Frequently Asked Questions
Is Sundays and Seasons.com difficult to work with?
No. Sundays and Seasons.com Web site is constructed to work just the way most people plan worship now:
Everything is laid out step by step, with visual and text cues and help at every point. The powerful Template feature allows you to plan your "usual" worship service(s) and save them for re-use. You can just apply a Template you've saved to the service and day you've chosen, and you're ready to preview and download.
- Select the date you're planning for
- Select the basic liturgy you want to use
- Customize the liturgy to suit your needs
- Preview and download your service!
How reliable is your Web server?
We have a special server for Sundays and Seasons.com that is available 24/7. Like the Augsburg Fortress online Store, this has unparalleled reliability and almost no down time at all. Maintenance is scheduled at the times with the lowest Web site traffic, so we won't interrupt your schedule. (We anticipate 99.5% up-time). Furthermore, all data and stored files are backed up every day. We have dedicated staff who ensure that servers are available all the time.
Will sundaysandseasons.com produce finished bulletins or projections for me?
No, but almost. Because every church has different preferences for size, font, margins, number of words to a page or slide, etc., we don't want to lock you into something you don't like. When you're done crafting worship the way you like, you'll download one RTF file containing all of the texts you've chosen (just what you want, in the order you want), and another zip file with all of the music graphics, clip art, and projection slides you've chosen. This allows users with various types of word processing programs to use the material from this Web site.
It's up to you to put your Sundays and Seasons.com download into your preferred format file, whether that's on paper or in an electronic form. (Most desktop software includes its own flexible template options that will help you with this step.) And you'll have to insert the music graphics into your service--but your text download will tell you exactly where they should go!
How many liturgies does sundaysandseasons.com have available?
All of the Holy Communion, Baptism, Affirmation of Baptism, Order of Confession and Forgiveness, Marriage, Funeral, and Healing services from Evangelical Lutheran Worship, Lutheran Book of Worship, With One Voice, This Far By Faith, and Libro de Liturgia y C‡ntico.
What other content is included?
Clip art from all three of our lectionary-based image collections: Icon (Tanja Butler), Icon Two (Lucinda Naylor), and Icon Three (Julie Lonneman); all searchable by lectionary day, theme, or scriptural reference
Weekly reproducible Kids Celebrate children's bulletins
Seasonal worship texts (e.g. confession and forgiveness, offering prayer, blessing)
Seasonal rites (e.g. blessing of the Advent wreath, midweek prayer during Lent, blessing of graduates)
Weekly prayers of intercession
Psalm refrains and tone melodies
Evangelical Lutheran Worship and Lutheran Book of Worship psalm texts
Weekly reflections based on the gospel reading
Selected leader content from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (e.g. full funeral and marriage services, full Holy Week liturgies)
The complete NRSV translation of the Bible (with Apocrypha), searchable by citation or word(s) - it is a complete concordance at your fingertips!
At the conclusion of planning a worship service on Sundays and Seasons.com, relevant artwork and children's bulletins will be suggested as optional downloads Š get these extras with a single click!
What hymns will be included?
We include all "public domain" hymns (those that have no copyright on them) and all Augsburg Fortress-administered hymn material. We have obtained, and are in the process of obtaining, legal permission to include other hymns on the site, and will include them as soon as we can legally do so. Collections include:
Evangelical Lutheran Worship
Lutheran Book of Worship
With One Voice
This Far by Faith
Worship & Praise
Libro de Liturgia y C‡ntico
Renewing Worship Songbook
As Sunshine to a Garden
Bread of Life
Dancing at the Harvest
Global Songs 2
O Blessed Spring
Only Deluxe subscribers can download hymns and songs. What is available to every subscriber includes the ability to search hymns and songs by title, keywords, or lectionary days.
Including hymns and songs in Sundays and Seasons.com involves legal issues around copyright licensing. Remember, you always need proper licensing or permission from the copyright administrator before you can print or project copyrighted material (see also Licensing FAQs below).
Do I get to pick exactly what I want to download?
As you plan your worship service, you get to decide how much of each service element you want to download. For example, do you want only an element's "title" to appear in your worship plan (like "Announcements"? Do you want the full text of the Great Thanksgiving, or just the title "Great Thanksgiving" to be included in your download? Do you want just the hymn title and the book number, or the full music graphic to appear? All of these options (and more) are possible within the Planner. The last step before downloading includes the option to preview your plan, so you know you've got just what you want, in the order you want (and of course you can easily go back and make changes before downloading).
What if I want to change one or more of the lectionary readings?
You can edit or change the lectionary readings that automatically "fill in" for any worship service. Using the convenient citation box next to each reading in the service, you can shorten, lengthen, or change any or all of the readings for the day. You can also preview the reading to ensure that the citation is correct. Sundays and Seasons.com will save you time and worry by defaulting to the appointed lectionary texts, but it's up to you to decide how to use them!
Will this be too expensive for my congregation?
We've priced sundaysandseasons.com to be affordable for any size church. With your Standard sundaysandseasons.com subscription you'll have access to:
- Every liturgy currently in use in the ELCA, including both texts and liturgical music graphics. Currently only select liturgies are available on CD-ROMs, and must be purchased separately, with accompanying licenses.
- The entire NRSV Bible. Currently this translation is difficult to find in electronic format, and fairly expensive.
- Nearly 1000 clip art and projection slide images for use in worship, on newsletters, and elsewhere in your ministry. These are presently sold separately.
- Seasonal worship texts, prayers of intercession, and seasonal rites from Sunday and Seasons print edition. Plus, your subscription includes copyright licensing to use all of this liturgy content at your church! Deluxe Sundays and Seasons.com adds more than 1000 hymns and congregational songs to this list of content (licensing for hymns and songs sold separately).
I want to try this out before I subscribe. Is that possible?
Yes! You can try out sundaysandseasons.com at no charge. You can plan a worship service for either of the two Sundays just past, including all of the customization and flexibility options that subscribers get (you're restricted to LBW Setting One, however). You can even preview your worship text; music and art graphics are not downloadable. This way, you can experience for yourself the easy and intuitive functionality before you buy!
What am I subscribing to in sundaysandseasons.com?
Your subscription to sundaysandseasons.com is annual, for twelve months from the day you sign up. Standard sundaysandseasons.com includes access to all liturgies, liturgical music, lectionary texts, prayers, artwork, and children's bulletins, and includes copyright licensing to use these locally (see Licensing below). Deluxe sundaysandseasons.com adds access to all available hymns and songs (texts and music). Pricing is based on your Average Weekly Attendance for all of your regular worship services. You will be billed for the full year when you sign up, and your subscription will be automatically renewed every year. You can cancel any time within 90 days of your renewal, no questions asked. Your annual subscription includes access to any content that we add during the year, too.
What licenses are needed to use sundaysandseasons.com?
Standard Sundays and Seasons.com allows you to download liturgies, liturgical music, lectionary texts, artwork, and weekly children's bulletins. This subscription also includes an Augsburg Fortress Liturgies License allowing you to print or project this content for your local worship services (or use the artwork in newsletters or other free, local-use publications). Deluxe Sundays and Seasons.com additionally allows you to download hymn and song content, however extra licensing is required. You can choose the Augsburg Fortress Hymns and Songs License to obtain permission for all Augsburg Fortress-administered hymns and songs. Printing or projecting hymns whose copyright is administered by any other person or company requires appropriate additional licensing from that copyright holder.
How will I know what the copyright status is of any given hymn?
Copyright Lookup is a FREE feature of Sundays and Seasons.com, so anyone (even non-subscribers) can check on the copyright status of any hymn or song printed in any Augsburg Fortress worship resource. Additionally, when a subscriber downloads any hymn or song, copyright status is included so you know how to use this download legally.
Sundays and Seasons Print Edition (and Other Things You Love!)
Will sundaysandseasons.com contain everything that's in the print edition of Sundays and Seasons?
