I was an enthusiastic and involved member of Evangelical Protestant churches for the first 47 years of my life.
Evangelical Protestant worship services are a lot of work involving a lot of people. Usually these churches have not just one, but several pastors who participate in the worship services. (One will pray, one will do announcements, one will give the sermon, all will participate in the altar call, etc.)
The pastors have to prepare a sermon, and remember, it will be expected to last at least a half-hour! None of these 5-minute homilies! No, no, no!
Of course, it would be even better if the pastor does something “special” for Christmas, like acting out the part of Joseph while his wife acts out the part of Mary. Or maybe the sermon will be omitted and an all-Church Christmas pageant involving dozens or even hundreds of people will be performed.
The music alone in many Evangelical Protestant worship services is glorious on any given Sunday, and it takes a lot of musicians and techs. Even if it’s just piano, there is a song leader. Christians would expect the most beautiful music of all on Christmas Day! Maybe even a cantata with an orchestra!
All this takes a LOT of work! And in snowy climes, the maint. staff has to clear the parking lot and try to get rid of ice that might injure older members. That means getting up very early in the morning.
Most of the musicians in the Evangelical Protestant worship services are volunteers (except for the music pastor), and many balk at the idea of leaving their families, especially their small children, on Christmas Day, to come to the church and perform.
In fact, many families have rebelled in the last few decades against the “Christmas Pageant” or the cantata being done too close to Christmas. That’s why you see a plethora of Evangelical Protestant Christmas programs being done the second week of December.
I’ve said it before on these forums, and I’ll repeat it–Evangelical Protestantism keeps its members very very busy! Most weeks, my husband, children, and I were at church or doing a church activity 5-6 nights/days per week! And since I was a church musician, there were lots of practices in preparation for those activities. The figure skating was a challenge to fit into all that work!
I think that Evangelical Protestants see Christmas as a “break” from all their busyness work, and a chance to just stay home with their families.
In fact, Christmas Eve is a great opportunity for Catholic churches. For many years as an Evangelical Protestant, I would wait until my children were asleep and the family was sitting around the tree sipping hot chocolate and chatting, and I would attend a midnight Mass at whatever Catholic Church was nearest. I know that a lot of Evangelical Protestants do this (or even attend a Christmas morning Mass) out of curiosity, a desire to experience ancient Christianity (the OF Mass is ancient to Evangelical Protestants), or just a desire to sit back and relax in a church where they aren’t expected to DO anything but listen.