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How You Can Reach 57 Out of Every 100 People in Your Community this Christmas

According to Lifeway Research studies:

“The Christmas season has become a major outreach focus for many churches, with more than half of Americans saying they visit church for Christmas. What’s more, many of those who don’t usually go to church are open to an invitation during the holidays.”

In fact, among those who don’t attend church during the Christmas season, a majority (57 percent) say they would likely attend if someone they knew invited them.

“The Christmas story remains a symbol of hope for many people, even those who don’t regularly go to church,” says Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. “The story keeps drawing people back because it helps them connect with the core message of the Christian faith.”

“Regular churchgoers may assume the rest of America has already made up their mind not to attend church,” continues McConnell. “In reality, many would welcome going to a Christmas service with someone they know.”

Whatever you do this Christmas, do something!
The fact that 57 out of every 100 people in your community would attend your Christmas program is an amazing outreach opportunity for your church or school.

So, whatever you do this year during the Christmas season, can I encourage you to do something and invite your community to join in?

That ‘something’ can be anything from a Christmas Eve candlelight service to a full blown Christmas cantata complete with choir, orchestra, bells, donkeys and camels!

Or, it can be something somewhere in between … like my play www.christmas-at-bethlehem-inn.com.

Christmas comes but once a year … and with it comes the opportunity to reach 57 out of every 100 unchurched people in your community.

So, whatever you do this Christmas, do something!

What a church of 100, a church of 2,000 and a Sri Lankan radio station did with my Christmas play …

Glenview Baptist Church, a 2,000-member church in Ft. Worth Texas, produced the play with Broadway-quality.

If you’re looking for a Christmas play that’s versatile, you might be surprised to know that Christmas at Bethlehem Inn has been presented in a variety of settings including:

* A church of less than 100 in Many, Louisiana.
* A church of more than 2,000 in Ft. Worth Texas.
* A radio audience of 50,000 in the country of Sri Lanka.

In each case, producers and directors used the gifts and talents available to them and touched lives with the story of Christmas at Bethlehem Inn.

* The church in Many presented their production simply, but with heart and emotion. Much like any small church would do.

* The church of 2,000 used a full 50+ voice choir to weave Christmas songs in between the scenes. Their actors, costumes, staging, sound and lights were Broadway-quality.

* The producer at the radio station in Sri Lanka humbly used his family as actors and recorded the script with music and sound effects in an effort to reach their nation with the gospel message one December night.

The beauty of ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’ is that it works in any of these situations and will work in others such as:

* Dinner theaters

Trevor Luowyke, a producer of a Christian radio program in Sri Lanka, recruited his wife and children to play the parts in Christmas at Bethlehem Inn.

* Christian school presentations
* Children’s ministries
* Youth ministries
* Senior adult ministries

The script is the foundation of the presentation – you can add as much or as little music, costumes, set design, sound and lights as you can or want to. You can cast children, youth, adults or a mixture of all three.

The point being: you can make it your own … like the church in Louisiana, the church in Texas and the radio program in Sri Lanka.

If you haven’t read my Christmas play yet, I hope you’ll download it here and consider using it this year.

Whether your church is small, large, somewhere in-between or even a Christian radio station in a faraway land, I believe Christmas at Bethlehem Inn can work for you!

[www.christmas-at-bethlehem-inn.com](https://www.christmas-at-bethlehem-inn.com)

 

Christmas Production

How to Give Volunteers a Chance to Shine in Your Christmas Production

If you’re planning your annual Christmas production and starting to wonder how you’re going to get it all done, I have an important message for you: YOU don’t have to get it all done!

Whatever your role is, you can’t be everywhere at once or do every task required. But gifted volunteers can take your Christmas production to the next level by supporting the event in both practical and spiritual ways. Plus, you’ll have a passionate group invested in your mission: a group who will help you promote it.

