It's never too early to start groaning at the Christmas letters we receive during the holiday season. Starting around Thanksgiving the pitches and retrospectives start pouring in. I'm not talking about the reminders from charitable organizations about end-of-year tax deductible giving opportunities. I'm referring to the personal letters from friends acquaintances and those of whom we ask, "How did he get my address again?"
Here's a sample. Note the last line, in which the writer ensures that he will receive the full weight of any tax deduction your donation might bring.
Dear Friends and Family,
I am writing to ask for your help. I have been asked to go on a mission trip to Rwanda, Africa by my church. I was scheduled to go earlier, but due to conditions in the mortgage industry we had to postpone our trip. The help I need is two fold:
1. Pray for us as we prepare for and go on our trip
I have been "trying" to go on this trip for over 3 years now. You must go through a 6 month preparation and training course once a week to prepare yourself and your heart for this trip. Once again, it was postponed. Please pray that we go on the trip, that we are safe and that we help the many Rwandans we will meet.
2. Help us financially
We need to raise over $6,000 per person which is a total of over $50,000 for the team. I am asking for you to give a donation to help sponsor the trip in the envelope provided. Even $50 or $100 will be extremely helpful to get us there. I think you in advance for your generous donation. (On your check, please do NOT put anything on the memo line or the check will be returned.)
May you be filled with joy and peace this Christmas.