To my princess…from Mummy
Each Christmas, the Prison Fellowship offices are pressed to the limit, arranging gifts to be delivered to the children of prisoners throughout Australia.
Countless volunteers come on board to assist with this very unique and special project that touches to the very core of what Christmas really is all about. Love and giving. John 3:16 says ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life’.
This year the office in Western Australia arranged for the delivery of 1600 gifts to children throughout the State. I am a regular visitor in two prisons within Western Australia, and as such, I hear firsthand from inmates expressions of overwhelming gratefulness that their children received a gift for Christmas.
One inmate was weeping as she told me that the family who has custody of her child does not believe in Christmas and that the gift that was delivered to her daughter from Angel Tree was the only one she got for Christmas.
She was so appreciative that the gift had a tag attached ‘To my princess…from Mummy ‘. She said it made the gift so much more special for her daughter to know mummy was thinking of her.
A young inmate thanked Prison Fellowship for the gifts his children received. His spouse told him the kids were actually jumping up and down with excitement when the gifts arrived, and started crying with happiness when they saw they were from Daddy.
For the delivery of gifts to one region in Western Australia, we encountered several problems in the process. It appeared the gifts would not get to their destination. Literally at the last moment arrangements were successfully put in place so the children could receive their presents for Christmas.
The father of the children just happened to be at the Wandoo Sunday Service the week after Christmas, and with a very humble, grateful heart, expressed his gratitude to Prison Fellowship that we would care enough about his children to arrange delivery of Christmas gifts to them.
I was the one arranging the gifts for his children to be delivered and nearly gave up in the process. When he told me they were the only gifts his children received, I thanked God that I didn’t give up and that he made me realise afresh just how special Angel Tree is.
To many of these families, Angel Tree is the only extension of God’s love that they will encounter during the Christmas season, and we must never forget that.
By Maria Raine, Prison Fellowship WA Staff