To the Editor:
The third week of November (12-19, 2012), was this year’s annual national collection Week for Operation Christmas child, a ministry of Samaritan’s Purse. Volunteers worked at the Colonial Heights Relay Center, located at Covenant Christian Fellowship, to count and pack into shipping cartons the shoebox gifts delivered from around the area. By the end of the week, 3,660 filled shoebox gifts were collected and loaded into a tractor trailer for their first stop at the Samaritan’s Purse distribution center in Charlotte, North Carolina. From Charlotte the shoebox gifts become a Gospel Opportunity for a child in one of 105 different countries served by Samaritan’s Purse.
A big thank you goes to the many churches, families and businesses that made it a goal and a priority to contribute shoebox gifts during National Collection Week. The Colonial
Heights Relay Center would like to recognize the following businesses for their contributions throughout the year and during Collection Week: Bretmor Headwear, Dr. Castro, Chick-fil-A - Southpark, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints – Meadowbrook, City of Colonial Heights Office of Youth and Human Services, Clover Hill Baptist Church, Covenant Christian Fellowship thrift Store, Dante’s Pizzeria, Hampton Inn – Southpark, Olive Garden Restaurant – Southpark, Randolph Market, Texas Roadhouse Restaurant, Tri-Cities Home Educators, YRC Freight, The many families who double-wrapped soap and candy for the shoebox gifts and the many small groups who took the time to make “lovies” and tote bags to put in the shoebox.
If your church or civic group would like to learn how to pack a shoebox gift for a needy child please email firstname.lastname@example.org  to request information or a presentation to your group.
Pat McGowan, Relay collection site coordinator, Covenant Christian Fellowship