Last-Minute Donations Save Christmas for Church Kids

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A last-minute influx of goodwill helped a Chicago church provide enough toys for its annual Christmas Eve party for needy children.

    A last-minute influx of goodwill helped a Chicago church provide enough toys for its annual Christmas Eve party for needy children.

    On Monday, the Sanctuary Family Worship Center was 500 gifts short of what it needed to hold the party, but after a story on NBC 5, the donations started pouring in.

    The church, located at 711 W. 120th St., had 150 gifts on Monday, but less than a day later, had topped more than 2,000. More than 600 children attended the party.

    "We were praying that something happened, but because it was so close to Christmas, a day away, we thought, 'Oh my God, no one's going to come through, people are going to be too busy,'" a church official told NBC 5.

    It's not 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.

    "We really thought we were going to have to call and tell all of these children and all of these parents that they wree not going to have a Christmas, and that was not only going to break their hearts, it would've broke our own hearts,"