Carrying out an annual tradition, Restorative Justice Christmas Card volunteers gathered for two days to prepare hundreds of goody bags for the people in San Francisco’s jails . The project is an effort to bring a bit of cheer into the jails at Christmastime.

Some of the volunteers who came together on December 12 and 13 had previously been involved with the work of the Restorative Justice Ministry, while others came for the first time. All said they came because they wanted to do something for others.

Accompanied by festive Christmas carols, the volunteers sorted donations of blank holiday cards that would be given to people in the jails. These cards can be used to send holiday messages to loved ones. The postage is provided through a partnership with the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department.

“I hope… they use them to reach out to someone in their family or friends’ circle, and sometimes that’s an olive branch to healing something that was broken between friends, between family,” said Connie D’Aura, a St. Stephen’s parishioner.

The volunteer group also received a visit by Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone during the project. He stopped by to see how the project was going and to thank those gathered for their work.

After hours of effort by this dedicated crew, roughly 800 goody bags were assembled. Some of the volunteers joined in two days later to deliver them to the people in the jails at the Hall of Justice in San Francisco and to the county jail in San Bruno.

Full story at SF Archdiocese.