Resources for Online Worship
CONNECTING TO YOUR CONGREGATION WITH TECHOLOGY
Taking Your Worship Online: A Guide for Beginners and Everyone Else from Resource UMC
- Use Technology to Extend Worship Beyond the Sanctuary: Part 1 from Resource UMC
- How to Stream Worship Beyond the Sanctuary: Part 2 from Resource UMC (A deeper dive than Part 1, includes equipment recommendations, costs, etc.)
- Web Ministry: Privacy and Permissions from Resource UMC
- A Beginners Guide to Live Streaming for Churches (Video) and Live Streaming Setup for Small Churches are helpful primers from Jake Gosselin, creator of churchfront.com, a comprehensive online resource for worship leaders globally. The video offering is apt to be most useful for churches with a bit of a budget, but overall, Gosselin is a great resource for essential information on tech for churches.
- Live Stream on YouTube--Learn How to Get Started
- How to Use Facebook Live to Stream Your Church Services. Written in 2016, but this is still solid advice on how to get started. The author has added additional information at the end of the piece in response to inquiries from Churches new to streaming because of COVID-19.
- Tips for conducting virtual worship from NYAC Communications
- Weathering winter (or coronavirus) with virtual worship: Tips from UM Communications on live streaming worship
- Creating an Online Faith Community
- Grow Your Church Online with a web ministry
- Amplify Media offers free video resources for Deep Blue Kids, Abingdon Lenten studies, and Spring Bible studies
- The Volunteer Technology Team is a group of unpaid NYAC clergy and laity that provide FREE help to churches with technology questions/ The group (formed by (led by Peter Hoernes of Shrub Oak UMC) can offer information on topics ranging from web-applications applications and office solutions (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OpenOffice, etc.) to hardware recommendations and help with Internet/WIFI issues.
If you have a Tech problem, please email your question. It will be forwarded to a member of the Tech Team for immediate response.
LIVE STREAM BASICS AND OPTIONS
There are a dizzying number of streaming options, with more becoming available too quickly to count. For purposes of getting started quickly, you can't beat Facebook Live or YouTube Live, so there's detailed information below.
Simulated Live Streaming: You upload a pre-recorded video to a hosting service like Youtube or Vimeo, copy/paste the share URL into your web site's video section, and the platform will play the video like it is live.
Live Streaming Direct to Social Media Platforms, like Facebook Live, is a great way to meet immediate, short needs largely because it is easy to set up and your videos can be shared, which broadens your reach and exposure. Best of all, it's really simple; you can even mount your phone to get it done. If you’re streaming using a desktop computer or laptop, click inside the status update box at the top of your newsfeed and choose the “live video” icon from the menu. A browser window pops up, activating your computer’s webcam. For mobile users, you can use the Facebook app. Simply tap the “live” icon beneath the status update box. Write a description for your video, set your audience (Public, Friends, etc.), choose a filter, and press “start live video.”
YouTube Live is another easy option. Using a desktop computer, simply click on the recorder icon in the upper right hand corner, followed by “Go Live.” Next, select “Webcam,” enter a title and description for your stream, and choose a privacy setting. You can also choose to schedule your live stream for a later date, and choose from more options under Advanced Settings. Click “save” when you’re done, and then “Go Live” to begin streaming. Streaming to YouTube via the “Events” dashboard is ideal if you prefer to announce a planned event before it goes live. You can access or schedule a live stream via the Live Control room.
When your church is ready to graduate to a higher quality approach, it will require a "decent" financial investment. To stream your service live to your website, you will need to have a streaming provider, an encoder, a camera operated by someone who records the service and is familiar with or willing to learn the process. Your provider's platform will issue an embed code that will need to be copied/pasted into the video section of your church website. Below are just a handful of streaming providers, but you are encouraged to reach out to other churches for recommendations as well.