Christian Haven Residents Help Share God’s Love with Operation Christmas Child

Oct 26, 2022 | Life At Sunset

For the past year, Christian Haven residents have been among the tens of thousands of volunteers from around the world who help pack shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

The mission of Operation Christmas Child is to “demonstrate God’s love in a tangible way to children in need around the world.” Since 1993, more than 198 million children in over 170 countries and territories have received an Operation Christmas Child shoebox.

Operation Christmas Child has become a favorite activity for many of our residents and is a wonderful opportunity to share God’s love.

Purpose-Driven Activities

Sending out Christmas boxes to children in need is a year-long effort. Pat Fleming oversees Operation Christmas Child out of Spring Lake and works tirelessly to fill shoeboxes with toys, hygiene kits, school supplies, and other fun gifts in the name of Jesus.

Christian Haven’s work with Operation Christmas Child began when Dale Thielbar joined its Board of Directors. When the opportunity arose for Operation Christmas Child to work alongside Christian Haven, Pat was more than willing to take her show on the road and agreed this would give our residents a meaningful activity, while also maintaining both organizations’ Christian values. “Providing for children with needs, while giving purposeful activities to our Christian Haven residents is a blessing,” said Dale.

Demonstrating God’s Love

Throughout the year, Dale and Pat visit Christian Haven and help the residents complete an activity to reach the goal of packing shoeboxes filled with hygiene products, art supplies, letters to the children, and more!

The final (and most exciting!) activity for Operation Christmas Child is the actual packing of the shoeboxes. This is where the Christian Haven residents get to see all of their hard work throughout the year come together.

“This partnership between Christian Haven and Operation Christmas Child would not be possible without the generous donations from Meijer,” said Dale. “Meijer has been a good friend to Christian Haven in donating many items, including those for the hygiene kits and school supplies.”

Fulfilling Our Mission All Year Round

When Christian Haven joined the Sunset family, it was important to us to maintain the culture and community involvement that Christian Haven was known for in the Grand Haven community. Preparing boxes for Operation Christmas Child not only helps residents stay connected to the larger community, but it also provides opportunities to socialize and maintain fine motor skills.

You can participate in Operation Christmas Child too! Follow this link for more information on how to pack a shoebox and what to include. National Collection Week is November 14-21, 2022.