Over the past Decembers in recent memory, our church has participated in the UCC denomination-wide offering called Veterans of the Cross. This special Christmas fund “has been caring for active and retired United Church of Christ clergy and lay employees and their families for over 100 years, providing emergency financial help, supplementation of small annuities and health premiums, and Christmas ’thank-you’ checks to our lower-income retirees” (www.christmasfund.org). With all the hardships 2020 has seen, giving to this fund, if you are able, is probably more important than ever.
If you follow the link to the Christmas Fund website, you can click on a video and hear Rev. Cathy Barker talk about a time in her life when the love and care represented by the Christmas Fund made all the difference. It was December of 1968, and Cathy’s father had just died after a long struggle with cancer. She and her mother anticipated a lonely and humble Christmas. The check arrived and meant so much—they were touched that the wider church remembered them.
I know that we usually have pew envelopes for this offering, but this year it would be best just to give through the website, www.christmasfund.org. I know that we have all felt stressed by all we have lost this year, but ironically, joy comes with giving and knowing that we are making someone’s life just a little bit better.