The Children’s Society have said a big thank-you to every church in the diocese which held a Christingle service over the Christmas period to help raise funds to support their work with vulnerable children.
They say that churches in the Diocese of Leeds raised a ‘phenomenal’ total of £56,216.
In total, across the north of England, Christingle services raised £173,635. More is expected to come in over the coming weeks.
Writing an open letter of thanks to the Diocese of Leeds, Joanne Nicholson of the Children’s Society says,
“On behalf of The Children's Society, I want to THANK YOU, your army of volunteers and those who support our Christingles enabling The Children's Society to work with the most vulnerable young people.
“A light shone across the Diocese of Leeds this Christmas, as armies of volunteers prepared 1000's of Christingles; juicy oranges, candles, red ribbon and sweets on cocktail sticks.
“Parishes opened their doors to the community, inviting in schools, uniformed groups, the elderly, the young, those who know and love God and those yet to meet with him.
“For many, it's the one time of year they step into church – a family tradition that brings in the start of the Christmas festivities. An opportunity for the church to share the wonderful news of Christ, the light of the world.
“There is much darkness where that light needs to shine and at The Children's Society we are working with the most vulnerable children who are victims of child sexual exploitation, who live in poverty, who suffer mental health or the effects of a parents solvent abuse. Young people who are carers for adults, young refugees living in fear and children who go missing from home, running from the darkness that brings such sadness and pain.
“Christingle is a celebration of Christ, but it's also a meaningful event that raises awareness and funds supporting those young people we work with across the Diocese.”
Nationally, just over £1million was raised from Christingle services for the work of the Society.
This year will mark 50 years of Christingle from Advent 2018 to Candlemas 2019, and the Children’s Society is inviting more churches to join in. “Think big, think 50, think orange and sign up for free resources at christingle.org/50”, says Joanne.