100 Christmas Dollies
Locally crafted dollies and a child-sized message about the birth of Christ are coupled with a Christmas feast and more.
Christmas begins in January when a local pastor-tailor purchases the needed materials from retailers and makes dolly boys and girls until all 100 are ready for the big Christmas event. On Christmas day we enjoy a merry celebration at the church along with a child-sized message about the birth of Christ. Not only do the children receive the 100 dollies you sponsor along with a hearty Christmas meal, but the carefully selected church body also receives a financial gift designated for furthering ongoing church building construction.
“Accompany us as we carry the offering, which we administer in order to honor the Lord himself and to show our eagerness to help” (2 Corinthians 8:19).
Thousands of handmade dollies were born of a woman (and her helpers) whose passions were Jesus, children, and handcrafts. What eventually became known as the 100 Christmas Dollies ministry began in 2010 and RETIRED in 2022 with our last significant gift going to Mariani Baptist Church in coastal Kenya. We’re preserving this page as a legacy to all of you who made this ministry possible. We couldn’t have done it without you!
Every year Surprised by Hope enjoys giving gifts at Christmas. After all, isn’t that what God did at Christmas too? He “gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not parish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). Our 100 Christmas Dollies program is filled with precious stories of gift giving.
Locally Made Dollies
Christmas begins in January when a local pastor-tailor purchases the needed materials from retailers whose income decreases after Christmas and just before school fees are due. Throughout the year, the pastor-tailor makes dolly boys and girls until all 100 are ready for the big Christmas event, which provides a steady income for him and his family. We love keeping people busy with their work.
Kingdom Business Application
Who receives all those dollies? Our founder keeps watch for those churches who hosted Kingdom Business seminars that resulted in some church construction activity. In talking with church leaders, she discerns whether members have applied what they learned and offered their increase in support of church construction. From these candidates, former 100 Christmas Dolly recipient church leaders recommend the next church gift recipient.
Christmas Message and Dolly Gift
On Christmas day we have a grand celebration at the recipient church with lots of singing and merry making. We share a child-sized message about the birth of Christ from three perspectives: Joseph, the shepherds, and the wise men. The message concludes with dolly giving as a reminder of the gift God gave us in the baby Jesus.
Food Essentials for a Week
Sponsors who give an additional $5 for each dolly also provide enough food for that child for at least a week (enough so that some of the children might tip over if they had to carry the sack without mom’s help). But don’t worry. If you aren’t able to add the food gift, we have a few friends who will help.
Church Construction Contribution
Not only do the children receive the 100 dollies you sponsor along with a hearty Christmas meal, but the carefully selected church body receives a financial gift to be included with what members offer toward continuing construction. As part of the local community and the body of Christ, we participate alongside recipient church members careful not to take the place of God as provider.
The Birth of Dollies
This 100 Christmas Dollies program was born in June 2010, during the founder’s first trip to Uganda, and immediately took on a very personal nature for her mother. The stories are many and can be found on our old website. The stories and photos from each recipient church for each year can also be found there. Read to your heart’s content. You won’t be disappointed.
Mariani Baptist Church (2022) Mariani, Kenya
Jesus Gathering Centre (2021)
Emmanuel Baptist Church
Grace Abundance Church
Mountain of Glory Church
Mjana Heri, Kenya
Victory Christian Center
My Second Year
Blog History (to 2020)
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