Online worship here to stay according to senior Church of England Bishop

Churches across our region are getting ready for their busiest few days of the year. More people attend at Christmas for things like Midnight Mass and carol services than at any other time. But with concerns over coronavirus increasing, there are people who will once again prefer to worship at home which is one of the reasons why online services have now become a permanent part of weekly life for many parishes.

Since the pandemic began, standing in front of a camera to lead worship remotely has become part of the job for many vicars and it continues to be so as they recognise the opportunity it presents to reach people who cannot be in church in person.

The Church of England estimates there are more than 17,000 online services listed on its website Credit: ITV News

When places of worship closed their doors for weekly services at the start of the pandemic, many had never allowed people to join them online before. Now, 18 months on that has all changed.

One of the church's most senior Bishops has led a recent review into the importance of Online Worship.

It is not just Christians who continue to offer online worship. Among the religions continuing to offer regular services are Buddhist temples, Hindu temples and Muslim mosques.

The pandemic has changed many aspects of all our lives. Finding new ways to explore religion from home is one of those changes which looks like being a permanent one.

Watch James Webster's full report: