At Crossroads, we have been sending Christmas cards to our students for over a decade, reminding them that they are not forgotten during the holiday season. This is the only Christmas card many of our students receive, and the seemingly small gesture can have a profound impact.
For years, the cards were donated by our mentors and volunteers, but as facilities tightened mail regulations, we began noticing a higher percentage of these cards being returned to our office because of violations.
In 2019, we began developing our Christmas cards in-house to accommodate facility regulations. In addition to ensuring that more students are able to receive a Christmas card, creating these cards in-house has allowed us to feature student art and a message of encouragement signed by Crossroads’ staff.
“By publishing our student artwork on the Christmas cards, we are not only honoring our students’ art but also reminding them that they are all a part of the body of Christ as they celebrate the birth of our Savior together,” said Eliezer Yeong, the Prison Art Project coordinator. “The responses we get from our students reinforce how special this program is, and that is why we’ve chosen to continue the program despite the hurdles of mail restrictions.”
Last year, 18,952 Christmas cards and letters were sent to our students, and in the weeks that followed, our office was once again flooded with notes of gratitude from students. Here is what a few of those students had to say about what receiving a card meant to them:
“I’ve lost nearly everyone I cared for while I’ve been in here, and yours was the only card I received. Thank you.”
– Lupe D., California
“I just received your Christmas card. Thank you so much for thinking of me and sending this beautiful card. I am very grateful to be blessed with this gift of joy and being thought of. . . . Sometimes it helps to know you are cared for, that you are important enough that someone took time, thought of you and wrote a letter.”
– Eliseo S., Oregon
“My heart was so touched by the Christmas card I just received because our mail room has been overworked trying to pass out mail to us. . . . See, I’ve been locked up for four years, and I’ve asked God to get a Christmas card from my loved ones, but none have ever come to me. I was heartbroken, but still I turned to Jesus. Then, I got your Christmas card. Tears fill my eyes even now as I write this letter to know each one of you signed it to show me you love me as Jesus does. . . . I couldn’t find the words to express the love each of you showed me, but I’d love to give my biggest heartfelt hug and smile. . . . I hope each one of you got all you asked for this Christmas. I did, because of you: my Christmas card. . . . Thank you for the love that you showed me. I can never thank you enough.”
– Bobby G., Texas
Would you like to help us ensure that every Crossroads student receives a card this Christmas? Consider making a donation.