One of the Pro-life Action League’s favorite events of the year is our “Peace in the Womb” Christmas caroling day. The idea is simple: we bring the hope and joy of Christmas to one of the world’s darkest places—the abortion clinic—in hopes that the familiar sounds of Christmas carols will save a life.
And, in fact, lives have been saved by our peaceful, prayerful witness when women heard our songs from inside the abortion facility and chose life for their children.
To hold your own “Peace in the Womb” caroling day, follow the simple instructions below—and be sure to let us know about your plans!
- Promoting your caroling day
- Sharing your caroling day with the media
- Print your caroling booklets
- Creative ideas to consider
- Assign key jobs to members of your team
- On your caroling day, bring everything you need
- Where to stand when you sing
- Take pictures and video of your caroling day
- Conclude your caroling day with hot chocolate and cookies
- Share your caroling experience with the League
Promoting your caroling day
The Pro-Life Action League has produced several tools to help you promote your caroling day and increase turnout.
Customizable flyer: To use this promotional tool, right click this link and choose “Save Link As” to download the file to your computer. (You will need Adobe Reader to open the file. If you do not already have it installed on your computer, you can get it here.) NOTE: do not fill out the flyer in your web browser or you will lose your changes. Once you’ve downloaded the flyer to your computer, fill in the customizable boxes with your details, then save the flyer with a new name to preserve your changes. Print out and distribute! (Contact us with any problems.)
Email template: Click on our caroling email template, copy the plain text and then paste it into an email window, and fill in your details. Send out your email a week before your event, and send it again a day or two before.
Bulletin announcement: This is some of the best free advertising you can get. Download our Bulletin Announcement template, fill in your details, and email to local churches 10 days before the Sunday you want your announcement to appear. Even better, run your announcement for several Sundays.
If you plan to gather for cookies and hot chocolate after caroling (see below), include that in your invitations. You may also wish to remind people to dress for the weather.
For more tips on promoting your event—including social media tools—see our page on “Increase turnout by using good promotional tools”.
Sharing your caroling day with the media
Consider inviting local media to cover your caroling day. It’s a great story for them to cover, with excellent visuals on a topic that will spark interest in their readers or viewers—an attractive opportunity for a reporter!
You can use this customizable media alert to send out to local media to let them know about your caroling day. Note: Be sure to fill out all the bracketed fields in the release with the correct details for your event before sending!
Refer to our page on “Earning good media coverage for your pro-life efforts” for instructions on building your media list, reaching out to local media outlets, and talking to reporters.
Printing your caroling booklets
A few days before your caroling day, get copies of your caroling song sheets. A great 8-page song booklet is available from the Pro-Life Action League, featuring carols focused on the Christ Child.
The caroling booklet is designed to be folded and stapled. Download it, and then email it to a local print shop like Fed Ex Office for printing.
Colored paper can make your song sheets or booklets more festive, but be careful not to sacrifice readability (for example, it is difficult to read black text on red paper).
Creative ideas to consider
Several creative ideas have been used by caroling groups around the country that you might want to consider:
Gather around an “empty manger”: With a couple of eight-foot lengths of 1-by-4 pine, an old broom and a few nails, you can build an “empty manger” for your carolers to gather around, reminiscent of manger in which the infant Jesus was laid. Just follow the simple instructions in our Empty Manger Plans [PDF].
Do a multi-site caroling “tour”: If there are several abortion facilities in your area, you might consider doing a “Caroling Tour” and visiting three or four facilities with your caroling. The Pro-Life Action League conducts two simultaneous tours in the Chicago area every year.
Create a “living nativity scene”: Dressing up in costumes to create a “living Nativity scene,” can make your caroling more visually compelling, and also make it clear to passersby and abortion clients what you’re doing there.
Use creative signage: For example, one caroling group in Ohio had the idea of staking three signs in the parkway reading: UNTO US … A CHILD … IS BORN.
Assign key jobs to members of your team
For a great caroling day, it helps to assign several important jobs to responsible individuals:
Song Leader: The entire group will sing more confidently if one person leads the singing, setting the pitch for each song. With help from the volunteers, the song leader should vary the set of songs sung at each caroling site, if you’re visiting more than one location.
Photographer: The best way to ensure you get good pictures of your caroling day is to assign someone to be the photographer who is comfortable sharing photos via email and social media. The photographer can also be responsible for shooting video, or you may wish to designate a videographer as well.
Song Sheet Distributor: This person will pass out song sheets to people as they arrive and collect them at the end of the program. In colder climates, the song sheet distributor can also offer people hand warmers.
Police Liaison: You’re unlikely to encounter police during your caroling day, but if you do, have someone designated to talk to them. See details above under Where to stand when you sing.
On your caroling day, bring everything you need
Song Sheets: Both wet conditions and gloved hands can do damage to song sheets [PDF], so bring a few more than you think you need.
Empty Manger (optional): The empty manger can also serve as a receptacle for song sheets and hand warmers between sites.
Hand warmers (optional): Participants in colder climates will really appreciate the special touch of offering them hand warmers—and the more comfortable they are, the more enthusiastically they will sing.
Flexibility: Be prepared to modify your plans if you encounter bad weather—like freezing rain or extreme cold. Sing fewer carols if conditions are harsh, or take a break to warm up in cars or a nearby coffee shop.
Fully charged camera: Always bring your camera or smart phone with you when you do any pro-life activism. But a camera with a dead battery or no room for data is useless, so charge your camera in advance and make sure you have adequate memory for shooting photos.
Refreshments: If you’re not planning to gather for hot chocolate and cookies after the last caroling site (see below), you might still want to bring along some refreshments to share at the conclusion of your caroling.
Where to stand when you sing
Be sure to stand on public property when you carol. But you should know that that even if you’re peaceful and on public property, abortion clinics will still sometimes call the police.
See the Activism Basic Training unit “Working with police at your pro-life event” for more information on both identifying public property lines and working with police.
Also, take care to give space to any sidewalk counseling efforts taking place while you’re caroling.
Take pictures and video of your caroling day
Always bring your camera to every pro-life activity, including the caroling day. Take plenty of photos; it’s better to have too many to choose from than too few. If possible, also shoot some video of your caroling.
Share your photos and video on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. You might also want to put together a one- or two-minute video with photos and clips.
Finally, please share your photos and videos with the Pro-Life Action League for inclusion in our annual nationwide round-up of caroling events.
Conclude your caroling day with hot chocolate and cookies
There’s no better way to warm up after a successful caroling day than to gather with your fellow pro-lifers for hot chocolate and cookies at someone’s home or a local church. Invite participants to bring a tray of favorite Christmas cookies to share.
Share your caroling experience with the League
To help spread the word about this great pro-life activity and encourage other pro-lifers, write up a brief account of your caroling day, including anything especially notable like a mother choosing life for her baby after hearing the carols. Please email your story to the Pro-Life Action League.
If you have photos or video to share, please send those, too, or provide links in your email.