Contact: Amy Campbell Smith
Nashville, March, 2020 – The outbreak of COVID-19 in the US and the resulting cancellation of group gatherings has led many United Methodist churches to plan online virtual worship experiences.
To assure that local churches have the resources they need, the United Methodist Publishing House (UMPH) announced that it is granting permission to livestream and post online selected content from the United Methodist Book of Worship (BOW) as congregations care for their members during the international health crisis.
Selected content is currently available by agreement at the Discipleship Ministries website for use in worship services but not for reproduction or livestreaming. UMPH publicized that selections from the General Services (pages 13 – 171) in the BOW for which UMPH holds the copyrights, are available for use in livestreaming services and for posting online at no cost through August 30, 2020. Permission is granted only for content listed showing The United Methodist Publishing House, the Methodist Publishing House, or Abingdon Press as the copyright holder in the Acknowledgments section found in the back of the Book of Worship.
The ritual resources in The United Methodist Hymnal (the standard Sunday service materials, Psalter (but not music), funeral, wedding, and morning and evening prayer) for which UMPH owns copyright are also approved for livestreaming and posting online for a limited time (until August 30).
For hymns and tunes from hymnals and songbooks, UMPH recommends churches use reproduction and streaming licenses from OneLicense or CCLI, both of which administer music rights for multiple copyright holders. OneLicense has also announced that it is granting free licenses for one month during COVID-19 pandemic.
“John Wesley exhorted the people called Methodists to ‘sing lustily and with good courage’” said Rev. Brian Milford, UMPH President & Publisher. He noted that “Wesley also urged that we worship with ‘an eye to God in every word’ we utter and in this period of crisis these wonderful resources for online worship may be used without cost.”
UMPH has granted permission for the free use of the worship aids through August 30, 2020.