8 Church Small Group Activities for Christmas
Christmas at church is a busy, bustling, joyful time where you can enjoy the special services, holy celebrations, and festive parties together. Make the most of this sacred time by planning church small group activities alongside the overarching events, saving space to connect more thoughtfully.
Small group meetups do something the big group events can’t — build trust, foster intimacy, and much more. Keep the Christmas spirit alive at your ministry by setting small group Christmas traditions, dedicating time to games, and prioritizing close connections.
Here are eight Christmas group activities for adults to incorporate into your Christmas program this year.
1. Share Your Childhood Traditions
Start a discussion about possible new church Christmas traditions by sharing the special moments that completed the festive season during childhood. Christmas traditions vary hugely from household to household, and this is an exciting time to get to know each other a little better while brainstorming a possible new church tradition. Adapt the sacred childhood traditions of your small group members into one of your favorite church small group activities to enjoy together!
2. Sing Your Favorite Hymns
A favorite small group activity is singing hymns. People feel connected – to each other and something greater – when they sing as a group, which is a big reason why choirs are so empowering to join. Experience this on a smaller (yet more profound) level by sharing an intimate moment of sing-song with your small group. You might be surprised by some people's choices, offering you a deeper insight into the personalities of your group.
3. When Did You Find Out About Santa?
Share the moment that each of you discovered the truth about Santa Claus for a funny walk down memory lane. Reflect on the tricks your families would use to make the presence of Santa known, from bites out of carrots and mined pies to snowy footsteps across the hallway. Or maybe your parents focused on Jesus and never pretended Santa was real in the first place. Warning — this is only suitable for adult church small group activities.
4. Story Time: Best and Worst Gifts
We all have a memory of a gift that completely missed the mark. Maybe it was a strange Christmas gift from a rarely-seen uncle that would be more appropriate for someone half your age or a confusing surprise from your mother-in-law. Dive into the best and worst gift you have ever received and transform it into one of your church small group activities. Make it a game by getting everyone to vote for the gift that they think is the best and worst too!
5. What’s a Must-Have Christmas Dish?
Plan the perfect Christmas lunch for your small group by asking everyone what they think is a must-have dish for any Christmas meal. Then, tell them to cook it! This is one of the most effortless church small group Christmas party ideas — just throw a pot-luck lunch with everyone’s favorite foods. Let everyone have a say to ensure they all get a meal they love while spreading the work among the group for an intimate breaking of bread.
6. Plan a White Elephant or Secret Santa
Gifts shouldn’t be the focus of Christmas, but who doesn’t love getting a little something? White Elephant and Secret Santa are two great Christmas gift games for small groups, as it adds a splash of fun to traditional gift exchanges. For Secret Santa, you have to buy a gift for an allocated person, and with White Elephant, you buy a generic gift, and each recipient can stick with what they opened or steal someone else’s gift. Just choose a price limit, so they are all a similar value.
7. Christmas Cookie Exchange Cook-Out
Merge a new Christmas tradition with your church small group activities by planning a Christmas Cookie day. Within the small groups, get each attendee to make a batch of cookies, with at least one per person, and enjoy the sweet feast. For younger children’s small groups, why not make the cookies together? This would be an insightful cooking class and a delicious snack for the youngsters in your small groups.
8. Give Back to the Community
A church Christmas initiative wouldn’t be complete without the opportunity to serve. Within your small groups, choose a cause that’s close to your hearts and action a plan to help people this festive season. This could be a fundraising project to help out a local homeless shelter, an initiative to deliver hot meals to elderly people living alone, or a clothing collection for those who need it this winter. What matters is that the charity idea comes from the heart and soul of your small group.
We love the church-wide events where the whole congregation gets together, but don't forget about the humble church small group activities. Reconnect with your peers and feel closer to your faith by designating time for your people, choosing relational ministry over an event-driven ministry.
It’s never too late to set a new church Christmas tradition, so get your thinking hats on the next time you break out for a small group session. We need our small group family to reflect, discuss, share, and support, so make sure your church carves out space for essential time this Christmas.