Church anniversary celebrations are always an exciting time for congregations. Whether a small special event or a large production with multiple events, churches tend to go all out for their celebrations—and understandably so. After all, these anniversaries mark special milestones in the life of any church and have the potential to be some of the most memorable events in their calendar.
Because of this, it’s important that you take your church anniversary celebration seriously and put as much thought as possible into planning it—because once you finalize those details, they can’t be changed again! However, don’t let that scare you away from planning something great. Anniversaries are a perfect opportunity to get creative, build camaraderie among members and make lasting memories that will help keep your church thriving for years to come.
When choosing your theme, you want to ensure it aligns with your core beliefs and provides an entertaining atmosphere for your congregation members. There are many different types of themes you can choose from, but we’ll go over some of our favorites:
12 Best & Creative Anniversary Themes, Ideas for Churches
- Come Together as a Group
- Commemorate the Formation of Your Church
- Commemorate with an art installation
- Have a service and invite the community
- Celebrate with a feast
- Bake a Church Cake
- Celebrate your Culture and Heritage
- Organize an Activity Day for your Members
- Serve a meal to the homeless.
- Write and publish a Church Anniversary Book.
- Have a worship service with guest speakers
- Honor Past Members with a Tribute
- Showcase a Meaningful Moment in Time for You and Your Congregation
- Why do we celebrate church anniversary?
- Tips for a successful church anniversary celebration
- Selecting a Church Anniversary Theme
- Final Thoughts
Come Together as a Group
Just as the name suggests, the theme of coming together as a group is all about getting your church members to bond and come together as a group. This is the perfect theme if you want to strengthen those relationships.
You can host various events with this theme, such as a potluck, karaoke night, bingo, or a movie night. This is also a great theme for youth events, where you can do something fun like go mini golfing, bowling, or playing laser tag.
This theme also works well for church anniversary events with a more serious tone. You could have a speaker come in and discuss the importance of gathering together as a church family.
This theme is also helpful for churches that have had recent changes to help draw attention to the importance of coming together as a group.
Commemorate the Formation of Your Church
This theme is perfect for you for churches that have been around for a while. You can look back at the beginning of your church to examine some of the founders’ motivations for creating it and how it has evolved over the years.
This can be done by having guests write letters to the founders, by having a service where you talk about the importance of the church, or by having a panel of people who were around at the beginning of the church share their stories.
Commemorate with an art installation
If your church is celebrating its anniversary of 20 years, then why not commemorate the event by creating an art installation that represents the past two decades?
One church in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, marked its 30th anniversary by inviting artists and members of the community to create works of art that explored the relationship between the church and Toronto. Their installation was a collaborative, interactive affair that allowed people of all backgrounds and beliefs to participate.
This type of project is a great way to commemorate the growth of your church through different periods. It’s also a wonderful way to invite the community around you to get involved and become a part of your church!
Have a service and invite the community
Another way to commemorate your church’s anniversary is to hold a special service. This service could be a thanksgiving for all God has done in and through your church thus far. It could also be a service of invitation, inviting the community to learn more about your church.
Either way, this is a fantastic way to celebrate and have a service that your members and the surrounding community will appreciate. One church in Pennsylvania commemorated its 40th anniversary by inviting the community to a service where they could learn more about the church.
The church held the service right near their building and invited the community to sit down and listen to the pastor’s message. This service was a great way to celebrate the anniversary and invite the community in!
Celebrate with a feast
Does your church have a special tradition of a celebratory feast? If so, a feast may be the perfect way to celebrate your anniversary! You could choose from many feasts, including a Chinese-themed banquet, a Southern-inspired dinner, or a Medieval feast.
One particular church in California hosts a Medieval feast yearly for their anniversary. The church members dress up in Medieval garb, and the feast includes meat dishes like chicken, pork, and lamb. The feast also includes delicacies like honey mead and dates with almonds.
Celebrating with a feast is a great way to bring your church members together and have a celebratory meal that’s truly unforgettable!
Bake a Church Cake
Another great way to celebrate your anniversary as a church is to bake a cake. It could be decorated with words like “Celebrating” or “Congratulations.” You may even want to bake a cake commemorating aspects of your church or its mission. This is a great way to celebrate and remember the day your church was built.
You can even bake a cake with the logo on the top. This cake can be brought out every year on the anniversary to celebrate the day your church began.
Baking a cake is a great way to celebrate your anniversary, and it’s something your members will also enjoy eating!
Celebrate your Culture and Heritage
This is a great theme to use if you have a large group of people in your church who come from a specific background or culture. Celebrate your culture and heritage by having guests bring food and drinks from their home country or region.
You can also have guests write letters to their ancestors, which you can then display in your church for others to read.
Organize an Activity Day for your Members
If your church is celebrating a special anniversary, why not organize an activity day for your members? You can hold a bowling event for the members to celebrate the church anniversary. The church can invite all the members of their congregation, as well as their friends and families.
This event will bring the church members together and allow them to celebrate the church’s anniversary together.
Serve a meal to the homeless.
Celebrating your anniversary as a church doesn’t have to be extravagant or expensive! You can commemorate the anniversary by serving the homeless in your area a meal.
