GRANBY, Mo. — Houses of worship across the Four States are taking part in a worldwide gift-giving program.

Granby Christian Church is one of hundreds of churches where people can purchase and drop off small items like little toys, hygiene items, and small books introducing recipients to the gospel. Those items are then placed in a shoe box-sized container.

Preaching Minister John Mehrens said his church has been involved in the program for 20 years. He said the faces of the children when they open their box make the whole effort worthwhile.

“A lot of the kids have never had a really nice present in their entire life, some of them have never had a wash cloth of their own, wash clothes, soap going out to them, especially little toys, it just opens up their hearts to the fact that people love them,” said Mehrens.

Mehrens expects about 250 boxes will be filled with items to be delivered to kids in 170 countries around the globe.