By Debby Schamber

For the Record

 

Things are ramping up in a big way at the Bridge City/Orangefield Ministerial Alliance as they get ready for to make sure area children have a Merry Christmas. 

It all began with notices being sent out through the local schools seeking parents needing assistance in getting their children Christmas gifts. In Bridge City, parents then went to the Ministerial Alliance and completed an application. Parents in Orangefield received an application and were able to return them. In the end, the result was the same. 

Since then the application process has been closed, but the next step of collecting monetary donations and the many toys needed has begun, according to Melissa Isaacs, director of the Bridge City/Orangefield Ministerial Alliance.  

“It has been really busy here,” Issacs said. 

But, she expects things to be even busier as they near the distribution date. 

There are several different ways the toys and donations are collected. 

 One way is for everyone who participates in the Bridge City Christmas parade donates an unwrapped toy in lieu of an entry fee. The parade “One Starry Night” is slated for6 p.m. December 8th. 

Angel trees are at most of the Bridge City/Orangefield area churches. A person can elect to sponsor a child or family. They can also simply make a donation. 

Local businessman Scot Shaffer, of Farmer’s Insurance, has been busy collecting toys too. He annually donates hundreds of sports balls to the Ministerial Alliance.

In addition, it is not uncommon for other local businesses to offer to help too. They have called offering to collect funds or sponsor a child or family for Christmas. But, it doesn’t stop with just businesses offering a piece of their heart, local citizens also make the calls to do what they can to help too, Issacs said. 

The community can also help the cause by attending The Light of the World holiday performance. The event will be 6:30 p.m. Dec. 7th at the Bridge City High School cafeteria. Admission is $5 per person and all the proceeds benefit the Ministerial Alliance. 

Organizers with the Light of the World, also known as GLOW, Go Light Our World, have said the program is designed to use the gifts and talents of the youth in the community to provide an opportunity to benefit those who are less fortunate. An added benefit is the Christmas presentation illustrates the true meaning and heart of Christmas. 

Expected performances are from some groups such as the BCHS Strutters, Cardinal Singers, Concert Choir and Drama Department. Also performing are members of the Tiger Rock’s Competition Team. There will definitely be something for everyone at this holiday show with other fun, fabulous performances. 

The first Light of the World was held in 2003. It was held every year until Hurricane Ike in 2008. The program restarted in 2015. Since then, community members have been eagerly awaiting an encore performance.

Following the fundraiser, Issacs and her volunteers will use the funds collected to fill in the gaps to meet the needs of the children. They intend to go shopping on Dec. 10th. They have a goal for each child to receive roughly $75 worth of items for Christmas. In addition to toys, she plans to give each child a shirt, pants and shoes. 

Plus, area seniors in the Bridge City/Orangefield area will receive gift cards too. They will receive $25 each from K-Dans and Walmart. 

Distribution is set for Dec. 14th at the First Baptist Church located at 200 W. Roundbunch. Santa is expected to be there handing out holiday cheer. Plus there will be a prayer tent on the premises. 

To make a donation or for more information contact the Bridge City/Orangefield Ministerial Alliance located at 285 W. Roundbunch Road or at 409-735-8296