With the interviewing of recipient families having been completed, Adopt-A-Family officials are now gearing up for the Dec. 14 delivery day, designed to make “a magical Christmas” a reality for more than 400 families living in some of downtown’s poorest neighborhoods.Since it was launched 23 years ago, Adopt-A-Family has made possible for thousands of struggling families with children in the skid row area to celebrate Christmas with gifts and food generously donated by the local community.Prior to delivery day, Adopt-A-Family has scheduled several opportunities for people to assist in the program. Among them:—Sorting and packaging of food boxes, where contributions (many from Catholic schools) are assembled (Nov. 30 and Dec. 7). —Gift wrapping, the week prior to delivery, when gift boxes are completed (Nov. 30 and Dec. 7). —Staging for delivery day, when volunteers are needed to help unload the many cars and trucks that come to the Cathedral to drop off gifts (Dec. 9-13).On Dec. 14, delivery is preceded by a prayer service led by Archbishop José Gomez, who then participates in the delivery, generally completed by 11 a.m. There is a particular need for volunteers with trucks or very large cars.And, there is always an opportunity available for individuals, families or groups to adopt one of the 400 families served by the program, said Lydia Gamboa, Adopt-A-Family coordinator. (For information on volunteer opportunities, contact Gamboa at (213) 637-7501.)In a message to prospective donors and volunteers, Msgr. Terrance Fleming, Adopt-A-Family director, drew upon the example of Pope Francis wading into crowds, reaching out to embrace the faithful, regardless of their stature. He also noted that in his World Youth Day homily last summer, the pope offered this challenge: “Jesus is calling you to be a disciple with a mission! Go, do not be afraid, and serve!”“These are three simple ideas,” said Msgr. Fleming, “that when put into action give us a chance to make a substantial difference in the lives of our brothers and sisters who live with challenges we can only imagine.” Donations via check can be sent to Adopt-A-Family, Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, 555 W. Temple St., Los Angeles, CA 90012. Please make checks payable to Adopt-A-Family. Credit card donations are also accepted.{gallery width=100 height=100}gallery/2013/1122/adopt/{/gallery}