New - Weekly hymns & St Martin's Digital

St Martin-in-the-Fields is providing new resources to support churches during the Covid-19 lockdown. 

The Choral Scholars of St Martin-in-the-Fields are to record hymns and songs each week for use by clergy and church leaders livestreaming Sunday services across the country during the coronavirus pandemic. St Martin's Digital provides resources for Reflection, Music, Learning, and Meditation.

The Choral Scholars of St Martin-in-the-Fields will record music individually in their own homes with their contributions edited together to produce hymns and other music for use by churches. A selection of up to five pieces of music recorded by the 10 members of the choir – who form a training programme for aspiring professional singers - will be made available every Thursday evening through the A Church Near You Resource Hub website, where there will also be details of music that will be available in subsequent weeks.

The Resource Hub is free and part of AChurchNearYou.com, the Church’s local church finder, and can be accessed by more than 17,000 editors. Incumbents can register to administer their AChurchNearYou.com pages here. Once registered, incumbents can grant up to five users access to both edit their church pages and to use the Resource Hub.

The music will be chosen, in collaboration with the Royal School of Church Music, to suit the church season and the theme of each Sunday’s readings. The hymns and songs published this week include Great is thy faithfulness, We have a gospel to proclaim and Ye choirs of new Jerusalem.

Clergy and church leaders have been livestreaming services from their homes since the start of the lockdown but have been very limited in their choice of music because of copyright reasons. The scheme will mean that Church of England churches can download music through ACNY from St Martin’s Choral Scholars rights-free when they hold a CCLI (Christian Copyright Licensing International) licence, with the ‘streaming’ addition.

Andrew Earis, St Martin’s Director of Music, said: “We are so pleased that our Choral Scholarship programme at St Martin’s is able to continue working remotely during the pandemic. It’s wonderful to be able to support our young musicians at this time of insecurity, whilst also being able to offer to churches a new resource of hymns and songs to use as part of their own online worship. I hope the work of our young singers can offer beauty and hope at this challenging time of fear and uncertainty.”

St Martin's Digital is a resource hub for videos produced by St Martin's in relation to Reflection, Music, Learning and Meditation. Among the wealth of available resources are: Great Sacred Music; Lectures; Nazareth Community meditations; and Sermons.