Christian rival to John Lewis Christmas ad goes viral

A Christian rival to John Lewis and Marks and Spencer's Christmas adverts is going viral and was viewed more than 50,000 times in the first 24 hours after going live.

Meet the Nativity is a series of short films based on an ancient apocryphal story of the Christmas scene.

Meet the NativityWill (Ant Joblin) plays the awkward boyfriend invited to his girlfriend Clare's (Emily Tucker) for Christmas.

Writer Glen Scrivener told Christian Today the aim is 'to get people to be interested in the actual Christmas message and not just buying toasters'.

In an interview on set he said: 'The idea is to resource Christians in their online world so that they can share not just cat videos online but maybe something with a little bit more meaning.'

He added: 'We want to be digital missionaries into this space and I think the way to do that is not just to go over the heads of Christians and try to reach those beyond the faith. I think the way to do that is to resource Christians in their own online worlds so they have stuff they are not ashamed of to share.'

With the first episode already being shared widely and three more to be released on the Monday's building up to Christmas, Scrivener said more than 200 people had already asked for a gospel book explaining the message of Christmas off the back of the video.

'We pray this would be a significant step for many in their journey to faith,' a statement from production company behind the series Speak Life said.

'Please pray that many thousands more will watch the films and be drawn to the gospel proclaimed there.'

Read our behind the scenes look at 'Meet the Nativity' here, including our interview with Glen Scrivener.

You can watch the first episode here, and read about the vision behind the project here.