Angel Tree Summer Update

4948807592_c929696d09_zDid you know that Angel Tree is not just a Christmas ministry? That’s right. Organizations like our church who host an Angel Tree program can further our influence with families of prisoners by also participating in Angel Tree Camping as well as Back-to-School and other outreaches of our choice. Exciting, huh?

One of my May posts (A New Chapter) told how I came to be our church’s Angel Tree Coordinator this summer after the sudden and untimely death of our previous coordinator, Amy, who also happened to be a dear friend of mine. I thought you might enjoy hearing how our Angel Tree program has progressed this summer. As you can imagine, it has been bittersweet to carry on without Amy. She would be so happy, though, to know that prisoners’ families are still receiving our ministry.

Amy had already made the initial contacts for Angel Tree Camping when her accident occurred. After following up with those who showed interest, only one Angel Tree child along with one of his friends were able to attend camp with the kids from our church. At first we were disappointed with only two participating, but joy soon followed as both of these boys asked Jesus to be their Savior while at camp!

Since the camping program has proven to be the most effective way to see kids make decisions for Christ as a result of Angel Tree, it is every bit as important as the Christmas outreach — maybe even more so. If you have a chance to help with Angel Tree Camping in any way, I encourage you to do so. Some in our church donated money for camp fees and others provided needed items to put in the camping backpacks. Finally, our associate pastor, Stephen, bravely acted as sponsor for the boy campers that week. Thanks, Stephen! :)

In June, I sent Father’s Day cards to our Angel Tree prisoner fathers (also a plan that I knew Amy already had in mind). I’ve received three thank-you letters in reply, and two of those men desired ongoing communication and spiritual encouragement. Since it wouldn’t be a good idea for a woman to carry on ongoing correspondence, I’ve made the need known to the men of our church, and so far have one man willing to write to and spiritually encourage one of the prisoners. Pray for him as he reaches out to Adam. Please also pray for another man to hear God’s call to be the hands and feet of Jesus to a prisoner named Bill.

And then there has been Angel Tree Back-to-School. I knew I needed someone to take the reins on this one because much of it needed to be done in July, already a busy time for me since Don is on break that month. I asked my friend (and loyal blog reader!) Lisa if she would be willing to coordinate this project, and she gladly said “yes”. (Thanks, Lisa!) She has done a marvelous job contacting the families, enlisting volunteers to provide backpacks and school supplies, and making sure the children get the appropriate items. Just one more opportunity to touch these special kids with the love of Jesus.

One of the great things about Angel Tree is seeing the church pull together to reach out to hurting families. I plan to enlist major help for the Christmas outreach, so, fellow church members, many more opportunities to serve are ahead. And for those of you who aren’t local, you can help with your prayers. Consider yourselves asked! :)

Any other churches represented out there who participate in Angel Tree? Any doing summer outreaches? Fill us in — let us rejoice with you and pray for you, too!

“I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow… For we are God’s fellow workers…” 1 Corinthians 3:6, 9a

*Flickr photo by meddygarnet, Creative Commons License


  1. Your welcome Cheryl. You know, I really enjoyed working on the Back-to-School Project. It was such a blessing!

  2. Great job Cheryl and way to delegate. Very exciting.

  3. Isn’t it awesome to see how God continues to grow someone else’s vision through those that follow? They are blessed to have you at the helm, Cheryl!


  4. Cheryl,
    God bless you for this wonderful outreach. Even though you may not see the numbers you hope for, you are truly touching the lives of these young children and families who are dealing with so much.

    When we go into prison and minister to the men, I often wonder what their families are going through. I thank God that people like you, through Angel Tree, are reaching out to them.


  5. First of all, Cheryl, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your new header. Absolutely gorgeous!

    And no, I was not aware that Angel Tree isn’t just at Christmas time! It’s such a worthy organization to be involved with. May God bless you as you endeavor to accomplish His will through Angel Tree!

  6. We have done the angel tree on a personal level as a family; was unaware that there was more. Could you send me info regarding the “back to school” angel tree? I’d love to see our church get involved with this at some point down the road.

    Thanks for all you’re doing. Amy has left a good legacy in so many ways.


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