The Methodist Church has launched a new Christmas film, which it hopes will inspire people to find the extraordinary in everyday life.
The film is called 'Out of the Ordinary' and features a young mother facing financial struggles who is transported to an animated, angelic world where she discovers that she is worthy of love.
Ben Hollebon, the Methodist Church's Director of Digital, told Premier more about the movie: “The idea behind this film is to reach people who wouldn't traditionally think about the church during the rest of the year, but at Advent and Christmas time, there's so much going on, there's so much kind of 'magical-ness' in the air that they might think to themselves, maybe this is something I might go along to.
“The whole idea is that it's a chance that the church has to reach people who are open to the idea of exploring faith. That’s really what the film is about. It's trying to reach those people, just gently suggesting and encouraging people to think about what church might do for them at this time of year.”
Methodist Churches will also be distributing scratch-off Christmas cards at services and events, as well as using them for invitations in their local community. There is also the opportunity to sign up for daily digital advent reflections, and a new arrangement of the Christmas carol, O little town of Bethlehem is used as the soundtrack to the film and will be released as a single.
Hollebon added: “There’s also a number of assets and resources that have been designed to help churches invite people into their Christmas services and events. There are posters and scratch-off postcard invitations, which is kind of scratching beneath the surface, looking beyond the ordinary into the extraordinary. You scratch off these cards, and behind it is something that maybe surprises you or maybe makes you think ‘hold on a moment, that wasn't quite what I thought it was on the first look.’
"Because Christmas is such an amazing opportunity for the church to speak with a voice that so often isn't heard in the rest of the year, I think we've got to be thinking creatively. It doesn't mean we've got to do big production like certain supermarkets do adverts and stuff like that. We need to think about ways to connect with people. It’s about those conversations beginning that hopefully lead into something where someone might go, ‘this whole church thing, this whole faith thing, maybe there's something in it for me.’ ”
You can watch the film here: Out of the Ordinary Christmas film 2023 launched (methodist.org.uk)