It took a global pandemic to make it happen, but here we are. Some of us wondering how it will work, some wondering if it will work, and a few hopefuls wondering why we never thought of this before. The answer is simple: necessity really is the mother of invention.
So this Sunday is our first ever online service, starting at 11am. To join in, follow this link: https://zoom.us/j/333352251.
Juts follow the instructions on the screen, and we'll do the rest! It works on any kind of computer, tablet, or smartphone.
If you prefer to use an ordinary telephone instead of computers, call this number instead: 0203 051 2874
When prompted, input this meeting ID: 333 352 251
Everyone is welcome! (except trolls)
Hymns for online services
Some other Unitarian congregations have been wondering what to do about hymns if they stream online services.
I thought I'd share some things I've learned. There are two main issues:
The other issue is much more thorny, and that's copyright. Essentially, you can use some hymns, but you have to be careful which ones. There is a very helpful Facebook post over on the Kent Unitarians site explaining more about this.
If you haven't read it, that should be your first port of call.
Further to that, I've decided to make a recording. This is hymn no 5 in Hymns for Living (the green book). It's in the public domain, both for melody and lyrics, and I give permission for my recording to be used freely in any religious context. Get in touch if you would like an MP3 to download. I hope this will be first of many.
As for copyright issues, I know it can be really confusing. I've been navigating these waters for some time, so I'm going to start by listing which hymns are safe to use for Unitarian churches (to the best of my knowledge. You are liable for your own copyright violations, so it's best to check for yourself). Note that "Safe" only means you can perform a hymn. There are separate copyrights that apply to each specific recording.
Hymns For Living (the green book):
I intend to continue this list over time (last updated: 21/03/20). If you need to check a particular hymn for yourself, here is my guide:
Hope you're staying safe and positive at this trying time.
Holland Morrell, Doncaster Unitarians