Dear Friend of the Mission,

Merry Christmas!

It is with a sincere heart that I write this letter to you as we are in a critical month here at the Modesto Gospel Mission. For many of us, Christmas is a time of joining as a family and celebrating the birth of Jesus. It is a time in which our favorite traditions are represented – whether that is through decorating, baking tasty treats, caroling with friends, going on a family trip to choose a tree, or opening gifts. It is safe to say that this season represents joy – but does that joy exists for the homeless and low-income population? Christmas time for many of the individuals we serve is a dark time that brings feelings of emptiness and hopelessness. It is a time in which the traditions we have grown to love often are unavailable to them. However, because of each of your generous hearts and support, we can fill that gap with hope and love during this Christmas Season. Because of you, 235 men, women and children will wake up in a warm bed on Christmas morning here at the Mission, and over 2,000 will receive meals and gifts to take home to share with their families to begin new traditions. Most importantly though, it is because of your partnership and our joint calling, that we can share the real reason for the season, the birth of Jesus Christ our Savior, who brought true light into a dark world. Jesus said it best in John 8:12, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

On December 23rd, the Modesto Gospel Mission will be hosting our annual Christmas event, “Christmas at the Mission – Gift Drive and Giveaway” in which we will provide the community with a hot meal and give Christmas presents to over 2,000 men, women and children. What a time of blessing this is for the people we serve and to our donors and volunteers! In addition to the homeless in our community, this event also meets the needs of those that are battling the reality of poverty in disadvantaged and often dangerous neighborhoods such as the Airport District. It’s hard to believe, but even here locally, we have individuals and families who struggle with hunger and the basic necessities of life. The Modesto Gospel Mission’s doors are always open 24 hours a day to provide rescue from homelessness and hunger.

“Last Christmas, my wife, our 4-year old daughter, and I were living in a tent near a local park. For my wife and I, it was a time of darkness and hopelessness. For our daughter, it was really all she knew. I remember the feeling of waking up on Christmas morning and doing my best to make it special for my little girl. Someone donated a few small gifts to my daughter and I desperately wanted to be excited to give them to her, but the overwhelming feeling of hopelessness was crushing. In my daughter’s eyes, we were on a long camping trip; but in reality, I couldn’t find an escape. Shortly thereafter, I was informed of a life-changing program through the Modesto Gospel Mission and was challenged to give it a shot. A lady from a local church offered to watch my daughter so that I could get my life on track. I have now been in the New Life Program for over 10 months and that darkness that I felt has been replaced with hope. I have been redeemed! This year I am excited to spend Christmas with my daughter and the Mission has provided me with gifts to give my little girl. This year the feeling of hopelessness doesn’t get to take the joy of that moment away from me because Jesus has restored my life!”

As we head into Christmas and the end of the year, please remember that the Modesto Gospel Mission is offering life transformation to people just like Justin every day, but we need your help. We rely on you to make tax-deductible contributions at the end of the year to carry the Modesto Gospel Mission into the next year. Please consider making a year-end donation to us so we can move forward into 2020 on strong footing. We love you and appreciate you! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! May God bless you with His grace and mercy during this time that we celebrate the birth of the long-awaited King and Savior, Jesus Christ, and as we move into a fresh, new year.

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there
is no variation or shadow due to change.” – James 1:17

Jason Conway, Executive Director
New Life Program Graduate 2008

P.S. We are also excited to share with you our Annual Report that looks back on the last fiscal year and reports the impact your donations had on our hungry, hurting, and homeless neighbors. To see this Annual Report FY 2018-19 online, go to our website at www.modestogospelmission.org.