Changing Lives Through Organ Donation
youtube facebook enews signup

National Donor Sabbath

National Donor Sabbath in November, two weekends before Thanksgiving, is a time for faith leaders of all denominations across the region to alert communities to the pressing need for organ and tissue donations to save lives.

Spreading the Message through Our Faith Communities

Donate Life graphic

National Donor Sabbath is an annual nationwide observance in November, two weekends before Thanksgiving. There is no cost to participate.

Celebrate National Donor Sabbath in 2015 from November 13 through 15.

National Donor Sabbath is supported by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, together with national, State, and local donation organizations, faith communities, health providers, community organizations, and concerned individuals.

Clergy participation is particularly important because people look to their faith leaders for guidance on serious decisions in their lives. Faith leaders of all religious denominations, along with other community leaders, can build awareness and help increase organ donation sign-up by participating in National Donor Sabbath and holding donor enrollment events throughout the year.

Congregations Can Also Help Save Lives

If you are a congregational member of a house of worship you, too, can make a huge difference during National Donor Sabbath. Here are three simple steps you can take:

1. Inform your religious leader that National Donor Sabbath takes place the third weekend of November 2015. Request that the he or she devotes a sermon to organ donation and how religion encourages all of us to save lives. Organ Donation Sermon Ideas (.doc)

2. Ask your religious leader whether you can help organize a speaker to attend services that weekend – a transplant recipient, donor family member or living donor. You can contact Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network to arrange a speaker, and we can also provide you with free materials to hand out. Please check out contact information — how to reach Amy James — below.

3. Enroll in the New York State Donate Life Registry – you can find out more here. Then, tell your loved ones that you have made the decision to give the Gift of Life. And encourage your relatives, friends and colleagues to fulfill the true meaning and spirit of Donor Sabbath by enrolling in the donor registry.


Some of the suggested activities during National Donor  Sabbath include:

  • Address the subject in sermons, prayers and homilies
  • Share information through bulletins and newsletters and web communications
  • Hold a prayer breakfast with speakers including local patients and families of donors
  • During funeral services, and with the family’s approval, acknowledge the gifts of donation

Resources to Help Share Information About Organ, Eye and Tissue Donation

Organ Donation Sermon Ideas (.doc)

Sample Donor Sabbath Newsletter Announcement (.doc)

Sample Donor Sabbath Newsletter Article (.doc)

To Remember Me – A Poem (.doc)

Pope Francis Supports Organ Donation — “A Testimony of Love for Our Neighbor.”

Contact Us to Participate in National Donor Sabbath:

If you wish to promote organ donation National Donor Sabbath, you can obtain free materials, as well as information about our Speakers Bureau program. Please email Amy James  (Amy_Jamesaturmcdotrochesterdotedu)   or call 585-272-4930.

Thank you so much for caring about others who need our compassion and love.

2014 Press Release in NEWS & VIEWS: National Donor Sabbath – Finger Lakes Religious Leaders and Congregants Asked to Promote Organ Donation 

  • © Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network, Corporate Woods of Brighton, Building 30, Suite 220, Rochester, NY 14623 (800) 810-5494