Learn More About the Nation's Largest Outreach to Prisoners' Children
Richard opened the letter that had just arrived from his wife Selena. He smiled as he read about their children’s antics back at home. Selena mentioned that even though it had been almost six months since Christmas, the kids were still just as happy with the toys from their father as they were the day they got them.
Many kids tire of their toys within a few days or weeks, but not Richard's children. They held on to those gifts as tightly as they could. These gifts were special because they were from the children's daddy.
And daddy was in prison.
ANGEL TREE SERVES PRISONERS' CHILDREN
But Angel Tree®, a program of Prison Fellowship®, serves incarcerated parents by providing a pathway for restoring and strengthening their relationships with their children and families. Through Angel Tree, parents behind bars can provide their children with Christmas gifts and a personal message of love delivered by caring local volunteers. Families are also given free access to a copy of the Bible. Many times, Angel Tree churches continue ministering throughout the year to families they serve at Christmas.
Today, Angel Tree is the largest national outreach specifically for the children of prisoners.
ANGEL TREE RALLIES LOCAL CHURCHES TO SERVE THEIR COMMUNITIES
When Maurice signed up his daughter for Angel Tree during his incarceration, he was overjoyed to know that his family would be blessed by Christians who truly cared about them.
"[They] got to see Jesus' love," Maurice explains, "and not just hear … 'God loves you.'"
When churches and Christians come together to remember the prisoner and bless prisoners' children with a Christmas gift, they are creating a chance for healing and reconciliation to occur. They are, as Maurice says, bringing "hope into that household, and [letting] them know, 'Dad's thinking of you … Dad hasn't [forgotten] about you.' And most importantly, [that] God hasn't forgotten about Dad" either.
ANGEL TREE ENCOURAGES HEALING AND RECONCILIATION
But during her prison sentence, Deborah was able to sign up her children for Angel Tree, year after year. It was because of Angel Tree that Deborah was able to maintain a presence in her children's lives. And those sinful examples were uprooted from her family and replaced with a godly mother and a strong church community, thanks to Angel Tree.
"Briarwood Presbyterian Church became my children's Angel Tree sponsoring church," she says. "And they ministered to them not only at Christmas but year-round. They sent my daughter to camp. They also gave my youngest daughter a scholarship for ballet classes."
This holiday season, we invite you to partner with us and help the Angel Tree kids in your area experience God's love by meeting their physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.