Thursday, September 4, 2008

Church Stuff

As most of you know, I serve as Executive Pastor at Hope Fellowship in Frisco, Texas.  I've been here over a year now, and I can tell you that I've never been more excited about the direction of our church and the potential we have for making an impact in our community.  A lot of people ask me, "so what is it that you actually do?"  I pretty much do whatever is needed. But more specifically, I work alongside our lead pastor, John McKinzie, in developing the vision and strategy for the future.  On a daily basis, I oversee all the finance and business management, lead our life group ministry and weekend ministry teams (ushers, greeters, parkers, connect, and coffee).  Since some of the readers of this blog are also involved in ministry, I thought I'd share some of the tools that we have implemented recently that have been a tremendous help in our ministry.

Planning Center Online is a tool that we use to schedule all of our volunteers.  As a church grows, communication can be a challenge.  This site has helped us to streamline the process of scheduling, and close the loop on communication gaps.  For instance, the monthly usher schedule is put together by the ministry teams assistant on staff and is sent to the ushers.  In the email that they receive, they click a button that says "accept" or "decline" the request, and that is immediately noted in the schedule.  Now, when the usher leader, ministry teams assistant, usher service leader, or I log into the site, we can all easily see that usher's response.  Without sending emails all over the place, everyone can be in the loop.  It has taken some adjustment on everyone's part, but I think it's been a great step.

Last month, we moved our church management system (database) from Shelby Systems to Fellowship One.  This was a big deal, because we had to migrate thousands of records to the new system.  I've done database conversions in the past, and it's always been a huge headache.  However, this one went really smooth.  Their team helped us through each step, and everything got converted with no real hiccups.  This new system is all hosted offsite, and so staff members can access it anywhere they have a web browser.  Now we don't have to worry about backing up the software, and I don't need anyone to manage Microsoft SQL on site.  It also gives us better ability to do child check in on the weekends, and has allowed us to offer online giving and online event registration.  I had been watching Fellowship One develop over the last few years, and felt like this was the right time to make the switch.  I'm very happy I did.

Another cool thing about working in a growing church, is seeing new buildings go up that enable us to minister to more people.  Last week, they raised the walls!  We are expanding our sanctuary to seat 1000 people instead of the 500 it seats now.  We are also enlarging our children's ministry area to meet the needs of families.  It's great to see what God is doing!


Anonymous said...

How many wheels were on that crane...


Anonymous said...
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