Directory: Churches and People

Preparing for Christmas 2017 with #GodWithUs

26 September 2017


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undefinedWith Christmas now just three months away, the Church of England’s Digital Communications team at Church House in London has launched the Church of England’s national campaign, called #GodWithUs. The team is seeking to give churches as much time as possible to prepare, and so here follows some information on a range of available resources...

As Archbishop Justin Welby says in his introduction to #GodWithUs:

“The constant refrain of Christmas, in carols and readings, is that God is with us. In whatever situations you find yourself this Christmas, God is with you – you need only turn to him and ask to know his presence.”

This year’s campaign has three key elements:

  1. video adverts that tell the story of peoples journeys to church at Christmas and what Christmas means to them, which will be released throughout December on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

  2. the new A Church Near You (ACNY) – our national church finder – which will point people to a Christmas service or event taking place in one of the 16,500 Church of England churches. This will launch in November 2017. Find out more about the new ACNY in this blog.

  3. producing Your Christmas Journey (pictured above), a series of short reflections throughout December and into early January 2018, introduced by Archbishop Justin Welby. The reflections have been written by soul[food] for people who are new to faith and to help us all grow in our love of God. People can receive the messages as texts, emails and on social media, and Church House Publishing have produced a booklet which would be ideal for churches to give to those attending Advent and Christmas services – find out more here.

The Digital Communications team will also be running a social media campaign support the above.

How can you and your church get involved?
The level of involvement and engagement from churches and dioceses last year helped the campaign reach 1.5 million people. The aim is to repeat that this year, and so here are five simple ways in which you can help out:

  1. access church Christmas resources (including posters and the logo) by going to the Church of England website: www.churchofengland.org/christmas

  2. share the content we post on Twitter and Facebook in the months ahead and throughout December

  3. churches can order copies of the Your Christmas Journey reflections from Church House Publishing to give out to those attending an event or service at Advent and Christmas

  4. sign up and get your friends and family to join the Your Christmas Journey reflections by texting GodWithUs to 88802

  5. if you are an editor on A Church Near You, our national church finder that receives 13 million page views per year, please go in and update your Christmas service information.

We’re hoping to see a record number of people visit a Church of England church this Christmas, and our prayer is that the #GodWithUs campaign will help play its part in achieving this.

In addition, a printed diocesan Advent resource is currently being produced. To include a four-week course suitable for housegroups and daily devotional readings for use in families and by individuals, more details will be available soon.