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Creating the Magic of Christmas

Dec 3 2015

Well, it’s December, and our Christmas preparations are in full swing here in Hillsong Church.

Truth be told, it has be in full swing for a while, but now the sense of urgency is upon us like a bargain hunter at a Boxing Day sale.

For the Church, Christmas (along with Easter) is prime time. It’s when people who are indifferent towards church and the things of God are curious, and maybe a little sentimental. If anything, most people become at least a touch more intrigued as to what Christmas may be all about.

SEE ALSO: Crafting a Spectacular Christmas Service

As a creative team, we have an immense responsibility and an irreplaceable opportunity to create an atmosphere that welcomes people from around our community, and this requires the very best of our efforts.

So this post is a quick hitting list of some essentials as you prepare for Christmas:

1. Christmas Cheer.

You have to love Christmas. How can you not? If you’re the person who hates carols and decorating trees and gets upset at stores who put up Santa signs at the end of October, that’s not really gonna work. Now I’m not saying you have to be Buddy the Elf (but it definitely couldn’t hurt), but please — get into it a little. Get some (tasteful) decorations, get a serious playlist going, and enjoy what the Christmas season can hold.

SEE ALSO: 10 Songs You Need to Sing This Christmas and Why

2.A Serious Plan for Christmas Carols.

Each year, we start doing Christmas carols in services form the start of December. When I say Christmas carols, I mean songs that glorify the name of Jesus (never forget: He is the reason for the season). No, we do not sing Frosty the Snowman in between What a Saviour and Transfiguration. We are purposeful about working the carols into our sets and diligent when working out arrangements that suit the feel of our weekend services. This requires planning and involvement from your music directors and worship leaders, but is well worth it. Christmas is all about Jesus, and if done well, your worship set can reflect that beautifully.

SEE ALSO: How to Craft Beautiful Christmas Music

3. Christmas Art That Inspires.

How you tell your community about Christmas matters almost as much as what you tell them. Christmas is a chance for you to take the high road visually and inspire people around the most wonderful time of the year. Resist the urge to cut corners and instead put the time into making something that is simple, elegant, and helps carry the beauty of what Christmas represents. Simple colour schemes, unified approaches to typefaces, and please, no tinsel.

(You can download our chalkboard lyrics here)

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SEE ALSO: Deck the Halls: How To Build Our Christmas Stage Design

4. Some Elves.

Christmas can be a massive undertaking for any church. Those trees don’t decorate themselves, and those fantastic vocal parts don’t arrange themselves either. You will need a small army of volunteers to help bring Christmas to life. Ask them to help early, and give them more than just roles to fill. If they understand the honour of sowing into the Christmas season, they will be excited about pitching in and helping build sets, hang lights, and stay later than normal for rehearsals.

5. Think of the Children.

Christmas brings families together like nothing else. Parents are so excited to share the wonder of Christmas with their kids, and children drive so much of the emotion around the season. Leaving aside your concerns about Santa (AKA is he just Satan spelt wrong, or does he add to the joy of the season…), do what you can to make your Christmas something that appeals to a broad range of ages. Don’t leave the kids behind — create moments where they can laugh, smile and interact with what you have planned. We had a huge kids contingent in our 12 Days of Christmas item last year, and it was so much fun!

Be wise when planning your Christmas celebrations — and you will win people over like never before.

GK