7 key questions when evaluating a church software solution

laptop computer

One of the challenges I have run into when selecting a software provider is the distraction of the new and shiny features, keeping me from selecting a solution that is the best fit for the organization. I have learned from my mistakes over the years, and I now have 7 questions I always ask when evaluating any software provider in order to select the best solution possible.


Don’t risk A LOT for a little! Focus on: risk retention

Risk-control with options from minimum to maximum

Together in our journey to move “beyond insurance,” we have thus far examined the first two steps in that process: risk identification, analysis and evaluation, as well as risk avoidance. Now, we undertake the next step in our journey: risk retention.


Protecting your church’s right to religious expression

Love is patient

Since the beginning of the United States, marriage has always been subject to detailed rules.


LISTEN UP! The pastor’s mic is a make-or-break audio element

Photo courtesy of Compass Bible Church (Aliso Viejo, CA)

When it comes to budget concerns, the pastor’s mic shouldn’t be up for discussion. Providing a premium spoken word experience comes with a price tag. When capturing speech, a great microphone will sound as if there is no microphone at all — only a transparent, accurate reproduction of the speaker.


What’s behind the curtain?


At New Venture Christian Fellowship in Oceanside, CA, visual impact is standard — and transparent.


How a non-traditional building approach can avoid traditional construction challenges

Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church (Wichita Falls, TX)

Most church leaders will tell you that making a decision to build a new facility — or to expand their current campus — is among the most difficult challenges they face. Concerns about managing the process, stewardship of funding, and keeping church members happy with the results all contribute to the worry.


The stewardship of savings

For a faith-based organization, a procurement services company provides a system for buying products and services that will reduce costs. Through their association with large, multi-facility clients — as well as with hundreds of manufacturer and distribution partners — these companies can provide value to smaller clients by sharing the discounts brought by the volume.


ChMS: Dos and don’ts for engaging church volunteers


DON’T waste anyone’s time. Volunteering often takes away from other responsibilities, so use volunteers’ time wisely. With everyone’s packed schedules, a donation of time is just as valuable (if not more) than a donation of money. So, communicate clearly when and where volunteers need to be and exactly what they will be doing. Texting is a great tool for communicating last-minute updates, weather cancellations, and reminders.

DO use your ChMS to get organized. Create categories and groups so your volunteers are in organized lists. Then, when you need help, you know exactly who to ask.


The spiritual benefits of capital planning


Each year, thousands of people come to Mater Dolorosa in search of spiritual enrichment. Mater Dolorosa — a Passionist retreat center in the San Gabriel foothills, in the city of Sierra Madre near Los Angeles — is a sacred place whose spiritual work depends on some decidedly material things. Mission-style buildings, a stunning outdoor Stations of the Cross, and many other physical improvements set the stage for lives to be changed in faith.

To help preserve the beauty and soul-changing power of the places in their care, Mater Dolorosa’s board and staff rely on a professionally prepared capital plan.


Examining church bylaws

A Book

The purpose of bylaws is to reflect how your church operates, as well as to provide protection and structure. The bylaws contain a detailed framework of operations, and what seems important to the church in this season might not be in the next. So, you need to have a framework that can change.