Check out the following resources that may help you take steps forward in Replanting a church.
The team the North American Missions Board (read Mark Clifton) has put together of National Replanting Catalyst is top notch. All of the other guys are very sharp and know so much about turning a broken church around. God has really gifted them and they are using those gifts to bless the Church in general. What I thought might help is asking each of them what they use in various aspects of the job we call pastoral ministry. For instance what does Nathan do in Kansas City when he faces a legal problem or who does Brad use for graphics? I’ve also thrown in a few other responses from other pastors I know that seem to be doing a great job. Below you’ll find the answers they provided, let us know if you have stumbled upon other great resources out there in the comments.
I am providing the list of responses and any thoughts I might have under the heading.
Membership Management (ChMS)
- Church Community Builder
- ACS https://www.acstechnologies.com
- CDM+ https://www.cdmplus.com
- Fellowship One https://www.fellowshipone.com
- ChurchTeams https://www.churchteams.com/ct/
- Elexio https://www.elexio.com/
After researching this for a while we moved Sachse’s Church to Elexio. We were coming from a server based solution and Elexio offered an affordable one stop shop for us. Some things to ask about are – mobile apps (for both iOS and Android), the fees associated with online giving and the roll out plan for new features.
- Standard Email
- Fellowship One
- Remind – www.remind.com
- Mail Chimp https://mailchimp.com/
As you can see in the case of Fellowship One mass communication is a feature often built in to the Membership Management resources. That is something to keep in mind when you are thinking through the cost of your ChMS. For a few years I found a resource that was free with up to 500 email addresses. That worked great for us. When we outgrew it, we switched to a paid version. One of my team members wants me to remind you to use mass email sparingly. In our setting we only use it to alert members of emergency changes or to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. We have used it church wide maybe 3 times in the past year.
- Word of Mouth
- Social Media – Facebook, Twitter, Nextdoor
- Door Hangers
- Invite Cards
- Church Sign
The number one response was Social Media. It will do you a world of good to research social media marketing and to pay attention to trends in this area. You will be amazed at how effectively you can get your people to reshare quality graphics, videos and invites. There are numerous articles on how churches do social media poorly, google it and then listen to them. Our church has grown significantly since my arrival here and by far most of our marketing has been done through a steady and intentional social media campaign.
- PowerChurch https://www.powerchurch.com/
- Quick Books https://quickbooks.intuit.com/
- Google Docs https://www.google.com/docs/about/
- Church Metrics https://www.churchmetrics.com/
- Fellowship One
- PushPay https://pushpay.com/
Again this is another area that is well covered by a decent ChMS. QuickBooks integrates well with Elexio but before we had Elexio we used a Google Doc to chart giving. This helped to keep everyone in the know but Quick Books was what was being used to keep track of individual giving.
Most of the responses I got in this category suggested that my teammates and pastor friends plan out at least 6 months (that is a good idea). I use a Google Sheet to plan out my year. When I get started I list out the dates, then go ahead and shade in the weeks I plan to be gone such as Holidays, Time Change etc. Then I start planning the sermon series to fit within the season of the church (Outreach or Inreach). Once this is filled in I start filling in the Guest Speakers to be here when I am gone. The burden that is lifted by having a well done sermon schedule is so immense I am not sure I could do this without one. Here is my schedule for the year.
Like Sermon Scheduling the resources mentioned here were mostly what you would expect. Most use a short form they have the staff or other lead positions fill out and then they meet to discuss goals and expectations. I would encourage you in this area to focus on Character and Team Chemistry as much as anything else. This is a form I created for my staff and made available to them via Google Docs.
In any of these areas be sure to do research. You will be surprised at how much you can help things go more smoothly by changing out some of the systems in place. No doubt in any replant situation a number of the systems are redundant and outdated. It shows great leadership to make smart moves that help everyone do what they are called to do more effectively.
Published January 14, 2016