Massachusetts Church Gives Away 1,000 Pairs of Kid's Sneakers to 'Transform' City for Jesus
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A Massachusetts church recently gave away more than 1,000 pairs of sneakers to kids in need.
Vox Church in Springfield partnered with its local Boys & Girls Club chapter to host a community "Back To School Giveaway Event" where they distributed 1,200 pairs of shoes, backpacks, and school supplies.
More than 400 families were blessed at the church's third annual event which included carnival-style activities such as bounce houses, cotton candy, and popcorn.
"We're so grateful to have been able to host our third-annual Back-to-School Sneaker Event," said Vox Church Springfield Campus Pastor Matt DeCiccio. "We are thankful to be able to love and serve the Springfield community through this event."
Vox Springfield team member Dan Tedone, who organized the event, told the Christian Post the event began after DeCiccio looked for ways to "make an impact in the city."
"By the third year, the event has an amazing reputation in the city and local businesses and churches were ready to donate funds or products," Tedone said.
Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno attended the event and described it as "wonderful" and "heartfelt".
"Having been at prior Vox Church events, their efforts and the efforts from our Springfield Boys and Girls Club are so heartfelt. It was truly a wonderful event," he said in a statement.
Tedone shared that the outreach is also an opportunity to share the love of Jesus Christ.
"We don't merely give the students new sneakers. A volunteer sits down across from them, asks them their name, how old they are, what they like to do, and then asks if they can take off their shoes and wash their feet," Tedone explained.
He added, "Every child has the option to say no, and we will always respect their decision, but over 95% of the students in attendance say yes. Volunteers wash the students' feet, explaining that we serve because Jesus served us. In many cases, this action leads to an opportunity to pray with the child and the parents."
Tedone said he is believing the outreach will change the city of Springfield and "see New England transformed from the least-churched region in America to the most spiritually vibrant place on earth."
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