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Technology In The Church: What Do Lead Pastors Need To Know?

I have dealt with technology in the church since I was very young. My mother was the administrative assistant at the church where I eventually became assistant youth pastor, and she employed my help to set up the church’s first computer network. Throughout my preteen and teen years, I continued to work on those systems.

In addition to the computers, I learned how to run and coordinate sound with cameras to produce videos. Young Alexandria could be found wherever technology touched the ministry. Today, I am currently working on overhauling my current church’s sound system and working with our lead pastor to upgrade our computer and software as well.

Primarily, my current church’s focus is on the emerging need for more comprehensive streaming tools. If you were to walk in on Sunday morning, you would count 15-20 people sitting in the pews. However, if you were to go on our Facebook page, our live streaming services have between 40 and 60 views per week. Online church attendance in just my small church is 2-3 times in-person membership.

Christians are seeking God in a whole new way. Worship services and bulletins are found online through social media or church websites. Church leaders need to take advantage of this online discipleship through technological advancement in this new digital age. The pandemic has brought us out of the church building and into church services in the digital world.

Do you know the true size of your membership? How many of them come from your online outreach? Are you doing everything you can to make the online experience feel as personal as the in-person experience?

As you answer these questions, you can start to answer the question posed by the next section: How important is the relationship between technology and the church?

I’ll cover:

Importance Of Technology In The Church

Short answer: Very important, and becoming more so by the day.

Long answer: I spent two months watching the Facebook streams of my church as they happened. The most concurrent live watchers were 4. However, this past Sunday, as I write this, within 24 hours of the service, the live stream had 27 views with only 15 in-person attendees. By the end of the week, we should see around 50 total views.

I noticed several issues with the music and speaking volume during the stream. I mostly solved this issue through my many years of experience with acoustics and sound technology. The lead pastor for my church and I spent an hour on a Monday night testing equipment from microphones to cords to the recording equipment itself to ensure that all of our technology was in working order, so that the web-based congregation would have a better experience.

As you can see, I personally take this very seriously in my own home church. We’ve even had discussions about possibly migrating to other streaming platforms, or simulcasting if possible. The importance of technology, especially when it comes to growing your church, can never be overstated.

Benefits Of Technology In The Church

Technology has a very broad definition and touches many different parts of your ministry. The rewards are abundant, even when they are not obvious.

  • Growth among youth. Older people also use technology in smaller numbers than youth. More on this below.
  • Streamlined services. Your worship leader can send the music to the band and singers with a push of a button. Your congregation can give through an app, and you can use software to count and report on it all.
  • Outreach among the elderly and disabled. Bringing bed-ridden church members into your service through technology makes them feel as though they have not been forgotten.
  • Lower costs. Many older sound and lighting technologies are very inefficient compared to their modern equivalents. You might pay a little more initially, but you will make up for it in savings for electricity and maintenance costs.
  • Community impact. By maintaining an online presence, you can be sure that more people within your community will be aware of church events, even if those people are not regular members.
  • Member tracking and followup. The right software allows you to see who has open prayer requests and follow up with them. You can also track giving and pledges while generating tax documents.
  • Track church finances. Church technology tracks your own expenditures and incomes. Good church finance software reveals those places where your church is losing money.

How To Plan For And Implement Technology In Your Church

If you haven’t started using technology to its fullest extent in your church, this section is going to help you get started with a few pointers and suggestions.

  • Start small. Don’t try to do too much at once. It is easy to get overwhelmed when you try new ideas, so take things one at a time.
  • Start cheap. I’m a musician, and the one thing I see new players do is buy thousands of dollars of equipment before they even know if they like the instrument. A lot of your technological needs will be the same. Once you have a solution that works, you can replace your inexpensive technology with more expensive tech.
  • The cheapest you can get is free. In this article, I teach you how to start from nothing to a working YouTube channel. If you use your smartphone as a camera, you can stream your next service at no cost. Finding free solutions allows you to take more risks in finding the perfect technology for your church.
  • Read the manual. I know it sounds silly, but I always read the manual when I get a new device. Many cameras, microphones, sound boards, and other equipment have hidden features that are not obvious. By taking a few minutes, you can turn a serviceable device into an amazing piece of machinery.
  • Technology is not just hardware. Smartphone apps let people give, volunteer, and more. As I said above, there is likely a software solution to the audio troubles for our live stream. In fact, most of the hardware you will find yourself using requires software. Some devices can be controlled by smartphone apps. Never overlook software. 

Youth And Technology In The Church

It’s no secret that young people do better with current technology than older people. According to this Pew Research poll, most Americans get their news from their devices with the younger generations engaging almost exclusively through social media on their smartphones. So, what does that mean for the church?

Simply, a church that is not actively growing through outreach among young people will eventually find itself losing more and more members to death and disability as they age. Your church’s use of technology could mean the difference between it existing twenty years from now or being yet another that closes its doors for good.

A few tips for engaging with youth are:

  • Participate in appropriate internet trends. Examples from the past include the ice bucket challenge, video game dances, and various memes.
  • Know where they are. Facebook tends to be used by older people these days. Young people are on Twitch, TikTok, and Instagram. YouTube is a middle ground that catches a little bit of everyone.
  • Cater your content toward them. This does not mean changing your entire Sunday service. Your outreach videos, however, should be shorter and punchier. 5-10 minutes is all you need to make an impact on the internet.
  • Be ok with always playing catch-up. I was very young when I became a youth pastor, and I was learning pop culture references from the youths. That’s ok. They don’t expect their pastors to be the coolest person ever if you try. They’ll respect the effort, usually.
  • Talk to them. Sometimes, the most helpful advice is the most obvious. The more youth that you talk to, the more you will understand them and their needs. You can tailor your approach once you do.

Issues And Disadvantages With Technology In The Church

So, I have really talked up technology in your church and why you should use it. However, technology is not for everyone. Better and newer technology means changes. Many people resist change, and some are just left behind. Most of these people are our older folks who are some of the steadiest and most faithful members of our congregations.

For that reason, upgrades should always be done slowly, in small increments. Let your church members get used to one or two new things at a time. Otherwise, and I have seen this happen, some of your longest serving members will leave and never return.

A balance must be struck between keeping the older church members, the ones who I call the “old faithfuls”, and bringing in the young folks who will one day take the place of the old faithfuls. Of course, those young people will probably be complaining about your successor bringing in their own new technologies, so the cycle will continue.

The other major issue I have personally seen is when a church becomes too dependent on technology. In some ways, it is nice to be able to still have a service when power goes out.

However, churches, after a certain size, become far too large to do that. Also, when all of your instruments are amplified, worship is more difficult under adverse conditions.

Finally, maintaining technology requires a decent amount of familiarity with it. People who did not take my advice to read the manual will find themselves here. Things always go wrong. It is far cheaper to diagnose and fix a problem than to buy new equipment. Be prepared for your team to be a part of the solution. 

What Is Church Software?

I mentioned church software a few times here, so let’s take a quick look at what it is. Church software, or ChMS, is software that helps you manage the various aspects of your church. Some software is an all-in-one package, while other software solves specific problems like finances, volunteering, or worship service.

Your church may need an all-in-one solution. It might not. Lucky for you, we at TheLeadPastor.com have written several articles detailing so many different software solutions.

Some common types of church software include:

More Resources About Technology In The Church

Eventually, you will reach the point that beginners’ articles and general approaches will no longer help you. We have you covered on that end, too! Read this article about The Best Church Technology Conferences to find places that can identify your needs and keep you on the cutting edge of church technology. Also, Church Technology Resources For Leaders is an article that gives you pathways to specific solutions for your problems.

If you have further questions, comment below, and I might be able to help or direct you to someone who can. 

Technology In The Church: Is It Right For You?

I hope this article has brought you to the conclusion that yes, technology is right for me and my church. My home church, which skews older and less tech inclined, still does board meetings over Zoom and has Wednesday Bible study over Zoom as well. We stream on Facebook every Sunday.

Maybe your church uses more technology or it might need a little less, but technology, especially in the area of computers and finance, can be the difference between your church surviving a down year or closing altogether.

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Tools

10 Best Worship Presentation Software In 2022

One of the keys to a successful worship service is keeping your members interested, considering how easy it is for people to become distracted these days. According to a study by Microsoft, people lose concentration after about 8 seconds, so you need to make your worship services more engaging to prevent members from drifting off. 

Using dynamic, visual presentations can make your services more interesting. This article will tell you about the best worship presentation software to help you make your worship services stand out. 

Tool Shortlist

Here’s the list of the best worship presentation software that I’ll cover in this article.

  1. ProPresenter
  2. MediaShout
  3. Faithlife Proclaim 
  4. Worship Tools
  5. Praisenter
  6. Quelea 
  7. OpenLP
  8. KAMWISE 
  9. Presentation Manager
  10. Shift Worship

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best worship presentation systems? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): Worship leaders need to care for many things during services, so I look for software with easy-to-find features.
  2. Usability: Worship presentation software should be easy to use and master so church employees and volunteers can learn it quickly. 
  3. Integrations: Managing worship services involve using several tools, so I look for software that will work with the other tools I use. 
  4. Value for $: Churches have a limited source of funds, so I look for inexpensive software packed with many features. 

Worship Presentation Software Key Features

  1. Presentation editor: Allows users to create, edit, and format presentations without using a different tool. 
  2. Remote control app: Allows worship leaders to control the projector using their mobile phones remotely.
  3. Media library: A collection of media files to make presentations more interesting. 
  4. Bible integration: Allows worship leaders to display Bible verses in different languages. 
  5. Multi-screen: Enables users to display multiple presentations on different screens.

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Overviews Of The 10 Best Worship Presentation Software

Here’s a brief description of each worship presentation app to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. ProPresenter – Worship presentation software with built-in multi-screen feature

propresenter worship presentation software screenshot
ProPresenter lets you create a 3-screen blend for multi-screen presentations.

ProPresenter is a live production and presentation software for displaying lyrics, Bible verses, videos, slides, and images. It has a video engine that enables you to import, edit, and play videos. ProPresenter is a cross-platform software that works on Mac and Windows devices. It also has an edge-blending functionality enabling you to project onto a large display of multiple screens. 

PropPresenter is the best worship presentation software if you need a multi-screen feature. You can use ProPresenter to have multiple screens with unique layouts. It also has a linked text box feature allowing you to display the same lyrics or texts while using different image backgrounds. 

ProPresenter is a free worship presentation solution with paid versions that start at $399/year.

2. MediaShout – Worship presentation software with built-in sermon builder

mediashout worship presentation software screenshot
MediaShout has a built-in sermon builder for creating and organizing interactive sermons.

MediaShout is a worship presentation software for creating, editing and displaying presentations during worship services. It has a built-in asset library, giving you access to media files you can use in your presentations. MediaShout has a background image editor for applying effects on images to make them more interesting, like sepia, blur, brightness, contrast, and grayscale. MediaShout also lets you add comments at cue and page-level if you have special instructions for your operator. 

MediaShout’s best feature is their sermon builder. The sermon builder works like a software wizard, guiding you step-by-step to put together a presentation using text, Bible verses, title screens, images, and music/lyrics. MediaShout lets you use objects, videos, pictures, and audio to make your sermons more interesting and interactive. 

MediaShout pricing starts at $199/year/1 computer and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

3. Faithlife Proclaim – Worship presentation software with tons of preloaded media

faithlife proclaim worship presentation software screenshot
Faithlife Proclaim comes preloaded with media files, including images, videos, and audio.

Faithlife Proclaim is a worship presentation platform that supports unlimited installs and accounts, so any member of your media or worship team can use it. Because it is cloud-based, members in different locations can work on the same presentation simultaneously. Faithlife Proclaim lets you reformat a slideshow or presentation, ensuring that it is ready to upload to your website or social media account after in-person services and presentations.

Faithlife Proclaim comes pre-loaded with more than 1,000 media files. You can save time because there’s no need to scour the internet for images or videos while creating presentations. The software also automatically reformats your texts like song lyrics and Bible verses to fit the background, ensuring that church members can read them properly. If you need more preloaded media files, you can get the pro plan with a media library of more than 15,000 files. 

Faithlife Proclaim pricing starts at $224.99/year/account and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

4. Worship Tools – Worship presentation software with a “music stand” app for singing along

worship tools worship presentation software screenshot
Worship Tools comes with cloud syncing, so you can upload and download presentations anywhere.

Worship Tools is worship presentation software that works on Windows and Mac computers, making it ideal for churches that use different operating systems. This worship projection software comes with CCLI SongSelect, allowing worship leaders to import songs for playback during live streaming or in-person services. It comes with a cloud sync service to access presentations and multimedia files anywhere you need to conduct a service. 

Worship Tools comes with an integrated music stand to ensure that church members can sing along during services. Worship leaders can overlay song lyrics on their presentation to ensure in-person attendees can read them. The music stand has a mobile app available to Android and iOS users so church members can follow along using their mobile devices. 

Worship Tools is a free church presentation software with limited features, while the pricing for the paid versions starts at $15/month/unlimited users. 

5. Praisenter – Worship presentation software for creating and editing songs

praisenter worship presentation software screenshot
Praisenter lets you edit songs to make them suitable for your presentation.

Praisenter is a free church worship software package for creating presentations with Bible verses, songs, audio clips, images, and videos. You can use it to install Bible translations from the Unbound Bible to minister to church members who are not English speakers. It also has a Bible search feature to help you find verses quickly and integrate them into your presentation.  

