‘Tis the season for birthday parties! Well, people may call them Christmas parties, but Calvary’s KidVenture sponsored a Birthday Party for Jesus this past Wednesday (12/20). Not only did they read the story of Jesus’ birth while the appropriate characters acted it out, but they also collected gifts for Jesus! The gifts were in the form of making cards for the residents of Evergreen Assisted Living across from the church and bringing diapers for The Baby Fold’s Healthy Start Program.
Jesus’ babies need lots and lots of diapers, and people were very generous in bringing them to the party. The cards for the Evergreen Residents will be given out when our volunteers go to Evergreen to operate Calvary’s Live Stream on Christmas Eve and celebrate worship with these precious people. I love that our children learn not only the very powerful story of Jesus’ birth, but also that Jesus loves it when we celebrate Him by giving to others.
The Baby Fold’s Healthy Start Program serves McLean and Champaign County moms aged 22 and younger who are expecting their first baby. Many of these young moms are considered ‘at risk’ because many don’t have the support system they need to answer important questions about how to take care of themselves during pregnancy and how to take care of their baby when he/she is born.
The following description is found on The Baby Fold’s website:
“The Healthy Start program is totally voluntary, but requires commitment from the mother to invite a Family Support Worker into her home bi-weekly through the remainder of her pregnancy and weekly during the first nine months of her baby’s life. A feature of the program is “mom is the child’s first teacher,” and the Support Worker brings many interactive ideas to help mom and baby relate and bond. The Support Worker becomes a trusted friend, a tie to other community resources, and a resource on so many “what do I do” concerns. Not only does the Support Worker help the mother relate to her child, she helps the mother build a safe and economically viable environment for her family. At the end of the Healthy Start program, the family graduates, knowing they have the resources and knowledge to manage the stresses of life.”
As you have your Christmas celebrations this week, I pray that you will be overwhelmed with the presence of Jesus and that you might consider ways that others have been in ministry with/for you and ways that you might be in ministry with/for others in the coming year. Praise God for the gift of Jesus!
About the Author
Debbie Reese is the Co-Directing Pastor of Calvary UMC