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Trumbull church ‘reclaims’ the meaning of the holiday season

November 23, 2018

TRUMBULL — The Trumbull Congregational Church is reclaiming the meaning of the holiday season this year by switching things up at its annual holiday fair.

“We wanted to reclaim the meaning of the season and give people an opportunity to buy gifts that make a difference in the world,” said Rev. Tim Hare. “We really want to educate ourselves and the community about poverty issues.”

This fair, which will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the church on Saturday, Dec. 1, puts a unique spin on a typical holiday fair.

Rather than leaving the fair with a gift, attendees can leave with a certificate to indicate that they’ve made a donation to help someone in need this holiday season in the name of a loved one.

Those who attend the fair will be greeted by a marketplace of informational displays. Each display is focused on a different community group that worked with nOURish Bridgeport. The donations made at the fair will go toward providing necessities to someone in need in Bridgeport, mainly a meal.

“At those displays, you can learn about who you are feeding, what are the hunger issues locally and globally, how many people are food insecure and don’t know where their next meal is coming from,” Hare said. “It lets us help out our neighbors in Bridgeport.”

Hare said the Trumbull church is working closely with the United Congregation Church in Bridgeport on this year’s fair.

Walking through the fair, attendees can purchase a dinner from someone who attends one of the soup kitchens being sponsored through the fair, including a more private one for domestic violence survivors. Attendees can even make donations to the baby center, where they can purchase diapers or formula.

“You have a menu in your hand and you mark the things you want to purchase and then you get a tribute gift — you can get a car with an insert that will describe what the gift is,” Hare said.

The tribute gift explains that a contribution in honor of that person was made and specifies the specific category the donation was made for — be it the baby center, one of the soup kitchens, or otherwise.

“All the programs are in Bridgeport. All these tribute gifts are going to support nOURish Bridgeport,” Hare said. “It makes a difference.”

But for those who might want to take home an additional gift, there will be handmade, fair-trade gifts from Serve International and Our Woven Community — a group made up of local resettled refuge women from all over the world.

The church has done similar fairs for the last two years. Hare said this year’s fair will just be a different version of the same concept. Yearly, the church has managed to raise more than $10,000.

“That’s a lot of money going out into the world to make a difference,” Hare said.

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