With Thanksgiving just a few days away, it’s time to start thinking about Christmas in your church. The number of days between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year is the smallest possible number. There’s less time to plan between the two holidays, so it’s time to get started now.

The Sunday before Thanksgiving can be a popular day for church attendance, especially when families try to remember all the things for which they are thankful. The Sunday after Thanksgiving, however, is usually one of the lowest church attendance days. Many people are traveling back home from spending time with family or are recovering from a long weekend of time spent in fellowship with friends and family. Things will only get busier from here as we approach the end of the year.

Christmas is an important time in the church calendar, and not just because it celebrates the day Jesus Christ was born and the beginning of the journey towards our Salvation at Easter. It’s a time when people who don’t often go to church return. Capturing infrequent church visitors is important to in your Christmas plans—growing your church requires knowing how to keep those who came at Christmas coming in the New Year.

One of the best ways to increase church attendance is to rely on the resources you already have—the people who come every week. Ask this Sunday during services that your church congregation members make a pledge to help increase church attendance leading up to Christmas and continuing into the New Year. It might be a good idea to have a membership committee assembled to support these efforts, if you don’t have one already. 82% of unchurched people are likely to attend if asked by a trusted friend or relative, says Dr. Thom Rainer, but only 2% of church goers ask friends and family.

Ask your church congregation members to call their friends and family and ask them if they will join them at church on a Sunday in the near future. When someone a person knows asks them to come to church, it’s more likely that the person will follow through because they feel welcome and wanted. Make it your church’s mission to increase attendance in the New Year by starting now.

Be sure to take a look at your church too—do you have enough room for new members? Are your church pews comfortable for everyone? If not, it might be time to install new church furniture.