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Christmas is all about giving… celebrating God's Gift to us in the birth of Jesus. But often this "reason for the season" gets lost, as we are, with too much "stuff" and not enough meaning. There is pressure to find just the right gift instead of focusing on things that really matter.

Give the teenager in your life a comfort toy for a child entering a shelter ($10 through Project Woman) or writing journals for teens in therapy ($25 through Wellspring). Your mother, who is always taking care of the family, might love fresh produce for 25 households for one week ($50 through Second Harvest Food Bank) or a food box for one family ($25 through Open Hands Free Pantry). For the handyman in your life, give two gallons of paint to a family in need ($10 through Habitat for Humanity). And, as you give thanks for your family this Christmas, consider giving each person who gathers around your tree a gift from Presbyterian Mission Agency to help families devastated by the floods in Kentucky. Items range in price from just $10 to $100.

Since the first Alternative Christmas Market in 2005, Covenant Presbyterian Church has raised well over two hundred thousand dollars, all of which has been given to participating agencies and organizations. Orders may be placed through the mail using the form on the back page or at the Alternative Christmas Market on the first Sunday of December.  Special cards with enclosures describing the organization you have chosen to support are provided for each gift so you can tell your loved ones about the gift you have purchased in their honor.

Since there will never cease to be some in need on the earth, I therefore command you,

"Open your hand to the poor and needy neighbor in your land."

Deuteronomy 15:11

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