The COVID-19 pandemic has forced places of worship to adapt.

Harvest Hills Alliance Church via phone 19/04/20

The ongoing pandemic that has been set from the COVID-19 outbreak has forced many businesses essential and non-essential into a difficult situation. But how has it affected places of worship or religious gatherings?

“It’s been challenging not impossible, but certainly different.”

I took a stroll up to Harvest Hills Alliance where I met with Rev. Myron Siemens. He said “It’s been challenging not impossible, but certainly different.” Rev. Siemens says the impact of COVID-19 has been immense since their church is not only a place of gathering for worship, but a shelter for those in need. The church helps the less fortunate by providing groceries or assisting some financially and even providing counselling for those with mental health struggles.

Rev. Myron Siemens captured during via live-stream 19/04/20

“Pull together what I believe is an effective live-stream.”

The church is not struggling as bad as they could have, since prior to the pandemic they opted to support donations electronically. This was a huge step forward as there are times they feel as though they are a tad bit behind in that area. Example of this is the fact that they had to turn the levers to ‘defcon 5’. Harvest had no way to live-stream or have the correct equipment to do so. “Less than 24 hours actually, we were able to pull it together using some fairly simple hardware, we were nevertheless able to pull together what I believe is an effective live-stream.” says Rev. Siemens.

Which is what the church believes to be a miracle being able to switch to this format overnight. Since the streaming has been going well they seek to keep it going into the future.

As Harvest continues to do what they can to social distance and battle this pandemic it’s still an ongoing struggle. Many of the amenities they offer cannot be active due to the gatherings sanction and many other laws in place too prevent spread of the virus. The church does aim to do whatever they can to assist the congregation and the surrounding communities moving forward, but it will be different not impossible.

~Daniel Siemens

SAIT NewsFile

Giannis Antetokounmpo hosted a Q & A last night.

Giannis Antetokounmpo after dunking over Raptors power forward Pascal Siakam.

Milwaukee Bucks 7 foot behemoth, Giannis Antetokounmpo or ‘The Greek Freak’ was chatting with viewers on Instagram live. The star was hosting the Q&A at his home in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

A baited question was asked from no other than the superstar of his own Canadian artist Drake.

“Definitely not you drake”…

The Greek Freak was asked by the platinum artist “who is the most annoying fan to play in front of?” To which Giannis quickly replied with a chuckle “definitely not you Drake”.

Later after discussion with his girlfriend who was also there alongside him during the stream, they pondered for a moment when they agreed Toronto Raptors ‘Super Fan’ Nav Bhatia was the culprit. Bhatia was recently inducted in the the NBA hall of fame for never missing a single Raptors game since the franchises birth.

This of course was all in good fun as Drake and Giannis have been friends for a while. Their ‘good-natured trolling’ has a long-standing history. Going all the way back to the Raptors Championship run last playoffs where Drake’s court side antics helped lead Giannis to fouling out.

~Daniel Siemens
SAIT Newsfile

The World Health Organization updates the global threat level of COVID-19

The World Health Organization updated risk of the COVID-19 to very high at a global level. Growing concerns for the virus have lead to preparations for an inevitable pandemic.

“3.4 per cent of COVID-19 cases have died.”

COVID-19 is the illness caused by the new coronavirus, which emerged from China late last year. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director of the World Health Organization, said Tuesday that globally “about 3.4 per cent of reported COVID-19 cases have died.”

There is no time for panic says director Ghebreyesus, one expert from the university of Toronto David Fisman says that the virus has become widespread globally and people should take the necessary action to reduce spreading. 

 The virus bordering 100,000 confirmed cases as the death toll rises to 3,000.

-Daniel Franz Siemens

New Technology Sought After Nearly 10,000 Thefts

Liquor Store Calgary, Alberta

Alcanna Inc., says thefts are a major safety concern in Edmonton liquor stores. These burglaries are costing millions of dollars annually.

The company in charge of some of the largest Wine and Spirits retailers has begun working with Edmonton Police to instate ‘PatronScan’ entry systems.

As theft is up 200 percent the result of 9,600 accounted for in 2019, averaging 26 robberies a day.

Requiring customers to use valid government official ID’s to gain access into the stores. An act to reduce stealing and provide safety for the public.