Tuesday, December 16, 2008

HELP! Christmas Women's Ministry Ideas Needed!

I'm in the process of writing about women's ministry at Christmas time. Believe it or not I've run out of ideas. So, stereotypically speaking, what crazy ridiculous stuff happens during Christmas in women's ministry? What have you experienced? What have you seen? What gets women's knickers in a twist? What do you avoid like the plague?

Let's stir up some insanity....

40 comments:

Beth said...

One word: Candles.
Okay two words: Scented candles.

Stir, stir, stir....

heartafire said...

I'm not a big Rick Warren fan, but one of the wisest things he ever said (I think in "PDL") was that sometimes the most spiritual thing you can do is to rest.

Seriously, this is a message so many women should take to heart at Christmastime. STOP the baking, STOP the shopping (yes, we know it won't get done if you don't do it) SAY NO to some parties, etc. and just rest. Rest in Him, rest in the Word, rest with your feet up in a chair and your eyes closed.

OK---the insanity?
Not only do they hold Community Bible Study all the way up until the week of Christmas where I live, it is also a luncheon (bring a dish) and a Yankee Swap (known in some parts as "Dirty Santa") and bring a treat for the nursery workers.

NO THANKS..... JESUS TOLD ME TO REST IN HIM, and that's what I'm doing.


Now, wait a minute here....Did I derail your topic as first commenter? I got the feeling you were going to be writing about the "insanity" part, so I just shared mine....were you looking for something else?
Feel free to correct.

heartafire said...

Oh, no....were you looking for IDEAS?

As in...what can we do to add to the burden of women during this Holy month?
Let's all get together and DO something, or MAKE something or BUY something?

Is that what you're looking for?


WV: pottese
When you're child THINKS she has to go, but is not really sure....then you realize she just wanted to check out the bathroom at the restaurant....

Ann Marie said...

um letsee...
we used to do a Cmas banquet and had a local christian woman quasi-celebrity speak. ya know, the news anchor that happens to be a christian, etc..
door prizes for the table centerpieces, and secretly hating the woman who won, since it want you that got the clear block lit from the inside with lights with holly hot glued to the top with an enormous gold bow.
everyone wearing the spangliest sweater, of course.
the loudest soprano in the church choir singing O Holy Night during dessert.

Mella DP said...

What, you mean besides ugly sweaters, Secret Santas, and decorating the sanctuary?

I recently made the vow that I will faithfully attend any women's ministry event that doesn't use any form of the words "inspire" or "encourage" in its publicity. Don't expect to have to deliver on that anytime soon...

fb said...

The secret sister luncheon. Always are those who did very little all year long - now what do they do - they are going to get revealed one way or the other. Also extras show up with no gift for the blind swap - oh my - the Christmas Spirit just left the building.

Marni said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marni said...

I put this on your facebook too:

Everyone brings their favorite powdered cocoa mix and powdered coffee creamer mix, favorite Christmas fabric, empty Mason jars and wears their best Christmas sweaters. Turn on some wonderful Christmas music (real carols, not that pagan junk) and as you enjoy a wonderful time of fellowship and gossip disguised as prayer requests, you mix up yummy ... homemade cocoa mix, put it in jars, and cover the Mason lid with festive Christmas fabric and hand it out to your neighbors, postal carrier, or just whoever needs a little ray of sunshine in their life...

Or you could ditch that idea all together and all go get "Jesus is my homeboy" tattoos. Most parlors will give group rates. Trust me.

Kristel said...

it seems every church I know of has a women's christmas tea.

I love tea....but not women's christmas teas.

nooo thank you.

tabitha said...

Expecting every woman to show up at the Christmas party to decorate the tree and then get after them for not decorating it right.

"This goes here. No, no that goes over there. Haven't you every decorated a public display tree before?"

Then getting upset because no one wants to help you decorate the tree.

This has happened...year after year after year.

They couldn't understand why I wouldn't help decorate the tree. Didn't I have any Christmas spirit?

scott b said...

the ladies at our church coordinate the poinsetta party that churches are required to celebrate annually (it's in the bilaws). the rest of the church thanks the women for their hard work with the poinsettas on mothers day when we put on our other bilaw required flora fest: massive mums of moms.

Miss Linda said...

Mella DP, what a great, great idea!
At our former church the very first "women's retreat" was at a local hotel (in case daddy couldn't figure out how to feed his own children) and I SWEAR TO YOU one of the topics was "how to clean toilets better".
Also, same church has men's golf, skiing, shooting, camping, etc. The women have events with the words "inspire" and "encourage" in the titles...
Took many years but I escaped the insanity!

WV: oodenti, as in "here comes the dentist with a big needle for my mouth...oodenti!"

jenn3 said...

