Our Season of Service

Inspired by some friends of our family, the Marshall family has decided to try a new way of exchanging Christmas gifts in 2012. We hope it will become a wonderful family tradition.
For years, the four Marshall children, their spouses, and their parents exchanged gifts every Christmas, but in 2011, we decided the gift-giving tradition may need a change since we are all so blessed and in need of truly nothing. We decided we needed to find a better way to celebrate the true Christmas spirit.

We suggested that we each perform acts of service in the name of the sibling whose name we were assigned at random. Our service will be kept a secret until Christmas Day.

Our friend drew the names for us and notified each of us privately of the person who should inspire our service. On Christmas Day, we reveal who we were given and how we chose to serve by posting our stories on The Marshall Family Season of Service blog.

We hope this tradition will help us focus on serving our communities and each other during the annual celebration of the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

We invite you to come back to our blog on Christmas morning to read this year's service.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Dear Craig,

For your Christmas gift this year, we purchased two shares of a goat. With any luck, these parts of goat will help a family in a 3rd world country make a better life for themselves and others in their community. After we read a story about a family who received a goat and was able to feed their family and produce some income, I knew what I needed to do for our Christmas service! Heifer International is an organization that provides livestock, clean water, educational opportunities, and various other benefits to families in 3rd world countries. They also provide the families with the education necessary to successfully put the gifts to good use. The families in return agree to pass along the things they learn and the gifts given when possible. According to Heifer International, "The gift of a dairy goat represents a lasting, meaningful way for you to help a little boy or girl on the other side of the world. Goats can thrive in extreme climates and on poor, dry land by eating grass and leaves. The gift of a dairy goat can supply a family with up to several quarts of nutritious milk a day - a ton of milk a year. Extra milk can be sold or used to make cheese, butter or yogurt. Families learn to use goat manure to fertilize gardens. Goats often have two or three kids a year making it easy for Heifer recipients to pass on the gift of a goat to another family in need. This great investment allows our partners to lift themselves out of poverty by starting small dairies that earn money for food, health care and education." Hopefully with this gift, a family can provide a better life for themselves and those in their community. Merry Christmas! Love, Anthony

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