Local churches make huge success with online activities

By Beatriz Abreu Ferreira

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced everyone to change the way they socialise and interact with others, and the religious communities are no exemption.

Churches all over the world have moved sermons from the pulpit to the screen, relying on Youtube or Facebook to live the traditional Sunday service.

Phil Chapman, one of the leaders at Living Rock Church in Market Harborough, said: “What we try to do online on a Sunday morning is almost the same as if we were together.

“There is some music, there is worship, reading of the Bible and then somebody will speak based on something we read of the Bible. Those online activities last about an hour and we use Youtube to broadcast it live, but people can also watch it later.”

The pandemic has helped religious communities gather pace to improve their online presence, and it seems to have been a success. 

At Living Rock Church, in addition to the digital Sunday celebrations with an integrated Bible app, there are also weekly Youtube videos and a podcast.

Leicester’s St John the Baptist Church has also invested in a stronger online presence, and has recently become famous for its creative lessons using Minecraft to teach the Bible to teenagers.

And around the world membership in spiritual apps have gained popularity.

“People on the whole have engaged really well, it seems we are reaching more people online than would normally come on a Sunday. People quite like it that they can watch it in their own time,” explained Mr Chapman.

“It varies from week to week but around 15,000 people watched our Sunday celebration last week. For some people who wouldn’t normally come to the church, watching online is a bit easier. And there is also an aspect of what has happened this year which has made people think about spiritual matters,” he added.

Although the team ensure online sessions are no replacement for being physically together, for the Living Rock Church it is definitely something to continue after the pandemic.

“I expect what we will do when the pandemic is over is maintain a really strong online presence. Not as a primary thing. The primary way will be physically when the pandemic is over, but we might well live stream our Sunday mornings because we know there are people who watch that who probably wouldn’t come and gather in the church,” he said.

“We are just longing to be together again, physically, gathering on a Sunday. But while it can’t happen, being able to do what we are doing online is really good and we are pleased with the response we had.”

Large cannabis factory found in Coalville

By Beatriz Abreu Ferreira

Police have found a large cannabis factory in premises in Baker Street, Coalville.

On Monday (Oct19) local officers found a factory containing in excess of 1,000 cannabis plants as well as hydroponic equipment.

No arrests have been made but an investigation is ongoing while enquiries continue to be carried out.

Earlier this year, on 22 June, 900 cannabis plants were also discovered near Coalville, at an industrial unit in Walker Road, Bardon Hill.

Anyone who may have information about the factory in Baker Street is asked to contact police on 101 quoting 20000552140.

Fast food chain Taco Bell to open in Leicester this November

By Adam Rear

It’s time to lick your lips as Leicester welcomes Taco Bell, the Mexican fast-food giant very soon.

The go-ahead was given this summer to open on Gallowtree Gate, where a former GAME store used to be situated.

The 57-seater site spanning two floors will be the UK’s 49th Taco Bell and will open on November 11, creating 35 new jobs.

The restaurant will allow diners to sit in or take-away, as well as the option for home delivery and click-and-collect.

Taco Bell UK marketing leader Lucy Dee said in a media release: “We’ve had our eye on a potential restaurant in Leicester for a while, and we know we’ve got plenty of fans in the area who we’re looking forward to welcoming through our doors.”

Rodgers confirms Vardy will miss tonight’s Europa League opener

By Oliver Taylor

Tonight’s game will kick off at 8pm at the King Power Stadium

Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has confirmed Jamie Vardy will miss tonight’s Europa League opener against Zorya Luhansk.

Vardy suffered a calf injury in training and missed the Foxes’ last game, a 1-0 loss against Aston Villa on Sunday.

Speaking at his virtual press conference yesterday, Rodgers said: “Jamie is a huge miss for us. We have to work with what we have, but we go into each game with a confidence we can create and score goals and it’ll be no different tomorrow.”

“We just have to find ways to be more creative and clinical. It’s still very early into the season and players are still trying to find their fitness.”

Islam Slimani will be ineligible to start in Vardy’s place due to not being named in Leicester’s 25-man Europa League squad.

Tonight’s game will kick off at 8pm.