ChristmasGivingTree_2013.jpgChristmas gifts for those in need

During the Christmas season Christians take particular care to think of those in need. Here are some opportunities for you to share your abundance with near-by neighbors.

Christmas presents
The Christmas Giving Tree is up in the church's atrium and decorated with opportunities to give gifts to children, seniors and young mothers. Please take a tag and return your gift, with the tag attached, by Dec. 8 to the bin in the atrium. Gifts for Bethel New Life, New Moms, and Uptown should not be wrapped. Gifts for Circle Family Healthcare Network should be wrapped.

Warm clothes for children
Grace School sixth-grade Girl Scouts are collecting gently used, clean, cold-weather children’s clothes, including outerwear, backpacks and footwear, or new underwear and socks, for distribution at First United’s Kids’ Kloset. There is a special need for larger sizes (12- 20), boys’ clothes, and like-new shoes and coats. There will be a bin in the atrium through Dec. 8.

Christmas stockings for the Night Ministry
The Social Ministry Committee will fill Christmas stockings for homeless teens and young adults served by Chicago’s Night Ministry. Please donate socks, hand warmers, gloves, gum, hard candy, mints, tooth brushes and travel-sized toiletries. Items can be dropped in the bin in the atrium through Dec. 15.

Dinner at Uptown
Julie Christopher is organizing volunteers for the annual holiday dinner for clients and neighbors at Chicago’s Uptown Ministry (ChUM), 4720 N. Sheridan Road, on Wednesday, Dec. 11. Come and work at the event, or make mashed potatoes and cupcakes ahead of time. Contact Julie for more information (

Advent_Candle_Of_Hope_1039672.jpgBring an Advent Thankoffering

The Stewardship Committee invites you to observe the season of Advent by reflecting on the many ways in which God has blessed you, and in response, to consider making an Advent Thankoffering. Last year Grace members made Advent Thankofferings in recognition of many blessings, including good health, a new job, the support of friends during difficult times, or simply the gift of every new day and the promise of life in Christ. (You can read an Advent Thankoffering Giving Story by Jane and Lyle Mortensen here.)

The 2013 Advent Thankoffering will support our worship ministry at Grace. You may use the special Thankoffering envelope that you received in the mail. If you write a check, please add the word “Thankoffering” on the memo line. To give online, insert the word “Thankoffering” in the “Other” option on the web form.