There are hundreds of special events and services taking place all over the borough and at your local Christian Church this Christmas. To help readers find out where and when the Churches Publicity Forum has put together a listings guide in the free Yellow Advertiser Christmas TV Guide that will be delivered to over 115,000 homes across South East Essex week commencing Monday 8th December 2008.
Details of Carols, Nativities, Christingles, Masses, Midnight Communions and special Family Services will also feature in the Evening Echo, and on a wrap round feature on the Rayleigh & Eastwood Times.
You can also download the Yellow Advertiser Listings by clicking below:
The campaign by the Churches Publicity Forum (SEECPF) this Christmas also features quotes from many people across South East Essex who have said why they enjoy visiting their local church at Christmas. Many of whom don’t normally attend church have commented on the warm welcome they receive from regulars and how it completes their Christmas.
One person we interviewed called Alex said, “I don’t go to church normally, but church on Christmas Eve can’t be missed. It makes me feel truly Christmassy and I always leave with a great warm feeling!”
The advert available to download above also contains a free Christmas Crossword Puzzle for when nothing in the TV guide can be found worth watching. Why not give it a go yourselves? Dig out an old bible or vistit www.biblegateway.com and explore the Christmas story for the answers. Once the puzzle is complete(or even if it isn’t), if you are not a regular church-goer you can send off for a free booklet called ‘Why Christmas?’ by Nicky Gumbel, author of a number of best selling books about the Christian Faith. Send your address details to Christian Enquiry Agency (Essex), Love Southend Offer, FREEPOST WC2947, South Croydon, CR2 8UZ or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org (you will not be contacted again unless you request it).
Also listen out to Essex FM over the next few weeks. There you will also hear the nativity story being told in the style of horse-racing and football commentaries in the latest in a series of Christmas adverts by the Christian Advertising Network (CAN). The joke-filled recordings encourage listeners to ‘join in the action this Christmas’ at their local Christian Church. Take a listen yourself by clicking on the links below:
Chas Bayfield of CAN said, “The new radio ads take on the style of a sports commentary and hope to engage in a humorous way with the youth audiences and encourage them to go to church to hear the Christmas story in full.”
South East Essex Churches are also delivering invite cards and community newsletters through doors in their neighbourhoods as a way of inviting people to their Christmas events. All of these campaigns aim to show that all are welcome to join with their local church at Christmas and indeed at any time of the year.
David Elcock, SEECPF member said, ‘Whether people find out about the special Christmas events going on through; the listings in the Yellow Advertiser TV Guide, radio ads, free booklets, door-to-door invites, bus shelter posters, Hope adverts on buses or by personal invite from a friend – we want to make sure they do know they are warmly welcome at their local church this Christmas and indeed throughout the year.’
David added, ‘Some of the churches are holding special music concerts, film showings and plays, Carols Concerts followed by free mulled wine and mince pies, and opportunities to wonder at the story of the first Christmas and God’s Son being born into the world as a gift of love from God for all of us.’
So go-on why not give your local Christian church a try this Christmas – we’re sure they would love to see you.