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Operation Christmas Child a huge success

Cove Leader-Press

With Christmas over and 2023 behind us, Robertson Avenue Baptist Church reflected on the success of 2023’s Operation Christmas Child and began preparing for 2024’s Operation Christmas Child.
“We had a really, really good year,” said BJ Logue, Project Lead for Operation Christmas Child for the Robertson Avenue Baptist Church and Drop-off Leader for the area. 
The church crushed its goal of 450 boxes (they delivered 467 in 2022) with a whopping 600 boxes. They also received 85 boxes from outside of the church. Those boxes were filled boxes that were given out during various events such as Chick-fil-A’s spirit night and later returned to the church.
Robertson Avenue Baptist Church’s total was 685 boxes. Counting the drop-off boxes, they were able to deliver 1,921 shoeboxes from this area to the Dallas distribution center where the boxes were shipped off to other countries. This year’s Operation Christmas Child’s goal for the nation was to deliver 11 million shoeboxes. The actual number distributed has not yet been reported.
Each shoebox is filled with a variety of fun toys or items along with things like school supplies and hygiene items. Volunteers can also add pictures, notes, and cards to their shoeboxes. Logue said that small instruments like a harmonica, noise makers, and stuffed animals are always popular items.
The goal of Operation Christmas Child is to provide their local partners around the world with these shoeboxes as a means of reaching out to children about Jesus Christ. The boxes are generally sent to children in areas affected by poverty, war, famine, natural disaster, and disease. In 2023, a very large number of shoeboxes were sent to Ukraine. Many of the boxes from our area were distributed to Mexico and several South American countries. 
“Sometimes for a child, it’s the first gift that they’ve ever gotten. For some children, it’s the only one they’ll ever get,” said Logue.
Children who receive a shoebox are invited to enroll in “The Greatest Journey”, a 12-lesson discipleship program.
According to the Operation Christmas Child website by Samaritan’s Purse, “We seek to demonstrate God’s love in a tangible way through each shoebox gift. Children do not have to do or say anything to receive the gifts. We work in and through local Christians in each country who understand the context in their area. Simple gifts—packed with love in Jesus’ Name—deliver hope and joy to children all around the world, regardless of their faith or religious background.”
Logue said that the packed shoeboxes give the missionaries a tool to reach out; however, she emphasized that there are no obligations or strings attached to receiving a shoebox.
She said that those who do chose to participate in the discipleship program often reach out to others to share what they’ve learned, multiplying the number of people that they are able to reach through one simple act of kindness. 
“It’s not just one shoebox and one child,” said Logue.
To make Operation Christmas Child as successful as possible in this area, the Robertson Avenue Baptist Church collects, purchases, and organizes items for the shoeboxes throughout the year. The church has an item of the month to help encourage donations. January’s “item” is hats, gloves, and scarves. They also collect monetary donations throughout the year. Those interested in donating can find the church on Facebook or visit their website at

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