If you like using original songs during worship services, Praisenter lets you compose songs in the app. You can also use Praisenter to search for existing songs and edit them to make them better fit your needs. 

Praisenter is a free church service worship package. 

6. Quelea – Worship presentation software with a wide variety of Bible options

quelea worship presentation software screenshot
Quelea gives you access to different Bible versions in different languages enabling you to serve members who are not English speakers.

Quelea is a free and open-source worship presentation software. It lets you import songs and lyrics from multiple online sources, including OpenLP and OpenSong. It has a remote control app that lets you navigate your presentation using your mobile device. 

Quelea gives you access to a comprehensive library of Bible editions/translations available in multiple languages. With access to multiple Bible translations, you can minister to church members whatever their native language is. Quelea uses cloud-based storage, so you can download a new Bible version anywhere you need it. 

Quelea is a free worship presentation software. 

7. OpenLP – Worship presentation software that works with Windows, Linux, and FreeBSD

openlp worship presentation software screenshot
OpenLP has a remote control app enabling you to control your presentation using your mobile phone.

OpenLP is a worship presentation software for displaying songs, presentations, Bible verses, images, and texts. You can use it to import songs to your playlist from other presentation tools, ensuring you have the latest worship songs at your disposal. It works with other presentation tools like LibreOffice Impress and PowerPoint, so you can create presentations from other programs and project them using OpenLP. 

Worship Leaders hold services in different venues and use different devices, which makes OpenLP an excellent choice because it works not just on Mac computers but on those that run on other operating systems. With its ability to work on any computer, worship leaders can ensure that they can use their presentations to make worship services livelier. This also means that church members and volunteers can help church leaders create presentations with whatever computer they have at home.

OpenLP is a free and open-source worship presentation software.

8. KAMWISE – Worship presentation software that works with Windows, Linux, and FreeBSD

kamwise worship presentation software screenshot
KAMWISE lets you display yourself beside your presentation so your audience can view your presentation without taking their eyes off you.

KAMWISE is a church presentation software you can use on in-person services and live streaming on your church website. It has a content playlist feature where you can access digital assets, including videos, images, songs, and audio clips to create your presentation. KAMWISE has built-in animated templates to help you save time while ensuring you have a suitable template for the type of presentation you are creating. 

Effective presentations should capture audiences’ attention, and KAMWISE can help you with its live animated graphics. You can use KAMWISE to take stock video files and make them special by adding fantastic live graphics. When holding a worship service in a large venue, you can share yourself side by side with your presentation so your audience can give you their undivided attention. 

KAMWISE integrates with other productivity tools, including Skype, Zoom, and TeamViewer. 

KAMWISE pricing starts at $9.95/month/ user, and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

9. Presentation Manager – Worship presentation software that supports multiple screen displays

presentation manager worship presentation software screenshot
Presentation Manager lets you display different presentations on two or three monitors simultaneously.

Presentation Manager is a feature-rich worship presentation software for creating and displaying worship projections. It has an easy-to-use layout mixer so you can customize images, songs, transitions, timers, and cues on presentations. You can use it to create sermon notes you can view on your screen to assist you during worship services.  

If you hold church events with multiple groups, then Presentation Manager is the best presentation software because it lets you run different presentations on up to three projectors. Presentation Manager has a dual preview mode to see what your presentations look like before your service.

Presentation Manager pricing starts at $250/year/license and they offer a free demo. 

10. Shift Worship – Worship presentation software pre-loaded with mini-movies and church videos

shift worship presentation software screenshot
Shift Worship updates its media collection with new videos you can use for the current season, like Easter or Christmas.

Shift Worship is a worship presentation software that gives you access to an extensive library of images, audio, and videos. You can also use Shift Worship to boost your presence on social media because you can upload the video clips and images you create in Shift Worship to your social media accounts. Shift Worship lets you play video files, so there’s no need to install a separate video player like VLC.

Shift Worship has a great media collection that receives weekly updates. They feature videos suitable for the current season, so you have fresh content to use instead of relying on old footage. It has mini-movies and church videos you can play during services, as well. Shift Worship also has video connectors you can use as transitions between slides to make your presentation more interesting. 

Shift Worship pricing starts at $149/year/license.

Other Options

These aren’t worship software per se but they certainly can be used for church presentations and services. 

  1. Apple Keynote – Presentation software for creating and projecting slideshows. 
  2. Google Slides – Free presentation program for creating, formatting, and presenting using your web browser. 

What do you think about this list?

Presentations make worship services more interesting and interactive. They can also help worship leaders make sermons easier to understand. 

With the help of worship presentation software, worship leaders can easily create fantastic presentations to spend more time attending to other responsibilities. If you are still counting on old-school technology to create and project presentations, now is the time to use the worship presentation software listed above. 

There are tons of other amazing tools to make managing your church easier, and you can find out about them by subscribing to The Lead Pastor.

Related Read: 10 Best Online Church Management Software For 2022

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Article

Guide To Church Conflict And Crisis Management

The other day my husband and I were chatting with a pastor friend, asking him how his past year went in their church. He had just started his new role as an associate pastor. It was his first time in that role; prior to that he was a youth pastor. 

He told us that he was exhausted. He began to share how it was a discouraging year for him. There was a lot of conflict in the church. There wasn’t any church growth. There seemed to be issues between members and ministry leaders continually. 

There were disagreements on how the church should respond to the global pandemic. There were disagreements on theological issues. There seemed to be a continual theme of disagreement. Their community had also been hit with a major storm and many families in their church community had lost their homes and loved ones.

Unfortunately, our friend’s experience is not an isolated experience. Sadly, conflict and crisis in the church is inevitable. The church is made up of redeemed sinners. No one is perfect, and conflict will come, no matter how hard we try to avoid it. 

In this article I will talk about: 

What Is Church Crisis Management?

In layman’s terms, church crisis management involves answering the questions of who, what, where, when, and how to get your church running as smoothly as possible following a crisis or conflict. This often means creating a living document that all church staff and members have access to. 

Internal Crisis In The Church

Sometimes, a crisis occurs amongst the members of your congregation. Whether it’s a marriage falling apart, a job loss, a death, sickness, or something else, you and your church family must be ready to meet the painful needs of those in your church family who are in crisis. 

When a crisis situation hits your church members it’s important that someone from the church leadership reaches out to them. You should go beyond just making a call or sending a text. When a church member is going through a crisis, someone from the church needs to show up. 

People learn quickly the difference between acquaintances, friends, and their church family during a crisis. Meet with them, pray with them, and do all you can to meet their needs. This might include organizing meal rotations or providing help around the home. If the family has children, have your children’s ministry leaders surround the children as well, bringing gifts or activities if needed. You could also offer childcare to help the parents. Do all you can to speak words of life and hope to them. 

Recently my own family went through some challenging times with our child in the hospital for an extended stay, and each life group within the church pooled their money together and sent a gift card for a meal delivery service. It was such a blessing to my family, and it really made us feel seen and cared for. 

Lastly, as a pastor, managing conflict and managing crises should not fall entirely on your shoulders. Your church will not grow if you are doing all the work yourself. As a pastor, your job is to train your congregation to be the church!

How To Deal With Conflict In The Church

Here are a couple of tips for dealing with conflict in your church or amongst your congregation. 

Confronting The Conflict 

If there is conflict, division, or fighting within the church, church leaders must take up the issue with that church member or members. The first interaction with them should be private, or in a one-on-one situation, if it’s appropriate. If that doesn’t work, take at least one or two other church leaders with you and discuss this with them in private. If the conflict still cannot be resolved, perhaps the question needs to be asked if the person or persons involved should still be part of the church. 

If you do not enjoy conflict, you are not alone. But confronting conflict head-on is the best way to handle conflict in the church. The longer a conflict simmers, the less likely it is that there will be a positive outcome at the end. This is why it’s so important to deal with church conflicts as soon as possible.

When conflicts arise amongst church members, some of the involved church members may begin to share their discontent with other members. This gossip cycle can be very damaging and cancerous in a church. Gossip can run wild though a church congregation. If you know of conflict happening in the church, don’t make the mistake of ignoring it.

Communication 

Communication is a huge aspect of Church life. I truly believe that communication is the absolute key to avoiding conflict. 

My friend, the pastor I mentioned earlier, told us that they had a few people leave the church after a rather large purchase was made. The church members were upset with how money was being spent and felt that the leadership was being irresponsible with the church money. They felt that there was no communication to the congregation prior to the purchase. 

Members may disagree with why church leadership makes certain decisions or spends money, but when they understand why the church does what it does, they are more apt to support decisions. When your leadership has decided on something big, it’s vital to have a process in place to share that information with staff, volunteers, and church members. 

Make sure to share the news before it hits the rumor mill and spreads like wildfire. It is much easier to control what is communicated on the front end than trying to clear the mess and rumors from the back end.

Crisis Outside The Church, And How The Church Should Respond

Natural disasters are becoming more frequent due to the effects of climate change. More and more we are hearing about fires and floods, hurricanes and tornadoes, blizzards, and drought. Natural disasters are another area of crisis that the local church can get involved with. So how does a church come up with a plan to respond to natural disasters?

Put Your Own Oxygen Mask On First!

You can’t help those in your community if your church is not thriving. If your building is falling apart, or the culture of your church is struggling, you need to resolve those issues first before you can help the broader community. 

Make sure your church is prepared to handle natural disasters. This means thinking and planning. Figure out what disasters are common in your church area. Once you’ve figured out what you’ll need in a disaster, it will be training time! Prepare and train your volunteers as needed. 

Inspire your congregation and explain how your church will respond to natural disasters. Start fundraisers to raise money to purchase extra supplies or resources. If you’re near a disaster zone, visit government shelters and learn what they’re doing. 

Open Your Doors

If you have a church building, you are incredibly blessed! What a resource you have, and what an amazing resource to bless others. Use it as much as you can to bless your community. 

For example, if many people in your community have lost their homes or are unable to stay in them, you can turn the sanctuary into a dormitory. You might purchase some sleeping bags or blankets to put on the pews or the floor. You can create privacy by getting curtains or dividers.

You can use classroom space to put up families with babies, people with disabilities, or others who need their own space. If you anticipate people will be there for a long time, you can create space for people to wash and dry their clothes.

The kitchen is another obvious place that can offer help. You might want to have a stock of non-perishable goods to whip up in an emergency. 

Both before and during natural disasters, let the community know that your building can be a muster point for separated families. In case of the loss of cell phone service and/or Wi-Fi, connect good old-fashioned landlines so that people can check in with their friends & family. 

Church buildings are often equipped with lots of space that they don’t use anymore. Here is your chance to use it for good!

Be The Church

Here is where we as a church provide a unique service. The emotional toll of a natural disaster can hit just as hard as the physical toll. If you have made your building a muster point, make sure your pastoral staff and/or your volunteer team arrive soon after an emergency happens. Invite other pastors in the area as well. Prayer is such a powerful tool in the face of crisis. 

Take advantage of social media. If your church has a Facebook group, use it to post alerts, warnings, and other helpful information that is relevant to your area. You can also use it to post encouraging scripture and prayers. 

World Vision gives some tips on how the local church can “be the church” during a crisis, and Samaritan’s Purse is a great organization for churches to partner with.

What Does The Bible Say About Conflict?

If conflict is unresolved it can begin to fester and grow. It can become cancerous in a church body and then eventually it can end with the church being in crisis mode. Offense and hurt that is not addressed can damage a church body, and cause division or even church splits. If the conflict is resolved quickly and handled correctly, it will lead to repentance, growth, and a new understanding of grace and forgiveness.

Obviously as church leaders, we want to have some biblical grounding in what we do about conflict. Here are some quick tips and scripture references. 

Don’t Make It Public Right Away

Matthew 18:15-17: “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”

Be Careful What You Say

Proverbs 15:18: “A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.”

Proverbs 21:33: “Those who guard their mouths and their tongues keep themselves from calamity.”

Colossians 4:6: “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”

Be Quick To Resolve 

Proverbs 17:14: “Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.”

Ephesians 4:26: “In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.”

Matthew 5:25-26: “Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.”

Be Quick To Forgive

Ephesians 4:31-32: “Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Colossians 3:13: “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”

No matter the crisis or conflict, it’s important to not stay silent. When you choose to stay silent or not address it, whether you meant to or not, you are communicating something quite loudly. You are saying that you’re not bold enough to make decisions, that you don’t care enough to change, or that you are too proud to hear others out. Be sure you and your team count the cost of saying and doing nothing in those times of crisis and conflict. 

The 4 Phases Of Crisis Management

Unfortunately, we can not predict when a crisis is going to happen, but we can be prepared! Preparing for a disaster is one of those things that is difficult to put at the top of the list when it comes to church priorities.

However, effective crisis management can save you time when every moment counts and can lay a good foundation for a quick response to an emergency or disaster.

Mitigate

Mitigation involves minimizing the amount of loss or harm caused by a risk or issue. This phase is where you want to do a lot of the planning and prevention. A well-laid-out plan should help minimize any challenges you will foresee. Think ahead to what crisis may arrive and what you can do to reduce these risks. Maybe you need to create a risk management team. Discuss strategies for supporting and communicating to church members or the local community when a crisis happens.

Prepare

Once you have created a crisis management plan, it should be reviewed and updated on an annual basis. Perhaps you want to test the crisis management team by creating mock crises or drills to practice effectively. This gives the team an idea of any important aspects you may have missed and provides a chance to correct them. Also, make sure the church is equipped with the right emergency equipment and emergency kits.

Respond

This is the phase where the crisis actually happens.This is the time where you figure out the best response. How is the communication being delivered? Who needs to be addressed? Is there conflict or crisis that needs to be confronted head-on? Remember to avoid the silence.

Recover

The recovery process can differ depending on what the crisis is. When the crisis is over, it’s time to shift the focus to rebuilding, which can be time-consuming and expensive. Having an effective crisis management plan will hopefully help the church get back to normal, but of course, it depends on the crisis. 

If it’s something that horrific that affects families or results in loss of life, it may take a long time to heal and for the church to move on. When the crisis is over, it is very important to review the crisis management plan to see if it was effective and take note of any flaws or things that should be done differently. 

Examples Of Church Crisis Plans 

Here are some resources related to creating an emergency plan or crisis plan for your church: 

  • US Disaster Preparedness: This is a quick easy read that can help you get some ideas going when creating a crisis plan. This is a good place to start if your church currently does not have a crisis plan in place. 
  • United Methodist Crisis Template: I love how this crisis plan even gives tips on what to say when dealing with the media. This is a brilliant idea as sometimes there are unfortunate circumstances that may happen when the media might want statements or updates for “boots on the ground’ situations. 
  • Sample Crisis Plan: This is actually a crisis plan from a Christian School but it has some great details and covers everything from natural disasters to simple accidents to deaths. 

Preparedness Is Key

As a church leader, you already have so much to be thinking about. Preparing for conflict or crisis is not enjoyable, but the more prepared you are, the better you can pastor and lead your people through the tough times that may come.

For more on how you can best manage your church, start here: Complete Guide To Church Management For Lead Pastors.

Categories
Tools

10 Best Worship Presentation Software For Mac In 2022

One of the keys to a successful worship service is keeping your members interested, considering how easy it is for people to become distracted. According to a study by Microsoft, people lose concentration after 8 seconds of focus, so you need to make your worship services as engaging as humanly possible to keep people tuned in. 

Using visual presentations can make your services more interesting so you’ll need some sort of worship presentation software to put these together. This article will tell you about the best worship presentation software to help you make your worship services stand out. 

Tool Shortlist

Here’s the list of the best worship presentation software for Mac that I’ll cover in this article.

  1. ProPresenter 
  2. MediaShout
  3. Faithlife Proclaim 
  4. Worship Tools 
  5. Praisenter 
  6. Quelea 
  7. OpenLP 
  8. KAMWISE
  9. Presentation Manager
  10. Shift Worship 

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best worship presentation systems for Mac? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): Worship leaders need to care for many things during services, so I look for software with easy-to-find features.
  2. Usability: Worship presentation software should be easy to use and master so church employees and volunteers can master it quickly. 
  3. Integrations: Managing worship services involve using several tools, so I look for software that will work with the other tools I use. 
  4. Value for $: Churches have a limited source of funds, so I look for inexpensive software packed with many features. 

Worship Presentation Software Key Features

  1. Presentation Editor: Allows users to create, edit, and format presentations without using a different tool. 
  2. Remote Control App: Allows worship leaders to control the projector using their mobile phones remotely.
  3. Media Library: A collection of media files to make presentations more interesting. 
  4. Bible Text Integration: Allows worship leaders to pull relevant text from a database to cut down on personal research time.
  5. Multilingual options: Present in a number of languages with menus and spell check (etc.) that supports this.
  6. Multi-Screen: Enables users to display multiple presentations on different screens.

The Lead Pastor is reader-supported. We may earn a commission when you click through links on our site — learn more about how we aim to stay transparent.

Overviews Of The 10 Best Worship Presentation Software For Mac

Here’s a brief description of each worship presentation app for Mac to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. ProPresenter – Worship presentation with multi-screen feature great for large churches

propresenter worship presentation software for mac screenshot
ProPresenter lets you build out your song and worship slides to move with the music. 

ProPresenter is a live production and presentation software for displaying lyrics, Bible verses, videos, slides, and images. It has a video engine that enables you to import, edit, and play videos to make worship services more visually dynamic. ProPresenter is a cross-platform software that works on Mac and Windows devices. It also has an edge-blending functionality enabling you to project onto a large display of multiple screens. 

PropPresenter is the best worship presentation software for large churches who use multiple screens during worship services. Their built-in multi-screen set-up and projection functionality works well for large wall displays with unique configurations. ProPresenter can help you save money because there’s no need to buy separate image-splitting software or hardware. It also has a linked text box feature allowing you to display the same lyrics or texts while using different image backgrounds. 

ProPresenter is a free worship presentation solution with paid versions that start at $399/year. 

2. MediaShout – Presentation software with built-in sermon builder for step-by-step set-up helpful to non-technical pastors

mediashout worship presentation software for mac screenshot
MediaShout has a built-in sermon builder that offers pre-built templates for creating and organizing interactive sermons.

MediaShout is a worship presentation software for creating, editing, and displaying presentations during worship services. MediaShout has a background image editor for applying effects on images to make them more visually interesting and to help the text stand out over them—try: blur, brightness, contrast, or grayscale. MediaShout also lets you add comments if you have special instructions for your operator. 

MediaShout is an excellent worship presentation software for you if you want to easily craft sermons because it has a built-in sermon builder. The sermon builder is like a set-up wizard that you might see in other software. It walks you through the step-by-step process of creating your presentation elements, like titles, bible verses, and lyrics. It can pull Bible verse text from its database using just the scripture tag (ie: John 3:16) so you don’t have to type it all out or worry about copy-pasting. Then, it offers background templates to choose from that pull it all together.

All of this makes MediaShout a great option for tech newbies.

MediaShout pricing starts at $199/year/1 computer, and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

3. Faithlife Proclaim – Worship presentation software for Mac with tons of preloaded media

faithlife proclaim worship presentation software for mac screenshot
Faithlife Proclaim comes pre-loaded with media files, including images, videos, and audios, to help you save time searching the internet for media files to include in presentations. 

Faithlife Proclaim is a worship presentation platform that supports unlimited installs and accounts, so any member of your media or worship team can use it. Because it is cloud-based, members in different locations can work on the same presentation simultaneously. Faithlife Proclaim lets you reformat a slideshow or presentation, ensuring that it is ready to upload to your website or social media account after in-person services.

Faithlife Proclaim is the best worship presentation software if you want access to more than 1,000 media files. You can save time because there’s no need to scour the internet for images or videos while creating presentations. The software also automatically reformats your texts like song lyrics and Bible verses to fit the background, ensuring that church members can read them properly. If you need more media options, you can get the Pro plan with an asset library of over 15,000 files. 

Faithlife Proclaim pricing starts at $224.99/year/account. They offer a 30-day free trial. 

4. Worship Tools – Worship software for Mac with a chord sheet and lyrics app for musicians

worship tools worship presentation software for mac screenshot
Worship Tools comes with cloud syncing, so you can upload and download presentations anywhere.

Worship Tools is a worship presentation software that works on both Windows and Mac devices. This worship projection software comes with CCLI SongSelect, allowing worship leaders to import songs for playback during live streaming or in-person services. It comes with a cloud sync service to access presentations and multimedia files anywhere you need to conduct a service. 

Worship leaders know that songs make worship services livelier, and Worship Tools comes with an integrated music stand that displays a chord sheet and lyrics app for musicians and/or for the congregation to sing along. Music Stand has a mobile app available to Android and iOS users so church members can follow the lyrics using their mobile devices. 

Worship Tools is a free church presentation software with limited features, while the pricing for the paid versions starts at $15/month/unlimited users. 

5. Praisenter – Mac worship presentation software with tools for creating and editing original songs

praisenter worship presentation software for mac screenshot
Praisenter lets you edit songs to make them suitable for your presentation.

Praisenter is a free church worship software package for creating presentations with Bible verses, songs, audio clips, images, and videos. You can use it to install Bible translations from the Unbound Bible to minister to church members who are not English speakers. It also has a Bible search feature to help you find Bible verses quickly and integrate them into your presentation.  

Praisenter is the best church presentation software if you like using original songs during worship services because it lets you compose and edit songs for your congregation. You can also use Praisenter to search for existing songs and edit them to make them unique for your worship service.

Praisenter is a free church service worship package. 

6. Quelea – Worship presentation software for Mac with a wide variety of Bible text versions

quelea worship presentation software for mac screenshot
Quelea gives you access to different Bible versions in different languages enabling you to serve members who are not English speakers.

Quelea is a free and open-source worship presentation software so you can tweak its features to suit the needs of your church with a bit of IT knowledge. It lets you import songs and lyrics from multiple online sources, including OpenLP and OpenSong. It has a remote control app that lets you control your presentation using your mobile device. 

Quelea supports the Zefania XML bible format, so you can easily download and use the language and translation of your choice. Quelea also gives you access to a comprehensive library of Bible editions to choose from. The default is the American Standard Version but you can easily switch to another option in the menu. 

Quelea’s user interface is available in English, German, Spanish, Swedish, Czech, Hungarian, Norwegian, Dutch, Lithuanian and Portuguese.

Quelea is a free worship presentation software. 

7. OpenLP – Free open source worship presentation software for Mac, Windows, and Linux

openlp worship presentation software for mac screenshot
OpenLP has a remote control app enabling you to control your presentation using your mobile phone or web browser.

OpenLP is a worship presentation software for displaying songs, presentations, Bible verses, images, and texts. You can use it to import songs to your playlist from other presentation tools. It works with other presentation tools like LibreOffice Impress and PowerPoint, so you can create presentations from other programs and project them using OpenLP. 

OpenLP has free downloadable source code for developers so if you have an IT tech on your staff or volunteer team they can customize the software to suit unique needs. They have an in depth manual, community forums, wiki, and IRC Channel chat for self-help resources. 

OpenLP is a free and open source worship presentation software. 

8. KAMWISE – Online presentation software that can be customized to your church with fully branded TV Style graphics

kamwise worship presentation software for mac screenshot
KAMWISE lets you display yourself beside your presentation so your audience can view your presentation without taking their eyes off you.

KAMWISE is an online presentation software you can use for in-person services and live streaming on your church website. It’s not tailor-made for churches but their white label service means you can brand it to fit your church colors, imagery, and voice. So why did I include KAMWISE on the list if it’s not church-specific? Because it’s great for live streaming capabilities that some of the other worship tools just don’t have.

KAMWISE lets pastors share a video of themselves live beside their worship presentation. This is vital for remote services where a stage is not present for the viewer. You can also embed interactive content for at-home viewers, like polls, surveys, Q&As, icebreaker games, and counters. Some churches might decide to amplify their service capabilities with a free church worship presentation software + KAMWISE for live events. 

KAMWISE integrates with other productivity tools, including Skype, Zoom, and TeamViewer. 

KAMWISE pricing starts at $9.95/month/ user and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

9. Presentation Manager – Worship presentation software for Mac that supports multiple screen displays

presentation manager worship presentation software for mac screenshot
Presentation Manager lets you display different presentations on two or three monitors, making topic transitions (ie. sermon to song) easier.

Presentation Manager is a feature-rich worship presentation software for creating and displaying worship projections. It has an easy-to-use layout mixer so you can customize images, songs, transitions, timers, and cues on presentations. You can use it to create sermon notes you can view on your screen to assist you during worship services.  

Presentation Manager was first released in 1998 so they are a legacy software in this space and have the experience to provide what pastors need. It includes a song database and popular Bible editions, text overlay over live video and movies, DVD playback functionality, dual preview mode, picture-in-picture, and looping announcement slides.

Presentation Manager pricing starts at $250/year/license, and they offer a free demo. 

10. Shift Worship – Worship presentation tool pre-loaded with mini-movies and church videos for different occasions

shift worship worship presentation software for mac screenshot
Shift Worship updates its media collection with new videos you can use for the current season, like Easter or Christmas.

Shift Worship is a worship presentation software that gives you access to an extensive library of images, audio, and videos for your services. You can use Shift Worship to boost your presence on social media because you can upload the video clips and images you create in Shift Worship directly to your social accounts. Shift Worship lets you play video files, so there’s no need to install a separate video player like VLC.

Shift Worship’s key features include motion backgrounds, still backgrounds, worship start countdowns, church videos, and mini-movies, triple-wide media projection, social media integration, editable PSE, and AE files, editable sermon title screens, transparent text layers, and updated-weekly media asset collections. 

Shift Worship pricing starts at $149/year/license. 

Other Options

These aren’t worship software per se but they certainly can be used for church presentations and services. 

  1. Apple Keynote – A presentation software for creating and projecting slideshows. 
  2. Google Slides – A free presentation program for creating, formatting, and presenting using your web browser. 

If you have a church leadership team with mixed devices (Apple and Android), you might also want to check out our list of the 10 top church presentation software for all devices.

What Do You Think About This List?

Presentations make worship services more interesting and interactive. They can also help worship leaders make sermons easier to understand. With the help of worship presentation software, worship leaders can easily create fantastic presentations to spend more time attending to other responsibilities. 

