Christmas Story Outreach
Vision + Planning Guide
That many believers and house churches will utilize the vision, training, and planning resources we provide to conduct a small or large community outreach event before Christmas where the Christmas Story is read straight from the Bible with Christmas Carols interlaced throughout and culminating with a candlelight portion where the gospel is shared, all in about an hour. At the conclusion of the event, a weekly Bible Study could be offered, probably starting in the new year. This “Bible Study” could become a new house church.
This event could happen in a home, a back or front yard, a driveway, in certain streets, in a local park, at a community center, etc. It could be read and sung LIVE, shown on video, or a combination of both.
3-Step Event Planning Guide
STEP 1: PLANNING
When (date and time) will the event happen?
Who could help facilitate this event?
When will we rehearse for this event?
When will we pray for the event?
How many people do I/we want to plan for?
Where will this event happen? (e.g. house, backyard, front yard, driveway, street, park, community center)
Will the people be seated? If so, where and on what? (e.g. we provide, bring your own, no seating)
What are our desired outcomes? (e.g. get to know our neighbors, evangelism, promote new bible study or house church)
Will we collect contact information? If so, how? (e.g.: online form provided, card or paper)
What format should we use?
- Live reading and live music
- Live reading with audio player for carols
- Live reading with video for carols
- Video for whole event
*For live reading/music, contact readers/musicians ASAP
How will people experience what we’re doing? (e.g. lighting, sound system, projector, television, instruments)
How will the event feel? (e.g.: consider the 5 senses)
- Sight – Can everyone see and hear? Are there any unnecessary distractions?
- Sound – Do you have Christmas music to play in the background before and after?
- Touch – How’s the temperature? Is there any way to help people be more comfortable?
- Smell – Does the area smell pleasant? If inside, a Christmas-scented candle might be nice.
- Taste – Will you offer food, snacks, or sweets If so, how will they be offered, displayed, & distributed?
List potential problems to consider. (e.g. crying babies, power outages, too many people, few people)
STEP 2: PROMOTION
Whom will I invite? (e.g. coworkers, neighbors, teammates, etc.)
What’s the best way to promote the event? (e.g. door-to-door, flyers, social media, individual phone calls and texts, etc.)
What should I include in all promotions?
- Date + start time
- Will there be any food/beverages after? (e.g.: stay after for hot cocoa!)
- Is there anything for the kids?
- Are you asking people to bring their own picnic seating?
- Is there any way for them to get in touch with you if they have questions?
Date to begin promotion? (Don’t forget to pray)
STEP 3: PREPARATION
Next steps planned?
- Is someone on your team willing to lead a Bible study for any attendees who are interested?
- Who? Determine the day, time, and location to be able to communicate
Ensure you have all the equipment and elements needed for this event (consider buying, renting, borrowing, and/or using what you already have):
- Technology – a Television, sound system, speakers, microphones, etc.
- Music – a Christmas playlist (to play in the background before and after the event), lyric sheets (app or printed), instruments, etc.
- Vigil Candles With Drip Protectors – purchase ASAP (Amazon recommendations: 24 for $19.99, 50 for $20, and 120 for $39.99
- Furniture – will you need additional tables or chairs, or maybe even a canopy or tarp if outdoors
Practice, practice, practice!
- Do a full run-through in the days leading up to the event. Every person who is involved should be present (musicians, readers, etc.).
- If you’re using video or audio support at all: do a technical rehearsal to be sure you know when transitions happen and anyone helping is clear. Preferably the day or two prior to the event.
The day before:
- (For outdoor events) check the weather forecast and consider adjustments
- Take inventory of all supplies needed
- Send reminders!
- Set up early
- Be sure to get the contact information of your guests
- Offer next steps with clear day/time/location + way to sign up
Day-of tips to remember:
- Make eye-contact
- Don’t let the “things” be more important than the people God is bringing
- Don’t panic or get frustrated – remember the Lord is with you
- ENJOY yourself. Love on people. Show who Jesus is in you.
Thank God for what He did!