The big question for many parishes is how to continue serving an online audience when we return to physical gathering.
Those of you who are involved with producing and managing online ministry may be looking at effective ways to include cameras and live streaming in the sanctuary that does not get in the way of the liturgy, clergy or participants during physical worship.
Here is a summary of tips from the forum discussions we are having in the online Canadian Anglican Communicators Hub:
1. Presiding clergy should not be expected to multi-task and manage the equipment and live streams during the service. Dedicated volunteers are a necessary resource to effective online ministry.
2. Connection to the internet in the sanctuary, either through a direct cable connection or WiFi or a cellphone data plan is one of the major necessary expenses. If a parish does not have a budget for this then recording during the service and uploading the video elsewhere is an option.
3. Some parishes may want to continue using Zoom or Webex to live stream since their community is already familiar with it. The suggestion is to connect a quality webcam on a discrete stand and cabled to the laptop managed by a volunteer. The volunteer would manage the online waiting room, display liturgical texts, presentation graphics, bulletins, and song lyrics through screen share, and respond to chat during the service.
4. Various camera systems and switcher/controller apps are being discussed in the online Canadian Anglican Communicators Hub for parishes who have budgets up to $500, $1,000, $2,500, $5,000 and over. The GoPro and Mevo Start cameras (about $500) are viable systems for live streaming with apps that connect directly to social media and YouTube. The Mevo Start also can be used as a webcam to stream to Zoom.
5. Live streaming systems being recommended are: Switcher Studio, Church Online Platform, OBS Broadcaster, Streamyard, Ecamm, and others.
That's a short recap. If you are involved in managing or producing online ministry join us at https://canadian-communicators.myanglican.info
Contact me if you would like to discuss your parish plans to record or live-stream your services.
Peace be with you during these changing times.
Digital Communications Facilitator
Anglican Diocese of Calgary