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Vicar Goes Viral After Accidentally Setting Himself On Fire During His First 'Virtual' Church Service

Vicar Simon Beach accidentally set fire to his own arm while recording his first virtual service (Simon Beach/PA)

We've all had to adjust our life to fit social distancing parameters. Some people are holding "virtual" Church services. It doesn't always go well. This local vicar felt the heat while recording his first “virtual" service, after accidentally setting his arm on fire with a church candle.


Simon Beach, vicar of St. Budeaux Parish Church in Plymouth, England, was not harmed during the mishap and was able to see the funny side – posting the “out-take" online.

In the video, Beach is seen leaning in to deliver the final part of his sermon before exclaiming calmly, “Oh dear, I've just caught fire."

He said he had been teased by fellow vicars, who joked about “being on fire for Jesus" and telling him that he “should have waited for Pentecost."


19 March 2020 youtu.be


“People have laughed and laughed, really," he told the PA news agency.


“I just felt my arm getting a bit hot. The nice thing is, it did damage my pullover and my shirt but my arm is fine – there's no burn on my arm," he said.

“The funny thing is, I told my wife and daughter what I'd just done … and while I got the video my daughter said 'All Dad will say is Oh dear I'm on fire', which is what I said."

Twitter came to his support.



There were some bad jokes.


Beach admitted that he had never made a YouTube video before and that it had felt “surreal."

Worshippers across the UK are preparing to attend their first Sunday services from their homes and participate over the internet.

One was Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, who broadcasted a service on BBC local radio, to then be uploaded to Facebook.

“The whole thing is a bit surreal – there's never been a time where we've deliberately not gone to Sunday worship, so that's very strange," Beach said.

“I've never phoned so many people really, because normally you go and visit people."