If you are still counting on old-school technology to create and project presentations, now is the time to use the worship presentation software listed above. There are tons of other amazing tools to make managing your church easier, and you can find out about them by subscribing to The Lead Pastor.

Related Read: 10 Best Online Church Management Software For 2022

Categories
Article

Complete Guide To Church Management For Lead Pastors

Church management drives our places of worship to new levels of growth and outreach. According to this Gallup poll, 59% of people see outreach and volunteer opportunities as a major factor in deciding where to go and social events are important to 49% of people. Effective church management will give you the ability to keep first-time guests coming back to your church, improve your church’s growth, and ride out the rough patches we all go through.

I’m Lexie, and, if you can name a job in the church, I’ve probably worked at it in some capacity. In this guide, we will look at the broad strokes of church management and provide links to more in-depth articles on each topic. So, let’s get into it and start with the big question.

Here’s what I’ll cover:

What Is Church Management?

Church management is controlling or delegating everything that happens within a church. Some definitions of church management will exclude worship services, but your volunteers, from ushers to band, and your financial team, among others, all need to be managed before, during, and after services as well. 

While management does involve some direct control on the part of the church leader or head pastor, most management, and usually the best management, comes from assigning people into positions where they will be most effective. This is what I mean by delegation.

For instance, I grew up around stage and sound production my whole life because my mom was a piano player and assistant choir director. When I started working toward becoming the assistant youth pastor at our youth church, my youth pastor put me in charge of running sound and stage. He hardly asked about sound unless he wanted something specific, and we sounded great because I had a ton of experience.

The point is that management does not mean micromanagement. Use people you trust and who know what they are doing, and you will be more effective than trying to do everything yourself.

What Needs To Be Managed In A Church?

Everything! Managing your church from top to bottom is the key to growth and sustainability. Good management during a growth period can give you the edge to carry you through a lean period. Some areas, especially in smaller churches, can have overlapping requirements, so we’ll group the following management teams by areas of expertise or responsibility.

Property Management

Everything under this heading deals with the actual property of the church. People within these groups include maintenance workers, janitors, and project managers.

Facility Management

Facility management is the part of your team that covers the following areas:

  • Cleaning the building and grounds, such as the parking lot
  • Supplying the bathrooms and offices
  • Maintaining the church’s physical building through repair and general maintenance.

Small churches might employ an all-in-one handyman, but larger churches may need to consider an expanded team with a dedicated Facilities Manager

In addition to regular staff members, you might need specialists who you can call in occasionally. For instance, the megachurch where I worked had an elevator so disabled people could reach the balcony that could only be serviced by a licensed and insured elevator repairman.

Project Management

Church projects are varied but include:

  • Upgrading equipment and systems
  • Renovating church structures
  • Enhancing the church facilities.

Church projects might also include digital projects such as upgrading your church website, implementing presentation software, or setting up live streaming for your church services.

Here’s a brief overview of the steps in church project management is:

  1. Start the project by proposing the project plan and budget
  2. Finalize the budget through board approval, or through whatever process your denomination’s polity allows
  3. Work the project by coordinating contractors and volunteers
  4. Close the project by ensuring that the goals of the project have been met and all contractors and vendors have been paid
  5. Maintain your project to ensure that it keeps its value in years to come

Your church project manager should have a good background in networking and interpersonal skills. Project management involves dealing with both contractors and volunteers, so be sure to check out our in-depth guide on project management for churches.

Operations Management

Church operations management belongs here because your operations team will often be set apart from the spiritual leadership and will instead be focused on the day-to-day of keeping the lights on. Operations will coordinate the church board’s decisions with the departments that will fulfill them. In some churches, the legal department is part of operations.

Hard Management

In business, “hard management” is a style that follows strict rules and guidelines. Here, it is used to define the business side of church as opposed to the spiritual side. The business side has to follow tax codes, reporting methods, and recordkeeping guidelines.

Risk Management

Risks within churches usually fall into two categories. First is the legal risk associated with ensuring that your church is abiding by all tax laws. Some countries, like the US, make it very difficult to investigate churches and other charitable organizations, while other countries offer little protection at all. 

Second, and often unrecognized by most pastors I have worked with, are mandated reporter laws. These laws require that ongoing child or sexual abuse be reported to the police. These laws supersede the privilege of faith just as they supersede doctor-patient and lawyer-client privilege. Additionally, employing or allowing sexual predators to volunteer in the same areas as children can open up the church to liability.

Only a licensed attorney can give legal advice, so please seek out a lawyer concerning your church’s needs and concerns.

Finance Management

Finance management starts with your church’s Treasurer and budget committee. Due to the charitable organization status of most churches and the tax exemptions or reductions that come with it, your management style should be hardest around your finances.

A more in-depth look can be found in our article on church financial management.

Crisis Management

Crisis management is often found in action plans for various types of negative circumstances. Form a crisis management committee and ask questions about how to deal with natural disasters or allegations of impropriety among the church leadership. Brainstorm the various ways your church could need crisis management and develop plans to mitigate those disasters.

Records Management

Church records involve, but are not limited to:

  • Marriages
  • Baptisms
  • Christenings
  • Many more, depending on your denomination and services offered. 

These records are usually kept in Perpetuum due to their historical significance. Church records are how my family was traced back to 1600s England.

Beyond those important records, you will likely be responsible for tax information concerning your members. Some of your congregation may wish for a tax form showing their charitable contributions. Recordkeeping of this variety is made simpler these days with a wide range of church software which we will get into a little later in the article.

Learn more about records management in the church here.

Soft Management

Soft management is more people-focused and willing to accommodate individual preferences. The soft management part of your church is the spiritual side where you perform weddings, train volunteers, and reach out to your members.

Volunteer Management

Volunteers are our lifeline. From the business end, they lower costs and increase sustainability. From the spiritual end, they show the benefits of joining our church community.

A short summary of the volunteer management process goes a little like this:

  1. Recruiting Church Volunteers
    1. Ask For Help
    2. Conduct Background Checks & Screen For Legal Issues
    3. Get To Know Your Volunteers
    4. Lead From The Front
  2. Train Your Volunteers
  3. Care For Your Volunteers

Dig deeper in this article on church volunteer management.

Communications

Communication might be the single most important thing we do as pastors. 

We:

  • Preach from the pulpit
  • Negotiate prices on materials
  • Communicate church goals and ideas
  • Develop volunteers into leaders

We have more to say on this subject in this article on how to develop a church communications plan.

Member Management

Not every member becomes a volunteer or joins a leadership team. We cannot forget them as they will make up the bulk of our churches. If you don’t have the personnel to give everyone a personal call, many church software apps will allow you to track your members and even send messages to check-in when they miss service.

Event Management

Every church needs to have an event manager. No matter what kind of church you have, you run events. weddings, vacation bible school, passion plays, and more all fall under the umbrella of event management.

Get the breakdown on how to throw successful events in this article on church event management.

What Is Church Administration?

Church administration is quite simply the structure that organizes people into the management team and ministry leader teams defined in the above section.

Church administration usually starts with a church board or a bishop, depending on your polity. Guidance is usually given through a denominational board or synod above them. People within church administration roles can be given a salary at larger churches, but most churches reserve a salary for the lead pastor.

Church administration is the business side, mostly. They deal with the “hard management” issues so that the clergy can deal with the “soft management” issues. The lead pastor, however, usually deals with both as the head of the clergy and the president of the board. As always, individual churches will have differences based on their bylaws and the bylaws of their denomination.

Church Management Software

Church management, in the past, did not scale well with large numbers. My grandfather, with his parsonage of less than 50, handled all of the paperwork himself. The megachurch where I worked had an entire 4-office suite dedicated to finances alone.

Current advances in software, however, make it much easier to track, manage, reach, and follow up with your members no matter the size of your church. Let’s take a closer look.

What Is Church Management Software?

Church management software (ChMS) refers to the tools used by churches to computerize their member database, their giving receipts, their event calendar, and many other services that the church provides. Frequently, this software comes in the form of a mobile app for the church member, and a desktop application for the church administration.

Benefits Of Church Management Software

Church management systems not only give you the convenience of real-time tracking of your budget, volunteers, events, and more, it can let you print off your tax reports with a push of a button and print statements for your members with another push. When it comes to the benefits of bringing your church into the software age, you will not be disappointed.

Types Of Church Management Software

General Church Management Solutions

These articles analyze user-friendly church management software options from a general management standpoint. Keep track of member data, finances, attendance, volunteers, events, improve and automate management workflows and processes, and more.

Facility Management Software

This type of software will give you the functionality you need to stay on top of your building and facilities.

Find more info at the following link: Best Church Facility Management Software

Communications Software

The latest in communication software can be found at the links below. Send mass emails to your congregation, follow up with new members, leverage text messaging capabilities, and keep in touch with your church members.

Financial Management Software

Since financial stewardship is so important, we have a number of articles to help you find the best fit for you and your church. In addition to keeping track of church finances and assisting with general fundraising, many platforms also enable online giving for donations and tithes.

Church Management: The Takeaways

Church management is a wonderful and complex undertaking that can define the difference between a growing church and a stagnant one. One common ingredient in all of these different aspects of management is information, so bookmark this page to keep your source of information nearby!

Use this article as your jumping-off point to refine and develop the parts of your management team that need help. As always, comment below for further discussion!

Related Read: 10 Best Online Church Management Software For 2022

Categories
Tools

10 Best Online Church Management Software For 2022

Growing a congregation is one of the top goals of any church leader, and this is a mission that gets increasingly challenging in this day and age. For church leaders to attract new members, they need to manage their churches effectively, and church management software can be a crucial tool in achieving this goal. 

This article will tell you about the best online church management software you can use if you want to manage your church successfully to retain existing members and attract new ones. 

Tool Shortlist

  1. Planning Center 
  2. Churchtrac
  3. Elvanto
  4. Breeze 
  5. Chmeetings 
  6. TouchPoint
  7. Blackbaud 
  8. Excellerate Church Management 
  9. Fellowship One
  10. ChurchTeams

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best online chMS? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): Church management software should not be confusing, so I look for one with a clean user interface that lets me quickly find the features I need. 
  2. Usability: Aside from church leaders, other church members will use church management software, too, so I look for one that anybody can learn how to use quickly. 
  3. Integrations: Churches use several tools, so I look for software that works well with the other tools that I use. 
  4. Value for Pricing: Churches have limited funds, so I look for software with many features but reasonable monthly fees. 

Online Church Management Platform: Key Features

  1. Membership management: Allows users to create member profiles and compile them into a centralized location.
  2. Online giving: Allows church leaders to accept and record donations to help fund their activities. 
  3. Worship planning: Feature that lets church leaders plan and execute worship services. 
  4. Accounting software: Tool that lets church leaders keep a faithful record of cash inflow and expenses for reporting and auditing purposes.
  5. Event management: This allows users to manage the different stages of events like planning, sending invitations, execution, and post-event analysis. 
  6. Communication tools: Allows church leaders to connect with church members to boost engagement. 

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Overviews Of The 10 Best Online Church Management Software Solutions

Here’s a brief description of each online church management system to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. Planning Center – Church management software for managing membership information

planning center online church management software screenshot
Planning Center lets you create a directory of members with critical information like contact details, personal information, and anniversaries.

Planning Center is church management software with different features to help you take care of your congregation, including a calendar feature for managing events and scheduling resources like facilities and equipment. It has publishing capabilities to create custom web and app content for your members. It also has a giving feature for processing, accounting, and reporting donations. 

Maintaining an accurate record of church members is critical for any church because getting to know their members helps church leaders craft programs and services that will serve their congregation better. Planning Center allows you to create an accurate membership database with important details like personal information, contact details, and anniversaries. You can add notes like donations, activities, and group participation to know what activities your church members are interested in. Planning Center also allows you to include background checks to keep young church members safe.  

Planning Center pricing starts at $14/month/account plus the cost of add-on modules. You can request a 30-day free trial to try Planning Center. 

2. Churchtrac – Church management software for planning and executing worship services

churchtrac online church management software screenshot
Churchtrac allows you to create teams and assign roles to help make worship services successful.

Churchtrac is church management software that combines a wide variety of tools to help you manage your church to help you grow your membership. It has a membership management feature to help you create a directory of members allowing you to send mass emails and text messages with ease. Churchtrac’s giving feature enables you to track donors and contributions. It also has church accounting software that lets you monitor cash inflow and expenses so you can manage your church’s financial health. 

Worship services are at the heart of any church, and Churchtrac can help you plan and execute worship services that your members would love. You can use Churchtrac to create a detailed outline of worship services, so volunteers and staff are on the same page during events. Churctrac lets you maintain a comprehensive library of worship songs, ensuring that you can find appropriate songs for various worship services quickly. This church management solution also lets you send email and text reminders to volunteers to remind them of their schedules and roles.  

Churchtrac is free church management software but has a paid version that starts at $6/month/up to 75 members. Churchtrac offers a 30-day free trial. 

3. Elvanto – Church management software to help you improve engagement

elvanto online church management software screenshot
Elvanto lets you track members’ journeys and send follow-up messages to guide them on their next steps.

Elvanto is a cloud-based church management system, so you can access its tools without installing them on your computer. It has a worship planning tool to help you plan services and manage volunteers. Elvanto also has tools to make your church safer for children, including a child check-in feature and privacy and security tools to protect the information of young worshippers. It also has a church giving tool to track pledges and donations. This online giving tool also gives you access to your church’s financial data to assess your church’s financial state.  

