Here’s Why Your Church Needs a Text Messaging Strategy This Christmas
Many churchgoers are going into this Advent season feeling more disconnected than ever. With the onset of COVID-19, social and community gatherings have—for the most part—been cancelled or changed entirely since March 2020.
As Church leaders, Christmas is the perfect time to encourage hope and create a greater sense of community. After all, not only are there cheerful festivities and meaningful traditions, but Christmas also reminds us of the deep source of hope that Jesus’ birth brings.
This year, church leaders can reconnect with congregants and remind your people of the meaning of Christmas through an untraditional medium: Texting.
What is a Text Message Strategy?
A texting strategy is a plan that guides a church’s communication with its members. Whether your church’s texting strategy is highly detailed or more general in nature, the most important element of planning is what to communicate with your people, and when.
For churches that have a large amount of programs, Bible studies, ministries, Advent series, and small group meetings, a powerful texting strategy helps you stay organized. For churches that have no programming outside of regularly scheduled Sunday services, a texting strategy is an excellent channel to increase engagement and connect with your people on a more frequent basis.
Five Ideas for Church Texting Strategies in December
Just as Joseph and Mary had to plan for Jesus’ birth, alChristians can prepare their hearts and minds to celebrate the holiday commemorating when God became a man to save all mankind.
Typically Christians spend most of December ordering gifts, coordinating travel plans, and trying to get all their work done before the holidays, so it’s no wonder so many people might overlook the true meaning of the season.
And this year has all the usual chaos—plus the addition of emotions such as loneliness, isolation, and fear.
Here are 5 ideas to help your church community stay grounded, hopeful, and together as Christmas approaches:
- Tracking the Nativity Story. Text congregants at the start of December, asking if they’d like to track the Nativity Story together: They’d receive one verse from Luke 2 each morning until Christmas day.
- Reading Advent Devotionals. Congregants can text in to sign up for Devotionals specifically catered to them. The pastor may be interested in writing their own series of daily or weekly Advent devotionals, or sending out devotionals by other authors. Thoughtful individuals may enjoy The Dawning of Indestructible Joy by John Piper, Shadow and Light by Tsh Oxenreider, or Advent Gospel Reflections by Bishop Barron.
- Involve the entire family. Encourage families in the church community to keep an at-home Advent Wreath and send a text each Sunday when it’s time to light the next candle! Another idea is to read through The Jesus Storybook Bible: A Christmas Collection by Sarah Lloyd Jones.
- Make Christmas Morning Meaningful. December 25th is the climax of the Christmas season. Sending out a broadcast text early that morning relaying the significance of Christmas can infuse significance and life into an already great day.
- “A Child is Born...now What?” Christmas can stir up curiosity, hope, and wonder for new and non-Christians. Why not use that momentum? Sending a follow-up message after Christmas linking resources to learn more about the significance of Jesus could be an ideal opportunity to help your congregants dive deeper with their faith.
Texting strategies aren’t just for marketing firms. They can be helpful tools for greater connection with your church family, even in this socially distant season.