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Creating Advent Windows

A fun idea for engaging your local community in a celebration of Christmas is to invite them to join in making a community Advent Calendar with their windows.

Organise a Community Windows Advent Calendar
Members of the church, or a local businesses, are invited to decorate one of their windows (visible to the wider public, so street-facing) for one day of advent each. You can produce a map that tells people where to visit each day. You may want to place the 24th window at your church, encouraging the community to come along for a crib service or similar.

Here are some further tips of how to make a Window Advent Calendar:

1) Define your area
Whilst a parish is a defined geographical area, it might be a little big for a walk. It could be beneficial to pick an even more localised area to run the project, choosing streets just around your church. Or, if there’s an area you feel is hard to reach, this could be an ideal opportunity to invite those local people to take part.

2) Recruit volunteers
Ask for volunteers at church, connect with local community groups and businesses. You could hold a get together to give people an introduction to the project and inspire them to get involved. You’ll need enough houses or businesses to get involved so you’ll have a new windows to unveil on every night of Advent. Once you’ve got people involved, you can set up a Facebook or WhatsApp group to share updates, news and create a sense of community around the project.

3) Make a timetable and map
Once you know who is taking part, assign each window a day of Advent. Once this is done, it’s a lovely idea to create a timetable and map you can use to show people which new Advent Window will be shown each day. This doesn’t have to be too complicated – roughly map out the area taking part, doodle some houses and label each one with the day of Advent they will be representing. You can print these off and ask volunteers to distribute them around the community. Or, have a go at creating an interactive online map – giving you a link to share with neighbours. (And if you need help, ask if anyone has made one before.)

 4) Spread the word.
Once you have the volunteers, get the word out! Get the timetables and maps to local schools, other churches, businesses, community groups, and on your social media.

5) Enjoy the Windows!
Going along to the different displays is the best bit of the project! Make sure to take plenty of photos to share your experience with others. Post them on your Facebook or WhatsApp group so you can keep everyone involved. It might be on Christmas Eve, you organise a walk of all the windows with mulled wine and mince pies to conclude the project

Examples of Window displays

Download a guide at – Communty Windows Advent Calendar