5 Ways to Give Back During Advent and Christmas

Advent is here and Christmas is fast approaching! During this time of the year, many of us are anxiously making lists, shopping for gifts to give loved ones, and preparing elaborate meals.

While those things are fine, we should also set aside time to reflect on the reason we are celebrating. Advent provides us with that opportunity to slow our pace and engage in spiritual preparation. As Catholics, we embrace the holy season, so our focus should ultimately turn to those who are less fortunate.

Our inspiration for showing this compassion and mercy toward others was modeled for us 2,000 years ago when the Savior was born. While others may pursue power and possessions, we know that the true riches in life are to be found in him, and our works of mercy are meant to show both our connection to that love and our obedience to his word.

Giving hope, love and help to the less fortunate is the spirit of Christmas. At Cross Catholic Outreach, we have numerous ways to help your family celebrate the birth of Jesus and share the joy with people who need it most. Our top five are listed below.

1. Christmas Catalog

Our Christmas Catalog makes it easy for you to bless the lives of impoverished families around the world, and it is a simple way to incorporate almsgiving into your annual Christmas celebrations.

The tradition of exchanging gifts is a joyful reminder of Christ’s birth — God’s miraculous gift to us. Be Someone’s Miracle by “shopping” for a meaningful gift for the poor that most touches your heart. Our Christmas catalog offers everything from a soccer ball for a child to to a home for a needy family. Experience the joy of knowing you will bring long-term blessings to impoverished families who have difficulty obtaining even the most basic necessities of life.

2. Box of Joy

This wonderful gift-giving program can be a meaningful part of your Christmas celebrations. By sending a Box of Joy — filled with toys, clothing, school supplies, a rosary and the Story of Jesus — you have the opportunity to share your Catholic faith and provide a Christmas gift to a child who may never before have received one.

Last year, thanks to the generosity of people like you, Box of Joy blessed 61,422 children, reminding them of God’s love. It’s easy! We’ll do the work for you. Select how many boxes you want, and we’ll pack and ship them. The gifts will be shared at a “Day of Joy” celebration event organized by our ministry partners, and a child will smile because you cared.

3. Lifesaving Food

No gift is more powerful than nutritious food. It is one of the most basic necessities of human life, yet one in seven people is hungry. More than 720 million people in the world are suffering from chronic malnutrition, and nearly half of all deaths in children under 5 are attributable to undernutrition.

To win this fight against hunger, Cross Catholic Outreach provides millions of Vitafood meal packages through a network of schools, orphanages, rescue centers, community-based missions and local partners around the world.

Now through the end of the year, you can double your impact with a gift of food* from the Cross Catholic Outreach Christmas Catalog. Your gift is a beautiful symbol of Catholic unity delivering hope to families.

*Until midnight on December 31, all gifts to Healthy Meals from the 2021 Christmas Catalog, up to a total of $5,000, will be doubled.


4. Clean Water

We take clean water for granted, but one in three people globally does not have access to safe drinking water. It is estimated that more than 2 billion people worldwide do not have safely managed water and still lack basic sanitation.

At Cross Catholic Outreach, we understand how clean and accessible water can impact a family’s health, education and economic progress. Water is a gift from God, which is why we include it in our Christmas Catalog. Please help us deliver this lifesaving gift to those families who need it most.


5. Homes for Christmas

As Catholics, we see the face of Christ in the poor. That is why we grieve when we see poor children living in makeshift shanties fashioned from wood scraps, sheets of tin and other discards. A shack with a dirt floor is no place for a child of God to live.

Many of the families in Santa Rosa de Lima, Guatemala, suffer under a crushing level of poverty, and better housing is one of their greatest needs. Join us this Advent season to bless these needy families with safe concrete block homes. It is a life-transforming gift that will benefit a family for generations to come.

Proceeds from this campaign will be used to cover any expenditures incurred through June 30, 2024, the close of our ministry’s fiscal year. In the event that more funds are raised than needed to fully fund the project, the excess funds, if any, will be used to meet the most urgent needs of the ministry.