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Alternative Christmas

Special Giving Options

What gift will you give this year?

It may seem like a simple question, but as we reflect on the lessons of Advent we often find that the "stuff" we give falls short of the true gifts of the season - Hope, Joy, Peace and Love. Global Ministries believes that these rare and precious gifts should be shared globally.

With an Alternative Christmas Gift you honor your loved ones and make a difference in the lives of people around the world. It is a gift that does not get returned, a gift that never breaks, a gift that does not require a trip to the overcrowded mall, and a gift that will be deeply cherished by all who receive it.

This year, Global Ministries invites you to surprise friends and family with a gift that cannot be found on any shelf - give Hope, give Joy, give Peace, and give Love with an Alternative Christmas gift.

To participate in this sharing of God's abundant life you can give online or by sending a check along with the information form to:

Global Ministries
Office of Resource Development
P.O. Box 1986
Indianapolis, IN 46206-1986

Please indicate the name and address of your honoree(s) and the designation you have chosen. We can either send you a special Global Ministries Christmas card for each person that you give an alternative gift to, or we can send the Christmas card directly to the person(s) with a photo of the work you are supporting. If you give your gift online, you also have the option of sending an e-card to your honoree(s).  You will receive a receipt for your gift along with a letter of appreciation for your support.

 Alternative Christmas Special Giving Options

Each of your Alternative Christmas gifts can be designated for any of the following categories, or to any other Special Projects on the Global Ministries website, listed under each Mission Area.  Thanks to the generous support of Our Church's Wider Mission and Disciples Mission Fund, 100% of your gift will go towards the stated cause without administrative fees.

A General Gift to Global Ministries

Your general support of the work of Global Ministries is critical. Whether through mission personnel, building global partnerships, providing educational events, or planning pilgrimages to visit the ministries of partners, Global Ministries relies on gifts like yours to make these opportunities possible. Unrestricted gifts allow Global Ministries to provide important pastoral presence and international expertise to strengthen the global engagement and significant witness of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ together with global partners in the challenges and joys that Christians in every part of the world live out every day.  

Make a gift that supports the overall work of Global Ministries

Suggested Projects:

Peace with Justice

Ahmed and his family sold every possession they had to buy the first plane tickets out of Iraq when the Islamic state threatened their lives. Now this family of 10 is living in a 12x12 room provided by the Syrian Orthodox Church that is now hosting refugees from several neighboring countries in Amman, Jordan. They were able to escape the violence because international partners prepared a space to welcome them in.

Ahmed is just one of the tens of millions of displaced people globally seeking a place of safety and peace for their family, uncertain when or if life will return to normal. Behind each number there is an individual with a rich history, a web of relationships, and God-given worth. Nobody wants to be a number.

By working in long-term partnerships, Global Ministries is able to address global challenges in a way that provides both immediate relief and long-term recovery.  Global partner churches and programs offer  not only a radical welcome that embraces scores of refugees, but also a glimpse of hope for a future when they can return home to the land they love.

Examples of what your gift can do:

  • $25 supplies food and clothing for a refugee
  • $75 provides basic materials for a family seeking safety
  • $500 enables scholarships for young students attending interfaith peace workshops

Gifts for Peace with Justice this year will provide relief for displaced Syrians, many of these partners also responding to refugees fleeing Iraq.

Make a gift to provide safety for refugees

Education

For many families a choice has to be made between sending their child to school, or sending their child to work. Unfortunately, this decision is not made by the parents, but by their circumstances – often poverty robs parents of the opportunity to give their child a better future because of immediate demands on their limited resources.

Global Ministries works with partners that provide practical educations that families can afford that restore many of the opportunities that poverty has taken away.

Examples of what your gift can do:

  • $15 could provide school supplies for a child
  • $40 could start to build a resource library
  • $100 could help to repair a classroom

Gifts for Education this year will support King's Matriculation School in India. Or, you are welcome to give toward any Global Ministries education project.

Make a gift to expand education opportunities

Water

In many parts of the world, clean safe drinking water is luxury. Whether due to drought, pollution, or failing infrastructure, the search for water is a chore that often removes children from classrooms and parents from their work.

