All posts tagged christmas

5 Last-Minute Christmas Service Improvements

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It happened again! Your Christmas service is just a few days away and you don’t have anything planned. No worries! Here are five last-minute ways to improve your Christmas service with Church Media.

1. Download A Service Pack

There’s no easier way to make your Church Media look awesome than with a Service Pack. These easy-to-use bundles come with all of the media that you need to make a service look great. They typically come with a countdown timer, welcome/exit motions, and backgrounds for each of your songs. The best part is that you don’t have to worry about finding different pieces of content that work well together. These packs are created to look great together and add a level of excellence to your service that is sure to impress. Here are some of my favorites.

2. Put Together A Cheerful Pre-Service Playlist

Pre-service music can make or break the experience for your audience. There’s nothing more awkward than walking into a dead-silent church before service begins. I’m a pastor and that still weirds me out. Having some light, cheerful music playing in the background takes the edge off and reminds people that they are there for a service, not a funeral. Check out my 2013 Christmas pre-service playlist here.

3. Buy A Powerful Mini-Movie

Pastors, this is a no-brainer. Spending twenty bucks for a mini-movie will seem like chump change when you see how it speaks to the hearts of your audience. Videos like these are the perfect way to drive home a point and will leave people talking about the message throughout their holiday. Check out the most popular mini-movies of the season here.

4. Download A Sermon Slide Template

Don’t leave the look of your presentation up to some random PowerPoint template. Download some pre-designed Christmas slides from Creation Swap, Centerline, or Graceway. They make it really simple to take the aesthetics of your presentation to the next level. This should also spark some ideas for a sermon title that’s a little more creative than simply “Christmas”.

5. Ask A Question On Social Media

Before Sunday, post a fun Christmas-themed question on your church’s Facebook and Twitter, as well as your pastor’s social pages. Ask about favorite Christmas foods, movies, or memories. On Sunday, break the ice in your sermon by mentioning all of the great things about the season and announce what were the most popular answers.
 
Are you ready for your Christmas service?

My Christmas Pre-Service Playlist 2013

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Angels We Have Heard On High – Elevation Worship

Jesus Is Alive – Josh Wilson

Born Is The King (It’s Christmas) – Hillsong

Joy To The World – Citizens

The First Noel – Phil Wickham

We Have A Savior – Hillsong

Little Drummer Boy – Pentatonix

Come Thou Long Expected Jesus – Marcy Priest

When Hope Came Down – Kari Jobe

The First Noel (Holy Is The Lord) – Hillsong

How Many Kings – Downhere

Hark! the Herald Angels Sing – Citizens

God With Us – Jeremy Camp

What’s on your pre-service playlist for your Christmas services this year?

Six Things Your Christmas Media Should Say

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Christmas is one of the most popular times of the year for people to attend church. It only makes sense that ministries around the world use this as an opportunity to make a big impact. You can definitely use media to make your services extra special, but it’s important that you’re communicating the right messages. Here are six necessities:

1. We’re Glad You’re Here

Thumbnail-Warm_WelcomeFor both first-time guests and regular attendees, the Christmas season is super busy and church isn’t always at the top of the priority list. Have warm greetings on your screens to express how thankful you are that they made time to attend a service. It’s a little touch that goes a long way and makes the atmosphere feel more homey.

2. Upcoming Events

Thumbnail-Upcoming_EventsHaving something cool for New Years? Got a new series coming up? Show announcement slides or promo videos for what’s happening next. People are more likely to pay attention when it comes from media rather than a bulletin. Be sure to include how they can get more information.

3. We’ve Prepared For You To Be Here

Thumbnail-Today_ScriptureThe biggest difference between a “visitor” and a “guest” is that you prepare for guests. Communicate to your newcomers that you’ve created media with them in mind. Include helpful information that makes it easy for them to get through service without any awkwardness. This can also be comforting to those who haven’t attended in a while. Get more info on this here.

4. Christmas Is About Jesus

Thumbnail-Nativity_LyricsThere are a lot of choices for Christmas-themed media for your services, but I encourage you to choose content that points towards Christ. Use motions with nativity scenes rather than just snow or trees. Show mini-movies that point viewers toward Christ—not just the other aspects of the holiday.

5. Christmas Can Change Your Life

Thumbnail-Christmas_ScaleOne of the most effective ways to tell a story is through video. As you gather together for your Christmas services, use mini-movies to enhance your sermon. They have a way of captivating an audience and speaking to people in a way that words cannot. This is the perfect avenue to communicate how that one night in Bethlehem can change your life forever. Check out one of my personal favorites here.

6. How To Share With Friends

Thumbnail-HashtagWhen people experience something awesome, they immediately want to share it with friends. These days, that’s often done by social networking. Create easy opportunities for sharing by displaying a custom #hashtag throughout your service, uploading your mini-movies and promos to your social profiles, and displaying tweet-sized points in your sermon slides.

What are some other things your Christmas media should communicate? Tell us below!

Two Great Resources For December Freebies

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It’s the season of giving and two great Church Media websites are spreading Christmas cheer with a sleigh full of freebies. Be sure to check out both of these sites frequently throughout the month of December so that you don’t miss out on the free stuff!

WorshipHouse Media’s “14 Days of Christmas”

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Every year, the crew over at WorshipHouse Media has filled our December with twelve days of free media just as a “thank you” during the Christmas season. But, this year, they’ve upped their promotion to include fourteen freebies. Extra freebies are good! You’ll see that they’ve outlined a calendar with their giveaway schedule that makes it easy to remember when to check back on their site. It’s pretty cool that their content isn’t Christmas-focused, but rather media that you can use all year.

Check them out here!

CMD.tv “31 Days of Freebies”

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For the first time, Brad Zimmerman over at Church Media Design TV is giving away free Church Media content each day of December. You can always count on CMD for quality stuff. So far, he’s posted some of his custom work including sermon series PSD’s and bumper videos. These are great to add to your arsenal for sermon graphics throughout the year. They can also provide a lot of inspiration as you plan your sermon calendar for the upcoming year.

Check them out here!

Are there any other great resources you’ve found for freebies? Tell us below!

2nd Annual Merry Media Contest

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***Congratulations to our 2013 winners: Nate Marion (@natemarion), Jeremy Hunt (@JHUNT492), and Karlie Pickett (@karlienpickett)! We are also very excited to announce our grand prize winner: Seth Carter (@Seth_Carter)! Thanks for entering, everyone. We hope you have a very merry Christmas!

Christmas is almost here and we want to hook you up with a Church Media prize pack that’s worthy of Santa’s sleigh. This is the opportunity for three lucky TCP readers to take home enough holiday resources to make their December services look incredible. (We’re excited to offer over $200 in prizes this year!) For the first time, we’ve also included a grand prize for one additional winner of a Graceway Media subscription worth $400! (That’s a total of four chances to win!)

We’ll announce the winners next week, so be sure to go ahead and enter so that you don’t miss out!

Official Rules & Submission Info:

1. To enter, tweet “I just entered to win a #ChurchMedia prize pack in the #MerryMedia Contest from @creativepastor! Check it out here – http://ow.ly/rqE61“ to your followers.
2. Each participant must also be subscribed to our weekly newsletter. (You can sign up here.)
3. Entries will be accepted through Tuesday, December 10th, 2013 at 11:59pm (Eastern).
4. Three winners will be selected at random by our staff, along with an additional grand prize winner.
5. The selected winners will receive a Church Media prize pack valued at $236 and our grand prize winner will receive a prize valued at $400.
6. We will announce the winners on our site on Wednesday, December 11th, 2013.

Grand Prize (One Winner):

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2013 Prize Pack (Three Winners):

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TCP Free
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The-Creative-Pastor-MP   The-Creative-Pastor-WMH

Spread the word about this contest to your friends and followers!