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Breaching the subject of Operation Christmas Child

(155 Posts)
BeanBag7 Tue 22-Oct-19 22:30:00

Over the last few years it has become clear to me and many others that Operation Christmas Child is not as "good" and charitable as they appear to be. Many schools and youth groups still put together shoe boxes for them.

I want to let others know about this when they ask about which shoebox charity to support, or post pictures of their shoe boxes ready to go. But I dont want to look like a dick about it and be preachy.

Should I just leave it and let it continue, or am I right to make people aware of the issues? If so how would you go about it?

BeanBag7 Tue 22-Oct-19 22:30:59

Sorry that should say broaching the subject

ChangeAndThenChange Tue 22-Oct-19 22:33:51

Why are they not as good or charitable?

I’m not sure Op, i might lean towards just leaving people to do what they want to do

kitk Tue 22-Oct-19 22:36:47

I think it's fine to enlighten the schools/ youth groups who are promoting it but I wouldn't get into an argument or shame friends who do it in good faith

kitk Tue 22-Oct-19 22:37:26

Sorry, in good faith an unfortunate turn of phrase here!

BeanBag7 Tue 22-Oct-19 22:37:51

Basically pushing a very evangelical Christian belief on the children before they are allowed to open the gifts.

Toojudgypants Tue 22-Oct-19 22:38:51

Can you explain what’s wrong? I’ve not heard anything bad about them...

Toojudgypants Tue 22-Oct-19 22:39:23

Cross post

ChangeAndThenChange Tue 22-Oct-19 22:41:39

Okay, now I’ve read that I probably would share this with them. How awful, why can’t people just do something nice for others without a catch - it’s sad

SorrowfulMystery Tue 22-Oct-19 22:41:39

I sent a factual email to DS’s Head when he was in Reception and I first became aware that the school supported OCC annually. She stopped it immediately — she had never looked into it, and had inherited it from the previous Head — and now the school supports a local food bank instead.

Temeraire Tue 22-Oct-19 22:41:53

I think if someone who’s not an active Christian is doing it, or if a school with a significant proportion of children from other religions are doing it then they should be made aware that they’re supporting conversion work.
If the person doing it is a churchgoer or it’s a school with a strong Christian ethos then I’d stay quiet and assume they know what they’re doing.

ChangeAndThenChange Tue 22-Oct-19 22:42:31

@sorrowfulmystery I think that’s an amazing idea! To support local food banks

Faircastle Tue 22-Oct-19 22:43:35

You could suggest an alternative charity that does similar work without the proselytising or the homophobic leadership.
(I think Link to Hope does shoeboxes)

RolytheRhino Tue 22-Oct-19 22:43:39

Huh. I didn't know this. Thanks for the heads up.

Boobiliboobiliboo Tue 22-Oct-19 22:43:40

Never assume. Pretty much everyone I’ve ever told about what really happens thinks it is awful, including random strangers on Facebook.

Toojudgypants Tue 22-Oct-19 22:44:16

Reading that it sounds like someone who hates Franklin Graham and is out to only see the negatives.
I’m still going to do the box provided by my church. I will however, think more carefully about what I put in it.

MillicentMartha Tue 22-Oct-19 22:50:22

My local church read up on Franklin Graham. They weren’t impressed. They no longer support OCC or Samaritan’s Purse.

Catforaheadrest Tue 22-Oct-19 22:50:29

Alternatives? Our DCs want to do some. “Hope”?

CaptainTurdseye Tue 22-Oct-19 22:52:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MsAwesomeDragon Tue 22-Oct-19 22:53:19

We had a group of parents who contacted our school and expressed their concerns about operation Christmas child and the huge religious message they force on the recipients of the shoeboxes. We're not a religious school, so senior management took it in board that our atheist, Muslim and even Christian families really didn't want to participate in such an evangelical programme.

We tried Mary's meals backpacks for one year, but our pupils found it much harder to fill one of those backpacks than to fill a shoebox for some reason, and it wasn't a great success. For the past couple of years we've donated to a local charity who does shoeboxes/gift bags for local children living in poverty. Some of the pupils in our school are actually recipients of these gifts, although they themselves are unaware of that fact (the gifts are delivered to the family very discreetly so as not to ruin belief in Santa or cause any embarrassment to the family, the children don't know). This has been a massive success, with some children bringing individual shoeboxes while others get together in a group to put something together.

Do you have any more local charities that do something similar? You could mention that you donate to them rather than OCC because of the evangelical aspect. That way you're not completely negative about the charitable giving of gifts at Christmas, but you are planting seeds of doubt about the morality of pushing the religious message in order to receive a gift (that most people have given without the expectation of much evangelism taking place)

Boobiliboobiliboo Tue 22-Oct-19 22:54:25

Reading that it sounds like someone who hates Franklin Graham and is out to only see the negatives.

He’s up there with Hitler as far as I’m concerned. Evil personified.

BeanBag7 Tue 22-Oct-19 22:56:51

I know there are local charities who collect gifts for local children in poverty/difficult situations. However I dont know of any which do the "shoebox" style which seems to be so popular. I wonder if parents would be happy to bring in one larger gift for a charity drive, rather than a shoebox with lots of small things?

FamilyOfAliens Tue 22-Oct-19 23:01:32

Reading that it sounds like someone who hates Franklin Graham and is out to only see the negatives.

That’s a very simplistic take on the legitimate criticisms of OCC, @Toojudgypants.

You might want to read up on it yourself and maybe have a look at their video of bringing OCC into Nepal called “Reaching into Darkness”, the “darkness“ being Hinduism. It’s racism and imperialism rolled into one big manipulative message.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 22-Oct-19 23:09:10

Woolly Hugs the charity started by MNetters every year collects items for the children of Chernobyl - they have a wish list on Amazon could shoe boxes be filled with these items and then sent to Woolly Hugs for the children when they arrive.
Sometimes the children arrive for their four weeks in the UK with only the clothes they stand in.

Wheat2Harvest Tue 22-Oct-19 23:12:39

In short, Graham is a complete embarrassment to those who claim the name of Jesus in particular

The link is merely someone's opinion, which they are entitled to have, but it's not gospel (so to speak).

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