Christingle with a twist

First published 1st December 2021

Christingle is a joyful celebration that brings families and communities together to share the light of Jesus and spread a message of hope.

It is named after the Christingles that are lit during the celebration, made from an orange decorated with sweets or dried fruit and a candle.

The orange represents the world; the candle pushed into the centre of the orange, then lit, represents Jesus Christ as Light of the World; the red ribbon wrapped around the orange represents the blood of Christ; and dried fruits and/or sweets skewered on cocktail sticks pushed into the orange represent the fruits of the earth and the four seasons.

The pandemic showed us that there are many creative ways to hold Christingles, and that innovation has continued this year as churches across the diocese hold a variety of celebrations, alongside a wide choice of more traditional services. You can find your local church services here

St Martin’s in Knowle, Bristol, will be holding Christingle with a twist on Sunday 5 December – a cosy outdoor event taking place outside the church with a bonfire and hot drinks. And St Paul’s Church in Southville, Bristol, will be holding their Christingle service at Windmill Hill City Farm on Sunday 12 December, with two short family-friendly celebrations at 4pm and 5pm. Tickets are available to book here.

In the Woodbridge Group of Churches in North Wiltshire, Christingle: re-imagined is a Wild Church event with hot chocolate and mince pies, which will be held at Roberts Berry Farm on Sunday 5 December. Those attending are asked to bring wellies and a torch, as well as a warm coat! For those preferring the warmth of a church, a Christingle will also be held at Messy Church at Brinkworth.

Other indoor Christingle services include at St Ambrose in Whitehall, Bristol, who will be holding their family Christingle service on Christmas Eve, and at St Mary’s Church Purton, in Swindon, who will be holding a Christingle service for children of all ages and their adults on Saturday 18 December followed by refreshments. 

For those who would like to celebrate at home, many churches’ services are also online, and St John’s Haydon Wick in Swindon (whose Christingle service is on 13 December), have a handy video on How to Make a Christingle. There will be a national online service streamed on the Church of England’s websiteFacebook and YouTube channels at 9am on Sunday 13 December. 

A number of Christingle services across the diocese are raising money for The Children’s Society, to support their life-changing work with children and young people. Last year £600,000 was raised to support the young people who need hope the most. Christingle services in the diocese that are fundraising for The Children’s Society include at St Luke’s in Brislington, Bristol and at St Peters Church in Chippenham. You can find details of a service local to you here and find out how to collect donations at your own church here.

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