Mission Arlington’s Christmas Store offers hope for struggling families


Grace Lauderdale

Stuffed toys await distribution at Mission Arlington’s Christmas Store.

Grace Lauderdale, Staff Writer

ARLINGTON, Texas – A local non-profit aspires to bring hope by providing thousands of parents the ability to shop for gifts this holiday season.

Mission Arlington Executive Director Tillie Burgin said Mission Arlington has helped meet physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the community since 1986. As they spent time with the people, they recognized the needs and helped meet them. One such need was for struggling families to be able to provide gifts for their children at Christmas.

The Christmas store is in the In His Name Building on Mission Arlington’s campus, 210 W. South St. It was born with a vision to provide free gifts so families could save their money for critical expenses and still celebrate the holiday season with their children.

“Last year 36,000 children received gifts, and everyone heard the Christmas story,” Burgin said.

Sue Spaniolo, a Mission Arlington volunteer said, the Christmas store is operated by hundreds of volunteers. Mission Arlington invites people to bring their families to donate toys, food and their time. There are opportunities for people of all ages to make a difference. The store opened Dec. 3.

Cindy Dake, a Mission Arlington volunteer, said working in the Christmas Store has revealed to her the financial hardship impacting people within the Metroplex.

“It just gave me a sense of purpose that this ministry is reaching so many people from all over this area and that it’s blessing them during Christmas.”

Rocío García, a Mission Arlington volunteer said she’s seen firsthand the joy and relief the store provides families.

“There are many people who come here and leave verry happy because God provides in every situation they are going through,” she said.

Burgin said Mission Arlington’s primary focus is helping people understand that God loves them, too, that there is hope.

“We just want people to understand that God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only son [and] whosever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life,” Burgin said. “And the most important word in that is whosoever.”