One of the best ways to attract more members is by showing members how much your church cares for them, and if you want church management software to promote engagement, then Elvanto is an excellent option. You can use Elvanto to track members and send follow-ups to encourage participation in church activities. It has a pastoral care notes tool to help you create notes about specific members who require your guidance. Elvanto has a reporting tool for creating reports quickly that you can share with your pastoral team to help you craft future programs. 

Elvanto integrates with other church management solutions like SongSelect, Tithe.ly, Mailchimp, and PayPal. 

Elvanto pricing starts at $50/month/account plus a one-time setup fee of $149. Elvanto offers a free demo upon request. 

4. Breeze – Church management software to help you organize and manage groups

breeze online church management software screenshot
You can use Breeze to tag people on the groups they belong to for easier filtering of members.

Breeze is an excellent church management system if you have a small church that constantly grows because the software allows you to add as many members as you want without affecting your monthly fee. It has a mobile app that works on Android and iOS mobile devices. If you are using an old church management software, Breeze has an import team to assist you in transferring your data into the new system for free, so you don’t need to worry about losing data. It has a church giving feature that makes giving easier for members through text and online giving. 

If you want the best church management software to help you manage small groups, Breeze is your best option because it lets you create and manage small groups within your church. You can use Breeze to automatically add and remove members from groups according to their interests and preferences. Breeze has a messaging tool for sending emails and text messages to groups or individuals to stay connected to members. You can also use Breeze to schedule the sending of messages at a later date so you can concentrate on other critical matters.  

Breeze costs $50/month/account, and they offer an instant demo so customers can try their software immediately.  

5. Chmeetings – Church management software to help you plan and manage events

chmeetings online church management software screenshot
You can use Chmeetings to check-in attendees of events to make attendance tracking easier.

Chmeetings is a church management system with an informative dashboard that gives you access to crucial data about your church. You can use it to create member profiles and compile them into a church membership directory. Chmeetings has a mobile app that church members can access to view church news and events. The mobile app also lets members update their information as needed. 

Chmeetings is an excellent church management software if your church holds many events because of Chmeetings’ event management feature. You can use it to create events and invite your members and guests using emails, text messages, or mobile app notifications. Chmeetings also has a tool that lets you print name tags, QR codes, and QR tags for attendees so you can control the crowd on ticketed events. You can use Chmeetings to check-in people during events, track attendance, and print reports to gauge the success of your event. 

Chmeetings has a free version with limited features for churches with up to 100 members. For large churches, the pricing of Chmeetings starts at $100/year/up to 250 members. 

6. Touchpoint – Church management software with a fully-integrated and customizable mobile app

touchpoints online church management software screenshot
You can customize Touchpoint’s mobile app to make it easier for members to use while promoting your church’s brand.

Touchpoint has many church management features to help you take care of your flock, including an email tool to help you promote events and share news with your congregation. It also has a giving feature so a church member can send a donation to help shore up your church’s fund. Touchpoint also has church administration tools like volunteer management, distribution of worship guides, and financial reporting. 

Having a mobile app is one of the best ways to stay connected with the church and team members. Touchpoint’s customizable mobile app can help you manage your church better. It has a self-check-in feature so members can register their attendance during their events. Church leaders can use the mobile app to create sermon notes to guide them during worship services. Touchpoint’s mobile app has an accounting feature that lets church members review their giving history and statements.

Touchpoint integrates with other tools like OnlineGiving, Twilio, and Sage. 

Touchpoint provides pricing details after a live demo. 

7. Blackbaud – Church management software for managing fundraising events

blackbaud online church management software screenshot
Blackbaud can help churches and nonprofit organizations raise funds to support their projects.

Blackbaud is a cloud-based church management solution to help you manage online giving, small groups, and ministries. This church software provides church members with online giving options to send tithes, recurring donations, and one-time contributions easily. It has a volunteer management feature to monitor volunteer positions, roles, and schedules. You can use Blackbaud to manage church events, including online registration and payments for ticketed events. 

Church leaders need fundraising events to sustain their outreach programs, and Blackbaud is an excellent church software for planning and executing successful fundraisers. You can use Blackbaud to ensure that you can communicate with team members to make planning events easier. Blackbaud also lets you monitor how team members are doing on their assigned tasks so you can offer assistance if needed. You can also use Blackbaud to create reports about your fundraisers to assess their effectiveness. 

Blackbaud offers a free trial and customized pricing upon request. 

8. Excellerate Church Management – Church management software for attracting new church members

excellerate church management online church management software screenshot
Excellerate lets you track new visitors so you can send follow-ups helping you convert them.

Excellerate church management software features like member tracking and attendance tracking can help you monitor the growth of your church and implement plans to sustain the said growth. You can use it to generate church directories to help you connect with members. You can also use it to monitor a pledge, donation, or contribution for records keeping and accounting purposes.  

Excellerate Church Management software is an excellent option to increase your church membership because it allows you to track visitors to your website and convert them to leads. With the help of Excellerate, you can send follow ups so you can schedule visits or invite prospects to church events. Excellerate also lets you gauge your success in converting new members so you can improve your methods and attract new members. 

Excellerate Church Management has a one-time fee of $145/up to 100 members and offers scaled pricing according to the number of church members. 

9. Fellowship One – Church management software for creating and hosting church websites

fellowship one online church management software screenshot
Fellowship One has website templates you can use to create a church website quickly.

Fellowship One is church software with different tools you can use to manage your congregation effectively. It has a church accounting feature to help you manage your church’s finances. Fellowship One also has a payroll feature to help you ensure you pay your staff correctly and on time. It has an event management feature to plan events, manage resources, send invitations, and manage registration. 

Having a website is one of the best ways for a religious organization to welcome new visitors and keep existing members updated. If your church doesn’t have a church website, Fellowship One can help you create and host one. It has a user-friendly editing mode to help you customize your website. Fellowship One can help you create an SEO-friendly website to make it easier to find online. It has a wide variety of website templates you can use to have your website up and running quickly. 

Fellowship One offers pricing and a free trial upon request. 

10. ChurchTeams – Church management software with workflow automation feature for handling repetitive tasks

churchteams online church management software screenshot
ChurchTeams enables you to automate simple tasks so you can have more time to take care of your congregation.

ChurchTeams is a church management solution to empower you with tools like a membership management feature for maintaining a directory of members. It has a giving platform to make donating easier for members. It also has a volunteer management feature for scheduling and communicating with volunteers. ChurchTeams has an informative dashboard to keep you updated on the state of your church and its programs. 

Getting simple tasks out of the way can help you concentrate on managing your church, and ChurchTeams can help you with its workflow automation feature. You can automate the sending of welcome notes to new members or follow-ups to absentee members to help you sustain the growth of your ministry. ChurchTeams can also help you automate sending reminders to volunteers of their schedules and roles to ensure you have enough manpower for events. 

ChurchTeams pricing starts at $37/month/up to 200 members, and they offer a free trial upon request. 

Other Options

Here’s a few more that didn’t make the top list.

  1. Wild Apricots – SaaS to help you manage your members, events, and finances in one platform. 
  2. Shelby Systems – Church management system to engage new and current church members. 
  3. Servant Keeper – Servant Keeper has a child check-in feature to help keep young members safe during events. 
  4. Tithe.ly – Tithe.ly church giving integrates online and mobile giving so church members can choose how to contribute to your church. 
  5. ChurchSuite – ChurrchSuite lets you build a comprehensive membership database to understand your members and discover ways to serve them better. 

What do you think about this list?

Managing a church is a huge responsibility, and church leaders can use all the help they can give to make church administration easier. With the help of the best church management software, church leaders taking care of responsibilities is easier, and they will have more time to connect with church members and serve their needs. 

Follow The Lead Pastor and learn more about other useful software to help you grow your church and minister to your congregation. 

Categories
Tools

10 Best Church Data Management Systems In 2022

Thanks to COVID-19, hundreds of thousands of churches around the globe are rushing to get online so that they can continue to service their membership from a safe distance. Many churches are focused on tools for virtual services: church presentation software and church communication software.

However, data management systems should not be overlooked! I’ll bet you have an online church accounting and finance software. So why would you continue to rely on outdated, pen-and-paper methods for church data management? 

With the help of church data management software, churches can engage with members better to retain existing members and attract new ones. This article will tell you about some of the best current church data management systems to help you manage your congregation.

Tool Shortlist

Here’s the list of the best church data management software.

  1. ChurchTrac
  2. ACS Suite
  3. Planning Center
  4. ChurchSuite 
  5. Elvanto
  6. Tithe.ly
  7. Blackbaud Church Management
  8. Faith Teams  
  9. ChurchTeams
  10. FellowshipOne

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best church data management software solutions? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): Managing a church involves many administrative tasks, and a clean user interface will allow users to find the function they need quickly to save time. 
  2. Usability: Most churches count on volunteers, so I look for user-friendly software that anyone can easily use. 
  3. Integrations: Churches use different tools, so I look for software that will work with other church management tools. 
  4. Value for $: Churches rely on the generosity of members, so I look for software with many features and reasonable pricing. 

Church Data Management Solution: Key Features

  1. Member Directory: This feature allows churches to maintain a comprehensive directory of members. 
  2. Donation Management: This allows users to track and record the donations they receive
  3. Payment Management: Allows users to receive donations through text messaging, online giving, checks, bank deposits, credit cards, and others. 
  4. Communication Tools: Allows churches to keep in touch with members through text messaging, email, or a website chat feature. 
  5. Event Management: A feature that churches can use to plan and execute church events. 

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Overviews Of The 10 Best Church Data Management Systems

Here’s a brief description of each church data management platform to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. ChurchTrac – Church management system for managing church membership

churchtrac church data management systems screenshot
ChurchTrac lets you create member profiles and attach important notes like anniversaries, group memberships, and family details.

ChurchTrac is a church management software for managing church data like membership and financial data. It also comes with accounting software to track cash inflow and expenses, giving you a clear view of your church’s financial health. If your church has a Sunday school, you can use ChurchTrac to keep young members secure with its child check-in feature. It also has a website builder to create a church app or a complete church website to stay connected with members. 

ChurchTrac is the best church management software to manage your membership data effectively because it enables you to create detailed member profiles to keep track of your congregation. You can use the software to create member profiles containing contact information, personal details, interests, and family background. ChurchTrac also lets you attach tags to member profiles for easier grouping and filtering.  

ChurchTrac is a free church management software but has a paid plan that starts at $6/month/account. ChurchTrac also offers a 30-day free trial.

2. ACS Suite – Church management system for managing church attendance

acs suite church data management systems screenshot
ACS Suite allows you to generate attendance reports that show you members who are missing church events so you can follow up on them.

ACS Suite is a church management software and church accounting software accessible online through a cloud-based OnDemand service or directly installed on a workstation. This ChMS has a membership management feature to record and manage membership information in a centralized membership database. Its ACS contributions feature lets you track the financial gifts of members and create IRS statements and tax receipts to ensure compliance with federal regulations. 

The attendance of church members during events and activities is an excellent way to gauge the effectiveness of your ministry. ACS Suite has an attendance management feature that can help you do so. ACS Suite lets you track worship attendance not just on worship services but on Sunday classes, small groups, and discipleship programs. ACS Suite gives you the option to capture attendance using a barcode scanner to record attendance during events quickly. You can use ACS Suite to print attendance graphs for meetings so other members can easily understand attendance data. 

ACS Suite pricing is available upon request. 

3. Planning Center – Best for managing worship services

planning center church data management systems screenshot
Use Planning Center to assign roles that can help ensure worship services proceed smoothly.

Planning Center is a church management software with different tools to help you organize the data you need to manage your church. It has built-in tools for tracking attendance, donations, volunteers, and resources. Planning Center has an engagement dashboard to help you study different metrics like attendance and donations to implement improvement plans as needed. 

Excellent worship services draw more attendees, and Planning Center is an outstanding church data management system if you want to plan and hold successful worship services. You can use Planning Center to create a detailed blueprint of worship services to help employees and volunteers understand their roles. Planning Center lets you maintain a comprehensive song library and distribute music sheets to your volunteers and ministry. 

Planning Center integrates with other church management tools like Thryve, ProPresenter, Mailchimp, and Checkr. More integrations can be unlocked using a paid plan through Zapier.

Planning Center pricing starts at $14/month/up to 25 members, and they offer a 30-day free trial.

4. ChurchSuite – Church data management system for managing church resources

church suite church data management systems screenshot
ChurchSuite lets you see all events and booked resources to prevent double booking.

ChurchSuite is a church management software for managing different aspects of your church, including membership, donations, and worship planning. You can use ChurchSuite to create a member directory and send mass emails and text messages to church members. ChurchSuite is scalable, making it ideal for churches of any size. You can use the software to manage churches in different locations, making it ideal for multi-site congregations. 

ChurchSuite is an excellent option if you need a church management system to manage your church’s resources. You can use the software to maintain a database of all your resources, including facilities, equipment, tools, and volunteers. ChurchSuite lets you check the availability of resources to help prevent double booking and avoid conflicts. It allows you to study data on usage patterns to know which resources are in demand and which ones are underutilized. 

ChurchSuite pricing starts at $15.50/month/account, and they offer a 30-day free trial.

