Last Updated: 25 October 2019 at 10:31

Closed-captioning for the hearing impaired is available in many areas. The term closed-captioning indicates that the captions are visible only to those who turn them on. The North American television standard (NTSC) can embed captions within the video signal itself. Generally, after a program has been captioned, the caption data is forever included within the program.

If closed-captioning is available, at least one television should be set up during broadcasts for those who need this service. Sample closed-captioning data is broadcast at least one hour prior to any major broadcast to test that the setup is working properly. The person responsible for operating the system should arrive early enough to get things set up and tested well before the meeting starts.

Setting Up the TV for Closed-Captioning

A TV with closed-captioning should be set up in front of the seating area designated for the hearing impaired. Many chapels are wired so that a projector and screen as well as TV sets can be used simultaneously. After the TV is connected to a TV jack, the captioning must be enabled.

Each TV is different, but the principle behind how to view closed captions is the same.

Go to the TV’s menu screen. Select the closed-captions menu, and then choose one of the following languages:

  • CC1—English
  • CC3—Spanish
  • CC4—Portuguese

For more details, see the TV’s owner’s manual.


  1. The closed-caption channel selected on the TV affects only the language of the closed-captioned text, not the spoken language heard through the TV set.
  2. TV HDMI inputs are not compatible with closed-captioning. In chapels with HDMI distribution, a composite video output will be located at a designated location. This location will normally be in the chapel on the front of the modesty rail millwork.

Closed-Captioning on the Main Screen

Displaying closed captions on the main screen for all to view is not normally recommended. The audio and the captions may be out of sync with each other, creating a discrepancy between what is spoken and what is captioned. These small differences often distract and frustrate those who don’t need captions.