Permissions and Copyrights for Worship

Many of our congregations print the entire worship service or some portions of it every Sunday. Most music and some words used in worship require copyright permissions and licensing. With the addition of live-streaming or posting liturgies to Facebook or websites, licensing is also required.

The links below are provided so that you can assess the needs of your congregation for copyright permissions and licensing options. Any printed material and social media or website posting should recognize authors, composers, and source material, even if it is in the public domain.

  • Introduction to Copyright for Live Streaming (PDF): A helpful primer pulled together by The Episcopal Church regarding copyright issues with live-streaming and retransmission of services over the internet.
  • Purchase a Copyright License from OneLicense: For streaming music online, purchase the streaming/podcast bundle license. Include the streaming license number you receive in any broadcast online (eg. Facebook, YouTube, parish website, etc.).There are other copyright companies that provide copyright licensing, however OneLicense covers about 95% of all music in the hymnals of The Episcopal Church.
  • Public Domain Hymn List: All of the hymns on this site are believed to be in the public domain, carry the Creative Commons type 3 or type 4 copyright, or have a conditional copyright that allows for free reproduction and use.

If you have questions about copyright and licensing, please contact Archdeacon Steve Seely.