Locals gearing up for start of annual Operation Christian Child program

July 21, 2022

Yes, it’s already time to be shopping and preparing for Operation Christmas Child (OCC), a Samaritan’s Purse mission. The time is at hand to pack those red and green boxes (or one of your own shoeboxes) full of good things for boys and girls around the world. Many who receive the OCC boxes live in countries where there is no other method of getting God’s love into the hands and hearts of the people.

Individuals can be a part of reaching out with God’s love through a simple shoebox. Many parents or grandparents enjoy packing the boxes as a part of a family activity - a great way to help children develop a compassionate nature. Or if packing is not your thing, residents can simply donate items to a participating church or organization.

The Moody, Oglesby, Crawford, McGregor (MOCM) area has given strong support in past years. Over 1,400 boxes came in last year, despite lingering COVID-19 fears. Pre-COVID numbers were as high as 1,580 boxes from our area.

In recent years, 16 churches and organization from the local area packed boxes, loaded them in cartons and then transported them to Waco. Also involved were the McGregor Senior Center and the Interact Club from McGregor High School. Local restaurants Luigi’s, The Coffee Shop, and Milano’s Pizza, as well as the McGinley Library, which made empty OCC boxes available for anyone wishing to be a part of this community-wide project.

Though McGregor no longer has a drop off center at College Avenue Baptist Church, the new drop-off center is just down the road at Fellowship Bible Church on Speegleville Road.

“The MOCM 2022 goal is 1,500 boxes,” said Lissette Carpenter, church relations leader for the MOCM area. “The well-staffed and convenient center at Fellowship Bible Church will be able to handle, with efficiency and a smile, the MOCM tangible expressions of love-in-a-box.”

Boxes are packed for six categories: Girls ages 2-4, 5-9, and 10-14; boys 2-4, 5-9, and 10-14. Contents can include toys/fun activities (often considered a “wow!” item), hygiene items, clothing item(s), and school supplies. No food items of any kind are allowed, nor are any liquids or toothpaste. Neither are used items allowed. And a definte no/no is any war- or violence-related items. Many of the children who receive the boxes have already experienced violence and need no reminders.

“Right now is a great time to get started gathering items for your shoeboxes,” said Carpenter. “School supplies have already gone on sale! And would you believe, kids who receive the boxes rate school supplies as one of their No. 1 favorite. The other special favorite is a soccer ball and pump. Let’s get shopping and packing!”

For further information, please call (254) 840 3782.