Moments: Candles at Christmas

Moments: Candles at Christmas

December 19, 2018 by

As we approach the end of the year, a lot of communicators are tired. We’re feeling a little worn out as we get to the end of the long slog of Christmas communication, and we need a break before we dive into the new year. So we wanted to take a breather and offer something. Not more tips or ideas or downloads, but simple moments when church communication is truly about delivering the greatest story in the world.

Two Christmases ago, I was caught up in a moment.

We throw around words like “connection” or “engagement” so often as communicators that it’s easy to forget what it looks like when it actually happens.

Each year for at least a few decades (probably longer), our Christmas Eve service has ended with two songs. During the first song, we light candles, one by one, each person metaphorically sharing the light of Jesus Christ with the literal person next to them. By the time we reach the last song, we are all singing by candlelight. Perhaps there’s no other moment throughout the year during which our church feels more unified than when we are singing in one voice on Christmas Eve.

During this particular moment in 2016, I did something impulsive—something that would usually be against my better judgement. Yet I felt so compelled to document this moment that as I stood on the stage, leading the final song, I lifted up my phone and took a video.

This year will be the first Christmas Eve that I won’t be spending at my church in probably 30 years. I didn’t really understand at the time why I had chosen to turn on the camera, but I have to think that God knew how much reliving this moment would mean to me this Christmas.


Take a moment at the end of the year to reflect on what God is doing in your church. And if you’re still feeling overwhelmed and tired, check out You’ve Got This: A Pep Talk for Church Communicators by Kelley Hartnett.

Post By:

Marc Aune

Marc Aune has served as director of worship ministries for North Haven Church in North St. Paul, Minn., since 2004. Marc is a frequent reader, semi-regular tweet replier, and occasional commenter of this website, and he's still sad that Keith Green died way too soon.
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