A few weeks ago, I saw a reverse Advent calendar on Facebook. The idea of the reverse calendar is to place an object into a box for each day during Advent, then take the filled box to a charity of your choice—a food bank or a women’s shelter or a community organization that helps others.
Our church, Ascension Lutheran Church, South Burlington, Vermont, loves mission work–especially if food is involved.
Advent giving boxes
Every year, I ask our congregation to collect food for the Abenaki Self-Help in Swanton, Vermont, and I am always impressed with the love and care our congregation gives to people they’ve never met. So, I challenged our congregation during this Advent season to make some reverse Advent calendar boxes.
I wasn’t sure if anyone was interested, but I thought a few might enjoy getting involved. Last Sunday was the first Sunday in Advent, and I noticed some Sunday school classes were making wreaths.
Then, I also saw some kids decorating boxes. “What are those?” I asked Lydia, our superintendent.
“Reverse Advent calendar boxes,” she answered. “We’re going to fill them with food and hygiene products.”
“Great! Where are they going afterward?” I asked.
Lydia looked at me a little funny. “Aren’t you taking them to the Abenakis?”
“Wow! You bet!” I answered.
A moment later, Cheryl said, “The cookie exchange is next week.”
Yay, I thought. But all the fancy cookies I buy at the exchange are long gone before Christmas.
“And we’ve decided to give you the profits for the Abenakis,” Cheryl said.
Wow again. I’m over the moon!
How is your congregation or Women of the ELCA unit planning to help others during this season?
Kate Bruno of Colchester, Vermont, is a member of Ascension Lutheran Church, South Burlington, Vermont. She is originally from Pennsylvania and calls herself “the youngest member of the Ladies’ Auxiliary of the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia (my mother made me a member seven months before I was born) and a survivor of the Lutheran parsonage and hundreds of covered-dish suppers.” She has three children and five grandchildren who call her Oma.
The feature photo is of a reverse Advent box made by Ascension kids.