Your entire team doesn’t have to act, sing or play a musical instrument to serve. Here are five key areas for which you should recruit volunteers … and give them their chance to shine in a role for which they were made!

#1: Promotion Team

• Creative: Recruit your writers, artists, graphic designers, photographers and videographers to help design or adapt promotional materials for public service announcements, advertising, social media activities, programs, posters and other collaterals.

• Street: Name a street team leader and have him or her recruit others to distribute flyers and posters in key locations around town.

#2: Production Team

• Wardrobe/Hair/Make-Up: Recruit seamstresses, hair stylists and make-up artists to make costumes, and do hair and make-up of your actors. Your cast will appreciate the professional attention.

• Stage Crew: Depending on how elaborate of a set you’re planning, you may want to recruit a stage crew to design and build your set, and stage hands to move pieces around between scenes.

• Technical Crew: You’ll need sound and lighting technicians, a lyrics program operator and possibly a recording crew including video and audio techs.

#3: Hospitality Team

• Valet Parking: Step up your game by offering valet parking for your guests. Have your valets dressed to the nines and trained to greet every guest with a warm smile and directions to the door.  Be sure you’re organized with a place to store car keys and a parking lot map to plot where cars are parked!

• Greeters: Have a team of greeters at all entrances to your church or school, ready to welcome guests, open the door, and direct them to the sanctuary or auditorium.

• Lobby: Depending on the layout of your facility, you may want to have an additional team in the lobby to open doors and hand out programs.  The point here is that you want to have volunteers at every point where guests may need directions.

• Ushers: It’s always nice to have ushers to show guests to their seats. Ushers can also encourage folks to squeeze in to make room for others, tell folks where they can hang their coats and keep some extra programs on hand in case someone missed them on the way in. This is a great volunteer role for seniors or teenagers.

• Hostesses: Recruit your best cooks to make and serve coffee, tea hot chocolate and cookies in the lobby after your event. This will encourage guests to linger, fellowship and gives guests an opportunity to get to know your church.

#4:  Ministry Team

• Prayer: Recruit your prayer warriors to pray for the guests, the cast and other volunteer teams. Invite the more experienced to pray with people at the altar (if appropriate) at the end of the program.

• Minglers: These are folks who mingle intentionally before and after the program to meet guests, and make them feel welcome.  Your ushers can help with this, but it’s better to have a separate team assigned for this task so that this is their only focus.

#5: Clean-Up Team

Your janitorial staff will thank you for this one! A big event calls for a big clean-up and your janitorial staff will have their normal duties. Recruit some of your servant helpers to clean up areas used for your production.

These volunteers usually aren’t hard to find.  They are the ones who show up for workdays, and the ones you see with a broom or hedge clippers in hand. You’ll put a smile on their face if you invite them to help clean up after your program.

Break a Leg! (Best Wishes!)
Producing and directing a church or school Christmas production can be overwhelming. We hope these ideas on how to give your volunteers a chance to shine will help you as you plan and organize your Christmas production!

If you’re still searching for your Christmas production, please consider my play, Christmas at Bethlehem Inn. a 25-minute church play offering a fresh point of view, a powerful Biblical message and a complete production package. This versatile play works in church settings for congregations from 25 to 2500 as well as for Christian schools, a dinner theater fundraiser (great for youth!) and can be performed by a cast of adults, children, teenagers or a combination of all three.

 You can read the script for free right now by clicking here.

Church Christmas Play

Five Tips to Help You Choose a Church Christmas Play

Every year you find yourself at ‘that place’ again. You know, the one where you go to your local Christian or online store or to sift through selections looking for the perfect church Christmas play.

It’s a big responsibility and can be an exhausting process.

So how can you know when you’ve found the perfect Christmas play that fits your church’s culture, talent pool and financial resources?

A play that:
• You’ll be proud to have your name attached to.
• The cast and production team will enjoy working on.
• Your pastor and church leadership will feel comfortable with.
• Will minister to your congregation and community.

