THE FAMILIAR Advent lectionary texts and themes of hope, peace,
joy, and love are given new life and
relevance when explored from the
perspective of the struggle for a just
peace in the birthplace of Jesus. The
Advent Peace Box—a resource from
the United Church’s Unsettling Goods
Campaign—can bring this concept to
life. Offered since 2014, it attracts new
users each year.
The Peace Box includes extra-virgin
olive oil, certified fair trade by the
Institute for Marketecology, scent-free
pure olive oil soap, and za’atar, a
thyme-herb mix considered a staple
of Middle Eastern cooking. The boxes
make wonderful gifts and allow people
to promote Zatoun products in their
communities while advocating for eco-
nomic justice for Palestinians. (Zatoun
is a non-profit organization that sup-
ports Palestinian farmers and creates
awareness for peace for Palestine.)
The 2016 Peace Box includes a USB
stick that contains intergenerational
story ideas, prayers, suggestions for
hymns, and a white gift service drama.
These resources can be used for one or
all four Sundays in Advent during worship, at a meeting, or at coffee time.
Order your Peace Box by November
19 to ensure delivery in time for
For more information, search “Advent
Peace Box” on united-church.ca.
I’VE BEEN A MEMBER OF THE UNITED CHURCH ALL MY LIFE, and have
been the Mission & Service Enthusiast at Richmond Hill United Church,
Ontario, for 10 years.
As a little girl attending church school at Zion Wexford United Church,
I was given offering envelopes to use. One side was printed in black with
the words “For God’s Work in Our Sunday School,” and the other side was
in red with “For God’s Work Around the World.” (I still have one of those
old envelopes.) Thus started my understanding that as one who follows the
teachings of Jesus, I was expected both to care for my church family’s place
of worship and work, and to help meet the needs of others.
It makes me happy to know that my gifts for Mission & Service are well
stewarded by the church and that they benefit our Mission & Service partners in Canada and across the world.
—Donna Smith, Richmond Hill United Church, Ontario
WHY I GIVE