This weekend we will be just two weeks away from the beginning of the Advent Season for the Catholic Church. It is a season that is characterized by prayerful anticipation of the celebration of Christmas Day.
Many of us are already starting to feel anxiety around the holiday season with the decorations for Thanksgiving, Christmas and left over Halloween stuff in stores. So those of you responsible for managing your Church's social media pages may be thinking about or planning what to post for the month of December now, so you will be free to juggle all the other things going on.
My formula for success on a church social media pages is to post under 5 themes:
Posts about or from your Pastor, Associate Priests or Deacons
Share a daily inspirational message
Show behind the scenes
Share the Saints of the Day
Show Parish Community in action
So here are my favorite things to post that will spark engagement for parishioners using my social media success formula during Advent:
1. Have the pastor share what they personally love about Christmas with a picture or in a video format. It could be as simple as them sharing their favorite Christmas song, an ornament that they've kept through the years or a favorite food.
2. Post a daily inspirational message from a devotional book that you or the pastor select. To make it easy I simply use the little blue book that many parishes purchase and pass out to parishioners to help them focus on spiritual things during the Advent season. Simply take a photo like the one below to provide attribution for the source of where you are sharing the message from.
Another great thing that I've also shared is Dynamic Catholic's Best Advent Ever that shares short inspirational videos, free Christmas music and practical tips for keeping a spiritual focus amidst the chaotic time this time of year can be.
3. My absolute favorite posts that sparks engagement are the transformation of the liturgical environment during the Advent season. Whether it's capturing pictures of the preparation of the priests vestments going from ordinary time green to Advent purple or sharing pictures of the changes to the liturgical environment in the church always sparks engagement on the social media pages I manage.
4. There are 8 special days to celebrate saints and feasts days during the season of Advent don't forget to post on these days as they always spark engagement.
This year I'm having the parish school kids write a blog on St. Nicholas that we will post on the Facebook page. Also asking people to post pictures of their favorite Christmas ornament on the Instagram account.
5. Many Parishes will have ministries adopt a family for Christmas from a needy parish or serve meals to the homeless on Thanksgiving, capture pictures or videos of them living out their Catholic faith within your community.
To help parishes with designing posts and scheduling them for the season of Advent I have created a four-part one hour online video course to help. You can sign-up for the course by visiting the Church Social Tips website and clicking the services tab where you'll find a purple sign-up button. You can also use the ADVENTDEAL50 code for half off!