Hmmm. We don't do anything for Christmas at my church, other than the kid's Christmas play and exchanging Christmas cards. I was trying to come up with some ideas for you, but I've got nothing. Sorry.

Deborah said...

my women's group does a "dirty santa" ornament exchange each year and the competition is amazing. if the ornament has an angel or the baby Jesus on it, it is sure to be passed around LOTS. who would have thought that a women's church group would get so up in arms about a christmas ornament. i already have two picked out and can't decide which one to wrap. time's a wastin'!!

Matt and Becca said...

I avoid the Women's Ministry like the plague, and my husband's on staff at the church (gasp). I did go to a lunch yesterday with a group of women where I volunteer. It's not women's ministry, but it's a ministry made up of women volunteers. I'm confusing myself. Anyway, after we had a $10 limit gift exchange (no dirty Santa, much to the dismay of a lot of them), we played Win, Lose, or Draw (aka Pictionary) with... wait for it... Christmas carols. Yep. And it was a heated battle. The creator and leader of the game, who was not actually playing, always knew what the person "should have" drawn after she had failed. OK, so maybe it is actually women's ministry. Oh no. I better get out now before I start wearing Christmas sweaters. I'm only 29!!!!

Beth said...

Oh yes. The Christmas Tea. That reminds me...

One year they put the "younger women's" group in charge of the Christmas tea. We called it "Rocking Around the Christmas Tea" and tried to make it a little more "fun" than the teas of Christmas past. We were never put in charge of the tea again. In fact, I think they took away some of the responsibilities we had in other events, too...hmmmm...it's probably a good thing I just belong to that group and not that church.

Steph said...

I recently went to my first 'women's Christmas tea' ever and couldn't resist posting...

A few things I noticed:

1.) the tables were decorated by the hostesses of each one... and there appeared to be some insanely competitive, yet unspoken rivalry going on between the tables (and gifts!)

2.) the comedian who spoke to the gathering did a bit where a baby cried and then she chastised the person for 'bringing a baby to a comedy show'. She eventually revealed it was her own kid, but there was SERIOUS, SERIOUS tension before that.

3.) The worship group that sang worship and Christmas carols were an all-lady group that reminded me of the Carpenters.

4.) All the men at the event were SERVERS.

5.) There was a shopping bazaar, which I will forever refer to as 'the bizarre'.

Hope this helps... good luck!

Just KT said...

What about when bringing a dozen cookies for the Sunday morning treats turns into a serious competition for who can put the most razzle dazzle into their holiday baking. What it's not a competition??


wv-trytable
It's Sunday morning and all the church ladies have baked Christmas cookies-let's trytable-as in let's try everything on the table

It's my first comment-I love your blog!

Annie K said...

Uh, Beth, NO candles at our tea this year. Apparently one of the tables got lit last year. I mean...one of the more elaborately bedecked tables with ribbons, lace and pine boughs went up in smoke. Coulda been a real barn burner.

Joanna said...

Card making seems to be a popular one. I never usually send that many christmas cards so i have a stack of unused ones here somewhere

teamstrand said...

i am not a fan of the "everybody bring your favorite (insert item)

Lisa Karon Richardson said...

Secret Sisters (wouldn't want to mention Santa in the sacred precincts of the fellowship hall). Our church has a Ladies Christmas breakfast but we still manage to have a speaker.

The Ladies who feel compelled to give gifts to those they "worked" with in various ministries and of course the awkward feelings that are left because you didn't think to get them something. Because for goodness sakes all you did was help pass out the palm leaves on Palm Sunday.

Oh and I know it's been covered but Christmas Sweaters. The Ladies Christmas Breakfast is a blingy bonanza of christmas sweaters.

sara said...

Well, our women's ministry doesn't do anything specifically for Christmas - we are a small church, we see each other all the time, and we are all too busy.

However, what is it with women in general and the need to bake like a maniac during this time? Even if you don't want to, you get sucked in, because inevitably someone is going to bring you a holiday plate, and you don't want to look like a jerk, so you of course need to reciprocate with some sugary goodness.

And please, someone tell me that I am not the only one that has been known to take the cookies and candy off the plate someone gave me in order to fill out a plate I'm giving someone else...

Helen said...

Okay...I loved doing this, but you could probably write something humourous with it. We played Christmas Charades. I had the best time ever! (Okay, maybe not ever, but I really liked it.) Sigh. Go ahead. Make fun of it and me. But remember, the closest thing I own to a Christmas sweater is a green velour sweetshirt. It is also my St. Patrick's Day shirt. Shhh! Don't tell anyone.

Donna said...

Marni,

Can we get a massage after the tattoos?


wv: allin

I'm allin for the group tattoo!

Helen said...

