We are curating this page every day for Churches that are looking for resources during this time while we can't phyisically gather together to worship.
As you come across resources you think would benefit the whole Church please send the links to Angela Cadena firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liturgy of the Empty Hands: The following Liturgy is designed to deviate only minimally from the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper as set out in Uniting Worship and other liturgical resources, to allow for the absence of bread and wine/juice – while retaining familiar foundations, in uncertain times. Download the liturgy here.
Coronavirus Liturgy and Prayer Resources: from the Church of England including prayers about the outbreak, prayers with children, worship at home and prayers if you can’t get to Church.
Liturgies for Worship are offered by a group of scholars, teachers, and worship leaders in The United Methodist Church.
Free Music Licence: One License is providing gratis license options valid through April 15, 2020. This offer is now expired, however, follow links on their site for current pricing.
Because the Lord’s My Shepherd: Song and music score composed by Rev. David McGregor for Psalm 23, which is in the Lectionary for this Sunday 21 March. Chris McNaught has recorded the vocals.
Click here for the Music: https://www.facebook.com/dmacgreg1/videos/pcb.10157844678954871/10157334835597986/?type=3&theater&ifg=1
Click here for the Score Sheet: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10157334836187986&set=pcb.10157844678954871&type=3&theater&ifg=1
See also this post from the Progressive Christian Artists Network on access to streaming music.
Reflections & Resources
Toilet Paper Blues: A 5-minute reflection and prayer from Rev. Rod Pattenden, Adamstown Uniting Church on toilet paper shortages – “We thank you God that you provide us with what we need.” https://vimeo.com/397871432
Reflection on community in the midst of a pandemic: a theological reflection by Rev. Dr John Squires on how we be Church in the midst of a crisis.
Colliding calamities are hurting the most vulnerable - a reflection by Doug Taylor, Director of Mission, Communities and Social Impact at Uniting
Certainty in uncertain times: Reflection and Prayer from Ravenswood School Chaplain Rev. Jon Humphries
A Call to Worship for Dispersed People: Prayer from Craig Mitchell
Insights magazine articles on COVID-19 are available here.
Ministry During Pandemic: From Awareness to Implementation by Dr. Naomi Paget, B.C.C., B.C.E.T.S. Fellow, National Center for Crisis Management
With Love to the World - Temporary Open-Access Edited by Dr. Peter Butler (29 June - 12 July)
The Saltbush - Uniting the Scattered Community team are doing weekly resources for use in any context. You can access their Vimeo channel here (resources are downloadable).
Project Reconnect: Find out more here .
Hold That Thought - Two seasons of 90 second sermons for use as conversation starters for small groups. You can stream from YouTube or download on the Hold That Thought Vimeo Channel and like and follow the Facebook page.
Illustrated Ministry is supporting local congregations and families during the COVID-19 pandemic, by providing free, weekly, faith formation resources for all ages. Visit the resources here.
Resources to assist Churches during COVID-19: A basic handy list of resources in one place.
The Work of the People - a spiritual visual library and virtual sanctuary for a growing community of people from all walks of life. You can subscribe to download the excellent videos from TWOFP from as little as $7 US per month.
- Staying Connected during the COVID-19 pandemic
- Unpacking feelings with kids around COVID-19
- Gathering when we can’t gather (part 1)
- Gathering when we can't gather (part 2)
- Hang out and Chill with Molk from the Pulse team three times a week
Explainer Video for Children about the spread of COVID-19:
Do you want to receive Pulse Mail every week? It includes loads of cool sheets and craft ideas to work on while at home during social isolation. Sign up here to get it now.
- Saltbush Online Cafe and Saltbush Sundays @ 4 - To join either the Saltbush midweek Cafes or the Saltbush Sunday @ 4 service just email the team to send you a Zoom link at email@example.com
- Saltbush will being a series of "Salty Conversations" starting on May 17 with special guests. Check the Saltbush Facebook page for updates.
- Check the Saltbush website for Word Around the Bush and other excellent resources for gathering.
If you want to reach out and assist the vulnerable in your community, an excellent initiative started by The Kindness Pandemic is cards you can put in your neighbours letterbox letting them know you care and if they are unable, offer to shop for them or pick something up from the local post office. Simply use the attached cards, by printing them and offering help during the COVID-19 crisis. Download the #viralkindness cards here.