5. Elvanto – Best for maintaining a database of online giving and contributions

elvanto church data management systems screenshot
You can use Elvanto to maintain a record of donations to help you assess your church’s financial status.

Elvanto is a management software for churches of all sizes to streamline admin duties and serve members better. You can use it as a centralized system for maintaining records of members, contact information, reports, files, and other critical data. It has an attendance tracking feature to track and record attendance so you can communicate with members who may need ministering to. Elvanto has a volunteer management feature to maintain a record of volunteers for easier volunteer scheduling and communication.  

Churches rely on the generosity of members and sponsors, and Elvanto can help you maintain a database of online giving and contributions to promote accountability. With an accurate record of donations and expenses, you can keep tabs on your church’s financial health. You can generate reports on pledges so you can send follow-up emails and provide donors with receipts or statements. Elvanto has an integrated giving app to accept payments and donations through debit or credit cards. 

You can integrate Elvanto with other church management tools like Tithe.ly, SongSelect, PayPal, Pushpay, and Mogiv. 

Elvanto pricing starts at $50/month/account, and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

6. Tithe.ly – Free church data management system for accepting and managing donations

tithe.ly church data management systems screenshot
Tithe.ly lets you convert mobile devices into kiosks to accept payments on-site during events.

Tithe.ly is a church management software solution to help you maintain a database of member records. It has SMS and email features to help you engage church members. You can use Tithe.ly to build a church mobile app enabling you to connect with a broader audience. It has an event management feature for event planning, event registration, and payment acceptance. 

If you want to ensure that church members can donate to your church using their preferred donation method, then Tithe.ly is the best software for you because it allows members to contribute to your church using six different methods. Members can send their donations via text giving, online donations, direct deposits, checks, or gifts. You can also use this contribution management system to turn tablets into kiosks so you can accept donations during events. 

Tithe.ly has a financial reporting feature to generate shareable giving summary reports for easier budget tracking.  

Tithe.ly integrates with Engiven, STS Consulting, Boxcast, and others. 

Tithe.ly is free software for religious organizations and non-profit organizations. However, there is a charge of 2.9% plus $0.30 per transaction.

7. Blackbaud Church Management – Best for managing small churches & groups

blackbaud church management church data management systems screenshot
Blackbaud Church Management lets you manage and communicate with the small groups in your church.

Blackbaud Church Management is a church management software that allows church administration to manage church members, events, and ministries in one place. This church management solution has communication tools to help you stay connected with church members. It has a volunteer management feature to track requirements for volunteer positions and conduct and store background checks. 

Small groups are critical for churches, and if you need church management software to manage small groups in your church, then Blackbaud Church Management is the best software for you. You can use it to maintain a database of the small groups in your church so you can provide support easily. Blackbaud has SMS and email features to communicate with small groups quickly. You can also use Blackbaud’s small group management feature to track the attendance of small groups to know which small groups church members find more engaging. Church leaders can customize group leader permissions giving them control over what group leaders can do. 

Blackbaud Church Management pricing is available upon customer request. 

8. Faith Teams – Church data management system with integrated form builder for data gathering

faith teams church data management systems screenshot
Faith Teams lets you create a comprehensive database of members, including their pictures, personal information, contact details, and interests.

Faith Teams is an all-in-one church management system for creating a database of church members. You can use it to automate guest follow-ups to help you convert visitors to your church website or social media accounts. It has a donation management feature for easier fund accounting and to ensure donors and supporters of fundraising events that their donations went to their intended projects.  

If you want to capture critical membership data, then Faith Teams is a fantastic option for your church because it has customizable forms and templates you can use for varied uses and events. You can use Faith Teams to create digital forms and embed them on your church website to make event registration easier. The software allows you to share forms on your social media accounts to reach more members. You can use your church’s font, colors, and logo to ensure branding on the forms you use. 

Faith Teams is available at a flat rate of $40/month/account, and they offer a 10-day free trial.

9. ChurchTeams – Church data management system for automating workflows

churchteams church data management systems screenshot
You can use ChurchTeams to automate actions in response to a set of triggers to ensure that your flock receives all the information they need.

ChurchTeams is a church management software with different modules for managing your congregation like group management, event check-in, and volunteer management. It has an email marketing feature to help you promote fundraising activities to church members. ChurchTeams has a text-from-church functionality for sending notifications to church members to remind them of their group’s schedule or of classes they signed up for. 

ChurchTeam’s workflow automation feature is what you need if administrative tasks take up too much time and if you want to devote more time ministering to your congregation. You can use it to automate simple admin tasks like sending a welcome email or text to new members or sending a reminder about upcoming worship services. You can also use it to automate sending schedules to volunteers, ensuring that everyone is aware of their schedules and responsibilities. 

ChurchTeams’s pricing starts at $37/month/up to 200 people. They offer a free 30-day trial upon request. 

10. FellowshipOne – Church data management system for creating church websites

fellowshipone church data management systems screenshot
You can use FellowshipOne to create a church website easily or improve your existing site.

FellowshipOne is a church management software with a CRM module to help you manage your members and their data. It has a mobile app version that works on iOS and Android devices. FellowshipOne has an online giving platform to make donating more convenient for members so you can raise funds for your outreach programs. It has a worship planning feature to plan and execute in-person and live streaming events. 

A church needs an excellent website to reach church members easily, and FellowshipOne is a superb church data management software if you want to create a church website that can serve all your church members’ needs. This SaaS provides you with a user-friendly website editing feature to help you customize your church website. You can use different templates to create a website that reflects your church and its ideals. 

FellowshipOne integrates with Mailchimp, EasyTithe, Clover Sites, and others. 

FellowshipOne provides customized pricing upon request, and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

What do you think about this list?

A church data management software is a critical tool to help you maintain an accurate record of your members, donations, resources, and events. It can help you manage your church effectively and improve engagement with members. 

On top of church data management software, your church can use other software to grow your church and minister to more members, and you can subscribe to The Lead Pastor if you want to know more about them.

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Article

Church Project Management: Importance, Process, & Benefits

Every growing church finds itself in need of new projects to expand its space, improve its technology, or facilitate community outreach. From larger churches to the smallest, church project management is a vital part of being effective in your mission to be “the Light of the World.” 

According to this Axios article, spending on church projects, specifically in the construction industry, is at an all-time low. That article also notes that some of the decline is due to church closings and the availability of those buildings on the market. Still, an old building will almost certainly need renovation and updating.

I’m Lexie Schmidt, and I have worked in a church of thousands and a church of dozens and plenty of churches in between. Let my experience help guide you through the essentials of church project management. 

Here’s what I’ll cover:

What Is Church Project Management?

Church project management is defined as the steps a church takes to complete a task that is focused on self-improvement. Think of church projects as infrastructure upgrades. They add more seats, install new screens or lights, upgrade computers or applications, or anything else that makes it easier to preach, worship, and reach as many people as possible.

The most difficult and intensive projects for a church involve construction, whether in a new building or renovating existing buildings, so this guide will focus more on construction projects. In the digital age, however, projects such as building your website, creating a live-streaming platform, or implementing church management software are just as important, if not more so. Determining which type of project is best falls on your project manager.

A church project manager is frequently one of the clergy in smaller churches, but larger churches may hire a dedicated manager. The people who work on a project may be volunteers, but many times you may need to work with contractors. Most large projects will likely be a mix of both. When the megachurch I worked at built its larger building, contractors did the heavy machinery tasks and technical work, but church staff and volunteers did a large portion of the manual labor.

Church project management rewards your church by making it easier to work and making your building more appealing to the people you are trying to reach. Many times, church projects don’t provide a direct, spiritual benefit to your people at first. Your community and members likely won’t receive the benefits until after the project has finished.

What Does a Project Manager Do In A Church?

illustration of a megaphone church project management
Communication is a key part of a project manager’s role within a church.

Project managers need to be the best communicators in your church. Most communication will happen between church leaders and members who share a common vision and common goals. 

However, projects can bring in contractors who do not necessarily share those ideas. Your project manager needs to be able to communicate the needs and goals of the project with people who may not even share your religious beliefs.

If you find communication failing, try the steps outlined in our church communications plan article. I recommend that article no matter what since communication is so important.

In addition, project managers should be organized, punctual, and high-energy. On longer projects, such as building a new sanctuary or remodeling the current one, enthusiasm can flag among your volunteers, so a project manager who can keep morale up is essential. 

Organization, of course, is needed above all. Without organization, you will have everyone from contractors to volunteers standing around doing nothing. Organization also makes sure those contractors get paid.

A note on punctuality. In all my other articles, I have never mentioned this as a requirement for managers or leaders. Once again, contact with outside contractors causes this. Contractors get paid for their time, whether they are actively working or not. 

Contractors will arrive at the beginning of their workday and start their clock. If circumstances don’t allow work to continue, they will continue billing for their time whether or not your project manager is there to fix the problem. Punctuality saves your church money.

Difference Between Church Events And Church Projects

Church projects and events are linked in many ways and have some elements of overlap, but they have distinct purposes and outcomes. In simplest terms, projects serve the church itself, while events serve the community.

As noted above, church projects primarily serve to improve the church and your ability to accomplish your church’s mission. Church events, instead, improve the community through outreach, service, and, frequently, fun. A wedding is an event that improves the lives of the families who are gathered, but it is not a project that improves the church.

Another way to think of the differences is to consider the flow of resources. Events will usually double as fundraisers as well. Vacation Bible School can charge a small fee per child which will generate some cash flow and educate your community’s children with Biblical concepts. Replacing your old pews with new theater seating will cost money and improve your sanctuary, so it is a project.

Knowing the differences between church projects and events, if you’re in the right place, keep reading! If not, you can read more about church event management here.

The Church Project Management Process

The process of church project management might feel daunting at first, but this section will break it down into simple steps that any church project manager can use to find success. Remember that there is no amount of note-taking that can be considered excessive. In my personal experience, a three-ring binder and a hole punch are a project manager’s best friends for implementing the project.

Step 1: Starting The Project

Every church project starts at the top. Depending on your type of church, your church board, your lead pastor, or your bishop will decide which of the church’s needs are most important and will be filled next. They will determine the budget, the time frame, and the scope of the project before any work begins.

The church project manager will then take those instructions and initiatives and develop a plan for how to accomplish the project within the constraints provided by their church leadership team. Determining where costs can be trimmed through the use of volunteers, through previous relationships with contractors, or through business owners in the church needs to happen in this phase. Finding out that a church member owns a demolition company does not help after the walls are already coming down.

Finally, the project manager should submit their completed plan back to the church leadership for final approval before taking any action. Most churches have limited resources and cannot afford mistakes that cost tens of thousands of dollars. That number might seem large, but building expenses are always higher than you think. An ounce of caution in the planning phase can save thousands in the execution of the plan.

Step 2: Finalizing The Budget

After the plan secures approval from the leadership, the project manager needs to finalize the budget through negotiating contracts, recruiting volunteers, and sourcing materials. Once every part of the plan has been covered, the project manager should bring the finalized budget to the church leaders for approval.

When setting the budget, especially with building projects, the church might need to take out a loan to cover some shortfalls. Most churches do this, and the Treasurer will be able to secure a loan if the church has a good credit score. Yes, your church, as a nonprofit corporation, has its own credit score and the ability to take out loans in its own name. Your church’s income will determine the size of the loans you can take, just like anyone else. The megachurch where I worked typically took out loans of $5,000,000 at a time, but the smaller churches would normally max out around $100,000 or so per loan.

Expert tip: The final note on budgeting is that you will overrun your budget. Problems come up, things break, and unforeseen issues slow things down. For that reason, allocate at least 20% above what you think you need just to start. I have never seen a project come in less than that. The largest overrun I have seen was nearly double the budget. Be smart, and have a contingency plan for those issues. The worst that can happen is that you have extra money at the end if everything goes smoothly.

Step 3: Working The Project

Before your project can begin actual work, your local government inspectors will probably want to visit the worksite and approve the changes to your building and grounds before giving a construction permit. This step cannot be skipped, otherwise, major fines and possible lawsuits will eat your entire budget and leave nothing for what you need to get done.

When your permits are granted, be sure to display them according to the instructions either found on the permits themselves or given separately by the inspectors. As the project goes on, inspectors will show up, often unannounced, to inspect your team’s work and ensure that everything is being built to code. 

Building codes change over time, so inspections during remodeling frequently find safety issues that must be dealt with before construction can continue. This is normally the largest source of budget overruns in older buildings.

Expert tip: For new construction, be sure your contractors have fully up-to-date licenses and training. The most common overruns in new construction are redoing work from contractors who have not learned the new building codes. You may also find a contractor is cutting corners with materials or techniques. Be sure that your contracts include the ability to fire them for negligent behavior revealed by private or government building inspectors.

Volunteers will usually not have formal training in construction. For the same reasons as above, they should be supervised by someone who does have that training, although most inspectable work, by law, can only be done by licensed and bonded contractors. This work includes electrical, plumbing, fabrication, erection of structural elements, and so on. Generally, if a job can be performed by a union member, it must be.

Anytime a worksite has dangerous equipment or heavy machinery, the site should be considered closed unless a person goes through a check-in process and wears proper protective gear. Most contractors take care of this on their own. Your church will be responsible for the safety of your volunteers.

A comprehensive project planning phase shines here. A church project manager who accounts for as many details as possible propels the project forward even in the face of the inevitable setbacks.

