God will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide a way out. 1 Corinthians 10:13.
This is the verse that began Pastor Dave’s 2018 letter to our college-student members. Copies of the letter were included in boxes that contained snacks, novelty items, home-baked cookies, and personal care items. 100 of these boxes were mailed to college students at the beginning of December, just in time for finals. These gifts from their church are intended to provide our kids a little boost during a stressful time of the year.
This tradition began about six years ago, when some Sunday School moms began to think about a way they could care for, and keep in touch with, Mount Calvary students away at college. “It all started with collecting leftover Halloween candy,” said Brenda Lund, our Faith Formation Assistant, and the coordinator of the program. “We sent the candy, along with a card, a letter from Pastor Dave, and a few added treats.”
The program has evolved so that now the boxes include nut-free options and just the right mix of healthy and not-so-healthy treats. A sweet card from the Sunday School kids is always included, along with the letter and a novelty item from Pastor Dave. This year’s box included Kleenex, Chapstick and toothbrushes too!
Treats are donated by families of the students, and fresh-baked, chocolate chip cookies are contributed by the Women of Thunder Bible study members. Parent volunteers then gather to pack the boxes and get them ready for mailing. “It’s a double ministry,” said Brenda, “because it also gives parents a chance to see each other and reconnect.”
Thanks to all who contributed or helped pack and mail boxes. They were much appreciated by the students! Here is a sampling of the responses we received from both students and parents:
I would just like to say thank you for the box of snacks and goodies I got from the church this week. It has helped deal with the stress during this stressful time in college.
(Student) asked me to share how much he appreciated getting the care package. What a great ministry! Special shout out for the customized, nut-free packing.
Thanks so much for doing this! My kids have always loved receiving the boxes and feeling the connection to church, especially at this time of year!
Thank you all so much for putting this together, this absolutely made my day and turned my week around for sure!!
We are so proud of our students, and loved seeing many of them home for Christmas!