The pastor steps up to the pulpit. He lays before him the outline of his sermon. There are some correction marks throughout the pages, but he is ready to preach. He lifts up his head, peers out into the sanctuary space, and notices a striking difference. This year, the pews are empty. His audience cannot be seen behind his smartphone as he broadcasts his sermon on social media. This year is different; from the pulpit, he feels alone.
It’s no surprise that Christmas is going to look different this year. Many of us won’t be having our usual big family celebrations or attending our typically packed Christmas services. Our ways of serving at Christmas, like doing food drives or giving trees, are likely impacted as well.
This year, we’ll all have to get a little creative, because people need assistance now more than ever! The pandemic has impacted many families’ incomes, so clothing, food, and gifts will likely be in short supply.
As your church prepares for a likely influx of visitors during the Christmas season, now is a great time to refresh everyone on ways to welcome new faces. Here are a few ideas to help your church create a welcoming environment during this busy season.