Thanksgiving marked the beginning of the busy season for charitable organizations looking to utilize the year-end spike in giving and volunteerism.

Lebanon Rescue Mission is no exception: The organization always provides a bountiful feast for the most vulnerable members of our community on Thanksgiving. And now, their annual Mission Food Drive, which began Oct. 16, will continue through to Dec. 6. and lead right up to Agape Christmas, an outreach program for senior citizens.

In 2016, the Mission parted ways with Operation Santa and began delivering their own goodies. The program focuses on seniors, and rather than toys, recipients are provided bags stuffed with several meals, gospels, Christmas cards and handmade gifts, such as knitted lap throws.

Red christmas bag filled with gifts
An Agape Christmas bag. In addition to Agape Christmas, Lebanon Rescue Mission is also hosting a meal Christmas day at noon at Lebanon County Christian Ministries.

The program has been a success, bringing joy and excitement to seniors as well as the community at large. This year’s event runs Dec. 9-10. Lebanon Rescue Mission is anticipating a broad community turnout for the “biggest Agape Christmas yet” following a successful season of generosity. Executive Assistant Catherine Krause told LebTown more businesses, schools, and organizations offered support for this year’s drive than last year’s.

Volunteers at last year’s Agape Christmas assembled and delivered 800 bags to men and women in 13 senior communities managed by Community Homes of Lebanon and the Lebanon Housing Authority. This year, the goal is to deliver 850 bags. Church groups and other organizations are working on the cards and handmade gifts, but they’re still in need of foodstuffs.

Organizers are asking the community to donate any of the items pictured here, including cans of chicken noodle soup, peanut butter, canned tuna, granola bars, instant potatoes, sleeves of fruit cups, and hot chocolate.

Lebanon Rescue Mission asks that all donations be delivered to the donations door, located to the right of the loading dock at Mission Headquarters at 1223 Bittner Boulevard in Lebanon. Donors are also asked to refrain from dropping off anything that can spoil or break.

The Lebanon Rescue Mission is currently celebrating its 75th Anniversary. The church operates three facilities in the City of Lebanon that provide much-needed services to members of our community. They provide food, shelter, sanctuary and health services along with what they call “cooperative evangelism” to those experiencing a life crisis.

  • The Men’s Shelter Main building at 1223 Bittner Blvd.
  • Agape Family Shelter For women and children. 139 S. 9th St.
  • Lebanon Free Clinic at 135 S. 9th St.

While the Rescue Mission is also asking for corporate donations, the organization is in need of non-food supplies to help keep their shelters running smoothly. Items include personal hygiene, paper supplies, cleaning materials and more.

Visit Lebanon Rescue Mission’s website to view each facility’s wishlist.


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