Advice from those who have been there!
Kat Griffith and Becky Marty, co-clerks of Northern Yearly Meeting shared this reflection, Toward a Friendly Zoom Liturgy. Thinking somewhat liturgically about our sessions brings out some of the rhythm, richness and depth of our time together. Here are some elements that we included (and a couple that in hindsight we should have). Note that our comments focus mainly on business sessions, but that opportunities abound to build in “liturgy” in other aspects of an annual session.
David Coletta of New England Yearly Meeting created and shared Best Practices for Large Online Quaker Meetings for Business, outlining some of what NEYM’s annual sessions tech team learned about how to prepare and organize the clerks’ team, the supporting tech team, and the participants for their business sessions.
Southeastern Yearly Meeting has created a Virtual Gathering FAQs page with a wealth of information about the online gathering they held in April, including information about program priorities, logistics, training their volunteers and attenders in the use of Zoom, how they organized their sessions, and more. Check it out!
FWCC’s Planning Online Annual Sessions: Sharing Experiences and Ideas
- Audio recording of the meeting
- General notes from the presentations
- Logistics & Technology breakout group
- Meeting for Business Online breakout group
- Social & Community Building Events breakout group
- Children and Youth Programming breakout group
FWCC’s Planning Online Annual Sessions: Moving our Quaker Spaces Online
- Recording of the meeting
- Notes from initial presentations
- Staging a Quaker Spaces breakout group
- Logistics of a Complex Event breakout group
- Zoom Hosting (for beginners) breakout group notes and images
FWCC’s Planning Online Annual Sessions: Clerking Business Sessions Online
- Recording of the meeting
- Notes from the panel discussion
- Prior writeup from Kat Griffith and Becky Marty, co-clerks of Northern Yearly Meeting, Toward a Friendly Zoom Liturgy.
- Prior writeup from FWCC Europe and the Middle East Section, Guidance for Clerks: Holding Online Meetings for Business/ Meetings for Church Affairs.
Logistics and Technical Aspects:
Clearly, this depends on what you are trying to do. Here are a few useful starting spots:
- Zoom provides free video tutorials and live and recorded training sessions on many topics. A couple of specific suggestions:
- Host controls
- Waiting rooms
- Managing breakout rooms
- There is no substitute for practice! Recruit a few friends to join a practice session where you can try out all of these controls.
- New to Zoom from New York Yearly Meeting is a friendly, short intro for beginning zoom users
- Virtual Meetings with Zoom: How to Participate from Northern Yearly Meeting is an example of training information that includes more detail.
- New England Yearly Meeting created a video How to use Zoom at Sessions 2020, which includes specific tutorials on how to connect and participate from MacOS, Windows, iPhone, Android, and Chromebooks.
- Hosting a Zoom Meeting, also from Northern Yearly Meeting, is a helpful guide for volunteers hosting straightforward meetings, without breakout rooms.
- Organizing Login Information – a sample from Northern Yearly Meeting
- Pendle Hill’s Hybrid Worship Experiment explains how they have set up unprogrammed worship to include both in person and online worshipers using zoom.
- Zoombombing Prevention and Management, also from New York Yearly Meeting, is an excellent guide.
- Kathleen Wooten of New England Yearly Meeting’s web page Being the Church Online includes multiple resources about livestreaming and using Zoom (scroll down).
Online Clerking Resources:
- Kat Griffith and Becky Marty, co-clerks of Northern Yearly Meeting shared this reflection, Toward a Friendly Zoom Liturgy. Their comments focus mainly on business sessions.
- Europe and the Middle East Section of FWCC held an online Section Meeting in May, and has created this Guidance for Clerks: Holding Online Meetings for Business/ Meetings for Church Affairs. It contains detailed suggestions for the preparation needed ahead of time as well as for during the meeting itself.
- New England Yearly Meeting shared tips and a wonderful video on virtual clerking and discernment.
- Emily Provance of New York Yearly Meeting’s has a blog post about virtual clerking.
- Steve Mohlke, General Secretary of New York Yearly Meeting, shared these tips about Clerking on Zoom, which includes both technical advice and guidance about the online clerking process.
Children and Youth Programming:
- Maggie Nelson of Portland Friends Meeting shares Key Ingredients for Connection from a Distance
- Philadelphia Yearly Meeting shared Guidance and Practices for Online Youth Gatherings when participants are under the age of 18
- Northern Yearly Meeting’s Children and Youth committee shared Guidelines for Virtual Meetings, a collection of best practices and recommendations related to virtual meetings involving youth.
- Farmington-Scipio Regional Spring Gathering
- FWCC: Europe and the Middle East Section Online Program
- Illinois Yearly Meeting Annual Sessions
- Iowa Yearly Meeting Conservative Midyear Meeting
- Northern Yearly Meeting
- Sierra-Cascades Yearly Meeting of Friends Annual Conference
- Southeastern Yearly Meeting’s Virtual Mini-Gathering