La Jolla church gives away hundreds of Christmas trees

The UTC-area’s La Jolla Community Church passed out hundreds of fresh 6- to 9-foot noble fir evergreen trees on Dec. 12 to local families.

“These are difficult times for so many people. We wanted a way to bless our community with a gift of hope,” said Dan Sharp, worship pastor and coordinator of the church’s “Trees of Hope” effort.

Members of the congregation underwrote the cost of the trees and their delivery from Oregon. Earlier this month, the church sent out 20,000 postcards to households in the Golden Triangle/UTC community announcing the free tree offer.

People began lining up at 7 a.m. to pick up their trees, which were presented on a first-come, first-served basis. By 8 a.m., the line had swelled to 50 people. Free coffee and doughnuts awaited those in line.

Church volunteers helped visitors pick out the perfect tree and load it into their cars. By 4 p.m., more than 350 trees had been given away and even more were distributed throughout the weekend. In addition, 75 military families were also given free trees.

— Michelle Le Beau

La Jolla Community Church

  • Nondenominational, Bible-based
  • 4377 Eastgate Mall, east of Genesee Avenue
  • Senior Pastor Steve Murray
  • Sunday services: 9 and 10:30 a.m. except 10 a.m. Dec. 27
  • (858) 558-9020