Global Ministries works with international partners to provide clean safe drinking water with systems that utilize local talent and equipment so that the water solutions can be sustainably maintained.

Examples of what your gift can do:

  • $25 could provide some of the needed materials for a well
  • $75 could provide a pump for a well
  • $125 could provide water for up to 50 people

Gifts for Water this year will support the digging of wells in China. Or, you are welcome to give toward any Global Ministries water project.

Make a gift to provide clean water

Microcredit

The power of micro-credit lies in its foundational belief that given certain economic conditions of the marketplace, many people victimized by poverty are capable of supporting themselves if they have access to the small amount of capital necessary for starting their own income-generation activity or business. In most micro-credit projects, groups make loans to individuals, and these loans are repaid with a small amount of interest so that additional funds can be made available to the group. These groups tend to be almost entirely female, as women face greater challenges than men in securing funds through traditional sources like banks and money lenders. Moreover, women are often the primary providers for children when resources are scarce.

Global Ministries works with partners who have established these groups to provide additional seed money, so that these opportunities can be extended to a greater number of people.

Examples of what your gift can do:

  • $20 could provide a loan for a woman to stock the shelves of her new shop
  • $60 could provide a loan for women to expand their microcredit group
  • $150 could provide a loan for yarn for an indigenous group of weavers

Gifts for Microcredit this year will support microcredit groups in Colombia. Or, you are welcome to give toward any Global Ministries microcredit project.

Make a gift to support microcredit groups

Health

Whether it is a devastating diagnosis of cancer or AIDS or something as common as a broken bone or infected scrape, medical problems are a misfortune that few families in developing countries can afford. Sickness not only means costly medications and doctor’s bills, but it also means a loss of wages. This can mean the failure of a small family business, an inability to harvest crops, or the necessity of taking a child out of school.

Through scholarships, the procurement of medical equipment, and the sending of medical doctors and public health professionals, Global Ministries promotes access to health care so that communities that have been ignored by the more formal systems, may be empowered to exercise their basic human right of health for all through prevention, treatment and promotion of adequate health care systems throughout the world.

Examples of what your gift can do:

  • $50 could provide textbooks for a medical student
  • $100 could help start a community health chest for communities
  • $300 could provide support for a medical clinic

Gifts for Health this year will support Ebola responses of partners in Africa. Or, you are welcome to give toward any Global Ministries Health project.

Make a gift to support health initiatives

A Gift for Missionary Support

For over two centuries, Global Ministries, beginning with its predecessor mission bodies, has sent individuals whose passion for Christ’s Good News and God’s People have served in a mutual sharing of God’s abundant life. Through disasters, dictators, and despair, mission personnel walk together with international partners and communities as they develop ministries that sustain all of God’s creation.    

The sending and receiving of mission personnel is essential for Global Ministries. Their presence fosters the deep relationships with international partners, and their witness in local churches in the U.S. and Canada during their home assignments make connections among congregations like yours to engage in the realities and complexities of the communities they work in.

This years gifts will be used to make possible:

Paul Turner is will be serving with the Disciples of Christ Community in the Congo assisting with their development programs that provide health, education, water, and economic opportunities.

Support this placement

Anne Gregory will be serving with the Church of Christ in Thailand assisting with their communication efforts that build awareness of human trafficking and other challenges facing the people of Thailand.

Support this placement

Share this Special Giving Opportunity with Friends

Over the past several years, a growing number of Global Ministries supporters have participated in Alternative Christmas. This is in large part thanks to people like you, whose passion for the life giving work of international partners goes beyond financial support. We hope that if you participate in Alternative Christmas this year, that you will also take the opportunity to share this seasonal option with friends and relatives.

To make sharing as easy as possible we've included pdf versions of these materials so that you can easily print them yourself to help promote Alternative Christmas.

Project Descriptions
Response Cards
Promotional Photo

You can also share the photo below on your own Facebook feed just by clicking the image, and selecting "share"



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