June 14, 2012
Mayor Vaughn Spencer attended a news conference today where the Collegiate Church of New York, along with Odyssey Networks, will co-produce Christmas in Reading: A Community Celebration, a one-hour CBS Network television special that will be aired on Christmas Eve. The program, which will take place at Hope Lutheran Church, will “celebrate the true spirit of Christmas and the unique character of the community of Reading,” according to Odyssey.
The Collegiate church also announced it will match the production grant of $50,000 it gave to Odyssey with a $50,000 grant for local organizations to help sustain their efforts to alleviate poverty in Reading.
“We appreciate the grant money, it’s a generous offer,” said Mayor Spencer. “We have several organizations in the City who can use it for their programs. This TV special will show the true character of our city. We are a diverse community, but we are a strong community, and a community on the rise.”
“We did not want to just come into town, shoot the Christmas Eve special, and then leave,” said the Rev. Robert Chase, one of five Senior Ministers of the Collegiate Church. “We wanted to offer a lasting benefit to the people of Reading as they courageously work together to fight the economic realities that have been thrust upon them.”
The Collegiate Church has set up the site readingpalove.org to accept grant requests from organizations in Reading who seek funding for initiatives such as providing shelter, fighting hunger and supporting education. The submission deadline is November 1, 2012. The grant recipients will be announced at the Christmas in Reading premier on December 11, 2012.
The Collegiate Churches of New York
(212) 233- 2312
City of Reading