Since 2014 St Michael’s in Blacksburg has been creatively counting down the days to Christmas with their online Advent Calendar. What started as a way to generate a greater web presence has become a unique way to reach out to the community during the lead up to Christmas, and a creative outlet for church members looking to share their talents in a meaningful way.
A number of artists at St. Michael’s work to illustrate each day of the Advent season, presenting the year’s specific theme in their unique style and medium. In year’s past, they’ve even created a coloring book so everyone could put their artistic spin on the art created for the calendar. “The overall effect [of the calendar] continues to surprise me as the years have gone by,” shared Gary Worley, who has led the calendar project since 2014.
Artists for this year’s calendar include Elizabeth Berg, Barbara Corbett, Anna Rossomando, Lylah Shelor, Maggie Maloney, Joyce Coupey, James Akers, Becky Steck, and Courtney Steck. Past calendars have featured work from Michelle Pasier, Sandie Worley, Parker Wertz, and Chris Wertz.
The calendar is presented both as an online web image and through the congregation’s Facebook page. The web calendar is interactive and the Facebook images present both the artwork and the text together. Typically the advent calendar receives 10,000+ unique viewers each year. More recent editions of the calendar prevent looking ahead on a single day, so the hope is that viewers will return throughout the season of Advent.
To view this year’s calendar, and year’s past calendars click here.