Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

Christmas on Sunday


Throughout all time, churches have grappled with how to handle worship when Christmas morning falls on a Sunday. Many families have established traditions and those include visiting far-flung family or staying home and focusing on one another.

According to an article by Jessica L. Anschutz and Doug Powe of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership, many churches make the decision to cancel services in light of the holiday.

That, they say, is something for churches to reconsider. “A worship service on Christmas Day gives voice to the meaning of Christmas beyond consumerism and the commercialization of Christmas,” the article says.

Many people might be lonely on Christmas morning; some might be alone but for the opportunity to worship with their church family.

The authors suggest hybrid or virtual worship ideas complete with take-home Christmas Day worship packets prepared in advance.

Other options might include “casual” Sunday, with pajamas and/or ugly Christmas sweaters; a birthday party for Jesus complete with cake and gifts (to a local charity); spontaneous Nativity skits featuring simple costumes; singing Christmas carols and drinking hot chocolate; or reading children’s books about the story of Christmas.

Another thing to consider is sharing a meal, like an old-fashioned potluck or a church-provided simple brunch. A community meal is another idea. The church can be a gathering place for those who might otherwise feel forgotten or lonely.

It’s not too late to plan an impactful Christmas morning worship service. For more information, read the full article.


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