2021 United Methodist Christmas Shoebox Project
Sponsored by the North Alabama Disaster Relief Warehouse
For several years the Tennessee River District has participated in a Christmas Shoe Box ministry that is sponsored by the North Alabama Disaster Relief Warehouse. United Methodist Churches throughout the southeastern United States have worked together to provide our United Methodist missionaries and local pastors with Christmas gifts and the Christmas story to children they minister to. In 2019, over 13,000 boxes were distributed in 9 different countries: Panama, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Ecuador, and Mexico. (2020 data is still being compiled)
This year, 2021, we are asking the entire Memphis Conference to join us in filling 3,000 boxes.
The Christmas Shoe Box Project will run 5 weeks, from June 1st through July 5. In the past we did the project in August. Many churches said the Christmas Shoe Box Project overlapped with their back-to-school projects and requested that we use an earlier date in 2021.
Some of our churches are already involved with the Samaritan's Purse Shoebox project. It is not our goal to pull support away from other projects. The Christmas Story will be told across the world regardless of whose name is on the box. We wish you continued success in your ministry.
I am excited that we have an excellent leadership team in place. Each county has a coordinator who will contact local pastors for assistance in identifying a layperson in your congregation to lead in this project. The coordinator will provide your church with the boxes and information on how to fill them. Each box will need $5 to cover shipping costs.
The exciting thing about this project is that it does not have to be a large group activity. Last year, during the peak of the pandemic, the TN River District packed over 800 boxes. Individuals can pick up a box, pack it, and bring it back to the church. Some churches gave a financial donation and a small group of people did the shopping and packing for the entire church. There are a variety of ways your church can participate even in these challenging times.