Below are five tips to help you choose a church Christmas play fits the needs of your church. We hope this makes your job easier and helps you find the perfect Christmas play for your church this year.

Tip #1: Choose a play based on Biblical principles

The first question you want to ask when choosing a church Christmas play is the most important: is the program Biblical?

It might surprise you to know that not all church Christmas plays are based on Biblical truths. Sometimes, in an effort to be creative, writers focus on universal topics like ‘love’, ‘giving’ or ‘social concerns’. While these topics are important and can be based on scriptural principles, they may not necessarily in and of themselves provide a strong enough Biblical foundation to communicate the Christmas message.

This is stating the obvious, but it needs to be said: you want your church Christmas play to communicate the truths of the gospel – whether that’s a recounting of the traditional Christmas story or a modern approach.

Some ‘warm and fuzzy’ elements are fine, but if the program doesn’t deliver meaningful and life-changing truth based on Biblical doctrines of repentance and salvation, shouldn’t you consider a different program that does?

Tip #2: Your choice should match your church’s skill and technical level.

It’s disheartening when a drama team is handed a script that doesn’t match their talent level.

If your actors are less experienced and the program is written for a high level of talent, try as they might, they may just not be up for the task. This can produce feelings of inadequacy and fear.

Conversely, if you have actors who are very experienced, handing them a program that is less than challenging will not motivate them. They may feel the program is ‘beneath’ them and back out.

You need to know the level of experience and skill in your creative team and try to find a church Christmas play that matches that level.

Smaller churches often struggle to find seasoned actors, singers, as well as technicians who can master professional-quality lighting and sound.

Larger churches often have more seasoned talent pools, which allow for greater flexibility of choice.

So when searching for your play, be sure the production fits your church’s skill level. If you have doubts, run it by some of your key leaders in your creative team and ask for their feedback.

Let them help you make the decision and you’ll have their buy-in from the beginning.

Tip #3: It should offer a fresh approach.

Although your congregation won’t remember everything about previous Christmas programs you’ve presented, they will remember enough to know whether or not you’re doing the same thing, something similar or forging new ground.

Why is it important to keep things fresh?

In today’s technologically savvy world, people bore easily. With hundreds of cable television channels, tens of thousands of You Tube videos, movies-on-demand, websites, social media and on and on – it’s more important than ever to be creative, memorable and fresh. Lose your creative edge and you might lose your audience.

Think back over the past five years, review your Christmas programs and ask yourself if there’s been enough variety in your program selections to appeal to a range of dramatic tastes, musical tastes – even entertainment formats vs. evangelistic formats.

If your program feels the same from year to year, step outside of the box, and your comfort zone and choose a bold, new direction.

As a creative person, you will find yourself challenged and invigorated as the producer/director. You will renew the excitement for your cast and production team. And your church will appreciate the fresh approach.

Tip #4: The play should fit your budget.

If your church is like most, it operates within a budget – which means your church Christmas play may or may not be included.

Some churches have fine arts departments which budget for productions. Others budget their productions within their worship department or maybe there’s even a special budget category for ‘evangelistic outreaches’ or ‘missions’.

If you aren’t familiar with how your church allots funds for productions, ask questions and get a full understanding of how to proceed.

Regardless of the amount of your budget, take care to spend wisely. Use what you already have, ask for donations of costumes and decorations, and look for creative ways to save money. Your pastor and/or finance committee will appreciate your thriftiness.

But What If You Don’t Have a Budget?

If your church has no budget, you still pull off an incredible church Christmas play. You just have to be more creative, more intentional with asking for donations, and using volunteers to make costumes or design and build your set.

This is a great opportunity to pull your creative department together and organize a fundraiser to raise your own budget. Fundraisers are a great team-building experience and your pastor and church leaders will appreciate your initiative.

