Christmas In October
October. Is autumn really moving along this fast? You’ve probably just started to make your Thanksgiving plans; however, the DHEFC Missions Board is already thinking about Christmas!
Every year our church family takes a collection to be split amongst the missionary families we support, so that they might have some extra finances to put towards Christmas gifts for their children. Traditionally, we’ve done this in November. Due to logistics of collecting the funds and distributing them to our missionaries around the world, it seemed to make sense to move this project to October.
Christmas in October provides a wonderful way to encourage our missionaries. Last year, the Camiola’s, missionaries in Nigeria, spent their first Christmas in Africa. On their blog, they gave an honest depiction of what it was like–rough! The week before the holidays, their whole family came down with a Nigerian flu. On Christmas day, in the midst of hosting guests from America, their house had become infested with rats and cockroaches! How strange it must have been for their four children — Jocelyn, Nico, Josie and Noah — to be removed from all the familiar and comforting things that Christmas had meant to them while living state-side. How hard it must have been on John and Missy as parents, knowing that their kids were missing out on what had been their traditional Christmas.
After Christmas had past, our church received a note from the Camiola’s, expressing much gratitude for the money that helped them make Christmas a little more cheerful for their kids.
Being a missionary is hard, and the Missions Board is grateful that we have a church family that recognizes the hardships our missionaries face, and is willing to encourage them in an additional way. We know that Christmas isn’t about presents, but it’s about Christ’s presence. And so, because we are encouraged from being united in Christ, we look to the interest of others (Philippians 2:1-4).
In your church mail-box you’ll find a letter accompanied by an envelope. You can use this envelope to place your Christmas in October gift in the offering plate. This ensures that these special gifts do not get mixed in with the regular offering.
Please thoughtfully consider what you might be able to give. Imagine all over the world, parents could be explaining to their children that there is a church on Long Island, who loves them from afar and wanted to give them something special.
It’s all because of Christ,
The DHEFC Missions Board