VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – A lot of us will be thinking about going to church at some point at Christmas.

TV ads now airing on local stations are inviting Catholics to attend church more regularly.

The commercials are meant to appeal to the roughly three-quarters of the nearly half a million Catholics in the Vancouver Archdiocese who don’t routinely go to church.

Paul Schratz with the archdiocese says similar ads in the States have paid off.

“The statistics invariably show throughout the States an increase of anywhere from seven to 10 per cent in Mass attendance. People do respond very well to these gentle invitations,” he notes.

“This is the first Canadian archdiocese to try the ads.”

He says research has shown a lot of Catholics have drifted away simply because they fell out of the routine of going to church.

The ads are part of a campaign, called Catholics Come Home, to get people to return to the church.

Some ads feature actual personal testimonies from Catholics who have come back to the church, while others highlight the church’s history and legacy. They’ll be running in a variety of time slots, including during supper newscasts and late night talk shows.