Who We Are
We are a California and federal non-profit formed in 2017. Our members come from all over the peninsula and beyond. We are motivated to meet unmet needs of the children in our community and take joy in collaborating with each other and local partner agencies.
Our members show our love for children in action according to the charge of our organization’s founder, Mary Virginia Merrick, Servant of God: “Nothing is ever too much to do for a child.”
We have become friends through our work. We invite others to join us, so we can make an even greater impact in the future. The need is there!
"The Christ Child Society of Monterey Bay is a non-profit organization of members dedicated to service to children in need, for love of the Christ Child."
“A good start to life and learning for children in our community.”
2019-22 Board of Directors
& Additional Leaders
Vice President, Membership
Gretchen Mueller Burke
Secretary, Bundles Chair
Shower of Love Co-Chair
Strategic Planning Chair
Shower of Love Co-Chair
Walking Group Chair
Fr. Rodrigo Paredes
Dr. Alfred Forrest
Yarns & Stitches Chair
We started as have many chapters of the National Christ Child Society, with former members of other chapters finding each other in a new community and deciding to bring Christ Child alive to meet the needs of local children. In our case, a former member of the Washington, D.C. chapter reached out to NCCS and was connected with a former member of the Pasadena, CA chapter in June of 2014.
Over two years, they brought friends, family and other Christ Child alums together to create an unofficial initial board of six women to evaluate local needs, potential member interests, and how to introduce ourselves to the community.
Our first public outreach was the Shower of Love at Crespi Hall at the Carmel Mission in December 2016. That successful event brought local awareness, in-kind and financial support, and members, which enabled us to start our baby bundle program and dip our toes into early childhood literacy. In early 2017 we officially formed as the Christ Child Society of Monterey Bay.
Since then we have continued to meet the needs of under-resourced infants and build early childhood literacy. We have grown to more than50 members, and are working to grow both our membership and impact in the years to come.
The National Christ Child Society
The Christ Child Society of Monterey Bay is one of the newest chapters of the National Christ Child Society, which has been serving children in need for more than 130 years. Forty-five Christ Child chapters across the United States currently work to meet basic needs of under-resourced children and families, with most chapters operating programs that benefit infants and promote literacy. The national organization helps all chapters to grow, share best practices and enhance their programs, and helps new chapters to form.
“The personal element brings true charity into life. The giver and the gift are brought together and the link is the Christ Child.”
Mary Virginia Merrick, Servant of God
The Christ Child Society was formed in 1887 in Washington, D.C., by Mary Virginia Merrick, Servant of God. Our remarkable founder started the Christ Child Society as a teenager from a recumbent wheelchair by gathering family and friends together to provide local infants expected at Christmastime with essential clothing and blankets. She grew the Christ Child Society in Washington, D.C., by creating many programs to assist children, with the charism in mind that we should see the Christ Child in every child and treat them accordingly. Soon more chapters formed and the National Christ Child Society was established to connect them together. Mary Virginia Merrick continued her work and leadership of Christ Child until her death in 1955 at the age of 88.