Episode 163: Christmas Creativity: Embrace Tradition While Unleashing New Ideas

Welcome to a special holiday episode where we dive into the realm of Christmas creativity. In this episode, we explore the delicate balance between embracing tradition and unleashing new ideas during the holiday season. Join us as we discuss insightful tips on timing, staying true to your church’s identity, and finding inspiration from various sources. Discover how to create engaging experiences that resonate with people of all ages, and how to make the Christmas season meaningful for everyone. Get ready for a thought-provoking conversation that will spark your creativity and help you make this Christmas truly unforgettable.

Show Notes

  • When it comes to timing and being creative, take time at the END of the Christmas series to write down what worked well and what you would do differently. Then save that and review it the following fall. Start thinking and planning for Christmas 3-4 months out at least.
    • Most large, unique experiences need to be thought thought almost a year in advance.
  • In general, try not to be too different on Christmas than you are the rest of the year. Otherwise people may feel like it was a bait and switch.
    • It can be damaging to us if we compare our church experiences to other churches and try to do what they are doing. Instead, figure out what your congregation loves about coming to your church. Then lean into that.
  • In many ways, you don’t HAVE to spin Christmas, it speaks for itself. You don’t need a new take: they are already emotionally invested in Christmas. Sticking close to the things that represent the core of Christmas if often the best plan: carols, candles, Christmas readings, etc.
    • “Just because we’re bored with something doesn’t mean that our congregations are bored with something.”
    • What is going to help get people to the manger and help them worship Jesus?
  • If you see something that works well other places, copy it and adapt it for your worship.
  • Use all of December, the whole season as opportunities to be creative and special.
  • It can be as simple as a theme around normal Christmas elements: blue grass Christmas, Hawaiian Christmas, Trans-Siberian Orchestra Christmas.
  • Expose yourself to inspiring Christmas content and use that as foundations for new insight or fresh perspective.
  • Another source of creativity is to dig into your past experiences you and your family and staff have had with Christmas. Allow those to serve as illustrations or inspiration.
  • Getting into competition mode with other churches can be dangerous.
  • One way to get more creative is to try and create an engaging experience that reaches any age group from a 4-year-old to 80-year-old. Ask the question, “How do we bring people together?”
    • Example: bring the youth ministry into the Christmas Cantata. Explain to them that they are about to walk into a different culture that experiences Christmas differently than we’re used to. Let that be a reminder about God’s character.
  • Those who are more creative will need to seek help to rein in those ideas and filter out all the ideas so only the best ones make it into reality.
  • Don’t be afraid to Google something or use an AI program to generate unique ideas.
  • Creativity has to be organic and come in the moment. It can’t be forced.
  • Sometimes things don’t need to be new to be special or unique. Ancient traditions that haven’t been experienced in your context can be very special and unique.
  • Remember that not everyone psyched up for the Christmas season. Look for folks who are hurting, who are alone, who are dealing with challenging situations.
  • “How can we make it easy for people to invite their friends to a Christmas experience?” Think invite cards, signage, and other marketing opportunities.
  • Contact Jeff Dunn-Rankin
  • Contact Rob Dyer
  • Contact David Gaddini
  • Connect with Renee: renee.wilson@ministryarchitects.com
  • Connect with Brandon: brandoncollins.orgbrandon.collins@ministryarchitects.com