Diocese of Portsmouth

Come celebrate Christmas at Church

Celebrating Christmas in 2021

Many are wondering how we will be able to celebrate Christmas this year – with most restrictions now removed, can we return to pre-Covid forms of celebrating, or will we still need to rethink and find new ways of hosting Advent and Christmas services?

The national Advent and Christmas campaign this year is entitled At the heart of Christmas. Inspired by readings from the Gospels of Luke and John read at so many Christmas services, At the heart of Christmas is an invitation to everyone to discover – or rediscover – the good news of God’s saving love as revealed in the birth of Jesus. It is also a challenge to each of us to ponder in our hearts – as Mary did – what the extraordinary events of the first Christmas might mean for us now and in the years ahead.

At the heart of Christmas is a deliberately simple and open theme – one that we hope can be used by local churches to invite their communities to share in celebrating the good news of Christmas in a whole variety of ways, whatever the prevailing circumstances.


This are some of the services and events taking place in our diocese this year to celebrate Advent and Christmas.

Upcoming Events

More events

Upcoming Events

More events

At the heart of Christmas


The resources you might find useful as you prepare for Advent and Christmas this year are all available via www.churchofengland.org/christmas. They include:

  • Daily Advent reflections that will explore the Advent Morning Prayer readings from Matthew’s gospel and feature content from Reflections for Daily Prayer by Stephen Cottrell and Guli Francis-Dehqani, available via a Church House Publishing booklet. Separate versions for families and young people will also be available.  
  • National online services for Advent and Christmas will be available here on the Sundays during Advent, and broadcast on the C of E’s Youtube channel and Facebook page. 
  • A series of twelve Christmas reflections are now available via a Church House Publishing booklet. The reflections will be shared digitally each day from Christmas Eve to Epiphany. 
  • Printed resources, including bookmarks, prayer cards, and booklets, which are available here
  • Add details of your Christmas services to A Church Near You, and to access the Resource Hub,(log-in needed) which can provide customisable videos, social media graphics, approaches to online giving, and Christmas carols that can be downloaded for free and used in digital or physical services. 

Digital carol services 2020

December 21: Community carol service from St Luke's, Southsea (featuring readings from those who live, work and study in the parish)

December 21: Pompey Heroes carol service at Portsmouth Cathedral (city residents who helped others during the pandemic were invited)