Special services give guests reason to return.
We have two aims as we plan our holiday services: (1) give visitors a high-touch worship experience that will help them celebrate the season and make them want to come back to church after January 1; and (2) make the events much like our regular weekend services so visitors will have an accurate feel for our church. We don't want them to be shocked by an "ordinary" Sunday on a later visit.
During the holidays, we maintain our order of service, with worship and preaching and liturgy. But we also want our visitors to experience the sense of community and involvement that comes from year-round participation in the body. So we include opportunities for visitors to be blessed by being involved.
Our high-touch services start at Thanksgiving. We invite people to bring to the front of the sanctuary cards listing their blessings for the previous year. A prayer team collects the cards and offers prayers of praise and thanks during the following weeks.