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Follow The Star: The Great Invitation

Resources for Advent and Christmas 2022

Following a series of difficult Christmases, churches across the Church of England are hoping that 2022 offers a chance to welcome people back to services and events that haven’t been possible recently.

Discover resources to invite your community back to church this Christmas. The services and events will be specific to your community, but here you will find signposts to the national branding, reflections and more that will help you to invite people into your church – both online and onsite.

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A Church Near You

List your onsite and online Advent and Christmas services on AChurchNearYou.com, using an Advent or Christmas tag. From the start of Advent, they will then appear on a special Christmas landing page, that we will be driving the public to via advertising and publications.

Last year, AChurchNearYou.com received 77 million page views, and 80 per cent of visitors were on the site for the first time.

By the start of Advent, the site also will carry a range of ‘Great Invitation’ features to help everyone invite family and friends:

  • Improved ‘Share with a friend’ buttons on all events.
  • If you share a Christmas event link from AChurchNearYou.com, the link preview will carry a “You’re invited” link preview graphic.
  • Improved ‘Add to calendar’ functionality to make it easier for visitors to plan their services.
  • Larger, clearer text options in the custom video generator and social media graphic generator, to help you invite people on social media (download on the AChurchNearYou.com Resource Hub)
  • ‘Great Invitation’ PowerPoint slides to download for your own invitation messages (download on the AChurchNearYou.com Resource Hub).

Downloadable hymns will also be available on the Resource Hub, for all Church of England churches to use for free. We will be sharing music from across the traditions, available thanks to the partnership with St Martin-in-the-Fields and Royal School of Church Music (RSCM).

  • By the end of September, we will publish a track list of all the Christmas music that we will be providing on the Resource Hub
  • All tracks available to download by end of October.

Resource Hub: A Church Near You

Our theme for 2022

In line with feedback from dioceses and parishes, we are returning to the very popular Follow The Star branding used in two previous years to encourage people to attend their local church at Christmas and to take the next step on their journey of faith.

We will be developing new resources for 2022 which will work alongside material from previous years, with a focus on The Great Invitation - encouraging everyone to share the joy of gathering together to celebrate the birth of Jesus with their family, friends and neighbours - especially after two years where this has been impossible for many.

 

What are the key elements of the campaign?

As in previous years, the national Church has been working with dioceses and churches to make a range of digital and print content available, branded with the Follow the Star theme:

Reflections
The Great Invitation short liturgy: commissioning people to invite others to church
Printed materials
Christmas in a Box
National online services for Advent and Christmas

Webinar: Support your church this Advent and Christmas

Learn more and explore this year's Advent and Christmas resources in our webinar recording below or view slides from the webinar.

How-to blogs

So you have a bunch of resources and assets, but you haven't quite figured out how to use them. Well, the Digital Labs team have been publishing a number of blog posts over the past few weeks to give you ideas and tips about how to exploit the assets you have at your disposal.

Whether it's about trying to leverage the growth in appetite for audio content or using social media to amplify your message, our how-to blogs will help you to share your church's experience and inspire others.

Check out the Digital Labs blog and find resources and advice on design, photography, social media strategy and more.

And if audio is more your style, try our Christmas podcast instead - just the same content in a different format.

Print resources

Reflection booklets (also in large print) are available now for churches to purchase. You can preview sample pages from the booklet online.

A range of new Follow the Star Prayer Bookmarks, Family Prayer Cards and Invitation Cards are also available.

Order these and other print resources today from the Church House Publishing website

Design elements and assets

Logo
Colour palette
Fonts

Source URL: https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/what-we-believe/advent-and-christmas/resources-advent-and-christmas