Last-Minute Christmas Planning

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Here we are in the midst of the Christmas season. For many of you, you’re well on your way through the plans you’ve laid out for Christmas. After all, Christmas prep starts when the weather’s still warm. Yet, with just a few weeks left until Christmas, are there still some things you can do to make sure your church has the best impact that it can? Here are a few things I think are worth considering and can be accomplished relatively easily if you still need to do them.

  • Easy invites. Have you made it easy for your congregation to invite their friends to Christmas activities at your church? Sure, many of us have slick postcards for people to give to their friends, but is there more you can do? Have you told them how to use the invites tools well? Give them some examples of conversation starters so they’re ready to go. Also, think about how your members could more easily share your church on social media outlets like Facebook. Have you provided a picture of the post card they could post? Have you created a Facebook event? Is your Christmas promotional video on YouTube so it’s easier for them to share? Christmas is when people are the most receptive to going to church and the number one way people usually decide to go is through a personal invite. It’s the perfect Christmas storm so be ready for it.
     
  • Have a follow-up plan. Once you have folks inside your building, how are you going to connect with them and help them better plug into your church? How will you get their information and what will you do to follow up with them if they have questions after that service or in the future. Church Solutions Group has some ideas on their blog.
     
  • Christmas warm and fuzzies. I’ve been in a lot of Christmas services over the years where churches were trying to do something way different and non-traditional for Christmas. I think visitors have a certain expectation of what Christmas at a church should be. So do members. Even if you’re trying something different this year, are there ways you can work in some of the traditional favorites or songs along the way?
     
  • Equip volunteers. While we should be doing it every week, Christmas is an extra important time to fill-in volunteers, greeters and ushers on what’s going on through the Advent season. They should be ready to answer questions people might have about upcoming events. Plus it’s a great time to remind volunteers how important it is to be welcoming and friendly since there will be more visitors.
     
  • The weeks after Christmas. It’s not uncommon for there to be a major letdown the weeks following Christmas. Everyone from staff to volunteers is worn out and want a break. While it’s fine to take time off, plan for how you’re still going to be impactful into the new year. If someone came to your church for Christmas, had a great experience and then comes back to an uninspired service with all fill-in people, what message does that send? All of your work for Christmas could be lost in that moment. Do your best to keep the momentum going.
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