Congregations Prepare for Advent and Support Episcopal Relief & Development with Gifts for Life

Episcopal Relief & Development Press ReleaseOctober 18, 2016

Congregations across The Episcopal Church are preparing for the holiday season with Advent resources and gift ideas featuring Gifts for Life, Episcopal Relief & Development’s alternative giving catalog. In this year’s catalog, there are two “Good News of Great Joy” gifts that enable groups to purchase a flock of animals to sustainably alleviate hunger or a pack of essentials to help communities thrive. In addition to printed catalogs and brochures available from Episcopal Marketplace, supporters can download digital resources such as prayers, activity guides and an Advent calendar poster from the online Advent Toolkit.

“Advent is a wonderful time to engage your congregation in healing a hurting world through Gifts for Life,” said Chad Brinkman, Program Officer for Engagement at Episcopal Relief & Development. “It’s easy and fun for everyone to participate and learn how the gift of a goat, for example, provides nutrition and a source of income from milk and cheese. Each gift in the catalog is connected with a program that does a world of good, and hearkens back to our Baptismal Covenant promise to seek and serve Christ – in this season the Christ Child – in all people around the world.”

Gifts for Life items can be purchased online at, and givers can choose either a customizable e-card or an attractive printed card to be sent to the recipient. Orders can also be made over the phone by calling 1.855.312.HEAL (4325) or via mail through the instructions on the catalog or brochure.

“Inspired by the angel’s words in the Gospel of Luke, we created the ‘Good News of Great Joy’ gifts to amplify individual gifts through the power of community giving. It’s a way to make sure that every gift, no matter what size, counts toward making a lasting impact,” said Judy Sawler, Episcopal Relief & Development’s Senior Manager of Direct Response Marketing. “Giving through Gifts for Life is a neat way to help kids connect with world mission, and shows loved ones you care about them and our global neighborhood.”

In addition to Gifts for Life, Episcopal Relief & Development offers a range of gift packages to benefit its work featuring coffee, tea and other products through its Fair Trade Partnership with Equal Exchange. For each pound purchased through accounts linked to Episcopal Relief & Development, 15 cents will go toward the Global Needs Fund, making a lasting difference in fighting poverty, hunger, disease and disasters around the world. More information is available at

For over 75 years, Episcopal Relief & Development has served as a compassionate response to human suffering in the world. The agency works with more than 3 million people in nearly 40 countries worldwide to overcome poverty, hunger and disease through multi-sector programs, using the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a framework. An independent 501(c)(3) organization, it works closely with Anglican Communion and ecumenical partners to help communities create long-term development strategies and rebuild after disasters.