Students at Holy Rosary School in Medford, in partnership with young people from four other parishes, collected 260 boxes of joy to be sent as Christmas gifts to children in developing countries.
On Wednesday morning, students and staff participated in a ceremony where Father Patrick McConnell blessed the boxes and explained that just as God blesses us, we in turn are to share these blessings with others. “It is because we are blessed that we can do it,” he said.
Cross Catholic Outreach’s Box of Joy is a Christmas ministry calling on people across the United States to bring hope and happiness to thousands of children living in extreme poverty around the world. Parishes, schools, churches, groups and families can wrap gift boxes with gifts like small toys, bar soap, pencils, toothbrush, toothpaste, hard candy, crayons , coloring books or t-shirts. Each box will include a rosary and “The Story of Jesus”, in the recipient’s native language.
In 2018, 620 parishes across the country participated in the Box of Joy program to help make Christmas brighter for 58,030 children in the countries of Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Haiti and the Dominican Republic. The goal this year is to collect 85,000 boxes.
“Many of these children had never received a Christmas present before,” said Mike Bub, director of religious education at Holy Rosary Ward. He praised the children of the Holy Rosary for their generosity.
“It is because of you that they will have a brighter Christmas morning,” he said, explaining that helping others “is what Jesus wants us to do.”