Angel Tree helps at holiday time |

Angel Tree helps at holiday time

Church will help provide gifts to children whose parents are in prison

When parents are in prison, their children do hard time, too.

In Moffat County, 35 children won’t be with their parents on Christmas because their parents are incarcerated.

To help ease the pain of a parentless holiday, First Baptist Church is participating in Angel Tree for its 10th year.

“The point is to buy gifts for children whose parents are in prison so they have something on Christmas,” said LuAnn Kline, who is coordinating the Angel Tree program at First Baptist.

Those who wish to participate can choose a tag from the tree at First Baptist, 1150 W. Ninth St. in Craig. The goal is to purchase one toy and one clothing item for each child. Participants are asked to spend about $20.

The gifts come with a note from the child’s parent, such as “Daddy loves you.” Some of the Craig children’s parents are serving time in the Moffat County Jail or in prisons in other states, and one father is in a Mexican prison, Kline said. The parents nominated their children for the gifts.

Angel Tree is part of Prison Fellowship, a national Christian ministry program for prisoners and their families, founded by Chuck Colson. Most of the parents who nominated their children for gifts became aware of Angel Tree through the Prison Fellowship ministry.

Gift recipients remain anonymous, as do the gift givers. The children range in age from 1 to 17. Tags include the gender, age and usually the clothing size of the children.

Kline said she’s been impressed with the support that people have shown for the program. A tree in the church’s foyer started with 70 tags on it. On Wednesday morning, 25 tags were left.

Best-selling Christian writer Rick Warren, author of “The Purpose Driven Life,” encouraged people to participate in Angel Tree to give this Christmas more purpose, Kline said.

Giving to someone one doesn’t know during the Christmas season is a good way to give the holiday more meaning, Warren wrote in an article titled “The Purpose Driven Christmas,” which ran in this month’s Ladies Home Journal. Warren talks about Christmas being a time for sharing, worship and personal growth, rather than maxing out credit cards.

To find out more information, call Kline at the First Baptist Church at 824-5926. She usually is available during mornings Tuesday through Friday.

First Baptist would like to have all gifts returned to the church by Dec. 12.

Rob Gebhart can be reached at 824-7031 or

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