While these simple tokens can mean the world to a child in need, Williams said, there is a bigger goal in mind: spiritual nourishment.
"Yes, we might give someone a gift like this, but the gift of Jesus Christ is a lasting gift," Williams said. "That's something that's not going to go away."
The church is one of 10 throughout the region that are collecting boxes from its members and community, Killion said. The biggest contribution Rand First Church of the Nazarene makes is its organization and packing of the shoeboxes, he said.
"It's a zoo in here," Killion said of the process.
Monday was the church's first day collecting boxes, and it will continue to do so until Nov. 25.
Those who wish to donate can fill shoeboxes with small gifts -- Killion said a box could be filled for less than $25, depending upon how thrifty the donor is -- and bring them to one of the collection locations along with a $7 shipping donation for each box.
Shoeboxes should not have gifts that contain liquid or war-related items, Killion said. Boxes are sent to 130 countries, some of which may be experiencing periods of turmoil.
"If we can show some of these kids love in war-torn areas, maybe ... they could grow up with a new mindset," Killion said.
Area Operation Christmas Child collection centers include: First Church of the Nazarene, Rand; Oakwood Baptist Church, Charleston; Cross Lanes Baptist Church, Cross Lanes; Walton Union Church, Walton; Summersville Baptist Church, Summersville; Christian Faith Center, Van; Highlawn Baptist Church, St. Albans; Hillcrest Baptist Church, Spencer; Switzer Church of God, Switzer; Lovers Leap Baptist Church, Ansted; Mount Vernon Baptist Church, Hurricane; Mount Zion Baptist Church, Ashton; Milton Presbyterian Church, Milton; and Parchment Valley Baptist Church, Ripley.
Churches will take donations until Monday, but hours vary. For information, call the church or visit www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/drop-off-locations/
Reach Rachel Molenda at rachel.mole...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5102.