Virtually the same ...
CONTRARY to rumours, Christmas has not been cancelled – that's the message from Christ Church in Downend.
The church has been creative to make a programme of services and events that are both safe and also help people to connect, either in person or online.
A combination of in-church, online and outdoor events will ensure as many people as possible can celebrate Christmas with Christ Church.
First up are two Carols by Candlelight services on Sunday, December 20, at 5pm and 7.30pm. Like all in-church events, booking is essential, as seating capacity is limited due to spacing to make the events comply with coronavirus rules.
Bookings can be made for all events either online via the website christchurchdownend.com or by calling the parish office on 0117 908 9867 for anyone who is not online.
The 7.30 pm Carols by Candlelight event will be streamed live on the Christ Church Downend YouTube channel.
Next up is the Downend Christmas Trail, which runs from December 21 to 24.
Anita Dobson, from the church, said: "We can't run a Crib Service this year so the Nativity is hitting the High Street! We are organising a trail around Downend shops telling the story of Christmas, with the help of children from church and Christ Church Juniors."
People taking part in the family-friendly trail can find Nativity scenes in shop windows and then scan accompanying QR codes to watch videos telling the Christmas story.
Children can collect a jigsaw piece from each shop taking part and trail maps are available to download from christchurchdownend.com/event-items/christmas-trail.
At the end of the trail the church will be open for a visit to see the whole Nativity scene from 10am to 2pm on Monday to Wednesday and from 10am until 12.30pm on Christmas Eve.
Christmas services will have as many of the familiar elements as possible, but as spaces are limited, booking is essential, with each person needing to book a separate, free tickets, except for children in pushchairs or who can sit on laps.
Midnight Communion takes place from 11pm on Christmas Eve, while on Christmas Day there will be a traditional Christmas Day Communion at the Church Centre, Quakers Road at 9.15 am, and a Christmas Day Family Service at Christ Church 10.30 am.
The 10.30am service will be a celebration for all ages, with children welcome and seated around tables or in the balcony for an interactive short act of worship and celebration.