The Sunday after Christmas and or the first of the year is a little awkward. Few people show up for ‘usual’ gathering. From food comas, family visiting, reasons vary for missing church. Sometimes that’s a good thing. Families spending time with those they don’t or haven’t seen in a long time. Besides this, the Sunday after Christmas has other interesting characteristics. And, there are some things worth our attention.
Team and Less
Some of my friends and I called it, “The Youth Pastor’s Sunday”. You know the Sunday when some in the church discover that s/he exists. If it isn’t the youth pastor preaching or leading the service it could be someone who usually doesn’t.
The challenge with holidays is availability of a full team compliment. There are usually fewer staff and volunteers to help with service. This might mean skeletal children’s program or none. Smaller worship band etc.
The experience often seems stripped down. Should we have a service or gathering? What should it look like? To do an acoustic set of songs? Find hymnals? We’ve had our share of debate about this, here.
Before That Gathering
The first thing I’d highlight here is that you must plan for this Sunday. It can never be an afterthought. Some people decide to come to church because of the experience they had at the Christmas or Easter service.
Before any big and busy period make sure you’ve planned for even the seeming smaller meetings after. Is there a follow-on from Christmas? Had you prepared invitations to your next Alpha.
Meet or be in touch with all who’ll be involved in serving your community during this time. Be intentional about anything and everything you do.
The Thing To Guard Against
I’ve been there. This can be the Sunday we wish your best friend doesn’t show up because it can feel like the B, C or even AZ team is on.
Because there are less people in the parking lot, pews and pulpit the gathering isn’t any less important. (Click to Tweet)
While the gathering isn’t like what it is usually like, it isn’t any less important. The gospel still needs to be preached. People can still have meaningful fellowship, worship and teaching.
In The End
Pray for people to hear God. Do the best you can with what you have? Don’t lose sight of the community with you because you’re disappointed about the ones who aren’t there.
The size of the crowd should never determine the size of our service and heart-posture.
Your thoughts on the Sunday after Christmas?