The Bottom Line

The truth is, it’s not about the amount of money you have to work with but the amount of passion, creativity and effort you put forth. Remember that your goal is to produce a program that merits the gospel message and one to which your congregation will be proud to invite their guests.

It doesn’t have to cost a fortune. And it doesn’t have to be cheap as dirt. Somewhere in the middle is just fine.

Tip #5: A Christmas play should meet your objectives.

As you consider your options when choosing a church Christmas play, ask yourself what you are hoping to accomplish with your church Christmas play.

If you’ve not established objectives for your Christmas play, why not stop now and decide what you hope to accomplish?

Don’t do a church Christmas program just because you’ve always done it. Establish objectives for your program and the outcome you hope for. This will give you a guiding principle.

Your Primary Objectives
You can have more than one objective. In fact, you can have a primary objective as well as a secondary objective.

For example, if your purpose is evangelism:
• Make sure the gospel message is clear and strong
• Give your pastor time during the program to say a few words
• Invite people forward for prayer or to make a salvation decision

Or your primary objective could be to provide an entertaining experience that connects with unbelievers and guests. If so:
• Communicate your intent beforehand so your congregation won’t be disappointed when a strong call to salvation isn’t made.
• Organize a fellowship after the program to connect with visitors.
• Give visitors a small gift as a way of building a deeper connection.

Secondary Objectives
A great example of a secondary objective would be ‘to encourage teamwork and relationship building among members.’

Because the more people you get involved as volunteers, the more your church members will build relationships and feel part of the team. That will pay dividends for years.

Begin with the end in mind. Decide why you’re producing this program and what you and your pastor hope to see happen. Then work to make it happen.

In Conclusion

Searching for a church Christmas play can be overwhelming. We hope these five tips will help you find the perfect Christmas play for your church this year.

Why not include ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn‘ in your search for a church Christmas play this year? You can read the script for free right now by clicking here.

Christmas Outreach Program

The Costs of NOT Doing a Christmas Outreach Program

They say ‘It’s the most wonderful time of the year,’ but from Thanksgiving until New Year’s the season is filled with shopping, parties, cooking, travel, spending time with loved ones – and more.

Even those of us who believe in ‘the reasons for the season’ are guilty of filling our December with so much activity that we wonder if that church Christmas outreach program is really worth it.

We start thinking things like:
• It seems like everyone is asking me for money this year.
• If someone asks me to do one more Christmas shoebox, I’ll scream!
• Please, not another Christmas play!

While it might seem like your Christmas outreach program will just get lost somewhere between your town and the North Pole, don’t discount the fact that the Christmas season is the loneliest and saddest time of the year for many.

These are the ones who need to see, hear and experience the Good News of the Gospel from those of us who really do believe it – even as we dash from sale to sale and party to party.

If your church is on the fence about a Christmas outreach program this year, consider these reasons why you should get off the fence and make an outreach plan.

Because there are real costs if your church chooses NOT to do a Christmas outreach program.

Here three of them:

#1: It will cost you opportunities to share the Gospel.
Some people have a reputation for only going to church at Christmas and Easter. If you don’t reach out to these people during this season, when else will you do it?

There are many reasons people don’t go to church. Some live in unbelief, while others live in hurt. Either way, this is your chance to be a light in their darkness and a beacon of hope in their faithlessness.

Don’t miss an opportunity to change someone’s life for eternity!

#2: It will cost your congregation opportunities to serve.
The Christmas season is a perfect opportunity for your congregation to serve their community. In fact, everyone from children to youth and adults should be missions-minded during the Christmas season.

Depending on the size of your church, you could organize one or more outreach programs for your community.

You could:
• Organize a community event such as a dinner theater, where you serve a nice meal, followed by a Christmas play performance that tells the story of the birth of Christ.

• Use Christmas to shine a spotlight on missions by creating a Christmas market consisting of items made by native people from developing countries. You can use the profits for missions and take the opportunity to educate your congregation and community about needy parts of the world.