Sara, you are absolutely the only person who has ever done such a thing. Aren't you clever! ;-) If you could just get people to time their plates so that you could shuffle them between each other, you would be all set. Hmmm.....

Raw Faith Real World said...

I just avoid women's ministry at Christmas time like the plague... oh wait I almost always avoid it like the plauge. :) The biggest things... the Christmas Teas or the Women's Christmas Party... with those things called "gift exchanges"... especially the ones where you can steal other people's gifts and it becomes like a mean spirited spiritual version of wrestlemania.

Beth said...

How about the Jesse Tree? As if there isn't enough going on around the holidays, someone (albeit one year it was me) decides that we need to have a Jesse Tree ornament exchange.

This could be good and work well if you get enough women to sign up, but that's almost never the case, so everyone who does sign up winds up making an absurd amount of ornaments (on top of all the other holiday "things" that they "have" to do) because instead of making 25 of one, they have to make 13 of 3.

That being said, I do love my Jesse Tree ornament sets (yes, I have done this twice), and I think it is a fabulous way to celebrate Advent with your family.

Marni said...

Donna,

For sure! When do you have time to go??? Can we have glass of wine too?

Christy said...

Hey Stacy, I just live across the river near Salem, and go to church in Greenville right now. We don't do a whole lot for Women's ministry this time of year, but I presonally would love to have an outlet mall day! Either Columbus, or even Nashville's Opry Mills. Women's road trip to go shoppping - away from everything the WHOLE DAY!

Out on a Limb said...

Ok, so I had to tell this womens ministry story. I absolutely despise womens ministry events. I avoid them like the plague. But, several years ago I attended the "Ladies Bible Study" Christmas party. There I started chatting with another woman (who coincidentally was as miserable being there as I was) and we were discussing the art of "re-gifting." Then comes the time for the Yankee Swap and someone opens my gift and the woman whispers to me, "OH! That's LOVELY! Where did you get it?" To which I sheepishly looked at my shoes and pretended to not hear her. All of the sudden her eyes sparkled and it all became clear and she whispered, "It's a regift, isn't it?" We both burst into hysterical laughter and all the other women just stared at us. We never shared what tickled our funny bone. And to this day, we're very good friends. We still avoid womens ministry events but least we have each other.

sundog said...

I'm slow... I know, but I have the most fun ideas! We can sit in a big circle (so no one feels left out), share all we are thankful for (children, pets, husbands-if applicable, Jesus, etc.), sing Kumbaya or some other happy song (at least three choruses), have hugs all around (with back pats and cheek touches), wash each other’s feet (comparing nail polish colors, callouses, toe fungus and the like), and spend the rest of the evening scrapbooking. Yay.

Theo Trollbeads said...

Since her due date is near Christmas, I suggested having a "Heaven Sent" theme, to incorporate a holiday feel into the shower. I decorated the families' Christmas tree with pink ornaments, white lights and white feathery garland. So, as guests arrived, they placed their shower gifts under the tree. Then the ladies walked to the backyard where tables covered in white linens, silver runners and festive centerpieces awaited them. Above head, silver and pink ornaments dangled from the gazebo that was lit by white twinkle lights.

No Ordinary Me said...

Juat ran across here. I am curious as to why some of the comments said that they avoid women's ministry events? What do you not like about them?

Anonymous said...

Wow,
I feel really saddened by the all the cynical comments. Are these really christian women making these comments. I hope there was so much more to the events that you attended. If not we really have our work cut out for us in attempts to reach a lost world. The ladies' ministry events I have attended were so much more the food, decoration and token gifts. The fellowship with true believers was what touched my heart and left me different than when I came.

Rebecca said...

I came here looking for ideas myself. I agree with the last comment that was made. I, too, am saddened by all the cynical comments. How can we reach the lost if this is the attitude of the very ones who have been commissioned by Christ to do it? I find it all very sad.

Anonymous said...

Just popped in to see if there were any ideas... Not from this group of cynical women....sad....very very sad.

Anonymous said...

Maybe if A Women's Ministry was just that "A Women's Ministry" we wouldn't have all this garbage in our Church Events. What if you actually had a get together where the true meaning of Christmas was represented to non believers that we BELIEVERS hopefully invited to the event. I would not have a women's ministry church event Christmas or otherwise for any other reason than for outreach. You just add some great fun things to it. Hope this makes sense.

Anonymous said...

If Christian women can't get together and fellowship with other Christian women without saying they hate being there and that they avoid the fellowship events like the plague, I feel sorry for them. God's people need the bond of fellowship and closeness that helps us to avoid the things of this world that can cause us to stray from God. Women's fellowship can be a precious and blessed thing if we want it to be. I love spending time with my Sisters in Christ and wouldn't want to avoid it because in our fast paced world, time with them is very special to me.

Anonymous said...

so sad to read these comments.