Resource Roundup: Tools, Tips, and How-Tos for Livestreaming and Other Virtual Gatherings

Inside Leadership

Resource Roundup: Tools, Tips, and How-Tos for Livestreaming and Other Virtual Gatherings

Home office setup with a Shabbat scene displayed on screen

The COVID-19 outbreak has forced us to practice physical distancing – but not social distancing. In fact, now more than ever is a time to demonstrate and create space for the power of community. By being creative and connecting online, we can create community in lieu of in-person gatherings, bringing solace and comfort to those in isolation.

In recent weeks, the URJ has created and highlighted a myriad of resources to help congregational leaders gather in community online – from streaming services to technical training to discounts on relevant technology.

For your convenience, we’ve gathered all of these resources in one place, broken down by topic.

Technical Logistics

  • [Webinar] Zoom Training for Clergy, Educators, and Lay Leaders: Looking to gather your community online, but need a technical orientation? Watch this URJ tutorial on how to use Zoom, a flexible and powerful tool for virtual meetings. This webinar was specifically designed to meet the needs of congregational clergy, educators, and lay leaders. 
  • Guidelines to Prep for Zoombombing: Rabbi Chase Foster has created this great guide, which outlines what to do if uninvited guests join your virtual call.

Savings

  • The Reform Movement Marketplace: We've just announced an early release of this platform, which offers discounted licenses for livestreaming, virtual meetings, and other vital services to URJ member congregations.

Streaming Services

Online Programming

Online Liturgical and Music Resources

  • Free and discounted liturgical resources: You and your community members can access online versions of Mishkan T'filah, liturgical resources, and additional ebooks on CCAR Press’ website.
  • Transcontinental Music provides a wealth of online music resources, including print and digital copies of sheet music, digital song books, recordings, and more.
  • J•License: J•License allows you to legally stream and podcast (store recorded streams) covered songs in any worship service and lifecycle, concert, or other event for your community. There are special prices for URJ member congregations. For new licensees registering in March or April 2020, use discount code JLICENSE15 to receive the first two months free.

Curriculum

This time apart provides opportunities for experimenting with creative programming in order to forge meaningful connections.

  • "7 Creative Ways to Gather Virtually"It's time to get innovative. Here are a few easy-to-implement examples to try in your community.
  • Ask Big Questions GuidesDownload these guides for congregational leaders, plus an introductory resource to help make the most of them.
  • Ben Franklin Circle Curriculum: This toolkit, created by the URJ, 92Y, and Central Synagogue, is designed to help you to facilitate a powerful dialogue about Jewish and American values.  

We hope these resources can be helpful to you in gathering your community online. Keep an eye on this space, which will be updated as we continue to add additional resources. Additionally, if you have a virtual event that is open to the public, submit it for inclusion on the Reform Movement Calendar.

Looking for a specific resource or want to review everything we have to offer? Check out “How Reform Congregations are Coping with COVID-19 (and Tools to Help),” which is being updated as new resources become available.

Have something to say about this post? Join the conversation in The Tent, the communications and collaboration platform for congregational leaders of the Reform Movement. You can also tweet us or tell us how you feel on Facebook.

Daphne Macy is the communications manager for the URJ’s Strengthening Congregations team. She holds a B.A. in Communications and Film from Tel Aviv University, Magna cum Laude, and is also a graduate of the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute. Daphne resides in New York and is a native speaker of both Hebrew and English. She is also a writer and an actress.

Daphne Macy
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Mar 26, 2020|the staff of the URJ and other Reform Movement partners

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