The Christian Community in the Market Harborough area

Open air carols part of local churches’ Christmas specials

Nativity scene

Carols by car light and QR codes are among the innovative ways Harborough churches are offering Christmas celebrations within the constraints of Covid-19 restrictions.

Harborough Community Church in Bath Street is holding a carol service in its car park on Sunday 20th at 3.00 pm for which booking is required (phone 01858 434906); cars arriving at 2.30 with pedestrians after that.

Available at any time are QR codes on boards outside St Hugh’s Church in Northampton Road; passers-by can scan the codes on a smart phone and listen to a carol. St Hugh’s also has a tree outside on which people may tie ribbons, baubles or thoughts and prayers.

Two of the area’s other churches have open-air services. On Saturday 19th there is an outdoor Carol and Nativity Service in the church yard of St Peter and St Paul Great Bowden at 4.00 pm but booking for this is required (phone 01858 434282). All Saints Lubenham does not require booking for its outdoor service of lessons and carols, with the blessing of the crib, at 3.00 pm on Sunday 20th.

In-church services

Most indoor services over the Christmas period at all the town’s churches require pre-booking because of limited space for social distancing (in a normal year some would pack in several hundred people for special services). The details of these and how to book can be found on the individual church websites that can be accessed via the “Our churches” tab here.

However, there are exceptions. The Congregational Church at the top of the High Street has a 10.00 am service on Christmas Day which does not require booking, and neither do the 9.30 am communion and 11.15 family services at St Dionysius in the town centre on Sunday 20th. St Dionysius also has a non-booking communion on Christmas Day at 10.00 am. For those who like to attend a midnight service, All Saint’s Lubenham has one without booking at 11.30 pm on Christmas Eve.

On-line and broadcast services

There is a variety of other services from most of our churches either live-streamed on line or via Zoom, the latter usually requiring a pre-obtained password. The details and links are available via the individual church web sites.

Some services and presentations are already pre-recorded and available on line. These include a Nativity and a Dementia-friendly service available via the Anglican team website. A joint Churches Together Christmas message will be available on line from Saturday 19th (the link will be here and on most church websites).

Radio Leicester is planning “Sing Christmas at Home” on Tuesday 22 December from 7 – 8 pm (BBC Radio Leicester on 104.9 FM, DAB, Freeview or online). The live broadcast will include carols, Bible readings and a Christmas reflection and blessing. Everyone will be invited to sing the last carol “O Come All Ye Faithful” on the doorstep. Listeners can also message the station during the broadcast for a mention in the programme. Other broadcast channels will have Christmas services and details will be available on the usual listings.

We hope that these provisions enable you to enjoy a peaceful, if different, remembrance of the unchanging message of Christmas, that God so loved the world that He sent His Son into it so that all who trust him might experience and enjoy his presence and help now and always.

The Christian Community in the Market Harborough area