‘Follow the star: Join the song’ this Christmas

Published: Tuesday September 5, 2023

Follow the Star Join the Song logoIs it too early to talk about Christmas in September? We don’t think so … and with new resources announced from the Church of England, there’s plenty of ideas to help you get ahead and ready to ‘Join the Song’.

Last Christmas, churches across the Diocese of Gloucester extended ‘The Great Invitation’ from the Church of England to Follow the Star to their local church in person once again.

This year’s theme – Follow the Star: Join the Song – highlights how singing can help draw us closer to God and each other through the journey from Advent to Epiphany.

In the story of the first Christmas, the shepherds are astonished to find the night sky filled with countless voices singing God’s praise.

The shepherds went back,
singing praises to God for all they had heard and seen;
it had been just as the angel had told them.
– Luke 2.20 (GNB)

Centuries later, singing is still central to how millions of people celebrate the good news of Christmas. Singing and hearing carols can enable people of all ages to get in touch with the wonder and the truth of the Christmas story.

Alongside some familiar elements, there are some completely new strands to this year’s campaign to help schools, churches, cathedrals to connect with this year’s call to Join the Song, including:

  • An invitation to all choirs and singing groups to sing a new version of ‘The First Nowell’ – listen to a preview.
  • Free resources to help choirs of all ages and stages learn and perform the carol
  • Supporting resources for schools including collective worship sessions
  • Daily Advent and Christmas reflections inspired by the words of familiar carols
  • A printed Follow the Star Advent Calendar for families – with stickers!
  • And much more, including free tools and resources on A Church Near You


Join the Song webinars

One of the key elements of the Join the Song campaign is to invite choirs and singing groups of all ages to learn and sing the carol.

The Church of England is running the following webinars to help you get the most out of this year’s campaign:

For logo packs, social media templates and more, visit: Follow the Star: Join the Song – Resources for churches | The Church of England

And don’t forget, Bishop of Kirkstall the Right Revd Arun Arora’s book ‘Stick with love’ (The Archbishop of York’s Advent Book 2023), is now available on pre-order: https://spckpublishing.co.uk/stick-with-love-566


2 thoughts on “‘Follow the star: Join the song’ this Christmas

  1. I’m in Salisbury Diocese, can I still have information about Follow the Star: Join the Song?

    1. Hi Ursula, yes the resources and webinars linked above are all nationally available so you can sign up from anywhere.

Leave a Reply

Most popular articles today: