Special arrangements for our services during the COVID-19 restrictions.

an invitation from the Rev. Linda Cronin:-

Hi everyone, 

Hope you’re well. 

 

As we’re unable to physically meet together, we are meeting on line on Sundays at 11am. Here are two links for you to follow:-​

 

  1. The order of service has been produced as a printable file. If you are going to join the service using a tablet, smart phone or laptop, I suggest that you print out this document in good time before the service. If you have a computer with a large monitor, and you know how to set up tiled windows you can save trees by simply opening up this link alongside the Zoom window.
    Click here to open the Order of Service for our next Service.

     

  2. The service is accessed using a piece of software called Zoom. This is installed the first time that you click on this link:-
    Click here to either carry out there initial installation or to join the meeting from 10:50 onwards.
    I suggest that you install the software well before the service is due to start. It is neither a large nor complicated install, but you may have give the programme permission to do various things. If you get the installation out of the way, you can then join the service directly by clicking again on the link above.


If you know anyone who does not have a smart phone or computer, you may wish to print out a copy of the order of service and post it through their door, with a note inviting them to pray with us at 11am on Sunday. It would be wonderful if we’re able to share this time together.

Please keep in touch,

Linda

Zoom settings

Michael High has set out his personal take on the essential settings we have to play with to get the best out of the software. However, the screen shots and instruction details relate to the Apple macOS operating system. So smart phone, tablet and Windows users will have to interpret these recommendations. If you wish to see information specific to your platform or if you want to learn about the finer points of the software, I suggest that you click here to go to the Zoom Help Centre. Click on the "Getting Started" button and select from the comprehensive menu.

Permissions

Some folk are having difficulties getting connected. One cause is that when installing the software, the devices security processes ask the user to give permission to the Zoom application to access the camera and the microphone. Now it does this without explaining why Zoom needs this permission. The default answer to the request is usually "Deny". So if, as most people do, you just crash past questions that you don't understand, you land up installing Zoom in such a way that you can be neither seen nor heard. Now if you like to come to church with a paper bag over your head and no intention of speaking to anyone or joining in with the service, these options may appeal to you. I can't remember anyone in Glenavy Parish doing this!

Here are two screen shots of the relevant permissions, taken from the current version of the Apple computer operating system. If you find that your installation of the Zoom application does not have these permissions or you cannot track down these settings on your device, I would suggest that the easiest course of action is to uninstall the software, restart your device and then install the software again, this time granting access to the camera and microphone.

 

Having ensured that the app is installed with the necessary permissions, the next thing to check is that the programme has the best settings for what we are trying to achieve. These are the settings that I have found work best for me.

Video Settings
 

Most of us don't have a choice of camera. If you do have a choice, the correct choice should be obvious.

I suggest that you leave the My Video settings as shown above. I tried clicking on the Touch up my appearance button, but it seems that I am a lost cause. The one button I would encourage all to tick is the one beginning "Always show video preview...". As we are generally infrequent camera users, we have probably got our screens angled so that the camera is pointing at our midriffs. Come on folk, show us your smiling face!

Audio Settings
 

This is the place where those who could not hear or be heard need to make some changes. So, for example, I don't use the built-in speakers on my iMac. I have an external boom box and speakers connected to the headphone socket. The handy feature here is the two Test buttons. If you can hear and be heard here, you know that the programme is going to work.

Finally, a word about that "Mute microphone..." tick box. If you have it ticked, it has the advantage that nobody can hear your grumblings and curses when you can't get the machine to work the way you want it to. The disadvantage is that you do have to remember to clear the Mute button when you want to say anything. It can be found in the bottom left hand corner of the Zoom window.

ZOOM Controls

Once you have loaded the software and joined a meeting, these are the controls that you need to master.

Sound Controls
 

If your controls have hidden themselves, just move the mouse to the bottom edge of your Zoom window. If the first of the controls says Mute, your microphone is turned on and everyone can hear all that is going on in the room. You have been warned! If this control says Unmute, just click on it to be heard. Clicking on the up arrow brings up the details of both your Microphone and Speaker. Now your settings will be different to mine, as they will reflect your hardware. You are probably better looking than me as well. The important thing is that if you can't be heard or you can't hear anything, there is probably a line on this menu that needs to be ticked.

Video Controls

The next control is the Video control which says either Start Video or Stop Video. OK, this is all a bit obvious. The important thing to remember is that what you see in the window is what the other participants will see if you say anything during the meeting. If you want to follow my example of vanity by showing a more youthful image of yourself (the glasses free image shown above is at least eight years old), you need to work your way through to the "View Advanced Features" button on the Profile tab of the Settings form. This takes you to an absolute minefield on the web site, and is only available if you have registered as a user. If your computer has sufficient processing power, you can have some fun with the Virtual Background.

Chat Controls

"Chat" gives the ability to send text messages to either everyone in the meeting or to just one person. For example, before the Sunday service starts, you may wish to send a personal greeting to a close friend who you see has just arrived at our virtual church service. Clicking on the Chat control just opens up the Chat window to the right of the original Zoom window.

In this screen shot you can see the blank Chat form. If I start typing where it says "Type message here..." the message will go to whoever it says above on the "To:" line. In this example, it will go to everyone one the call. You have been warned!

This may well turn out to be one of the most useful aspects of these virtual gatherings, either chatting before the Sunday service begins or Chatting to selected friends at Elevenses. I would encourage folk to share their discoveries about the more helpful features of this software.

Good luck!

Michael High