Faith-Based Communities

Religious communities across New Mexico and the U.S. are getting involved in “Give Thanks. Give Life” an initiative to increase organ and tissue donation education and awareness.

Fewer than 10 percent of people know their religion’s views regarding donation. Though beliefs differ, donation is seen as the highest form of giving by many denominations.

Encourage your congregation to share this life-saving message of “Give Thanks. Give Life” anytime of the year.

All major religions in the United States support organ and tissue donation as an honored and compassionate expression of generosity and love.

Celebrate the Gift of Life by spreading this life-saving message…

  • Share: Ask a congregation member who has been touched by donation or transplantation to share their story, or have congregation members participate in candle lighting ceremony with a donation theme.
  • Give a Sermon: Many people are unclear of the role of being an organ donor and their religious life.
    Christian Sermon Ideas
    Jewish Sermon Ideas 
  • Candelighting Ceremony: Includes ceremonyh wording and “To Remember Me” a poem written specifically for the candlelighting ceremony.
  • Donation Information in Bulletin: Add a donation message in the bulletin encouraging members to make a decision to be an organ donor. Use this section for recommendations on what to include in your bulletin.
  • Newsletter: Include an article in your newsletter about donation and transplantation. Highlight a member of the congregation that has benefitted from donation, or who left a legacy through donation.

The need for life-saving donations is great. Over 100,000 people await life-saving transplants, and 18 people die each day due to the lack of available organs.
ONE donor can save the lives of eight people through organ donation, and help 50 more people through tissue donation.

How You Can Help:

Request Donor Sabbath Materials at or by calling

You may also consider the following:

  • Bulletin Inserts (make your own copies)
  • Table top display and bi-lingual brochures
  • Donation Stickers for driver’s licenses/ID cards
  • Lapel Heart Pins with Donor Card
  • Bring an Inspirational Speaker into the Worship Experience: Transplant Recipient or Donor Family Member to briefly share their life-affirming story
  • Observe National Donor Sabath Day in November each year: National Donor Sabbath is observed two weekends before Thanksgiving each year as members of faith communities focus on the life-affirming gifts of hope passed to others by organ, eye, tissue, marrow and blood donors. Many faith leaders participate in services and programs to educate their congregations about donation and transplantation and the critical need for donors. This year, NMDS will be calling on all of our friends with connections to churches, temples and synagogues to assist us in outreach opportunities. Our past efforts have indicated it takes a significant relationship with religious or spiritual leadership to gain access for Donor Sabbath outreach. These events will occur primarily in November, but can be scheduled year round. Donor Sabbath outreach may take a number of forms:
    • having a speaker at services,
    • information in a bulletin,
    • a donor drive after services,
    • showing a spiritual video on donation during or after services.

    DO YOU HAVE A CLOSE RELATIONSHIP with a Leader in your place of worship in our 11 county area? If you do, and you would be comfortable working with NMDS Community Relations Manager, Katherine Doolittle on the best approach to facilitate a Donor Sabbath outreach opportunity, please indicate the place of worship and contact below:

Views on Organ Donation