Ideas for Churches

The 2012 video for Operation Christmas Child in the UK, featuring the connection of one community in the UK sending shoeboxes to a community in Swaziland, Africa. (8-min version)




Shoeboxes are an incredible opportunity to show God’s love in action, as well as share God’s love in words, reaching children in need through the local church. You can do this during your church service by:

  • Beginning and ending with OCC-focused prayers
  • Reading Operation Christmas Child stories
  • Watching the 2014 OCC DVD


  • Prayer is the cornerstone of Operation Christmas Child (OCC), and we encourage you to make prayer the foundation of all your planning and OCC activities.
  • If there is a prayer ministry group in your church, share requests to pray for opportunities to integrate OCC into outreach and missions plans for the year.
  • Encourage your church prayer groups to pray during the campaign 1st – 18th November.

Launch Event

  • Host a Shoebox Sunday Celebration for Operation Christmas Child. Show a video to share the heart of the OCC ministry.
  • Cast the vision for making OCC a mission opportunity for the entire congregation.
  • Purchase our decorative GO Boxes with How to Pack a Shoebox leaflet placed inside to give to members of the congregation.  Order from our resources Page

Dedication Service (Sunday before the cut-off date of 18th November)

  • Have one girl and one boy come forward and pray over the gifts during the service.
  • The pastor’s message can be about giving to the poor, fulfilling the Great Commission, and other lessons on showing the love of Christ to the world.





Youth Event

  • Each teen puts together a team that consists of himself/herself and 3 non-churched friends from school. They all participate in a scavenger hunt where they ask people to donate items to be placed in shoe boxes. Go to a dentist office and ask for toothbrushes, local stores to ask for school supplies etc. The teens have a list of things to find and then meet back at church to pack boxes.
  • Serve at the local OCC shoebox ProcessingCcentre (for those 13 and older). Contact us at for information on locations and how to get involved.

Children’s church/Sunday School

  • Take an empty shoebox and ask the kids, “How many of these boxes would it take to hold everything in your bedroom?” Most kids will say 500 or 1000, etc. Remind them that the children receiving these boxes have very few possessions. This helps a child understand just how needy the kids receiving the gifts really are.
  • Present an oversized box, one that is a tub/large plastic container and has enough items inside to fill 4-5 standard size shoeboxes. Explain the reason for distributing gift items into several standard size boxes instead of one large package so that more children will receive boxes.


  • For all year round volunteer opportunities, please contact us at  and you will be contacted by the Regional Manager for your area, who will be delighted to discuss the various options with you.