Castleford churches host virtual carol service to spread Christmas cheer across the community
Fans of Christmas carols have been invited to take part in a virtual carol service in Castleford this festive season.
Churches across Castleford have worked together over lockdown to help bring people together through song, prayer and support.
Their latest initiative is a virtual choir service, which included members of the churches recording classic Christmas carols from the comfort of their own home.
The home recordings have been made into a video that was broadcast on YouTube and Facebook, in the hopes that people will enjoy the performance and sing along at home.
Graham Earnshaw, of Smawthorne Community Church, said: “The churches in Castleford came together after we did a Pray for Castleford virtual prayer session earlier this year.
“The same groups have been meeting since then, we feel things like this are necessary because it’s been so difficult to get people together over lockdown.
“We didn't want people to miss out on a traditional carol service, so this virtual carol service is our Christmas gift from us to them.”
Participating churches include Church of England, Trinity Methodist Church, Cutsyke Christian Church, Christchurch, 5 Towns Christian Fellowship, Salvation Army and Smawthorne Community Church.
The video includes snippets and Christmas messages from the town’s people, Church members and local councillors, including Coun Richard Foster.
The project also highlights the good work of the Salvation Army and The Trinity Mission - who are each helping those in crisis on a local level.
Footage of the churches delivering food hampers can be seen throughout the video, including Smawthorne Community Church’s food bank who are distributing over 70 Christmas hampers to vulnerable families across the area.
Graham said: “All the churches involved want to provide carol service that can be accessed by people in town who are interested.
“We also want to let people know that there is help available, the churches want to show care in a practical and spiritual way.
“We’d love for people to join in with the service from home - we hope people can enjoy the experience and fingers crossed next year things will be back to normal.”