• Offer a ‘Christmas Camp for Kids’. With Christmas shopping to be done and office parties to attend, parents need babysitters. Organize a Saturday ‘Christmas Camp for Kids’ and connect with the children by making handmade gifts, decorating cookies, watching Christmas movies, or maybe stuffing stockings with toys and candy for needy children.

#3: It will cost your church and community an opportunity to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas.
If you don’t make a big deal out of Christmas, what is that saying to your church and community?

Our role as the church is to be salt and light in our world. With our culture already engaged in the season, Christmas is top-of-mind for everyone. It’s important to train our church members to take the lead in celebrating Christmas and be the spokespersons for why we celebrate. We should show love in as many ways as possible and point our community to the manger – and the cross – during this season.

It’s not only our responsibility but our honor as well.

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
To be sure, Christmas IS the most wonderful time of year. So why not take full advantage of opportunities to encourage your church congregation to connect with their communities and make it the most wonderful time of year for the right reason!

If your church is looking for a Christmas outreach program in the form of a Christmas play, consider my play, ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn.’ You can download and read the script here.

Christmas Play For Church

Three Things That May Happen if You Don’t Choose Your Christmas Play Script Soon

Fall is upon us and the countdown to Christmas is on! Have you chosen your Christmas play script yet?

If so, we wish you well and pray that God blesses your program mightily.

But if you’re still on the fence, consider these three things that may happen if you don’t choose your Christmas play script for soon:

#1: You may run out of time!
Right now, time is your friend. Wait too long and it won’t be so friendly. If you can get your Christmas ducks in a row by October 1, you have 8-10 weeks to recruit your cast, your production and promotion team, design costumes, build your set and rehearse, promote and rehearse! Whatever you do, try to make your decision by October 1 so you can get going!

#2: Your congregation’s calendar may fill up!
December is the most wonderful time of the year but also the busiest. Your congregation likely already knows their holiday vacation plan, dates for their school programs, office parties, Sunday School parties – their calendar is going to fill up soon and fast. Are you on it yet? Remember, you’ll need extra time from your cast, production and promotion team, costume and set designers. They will need to schedule the Christmas play into their busy December. Make sure and give them plenty of time to do so!

#3: You may add unnecessary stress to your life!
The longer you wait to make a decision about your Christmas play script, the more potential for stress you’re opening yourself up to. Believe me, I know. I’m kind of a last-minute person and I’ve learned the hard way that the longer I wait to make a decision, the more difficult it is to execute that decision. Trust me, decide and move forward as soon as possible. You’ll be glad when your program is a week away and you and your team are SO ready to do this!

The Clock is Ticking!
If you’re still on the fence about what direction you are going this Christmas, I understand. It can be very difficult to make a decision, or get a consensus from your pastor or a committee. If that’s your challenge, stress to the powers that be that the clock is ticking and in order for you to be ready to go in December, you need to make your decision no later than October 1.

And let me know if I can help or answer any questions. I’m just an email away! ([email protected])

Happy Choosing!
Jeffrey Gates Slaughter

P.S.Want to read my Christmas play script? It’s called ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’ and you can read it for free right here.

If you like it, you can purchase it immediately and start casting tomorrow!

5 More Outreach Ideas You Can Use With Your Church Christmas Program

The Christmas season is the perfect time of year to reach deep into your community with a church Christmas program and helpful acts of service.

To be sure, your church Christmas program is a wonderful opportunity to share the story of how God sent Jesus to earth to be the Savior of mankind. But also consider the impact your church can make if you go into the community with acts of service that express the love of God in tangible ways.

Christmas is one of the busiest times of the year and people don’t often stop to think about the reason for the season. Give them a reason to stop and reflect on what Christmas really means by expressing God’s love through one of these five outreach ideas you can use in tandem with your church Christmas program.