No - Sundays and Seasons.com is designed to help worship planners and those who craft, print or project worship materials for use by the worshiping assembly. Reflective content that is designed to be enrichment for planners (such as the seasonal essays, childrenÕs helps, Ideas and Images for the Day, choral and instrumental music suggestions) is not included online. What you will find online are all of the worship texts, both primary and alternate, including seasonal texts and seasonal rites, that are found in the print edition of Sundays and Seasons.
For even greater in-depth, effective, and efficient planning, use Sundays and Seasons print resources alongside Sundays and Seasons.com. This popular print resource provides additional preaching helps, seasonal reflections, worship essays, music suggestions and more to help you plan effectively.
Features of the print edition include:
Introductions to day
Introductions to lectionary readings
Prayer of the day
Liturgical color of the day
Prayers of Intercession
Ideas and Images for the day
Seasonal helps for engaging children in worship
Seasonal worship texts
Choral, instrumental, and children's choir suggestions
Lesser festivals and commemorations
Multiple Services, Multiple Staff and sundaysandseasons.com
What if we have several, or many, people helping plan and publish worship materials?
With the easy availability of Sundays and Seasons.com (any internet-connected computer, anywhere, can access it, any time!), you can have various people fill in their parts of the worship plan, and someone else can download it for printing or projecting. Based on average weekly worship attendance, several logins are given to the site for each church. For example, a church with average attendance of 1-49 per Sunday can use up to 5 logins. Worship planners are able to work when they want, and save their work online for themselves or others to work on later.
We have several services and use different liturgies for each. Will Sundays and Seasons.com be able to handle that?
Yes! You can set up your entire regular worship schedule online, name the services whatever you want (Traditional, Contemporary, Early, First, 8:30,...), and even make worship templates for each, with all of the detail about the sequence and contents of each of those worship services. When you plan worship you can start from a scheduled service, from a template, or from a calendar date and simply pull up your plan. Content for that day (lectionary, prayers, etc.) will automatically fill in as a starting point, and you can adjust as you'd like. No matter how you want to work, Sundays and Seasons.com will help you get your work done!
How are user accounts managed?
With your subscription to Sundays and Seasons.com you'll be able to set up a number of distinct users on your account, who can all be logged on and working at the same time. One user on your subscription will be the Administrator, and will be able to change logins, passwords, and users at any time. New staff member? No problem! Forgot your password? No problem! The maximum number of users is proportionate to your church size, but will be big enough for everyone to play their part.
We have a multi-point parish. Do we have to subscribe separately for each point?
A multi-point parish can sign up for one subscription, and use their combined Average Weekly Attendance to determine which Sundays and Seasons.com product to sign up for. For instance, if you serve a 4-point parish, each worshiping 30 per week, you should subscribe once, at an Average Weekly Attendance of 120.
However, since not all the content on the site is owned by Augsburg Fortress, other copyright holders have given us permission to make their material available. It is important that Augsburg Fortress honor the agreements with these copyright holders. Therefore, we cannot allow groups of churches to subscribe together unless they hold joint worship services or share a pastoral staff.
Downloads: Size and Time
How long will the downloads take? How big are the files that we'll be downloading?
Sundays and Seasons.com is created to make downloading as efficient as possible, whether you're on a broadband or a dial-up connection. Here are some examples for reference:
A complete worship service with full liturgical texts, full lectionary texts, full prayers, etc. takes with a 56k modem about 10 seconds.
If you select graphics, too - liturgical music, psalm intonations, hymns, clip art - you'll have a second download which will be bigger. A 2.5 MB zipped file would take about 7 minutes to download on a 56k modem, or about the time it takes to brew a pot of coffee.
Those fortunate enough to have broadband or DSL will have download times that are a fraction of these figures. Either way, Sundays and Seasons.com downloads are easy - and remember, you control how much you download, when, and even where, so you can plan your downloading around your capabilities, schedule, and plans.
Will my system meet the requirements to run this program?
If you are running Microsoft Windows 2000, XP or Vista, or Mac OS X 10.3 or later, these are all supported operating systems. Sundays and Seasons.com will run in Firefox 1.0 +, Internet Explorer 6 or 7 (Windows), or Safari 1.3 + (Mac OS X). Click here to read more.
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