The Ladies Guild at Memorial Presbyterian Church continues the annual tradition of gathering Christmas gift bags for those in need from its congregation. In support of the Christmas Bureau, the Guild put together nine gift bags for men and 28 gift bags for women, along with 84 jars of Love Soup, during a span of about three weeks.
“Given the circumstances, we did very well,” said Lois Snider-Norby, Guild member. “It’s because we are called to share the light and the love of Christ, and so that’s why we want to be able to do this at this time of the season, to let people know that we care, and we do this set of love for them,” she added.
The gift bags consist of personalized gifts, a jar full of soup ingredients made with love, and a festive card wishing individuals a merry Christmas.
“It’s quite a personal contact between the two people. We don’t know who the receiver is. We just like to put a card in to let them know that we are thinking of them, wishing them a merry Christmas,” said Snider-Norby.
Snider-Norby said COVID-19 posed several challenges to the process of raising donations for the Christmas Bureau.
“We have done this for many years. The Guild would have a Christmas party at the Legion, the first Monday of each December, and we would invite anybody who would want to come. They would bring gift bags.
“In the beginning, it was just for the women, and we would get up to 80 to 100 gifts.
“But with COVID we’ve been confined with what we can do. We haven’t done the large Christmas party where we were able to gather a lot of gifts,” she added.
However, there continues to be a strong need for the Christmas Bureau program, if not greater during this time, said Snider-Norby.