The Healthy Church Hub

For many people, churched and unchurched, attending Christmas Eve service is often an annual tradition. Young and old alike gather together to sing Christmas hymns, light candles, and hear the story of the birth of Jesus.

Not only is this an opportunity for your church to gather, remember, and celebrate, but it’s also an opportunity to reach and connect with people in your community who may not regularly attend. The question is, is your church ready?

Here are 7 ways your church can prepare for a high-impact Christmas Eve service.

1. Plan Your Invite Strategy

How will people know about your service if you don’t invite them? Start thinking now about crafting an invite strategy. Here are a few avenues to consider:

  • Create branded graphics with detailed information such as time, location, and expectations.
  • Include social media and use various communication channels (don’t forget you can use your ChMS to email your contacts).
  • Encourage members to invite friends, family, and neighbors by creating invite cards to hand out.
  • Consider placing ads in your local newspapers, magazines, TV or radio stations, and local Facebook groups.

Remember, the more people that hear about it, the more people that are likely to attend.

2. Be Considerate of Irregular Church Attenders

Have you thought about the service experience for those who don’t normally attend church? As you plan your service, be sure to take this into consideration. Avoid using overly churchy words, be sure to explain elements of your service people might not understand, and utilize volunteers to make sure everyone feels welcome. 

For example, don’t assume people know when to stand and join in the service or when to sit. Think through the language you’ll use to talk about things like offering and ensure that you’re explaining in a way that all people can understand, regardless of church background or experience.

3. Honor Long-Standing Traditions

Typically, when people attend a Christmas Eve service they have certain expectations. As a result, this might not be the service to experiment with something new.

This doesn’t mean you can’t be creative, but instead, be sure to honor long-standing traditions such as singing Christmas carols, reading the story of the birth of Jesus, and closing with Silent Night or a candlelit song.

Remember, even the simplest tradition may hold great meaning for those in attendance.

4. Make Connecting Easy for People

The goal is not only to have a high-impact Christmas Eve service, it’s also to help each person feel welcome and loved beyond the Christmas season.

One of the best ways to do this is to make it as easy as possible for people to connect. Here are a few tips:

  • Include easily scannable QR codes throughout your church explaining how to get and stay connected.
  • Create a unique form and workflow for new guests at your Christmas Eve service (encourage each guest to fill out a simple information form during the service). 
  • Set up a keyword for people to text and get more info.
  • Encourage volunteers and members ahead of time to greet and help the people sitting around them.

5. Craft a Follow-Up Plan for New Guests

Don’t wait until after the Christmas season to try to come up with a guest follow-up plan, instead be proactive and put systems in place designed to follow up with guests now. This may include:

  • Creating an email workflow sharing about upcoming events and ways to get involved.
  • Assigning a staff member or volunteer to personally reach out to each guest.
  • Handing out welcome bags at the service containing a gift and information about your church.
  • Ending your service with a “next step.” As people leave the service, what do you want them to do? Communicate this clearly.

6. Provide Volunteer Training

Because this isn’t just a normal Sunday morning service, it’s important to recruit and train as many volunteers as possible. Consider hosting a specific Christmas Eve service volunteer training designed to cast vision and equip your people.

Then, use this time to bulk up your worship and AV teams, increase the number of greeters and information desk workers you have, set up a prayer team, and strategically place people throughout your worship center to help people find seating. 

Pro-Tip: In your ChMS, send out a reminder before training dates. Volunteers can then directly respond to that email letting you know if they’re coming or not.

7. Cover Your Service in Prayer

Finally, and most importantly, don’t get so caught up in to-do lists and planning you forget to surrender this service to the Lord. It’s all for Him, anyway! Spend time in prayer asking God to do what only He can do this Christmas season.

Next Steps

Do you have the right software tools in place to make all of this prep work as easy as possible? The right ChMS can help you set up workflows, recruit volunteers, follow up with guests, and so much more!

Our team would love to connect with you and see if there are any opportunities to improve your tech. Click here to start your free demo of Ministry Brands Amplify.