#1: Holiday Food Baskets
Many families, singles and shut-ins could use a helping hand at Christmas. Have your church staff look for folks in the church and community who could use a holiday food basket. Have your church members bring the various items, invite them to prepare and deliver the baskets.

#2: Christmas Tree Giveaway
Not everyone can afford a Christmas tree …. Even a cheap Christmas tree. Talk to a local Christmas tree lot to purchase and deliver free Christmas trees. Ask your community school and your church members to recommend families to receive the trees and a decoration box, including lights, ornaments and a tree topper.

#3: Assemble Packages for the troops
Christmas is a lonely time for the armed service troops stationed overseas. This is a great opportunity to touch a service member when they are separated from loved ones. This would be a great project for retired vets in your church. Have them contact their service organizations to get a list of what service troops might need. Add Christmas cards, homebaked goods, Amazon.com gift cards and a Bible to the package.

#4: Christmas Eve Candlelight Service
A service on Christmas Eve can be one of the most meaningful experiences. Plan for 20 minutes of familiar carols, a brief Christ-centered message, and offer hot cider and hot chocolate at the end. Make sure your friendliest greeters are at the doors on the way in and on the way out. Make people feel warm and welcome and they just might come back the next Sunday.

#5: Serve Your Community Creatively
There are several ways you can build bridges to your community at Christmas: you can set up a booth at a local Christmas market or parade and give away free coffee, hot chocolate and cookies; you can offer free gift wrapping services at a local mall; or you can organize a local ‘tour’ for your church worship band, adult choir or children’s choir to sing at local holiday gatherings, malls or events. The idea here is to serve your community and make connections.

If you’re looking for a church Christmas program for your church or school, click here to learn more about ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’.

Christmas Plays for Children Attract Visitors, Teach and Evangelize

If you’re looking for a way to fill your church, teach children about the Gospel message and evangelize the lost, consider using one of the many Christmas plays for children available.

Here’s how Christmas plays for children can make a difference in your church Christmas program this year:

Children Will Fill The House
Everyone knows that there’s nothing cuter at Christmas than a group of children acting out the Christmas story. That’s why children are your greatest attraction.

Children have parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, neighbors, teachers and schoolmates. Many of these are likely to attend the play if only just to see ‘their child’ perform. The more children you involve, the more likely you are to fill your church from full to overflowing.

And remember – you aren’t just filling seats. You’re reaching out to people who need to hear the gospel message.

Want to fill the house with people who need encouragement, hope and salvation? Feature children!

Children Will Learn the Gospel
As long as your program is based on the Biblical story, Christmas plays for children are a great way for kids to learn about the gospel.

From reading and memorizing their role in the script and listening to the other children recite their lines, all the way to singing Christmas songs, children can’t help but soak in the Christmas story, and remember it the rest of their lives.

For kids who grow up in church, Christmas plays for children are a helpful reinforcement to Sunday school lessons. And for kids who aren’t regular churchgoers, these Christmas plays are the perfect introduction to the greatest story ever told.

Want to teach children about the Gospel? Use children in your Christmas program!

Children Will Evangelize
You might be surprised to know that God can use children to evangelize.

How? God can use the sweet, innocent nature of children to break through the hardest of hearts and make them laugh, cry and think. And the Holy Spirit can take it from there.

Want to use your church Christmas play as an outreach to evangelize? Let God work through your children!

If you want to fill the house, teach children the gospel and give children an opportunity to participate in an evangelization outreach, consider one of the many Christmas plays for children.  You can even click here to learn more about the play I wrote called, ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’.

Three Ways Christmas Plays for Small Churches Can Benefit Your Church

Christmas plays for small churches are a wonderful way to reach out to your community, unite your church and celebrate the birth of Jesus. If your church is small and you’re looking for ideas to make the upcoming Christmas season more meaningful to your community and your church, consider one of the many Christmas plays for small churches available.