Serve sandwiches, chips, and drinks; it can be a wonderful way to bring the church together and celebrate the anniversary.
It’s also a way to serve your community and show God’s love to the people around you.
Write and publish a Church Anniversary Book.
If your church celebrates a special anniversary, why not write a book to commemorate the occasion? You can feature the history of your church in this special book. It can include photos, memories from people who attended the church, and information about its mission.
You can make it available to the public so the community can learn more about the church. Writing a book is a great way to commemorate your anniversary and tell your church’s story.
It’s also a great way to preserve the history of your church and share it with others!
Have a worship service with guest speakers
Another way to commemorate your anniversary is to hold a special worship service. This service could be about your church’s history or its mission. It could also be a service with guest speakers who share their testimony about how the church impacted their lives.
It’s also a way to recognize and thank those who have been with the church since the beginning!
Honor Past Members with a Tribute
On this special anniversary, you may want to remember and honor the members who have passed on. You can recognize the people who had been church members during their early years. Play tribute videos, had guests speak about the members who had passed, and read poems and messages written by those members.
This special ceremony will be a great way to commemorate the anniversary and remember and honor the members who had passed on. It’s also a great way to get your church members thinking about their own mortality and encourage them to make their legacies meaningful!
Showcase a Meaningful Moment in Time for You and Your Congregation
If a specific event in your past has greatly impacted your church, you can use this theme to celebrate that moment in time. For example, one church used this theme to celebrate its decision to go from a large to a small church.
The theme helped the congregation recognize how important their decision was and how it impacted their future while providing a fun experience for them all to enjoy.
Why do we celebrate church anniversary?
Church anniversaries are a big deal! As the date approaches, it’s likely that many members will feel the excitement (or anxiety!) building as they gear up for the big day. This heightened energy has the potential to be a great thing for your church—as long as you know how to harness it!
Anniversaries are also a great way to showcase your congregation’s history and culture. When planning a celebration, you can use various symbols, traditions, and other church-specific elements to help members recognize how far the church has come.
Finally, church anniversaries are a great opportunity to involve your church members. To make your celebration special, you’ll want to get as many people as possible invested in the planning process. You can do this by holding a special brainstorming session, inviting members to suggest ideas, and hosting a vote to determine the final theme.
A church anniversary is a significant event that marks the anniversary of the founding or reestablishment of a religious organization. It can be private, such as the birth of a congregation, or public, such as the opening of a new building.
Take time to honor your congregation on this important day. As you gather for worship, remember those who gave their time, talents, and treasure to build your community. And pray for those who have passed away and all who are living in the faith journey.
Church anniversary allows us to reflect on our history and how far we’ve come together as one church family over the years. It’s also an opportunity to celebrate our successes and remember those who have left us.
Tips for a successful church anniversary celebration
- Choose a theme that is easy to maintain throughout the event. You don’t want too many different aspects to your celebration. Instead, you want to ensure that everything is tied together in a way that makes sense.
- Get creative: There are many ways to make your event special, so don’t feel you have to follow a strict pattern. Ask yourself: What can we do that is truly unique to our church? How can we make this celebration stand out?
- Get everyone involved: The more people you can involve in the planning process, the better. You can do this through in-person meetings, online brainstorming, and voting for the best ideas.
- Set clear goals for the event: What do you want your congregation to walk away from the celebration with? What do you want them to remember years from now? What are you hoping to achieve?
Selecting a Church Anniversary Theme
Before you dive into planning, it’s important to select a theme that is going to work well for your church. If you struggle with the decision, consider these factors: –
- Historical significance: Is there an important event in the church’s history that you could tie your theme too? For example, if you’re celebrating the fifth anniversary of your church’s opening, you could tie your theme to the concept of “opening” and its various meanings.
- Date patterns: Certain date patterns have become common anniversary themes. For example, if your church is celebrating the 20th anniversary, you could tie your theme to “20 years” or “20/20” and highlight how your church sees the world differently.
- Seasonality: Seasonality can go hand in hand with celebrations tied to significant dates on the calendar, such as Christmas or Easter. If you’re planning a large celebration around these holidays, it can be helpful to pick a secondary theme that ties back to the main event.
- Logo or design: If your church has a unique logo or design that captures its spirit, you can use that as inspiration for your theme.
When choosing an anniversary theme, you want to ensure it aligns with your core beliefs and provides an entertaining atmosphere for your congregation members.
You can choose from many different themes, but we’ve outlined some of the best ones above. Church anniversary celebrations are a great opportunity to get creative, build camaraderie among members and make lasting memories that will help keep your church thriving.
Regardless of your chosen theme, it’s important to consider your congregation and select a theme that will work well for everyone. Beyond that, there is no rule book to follow—simply go with your gut and have fun with the process! That said, it’s important to remember that anniversaries are meant to be celebratory events.
As much as you want to make them special, you also don’t want to make them so fancy that you pressure members or make them feel like they’re too “uncommon” to attend. Celebrate your church’s anniversary in a way that makes everyone feel welcome and excited, and your event will surely be a success!