26th November 2015
Christmas is a time of celebration, a time to give thanks and a time to share presents. But for families who are struggling to get by on low incomes, Christmas can also be a very challenging time. That is why I love Big Red Box and King’s Christmas Trees, our King's Christmas initiatives.
BIG RED BOX distributes gifts of food hampers donated by the church and local community to families who might otherwise go without over the festive period. It was launched in 2011 and has so far given away over 2,300 boxes. The scheme has been headed up by the brilliant Mike Reich and this year he has been joined by the equally brilliant Alice Tibbert. Last year we gave away over 1,000 hampers and we are hoping to equal that in 2015. Collections began early, and we have already filled 184 boxes! They will be distributed through Social Services, Lewisham Refugee Network and other local charities. We would love as many of you as possible to get involved. All you need to do is:
1. Get the food – pick up a list or use the website and decide what items you are going to get. You can buy just one or a few items, get it all yourself, or you can join with others: family, friends, work colleagues, class mates, group – you choose!
2. Get a box – if you want to fill a whole one, you can pick up a flat-pack box from any King’s Church London site from now.
3. Give it in – you can give a complete box or simply bring in any donations from the list. All items and boxes should be brought to any of our sites on or before Sunday 14th December.
You can also help in these ways:
4. Make a Donation – If you are unable to give food or a box in person, you might like to make a financial donation – we will do your shopping for you! Details of how to do this can be found on the webpage.
5. Volunteer! – If you visit a local supermarket in the weeks leading up to Christmas, you are likely to see our fantastic volunteers – dressed in their distinctive red t-shirts – collecting donations from generous shoppers. We are out again this weekend, and we need more volunteers! We also need people to help with packing and transport. If you would like to get involved, please contact the church office on 020 8690 5121 or send us an email.
KING'S CHRISTMAS TREES is another exciting Christmas initiative which has been running for a number of years. The Tibbert household loves a real Christmas tree – it is a part of our family tradition – and by buying ours from King’s Christmas Trees, we know that we are making a difference. Not only do we get a beautiful tree, but all profits from sales are helping rough sleepers and vulnerable people through the work of our Jericho Road Project. This year we are hoping to sell 500 trees and I have been told that we have already sold over half of them! Profits from the sale of just one tree can provide ten hot, three-course meals at The Feast, our weekly drop-in meeting. So, if you normally buy a real tree, can I encourage you to go to the webpage and order yours from King’s Christmas Trees?
The theme for our carol services this year is Closer, and it promises to be yet another brilliant event. Have you thought about who you can invite? Don’t forget you can pick up your tickets this Sunday – they are free, but it really helps us to have an indication of how many are coming! This week I am looking forward to preaching the last in our 'Follow Me' series, considering what it really means to be a disciple of Jesus and follow Him! And then in the evening at our 5.30pm meeting, we have the privilege of Terry Virgo preaching the final part of his brilliant series on grace. Definitely a great Sunday ahead, and I look forward to seeing you all there.
Posted by Steve Tibbert
Steve Tibbert leads King’s Church London, with sites in Catford, Downham and Lee. Over the past fifteen years the church has seen continued growth, both in size and diversity. Steve is also involved in Newfrontiers and regularly coaches other lead elders. His book, Good to Grow, was published in July 2011. He is married to Deb, and they have three sons.