Here are three ways Christmas plays for small churches can make a big difference:

Community Outreach
Every church is responsible to fulfill the Great Commission and, ‘Go and make disciples of all nations.’ That’s why most churches have some form of missions program.

Fulfilling the Great Commission can involve everything from the giving of our finances to the giving of our time and from sending missionaries to foreign countries to supporting local missions at home.

Why not use the Christmas season – a time when the much of the world is focused on the holiday – to share the story of Jesus’ birth through a Christmas play?

During a holiday like Christmas, visitors are more likely to attend a special event at a church than at any other time of year. And if you involve the people of your church in a play, their family, friends and neighbors – often unbelievers – are more likely to attend to offer their support.

Take advantage of this opportunity to reach your community for Christ!

Unite The Church
Organizing a special event like Christmas plays for small churches also helps unite a fellowship with a common bond. A special event gives many church members an opportunity to serve in such areas as: acting, music, set design, costume design, stagehand, sound and lights, promotions and even hospitality.

Each of these roles offer your members an opportunity to get involved with their time and talents and make a significant contribution to a churchwide event. And that brings personal fulfillment as well as an opportunity to strengthen relationships – old and new.

Celebrate Jesus’ birth
A Christmas play also offers each church member an opportunity to focus on the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus and what that means to each personally. In a busy season where shopping, gift-giving and parties are often the primary focus, a Christmas play brings focus to the season, an opportunity to worship, and reminds each of us of the very reason for the holiday in the first place.

Clearly, a church Christmas play can provide local fellowships with way to reach out to the community, unite the church and celebrate with the greatest story ever told – and remind everyone that Jesus is the real reason for the season.

If you’re looking for Christmas plays for small churches, click here to learn more about ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’.

Three Benefits of Using Funny Church Christmas Plays for Outreach

If you’re searching for funny church Christmas plays, there’s a reason you’re doing so. You know that the art of humor can reach behind the masks people often wear and help deliver important Biblical truths that change lives.

“When I wrote ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’, I used humor to help break barriers between hardened hearts and the truth of the Gospel,” says Jeffrey Gates Slaughter, whose play tells the Christmas story through the eyes of the Bethlehem innkeeper and family.

“When people watch my play, I want them to identify with the main character’s doubts and fears, internalize their own emotional struggles, and see how Jesus redeems and changes people. Humor breaks down the wall between audience and stage and opens a door into the heart to do just that.”

Here are three benefits of humor that make using funny church Christmas plays a great outreach tool for your church.

#1: Humor bonds
Humor has a way of bonding people together in a shared experience. The mere act of laughing acts as an emotional bonder across audiences, breaking down invisible barriers and preparing hearts for Biblical truths and the work of the Holy Spirit.

In a way, humor sneaks truth into hearts and challenges their ‘status quo’.

Humor also shows unbelievers that Christians aren’t sticks-in-the-mud and that we enjoy life. Humor is an expression of the ‘joy of the Lord’ and is part of what makes us human. That shared experience in a darkened church or theater helps unbelievers identify with the humanity of Christians. And that helps forge a bond and opens doors to discussion.

#2: Humor lights up the brain
Researchers have studied the effects of humor on the brain and found that radiological scans show that when people laugh – or think something is funny – various areas of the brain ‘light up’. This shows that the brain is active when engaged by humor, which maximizes learning and even strengthens memories.

This is important because humor can become a gateway to help people not only learn important Biblical truths but also remember them.

#3: Humor is an escape
Life can be hard and unbelievers living with hopeless hearts often look for an escape. That escape can come in the form of negative behavior such as addictions or emotional outbursts.

But humor can help ease the tensions of life and offer a temporary escape into a far different reality. In fact, just being around believers and witnessing the hope that life in Christ brings is a window into the freedom that Jesus offers – a permanent escape, if you will.

If you’re looking for funny church Christmas plays to use an outreach tool at your church or school, click here to learn more about ‘Christmas at Bethlehem Inn’.

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