Point of View

Bad Ideas for Winter Olympics Church Tie-ins

Topical gimmicks are great—except when they’re not.

The Olympics are an exciting international event where people from around the world meet and compete across the lines of nation, race, language, and other things that divide us. That sounds like something the church might resonate with. And there might even be some good ideas out there on how to join in that sense of wonder at human abilities, the diversity of the world and of people’s skills, and the way folks come together to create something exciting and fun and to overcome differences.

I’m not here to help you with those, though. I’m here to offer some bad ideas instead, because that’s more fun.

  1. Figure skating events offer their own sense of functional fashion—skaters’ outfits tend to include more sequins than your typical church service. Maybe we need to replace the pastor’s robe and stole or conservative Sunday attire with a glamorous figure skating costume!
  2. Part of the fun of the Olympics is the medal ceremonies. What if potluck contributions were scored and medals awarded? Second-place recipients would of course be required to cry.
  3. Produce a few soft-focus video profiles of choir members and their road to alto-dom. End with the featured singer jogging in with the Christ candle.
  4. Biathlon practice in the fellowship hall. A little skiing and shooting will make everyone’s Sunday more exciting.
  5. Speed hymn singing—like speed skating but with more hymnals and less skates.
  6. Balcony jump. Self-explanatory.
  7. All-church curling tournament in the parking lot. Actually, no, this is a great idea—somebody please do this.

About the Author

Bethany Keeley-Jonker is an associate professor of Communication Arts at Trinity Christian College in Palos Heights, Ill. 

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