- Worship resources
- Synod Climate Action Strategy and Task Groups
- Church banners
- Our videos
- Our Facebook Page
- Our Facebook Group
- Five Leaf Eco-Awards (environmental awards for churches)
- Stories about environmentally friendly churches
- Key Creation Care Bible Verses
- Living the Change (individual change)
- Field Guide for the Future: Design, Theology, and Innovation. 12-week foundation course exploring items such as spiritual innovation in shifting landscape; changing cultural perspectives; transforming economic realities; innovative theology and new parables.
- Spiritual First Aid Online: Join with other ministry leaders for a Spiritual First Aid Online Summit. This one-day free online event will inspire and case a vision for living a message of hope as we care for our neighbours, Churches, communities, and world during COVID -19 and beyond. Register for 30 April here. For registration please visit the above URL. Even if you cannot attend the live, register to get access as the content can be viewed on or after 30/04/2020.
- Collaboration of USA Churches responding to COVID 19 via a 2 day digital summit. Visit the website for more information for a digital summit for churches and church leaders responding to COVID-19 presented by the Humanitarian Disaster Institute at Wheaton College and National Association of Evangelicals. All on-demand videos may now be viewed and shared.
Neighbourhood Matters is movement run by husband and wife team who are forming reflective practitioners for service in the ecology of the urban neighbourhood. For more information visit the website.
Good Weekend Talks Konrad Marshall's cover story looks at how COVID-19 has brought out inspiring random acts of kindness around the globe. Joining Katrina Strickland and Konrad Marshall is Age reporter Tom Cowie who has been covering positive news, to discuss whether we are being kinder or whether we are looking for kindness.
How to's for online worship
Churches can extend their CCLI music licences if they haven't already, by contacting CLLI here to livestream across any platform, whether it is from a website or from Facebook.
The CCLI Streaming Licence is designed to legally provide a live stream or a podcast of a church’s worship service. A "Digital" transmission is considered a broadcast.
The base requirements for the Streaming Licence is that it(s):
- Requires an active Church Copyright License to reproduce (record) services. (not performances/covers/etc)
- Pricing is based on the church attendance, as with the CCLI normal licence. Sizes must match. (the views do not matter, overseas or otherwise)
- Songs must be covered under the CCLI Licence.
- Live music only; no pre-recorded music, such as an artist or record label recordings sold commercially.
- Recorded during the actual church service. Nothing added.**
** This won't be on the site because it is only for this time. At this point, with the licence, it would cover however the stream comes together, even with post production in the service, which means prerecording is allowed to a certain extent. It's more the process at the other end. It's meant to be a service - so it should follow the usual routine - but if you record the worship at one point and then the message/prayers etc and then do some post-production that's fine. This would mean that using a clip recorded and used at an earlier date would be okay as long as it is YOUR worship team and it is placed as part of the service as a whole.
Zoom Videos & Fact Sheets
There has been a lot information doing the rounds of the web about "Zoom bombers". This can occur when you publicise a Zoom link on a platform like social media. We would warn against such a practice and advertise the Zoom meeting with an invitation to join through email.
If you have already begun a session and find an unwanted attendee has joined you can do the following:
- If the Participantspanel is not visible, click Manage Participants at the bottom of the Zoom
- Next to the person you want to remove, click More.
- From the list that appears, click Remove.
Online Giving for Churches
Personal Giving to your Church through Uniting Financial Services
- Personal giving can be set up through Uniting Financial Services with Giving Direct here.
No cost online giving
- Direct Debit is simple & straight-forward. Churches can share their banking details, and individuals use their banking apps to set payments (one-off or regular scheduled payments). No price, and no transaction fees.
Low cost online giving platforms
- PayPal is a familiar platform for anyone making online payments. No price, however a 2.2% + $0.30 fee per transaction. PayPal has a simple button users can add to any page on a website or embed in an email. You can also set up PayPal.Me to create a customised landing page with a link unique to your church for your PayPal Donors to visits.
- Tithe.ly is free to set up and easy for admins to manage. They have great customer service and are available to answer questions through online chat or over the phone. Free to use, with 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction (prices are in US$). Members can give through the app or through a website integration that doesn’t require users to leave your church website. Members can also opt to ‘cover the fee’. Visit the tithe.ly website for more information and resources.
- PushPay is a dedicated church online giving platform. Prices are tiered based on features, and with fees ranging 2.5% – 3% per transaction (prices are in US$). Visit the PushPay website for more information about features.
Online Security Tips & Hints
During the COVID-19 crisis, we will all be spending more time online and it is a good time to have some refreshers for cybersecurity and how to recognise scams and other important information. Synod IT and Assembly have prepared the following documents:
- Cyber Security Awareness
- Cyber Security Tips for Parents
- Being a Safe Church Online - Assembly Document