A Chicago church is nearly 500 gifts short ahead of its annual Christmas Eve party for area homeless children, and the congregation is praying for a miracle.
"Please help us," Pastor Virgil Jones of the Sanctuary Family Worship Center said. "I can't give up on our children, they need you. Please have faith in the miracle of Christmas."
Donations are way down this year at the South Side church at 711 W. 120th St., Jones said.
As of Monday morning, the church counted 150 gifts. At noon on Christmas Eve, 633 children are expected to attend the party.
This isn't the first gift dilemma the church has witnessed. Six years ago all of its donated toys were stolen. In that case, a Christmas miracle materialized. The church received an outpouring of support with more gifts than they could have imagined.
This holiday, Pastor Jones is desperately hoping someone can help these kids.
"Failure is evidence I tried," the pastor wrote to NBC 5, "but success is proof I didn't give up."
Toys can be donated via the Chicago Toy Depository by calling 773-301-3053 or 708-439-8255.