Step 4: Closing The Project

Each project will have set goals according to the plan that the manager set in Step 1. As the project nears fulfilling those goals, the project manager is responsible for ensuring the work was completed correctly and, if so, paying the contractors and thanking the volunteers. Each step within the plan should be completed before victory is declared.

The project, if it involves construction, cannot be completed until the final inspection. Be sure that your contractors and volunteers are still available until that inspection is complete.

The project manager should write a final report on the project detailing the highs and lows of the process. This report tells future managers or refreshes the current manager’s memory, of who worked well in which areas and who should be avoided in the future. Detailed notes of what went wrong in the inspections allow the leadership in older buildings to know what to look out for in future projects.

Step 5: Maintenance

Many projects will require some amount of maintenance. An expansion to your sanctuary means more cleaning and more seating. An upgrade to your sound system means more technical expertise is needed in each service. Upgrading your computers or adding a church network can mean creating an IT department.

These continuing costs should be considered before starting a project. New things are only better if you can pay for them. Some projects, though, pay for themselves through saving on electricity or heating. 

For instance, new, high-efficiency windows in your church can save hundreds of dollars in utility payments every year. For this reason, a project that reduces continuing costs should be done before a project that increases them.

The Importance and Benefits Of Project Management For Churches

Church project management is one of the most important skills you can develop to grow your church. Here are some benefits: 

  • Successful project managers deliver new and upgraded experiences, both for your staff and your congregation. 
  • Completed projects establish good relationships in your community. 
  • Successful projects foster deeper bonds among your members who volunteer. 

Beyond the obvious benefits of a remodel, a new building, upgraded equipment, or whatever the purpose of your project is, church projects provide benefits that may not be immediately clear.

For instance, adding or expanding a kitchen for your homeless ministry will also provide a basecamp for team members to relax and eat during other events or projects. My own experience has seen many of the contractors start going to our church by seeing how we work and treat each other with love and kindness.

The possibilities of how you use the fruits of your projects are as endless as your own imagination. Therefore, the benefits are endless as well. With every project, try to think of at least three ways that you can use the upgrades. As I wrote in the budgeting step, most churches don’t have much money. Your ideas will make every penny count.

Tips & Best Practices For Church Project Management

illustration of a hard hat and tools for church project management
There’s lots of tools to help you keep your church projects moving along.

Let me share a few of the best ways to keep your church projects organized and moving along. You will learn your own tips and tricks as you gain experience as a local church project manager, so always take notes, and never be afraid to ask the professionals questions that will help you do your job better.

  • Don’t hide your plan. While not everyone needs a full copy of the entire binder, every step of construction or finishing or maintenance should have a clear view of what is expected of them for their goal to be completed. Photocopies of a few pages combined into a packet and given to the foreman of a job will usually be enough.
  • Volunteers should have clear responsibilities. In every project, I usually have at least one volunteer who wants to be in charge of everything. Sometimes, I was that volunteer, which led to me joining the leadership team and filling the assistant youth pastor role. The problem is that, before I worked my way up, I was in the way by making the roles unclear. For my part, I was trying to help and doing it the wrong way. Others I’ve worked with just wanted some of the glory for themselves. Defined roles in a project prevent confusion, accidents, and mistrust.
  • Always pay your contractors promptly. Sometimes, you will have a dispute with a contractor over bad work. Don’t pay them until that dispute is resolved. In all other cases, pay them by the due dates outlined in your contract. It will foster good relationships and make them more likely to work with you again in the future.
  • Source your materials like a business. This is a repeat from the budget section, but it saves more money than everything else combined. Your church, as long as it is a 501c(3) corporation, is just as much of a business as the big home improvement store you currently shop at. They have suppliers, and you can too. Don’t pay the retail markup prices. Take advantage of your business status, plus the suppliers still have to honor tax-exempt cards, too.

Church Project Management Software

Volunteer management in church projects is very similar to church events. Church management software can usually double as project management tools. This software can help you monitor progress, set milestones, and aid church communications.

Church Project Management: In Conclusion

Successful church projects start with good project managers. The tips and steps within this guide will provide you with a solid base on which to build a leader into that manager. The benefits of projects are plenty, and the worst problems arise through poor planning. Plan well, build well, finish well.

If you have any questions, comments, or your own tips to share, comment below.

I’m Lexie and happy projects!

Categories
Tools

10 Best Church Event Management Software In 2022

Before the pandemic, churches count on events to boost engagement among members, like holding church socials, Bible studies, and family days. Although most of these events were discontinued at the height of the pandemic, many churches are starting to attract members to in-person events again. Churches are now adopting a hybrid model that combines online and in-person events in serving their congregation. Church members seem to agree because 35% of all churchgoers liked both online and in-person services, according to a Barna study.

Managing church events, an already challenging task, is now even more difficult these days, but some tools can make holding events easier. This article will tell you about some of the best church event management software you can use to make holding events stress-free and more productive for your members.   

Church Event Management Tools List

Here’s the list of the best church event management apps I’ll cover in this article.

  1. FellowshipOne
  2. Realm
  3. Smart Church Solutions
  4. Rsvpify 
  5. Swift Events 
  6. Hopin
  7. EventPro 
  8. PowerChurch Plus 
  9. Arlo
  10. Mazevo

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best church event management solution? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

1.   User Interface (UI): Aside from church leaders and employees, church members also use church event management software, so I look for software with a clean user interface to provide church members with a positive user experience. 

2.   Usability: Users need to be able to use church event management software immediately, so I look for user-friendly and easy to master software. 

3.   Integrations: Aside from church event management software, churches use other software, so I look for a church event management software that works great with other church management tools that your church uses, like CRM and ChMS software. 

4.   Value for $: Churches are non-profit organizations, so I look for software with many fantastic features with affordable monthly rates. 

5. Versatility: Churches hold in-person, online, and hybrid events so I look for software I can use to manage different types of events. 

Church Event Management Platform: Key Features 

  1. Event calendar: Allows event creators, team members, and church members to view upcoming events to block off their schedules and avoid conflicts. 
  2. Event registration: Allows attendees to register for an event and has an event check-in feature to know the exact number of attendees. 
  3. Resource management: Lets church leaders manage resources critical to a successful event like rooms, audio-visual equipment, chairs, printed materials, etc. 
  4. Payment collection: Allows users to accept payments or donations to paid events. 
  5. Marketing: Allows users to promote upcoming events to increase attendance. 

The Lead Pastor is reader-supported. We may earn a commission when you click through links on our site — learn more about how we aim to stay transparent.

Overviews Of The 10 Best Church Event Management Software Solution 

Here’s a brief description of each church event management system to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. FellowshipOne – Church event management software that automatically publishes events on your church calendar

FellowshipOne Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Creating an event using FellowshipOne automatically publishes on your church calendar, allowing members to see scheduled events.

FellowshipOne is a church management software with a wide variety of capabilities for managing your church and taking care of your flock. It has payroll and accounting software to help you manage your church’s finances. You can also use FellowshipOne to manage and schedule church facilities to ensure that small church groups have access to facilities for their group activities. 

Informing members of upcoming events is one of the best ways to encourage attendance, and FellowshipOne can help you because it automatically updates your church calendar when you create an event. With this feature, members can take note of the events they are interested in to sync them with their personal or business calendar to avoid conflict. Organizers and volunteers can access your church calendar and view details of the event, giving them an awareness of their roles in making the event successful. 

FellowshipOne pricing is available upon request, and they offer a 30-day free trial. 

2. Realm – Church event management software with an events registration feature. 

Realm Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Realm helps you inform church members of upcoming events so they can register in advance.

Realm is a church management system with event management capabilities to provide members with more opportunities to get together and engage with other members. You can use Real to accept payments for paid events like summer camps, retreats, or kids’ programs. Realm also allows you to create recurring events for activities such as Sunday schools, volunteer meetings, or weekly socials, so there’s no need to create an event weekly.  

Knowing how many church members you will attend your event can help you prepare better, and Realm has an event registration feature you might find useful. Realm lets you inform church members about upcoming events so they can pre-register using the Realm mobile app. What’s great about this feature is you have a better idea of the number of attendees to expect, so you know how many volunteers you need, how many chairs you should prepare, or if you have enough printed materials to make your event successful. 

Realm provides pricing details and a free demo upon request. 

3. Smart Church Solutions – Church facility management for scheduling and managing facilities for events

Smart Church Solutions Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Smart Church Solutions is accessible via a web browser or through its mobile app, so you can manage events anywhere.

Smart Church Solutions is software for all the facilities requirements of your church. You can use it to design facilities that can serve the needs of your congregation. It is a system that church leaders can use to maintain facilities and ensure proper working order. Smart Church Solutions’ event scheduler allows users to design and create custom forms for events like registration forms or consent forms.  

Smart Church Solutions is a church facilities management software to ensure proper utilization of church facilities during events. It allows users to reserve rooms, venues, sound systems, multimedia devices, and others critical to the success of any event. Smart Church Solutions is a useful software because it can help prevent conflicts and double booking, resulting in the disruption of events and discord among church members. 

Smart Church Solutions pricing starts at $50/location/month, and they provide a free demo upon request. 

4. RSVPify – Church event management you can use to collect payments and donations

RSVPify Church Event Management Software Screenshot
You can use RSVPify to sell tickets to fundraising events. 

RSVPify is an events management software for churches, businesses, and non-profit organizations that need software to efficiently plan and execute events. You can use it for event planning and tracking invitees giving you an idea of how many attendees to expect during the actual event. RSVPify also allows you to create customized event registration and online reservation forms to collect attendees’ contact information and get to know your audience before an event. 

Generating funds is critical for your church because it can help you provide services to your congregation and initiate outreach programs for your community. Rsvpify can help you sell tickets for events to generate funds. You can use RSVPify to sell ticket variations like VIP tickets so you can maximize the potential of fundraising activities. RSVPify also gives you the option of collecting online donations for specific events, giving church members the freedom to choose the amount they want to give. 

RSVPify integrates with other event planning and communication tools, including Facebook, Slack, Salesforce, and Gmail. 

RSVPify pricing starts at $39/account/month and they offer a free trial upon customer request. 

5. Swift Events – Event management software for organizing online events

Swift Events Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Swift Events lets you create and host online events for church members.

Swift Events is a virtual events platform you can use to widen the reach of church events and services using the internet. You can use the platform to conduct live polls, SMS polling, quizzes, and gamification to make your event more interactive. It also allows you to conduct pre-and post-event surveys to help you determine areas you can improve to make future events more successful. 

Online events are getting more popular among churches, and if you want to start hosting online events, then Swift Events is the best church event management software for you. Swift Events allows you to customize your online event using your font, color, and layout style to make your event stand out while promoting your church. You can use Swift Events to Livestream in-person events on your church website, or social media account so you can reach members who cannot attend in-person anywhere they are in the globe. 

Swift Events integrates with other communication and video conferencing tools like Webex, Zoom, and GoToMeeting. 

Swift Events has a free version for up to 150 participants, while the pricing for the paid plans starts at $5/month/up to 300 participants.

6. Hopin – Church event management software for marketing activities

Hopin Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Hopin has an event builder functionality to ensure customization of events to make them more appealing to invitees. 

Hopin is a management software for handling not just in-person events but online events and hybrid events too. You can use it as a planning center to manage your event in its entirety, from planning to post-event evaluation. It has an analytics feature to help you analyze critical data like attendee statistics, chat transcripts, and event recordings so you can use event data to plan future events. 

No matter how amazing your event is, it can turn into a disaster if you cannot market it properly, which is why Hopin’s event marketing feature is a vital feature. You can use Hopin to create an amazing landing page that can help promote your event and drive attendance or launch an email marketing campaign. It also has an attendee management feature for resending tickets, creating promo codes, issuing refunds, and others that can help increase attendance at your events. 

Hopin integrates with other amazing event management tools like Twitter, Mailchimp, GoFundMe, Figma, and Slack. 

Hopin is free church event management software, but they offer paid plans starting at $99/month/account. 

7. EventPro – Church event management software for managing resources during events

EventPro Church Event Management Software Screenshot
You can use EventPro to manage the resources you need to make your event successful.

EventPro is an event management software for churches of all sizes, businesses, and nonprofits to help them plan and execute events. It has different modules to help you manage your events, including attendance tracking, email marketing, child check-in, etc. You can also use EventPro to create custom event webpages to market your event and act as an online registration form. 

Mounting an event means utilizing resources, and EventPro is the best event management software for you if you want one that allows you to manage the resources you need during the event. You can use EventPro to allocate resources like tables and chairs, audio-visual equipment, tents, and others to ensure the comfort of attendees and avoid double-booking equipment. If you have to source equipment, you can use EventPro to maintain a record of hired equipment and their costs for accounting purposes. 

EventPro provides customized pricing and a free demo upon request. 

8. PowerChurch Plus – Church event management software for managing tasks

Power Church Plus Church Event Management Software Screenshot
PowerChurch Plus has a member management feature to maintain a comprehensive record of members that you can also send event invites to your member directory.

PowerChurch Plus is a church management software solution with different modules to help you manage your church and its activities. It has a membership management feature for maintaining a record of your members, their contact details, and other critical information. PowerChurch Plus’ donation management feature can help you manage member contributions whether from checking accounts, credit card, text giving, or online giving. This donor management feature also allows you to keep donors’ financial information secure while ensuring that records of donations are available for fund accounting. 

