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Covid–19: Guidance for Online Services

The following advice is being issued by the Church of Ireland Press Office to assist parishes and dioceses which are considering online worship opportunities at this time.

Parishes and dioceses are strongly advised to:

1. Consider whether your parish has the resources at present to provide recorded or livestreamed worship – parishes which do not wish to take on broadcasting are free to encourage and help parishioners to watch or listen to services provided by others;

2. Consider carefully whether recording for uploading at a later time or livestreaming is the best approach – recording gives an opportunity for speakers (with advice from others where appropriate) to check and edit content before sharing this more widely;

3. Consider whether advertising will be displayed when your service is broadcast on a social media channel;

4. Ensure that your copyright licence covers broadcasting where the livestreaming, recording or performing of music and hymns is being considered – a performing rights licence may also be required.

5. Consult and follow the Church’s Social Media Guidelines and Safeguarding Trust & Adult Safeguarding policies.

Christian Copyright Licensing International provides information on the copyright status of hymns and songs.  Please check the following websites before recording or livestreaming:

Social Media Guidelines: https://bit.ly/2Wtvljw

Safeguarding Trust & Adult Safeguarding: www.ireland.anglican.org/safeguarding

CCLI UK (for Northern Ireland): https://uk.ccli.com/faq

CCLI Ireland (for Republic of Ireland): https://ie.ccli.com/faq


The following guides, produced and kindly provided by the Church of England, are designed to help parishes which are planning to share their services online:

How to set up to film a video on your phone

A beginner’s guide to going live with your service or event for free

Please note that the pages at the above links refer to copyright law in the United Kingdom and structures within the Church of England.  CCLI websites provide information on copyright law in both the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland: https://uk.ccli.com/faq / https://ie.ccli.com/faq


CCLI has also produced or recommended a number of guides which may be helpful for parishes in either jurisdiction:

Four simple steps to start streaming worship

How to live stream your worship service


The Central Communications Board’s live streaming and recording checklist is designed to help parishes in complying with GDPR requirements when sharing services online.  Parishes are encouraged to email dataprotection@ireland.anglican.org if they have any further queries regarding GDPR.

Issued by the Church of Ireland Press Office