Immanuel's 2016 Packing Party

The 2016 Operation Christmas Child (#OCC) Shoebox Packing Party was a fantastic success. Over 120 volunteers packed and prayed over 140 shoeboxes to be sent out to children worldwide.

On November 6, Immanuel Lutheran Church and School in Palatine will be hosting a “Shoebox Packing Party” open to the entire community. Volunteers will fill shoeboxes with donated items – some fun, some practical, some both – and prepare those boxes to be sent around the world. The shoeboxes are part of Operation Christmas Child, a project that brings joy and hope to children in desperate situations worldwide through gift-filled shoe boxes. These shoeboxes are filled with presents such as school supplies, toothbrushes, combs, personal letters, a toy, and a variety of other small-sized gifts. For many children, their shoebox is the first and only gift they’ll ever receive. The presents and personal letters inside communicate that someone cares for them and gives them an opportunity to experience the love of God.

You’d be surprised at how much fits in a shoebox! All of this will fit nicely when efficiently packaged.

“Everyone is invited to participate in the November 6 Packing Event. It worked out so well last year,” says Trephina Bedell, Children’s Ministries Coordinator at Immanuel. “It will be a meaningful event for all involved. My family has been involved in Operation Christmas Child for five years and we have no plans to stop. I’ve been asked what’s most needed. I would definitely say nail clippers, washcloths, soap, small tools, combs, and also the “wow gift.” The wow gift is not something that’s a “need” – it’s a wish or a want. It’s a special item like Legos, a deflated soccer ball and air pump, a backpack, a game, a toy car, a wallet, a purse, or a doll. You’d be surprised what fits in a shoe box.”

Another way to participate in the project is to donate something to include in the shoeboxes – nail clippers, crayons, little notebooks, small toys, soap, combs, and more. Items must be new. For a complete list of accepted items, please visit Donations may be dropped off at Immanuel prior to November 1.

The November 6 shoebox event will be held at Immanuel, located at 200 North Plum Grove Road, Palatine, IL 60067. For more information, please contact Trephina Bedell at 847-359-1549/ Immanuel Lutheran Church and School, a fixture in the Palatine community for nearly 150 years, offers a variety of programs and services to the people of Palatine, as well as weekly worship services. More information on Operation Christmas Child may be found at