Small churches and large churches rely on the generosity of volunteers when it comes to manning events, and PowerChurch Plus is the best church management software for you if you want to ensure that volunteers know what to do during events. PowerChurch Plus has a volunteer management feature to assign tasks to people giving you a better idea of who is responsible for a task and which tasks need more resources. You can use the software to automate the sending of notifications whenever a new task gets assigned to help you save time from sending a text message to each volunteer.  

PowerChurch Plus has a one-time license fee starting at $395. They offer free demos that customers can download using the PowerChurch Plus website. 

9. Arlo – Church event management software for managing educational events

Arlo Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Use Arlo to maintain a calendar of events that lets you see event status to send a follow-up to the event point person.

Arlo is a training management software with an event management feature to help you conduct recurring events successfully. It allows you to create customized registration forms ensuring you capture all the details of participants for easier group management during the actual event. Arlo can help you create tasks and assign them to volunteers or church employees. Arlo also helps streamline task management by automatically sending a task checklist whenever you assign a task. 

Part of ministering to a flock is helping them improve themselves by gaining new skills or maximizing the ones they possess and Arlo is the best event management software for you if you hold recurring events or educational ones. With Arlo, you can easily plan and execute educational events like a series of seminars about how to minister to the community or how to manage Sunday schools effectively. You can use Arlo to create multi-session courses that allow participants to choose the sessions they want to take. Arlo lets you automate workflows to help you save time, like sending feedback surveys to help you gauge the success of your events. 

Arlo pricing starts at $89/license/month, and they offer a 14-day free trial. 

10. Mazevo – Mobile event management app to help you manage events on-the-go

Mazevo Church Event Management Software Screenshot
Mazevo’s mobile app has a messaging feature enabling organizers to communicate with other team members.

Mazevo is a SaaS with an event management functionality for scheduling facilities and resources to help you prevent double-booking while ensuring you have the resources for scheduled events. It has a detailed calendar of events so organizers and invitees can view upcoming events, their descriptions, and how they can register to join. It also has a reporting and analytics functionality so you can study previous church events and find ways of improving them. 

Managing events requires quick decisions and coordination which makes Mazevo an excellent option because it has an in-app messaging feature so you can coordinate with other team members using your mobile device. Mazevo works not just on computers but also on iOS and Android phones, so you can access real-time information in your office or on the field. The app allows users to send detailed set-up information and photos so you can track the progress of preparations and 

Mazevo pricing and a free demo are available by request. 

What do you think about this list?

Events are crucial to churches of all sizes because they offer excellent opportunities for church members to mingle and for the church leadership to raise funds for outreach programs and other church activities. If you want to mount successful events every time, your church needs excellent church event management software. 

This type of software can help you create and manage events, market events, and collect payment for ticketed events. With the help of excellent church event management software, you can hold amazing church events all the time to improve engagement and help church members hone their skills. 

Aside from church event management software, there are other fantastic software your church can benefit from, and you can read all about them when you subscribe to The Lead Pastor

Related Lists of Tools:

Categories
Tools

10 Best Church Volunteer Management Software In 2022

In any church, volunteers play a vital role in keeping things running. But when you have many helpers assisting with various events and activities, managing them can be a headache. It’s hard to keep track of who’s doing what—and even harder to ensure that each project has the right staffing at the right time. 

That’s why church volunteer management software is such a fast-growing sector in the SaaS niche. From food drives to community outreach, these volunteer management tools help keep church programs running efficiently. In this article, I’ll discuss the top church volunteer management software tools and show how they can help.

Tool Shortlist

Here’s the list of the best church volunteer management systems I’ll cover in this article.

  1. Churchteams
  2. Planning Center
  3. Church Community Builder
  4. ASC Technologies
  5. Galaxy Digital
  6. Track it Forward 
  7. SignUp.com
  8. iVolunteer
  9. VolunteerMark 
  10. VolunteerHub

Comparison Criteria

What do I look for when I select the best church volunteer management solutions? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): I look for an interface that users both young and old will find easy to understand
  2. Usability: I expect everyone from the pastor down to have no problems getting to grips with features
  3. Integrations: I look for ready-made integrations with related church software and other productivity tools
  4. Value for $: I’m seeking software that will keep volunteer programs on track without making a big hole in the church budget

Church Volunteer Management Key Features

Here are the features I hope to see in quality church volunteer management software:

  1. Creating and storing volunteer profiles: allowing volunteers to register and indicate their interests, favorite activities, and licenses.
  2. Coordinating volunteer schedules: customizable calendars and volunteer self-scheduling tools to keep everyone engaged and in the loop
  3. Volunteer hours tracking & reporting: accurate data showing how volunteer resources are being allocated and used
  4. Volunteer interests & skills matching: making the most of your team by fitting the right people to each task
  5. Online background checks: integration with a quality background screen organization for a thorough investigation of volunteer’s histories
  6. Communications hub: multi-channel connections with volunteers using email, text, and social media messaging to stay in touch
  7. View and fill available shifts: coordinate helpers, cap attendance, and fill in gaps as required
  8. Check-in and check-out processes: contactless tracking of volunteer attendance at events and meetings
  9. Group scheduling: working with other ministries and volunteer groups with coordinated volunteer recruitment and scheduling
  10. Reporting: creating a full range of reports to share with the community, demonstrating the impact of projects

The Lead Pastor is reader-supported. We may earn a commission when you click through links on our site — learn more about how we aim to stay transparent.

Overviews Of The 10 Best Church Volunteer Management Software

Here’s a brief description of each church volunteer management platform to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface. 

1. Churchteams – Best for text-to-church communications tools

Churchteams Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
Churchteams help you track volunteers and contact them when necessary.

Churchteams provides membership management, communications, and contributions management for churches and nonprofit organizations of any size. Church leaders can collect custom member attributes and record attendance, as well as taking pastoral notes and prayer requests. The check-in features help with managing attendance at classes, events, and worship services.

The text-to-church capability allows volunteers and others to start an interaction with the church, using technology they are comfortable with. Volunteers can be assigned to one or more groups according to their preferences. Churchteams is available both on the web and as a mobile app. 

This tool integrates with a number of applications, including Google Maps.

Churchteams cost $37/user/month, and a 30-day free trial is available.

2. Planning Center – Best for advanced scheduling over long time periods

Planning Center Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
Planning Center gives a clear overview of events, volunteers, and activities.

Planning Center is a cloud-based CHMS that supports church leaders in organizing, scheduling, and managing programs and events. Features include a services module for planning worship events, plus a resources module that makes it easy to reserve rooms and publish event calendars. Members of the congregation can see future events displayed on tablets, touchscreens, or TVs in common areas. 

Organizers can schedule months ahead using the Matrix feature, while volunteer gaps can be filled with auto-scheduling. Church members can upload and tag media and files, including songs or videos required for services. All events, rooms, and resources have their own calendar feeds, which can be synched with programs such as Outlook, iCal, and Google Calendar.

This tool integrates with ChurchSuite, Essential Worship, Faithlife Proclaim, and Mailchimp.

Planning Center offers customized pricing according to individual needs. A free 30-day trial is available for all users.

3. Church Community Builder – Best for simplifying scheduling

Church Community Builder Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
Church Community Builder keeps you connected to all your volunteers.

Church Community Builder from Pushpay is a cloud-based solution that helps leaders engage with their congregation. The software includes features such as contact management, check-in, and contribution management. Leaders can also follow up with guests, manage online giving, and view metrics on the built-in dashboards. 

This platform includes volunteer scheduling to help you organize teams and empower them to get things done. Schedulers can also receive alerts when volunteers need to complete a background check before proceeding. The system notifies volunteers of available positions and sends automatic reminders when they are due to serve.

This platform integrates many related tools, including Active Screening, Aplos, PastorsLine, and Text-em-All.

Pushpay provides customized pricing on request. 

4. ASC Technologies Realm – Best for making the most of individual talents

ASC Technologies Realm Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
Realm shows your upcoming events that may need support from volunteers.

Realm from ASC Technologies manages your church volunteer database, including volunteers, staff, and members of the congregation. The software keeps track of attendance, monitors giving, and helps leaders communicate with members. Realm integrates with your church website to manage check-in and allow updating of personal profiles.

The software has features to help ministers discover the talents of individual volunteers. This information can then be used to assign people to the tasks that suit them best. If necessary, unique roles can be created to leverage the skills of particular volunteers.

Realm integrates with solutions such as Givelify, Extend, and the Journey Project.

5. Galaxy Digital – A complete solution for volunteer management

Galaxy Digital Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
Galaxy Digital keeps you abreast of volunteer activity.

Designed to be mobile-first, Galaxy Digital helps nonprofit organizations automate, streamline and grow their volunteer programs. The Get Connected functionality tracks volunteer hours and reports on the impact of their work. Volunteer managers can quickly approve time submissions. Helpers can also be managed in large or small groups, with time allocated to different projects as required.

The work of ‘plus one’ volunteers can also be tracked easily. This all-in-one app is social-media friendly, encouraging volunteers to share their work with friends. Volunteer resumes are built automatically, ready for download at any time. 

Galaxy Digital offers customized pricing on request. There is no free trial.

6. Track It Forward – Best for volunteer self-tracking

Track It Forward Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
Track it Forward offers multiple options for adding volunteers.

With the help of Track It Forward, you can easily track the time committed by volunteers and coordinators. Approvals can be delegated to multiple people, with alerts sent when hours are pending confirmation. For large groups, hours can be approved in bulk.

Volunteers can log their hours instantly, either using the website or through the mobile app. They can also sign up for future activities using the calendar function. Where possible, information is pre-filled to make logging time as simple as possible. 

Track It Forward costs from $12/user/month, and a free trial is available. 

7. SignUp.com – Best for free online signup sheets

SignUp.com Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
SignUp handles registrations for any event or meeting.

SignUp.com offers volunteer scheduling software for streamlining scheduling, event planning, and fundraising. Ministers can manage volunteer records and send invitations by email or SMS. They can also receive confirmation notifications instantly. 

This app can be used to manage signups for any event, using features such as engagement analytics, data synchronization, custom workflows, and calendar management. Church leaders can use the mobile app to view or edit volunteer details, assign tasks and generate reports. 

The software integrates with WePay for online payments, allowing organizations to collect fees and contributions. 

Signup.com costs from $9.99/user/month. A 30-day free trial is available.

8. iVolunteer – A better alternative to messy spreadsheets

iVolunteer Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
iVolunteer offers improved volunteer management with a familiar visual interface.

iVolunteer allows helpers to sign up for events quickly and easily. Designed to replace paper signup sheets, this user-friendly software eliminates confusion and duplication of staffing, while also protecting privacy. 

You can record attendance in real-time via the web or use manual sign-in reports. It’s easy to modify the home page, header, and instructions for each event. Administrators can be kept up to date with email notifications of signups and cancellations. 

iVolunteer costs from $20/user/month, and a free 30-day trial is available. 

9. VolunteerMark – A volunteer management system you can learn in minutes

VolunteerMark Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
VolunteerMark gives you quick insights into when helpers are available.

VolunteerMark is a cloud-based system for managing interactions with volunteers. It assists with scheduling, attendance tracking, reporting, and communications. Ministers can share volunteer opportunities to recruit helpers, as well as send emails and text messages to keep everyone in the loop.

VolunteerMark is designed to be easy to use, and even novice users can get up to speed quickly. Additional features include supporting multiple administrators, data migration, custom fields, and tags. The software connects to social media to make sharing simple. 

The software integrates with applications such as Stripe, LinkedIn, Facebook, and SendGrid.

VolunteerMark costs from $34/user/month, and a free 30-day trial is available. 

10. VolunteerHub – Best for combined volunteer and event management

Volunteer Hub Church Volunteer Management Software Screenshot
VolunteerHub works on a wide range of devices.

VolunteerHub is designed to make organizing ministry outreach events simple. The software facilities all aspects of volunteer management, ensuring that all projects and events are staffed optimally. Church leaders can view and print rosters, update event details, and email helpers from anywhere. 

The software encompasses both volunteer management and event administration. As a result, managers can regulate the number of volunteers assisting at each event, search for appropriate helpers and register them as needed. Waitlists can be created for full events, with emails sent as spaces become available. 

VolunteerHub integrates with many business platforms including Altru and eTapestry.

VolunteerHub costs from $150/user/month. There is no free trial.

Other Options

Here’s a few more that didn’t make the top list.

  1. Timecounts – Best for a software solution that scales with your program
  2. Roster Volunteers – Quick and easy volunteer scheduling
  3. SignUpGenius – Eliminates ‘reply-all’ emails and paper signup sheets
  4. Signup Zone – Management of rosters, signups, and rotas
  5. VolunteerLocal – Best for streamlined scheduling, event registration, and communication
  6. WhenToHelp – Eliminates volunteer scheduling headaches
  7. YourVolunteers – 100% free volunteer scheduling

Related Read: 10 Best Online Church Management Software For 2022

What do you think about this list?

Do you agree with my choices for the best church volunteer management software? Let us know what you think in the comments below. Remember to sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date with the latest news and information.

You might also like to check out our post on the 10 best church management software. For alternatives that won’t bust your budget, try our picks for the 10 best free church management software. There’s always something interesting to read, so be sure to come back to The Lead Pastor often!

Related List of Tools: 10 Best Church Data Management Systems In 2022