By Rev. Marty Levesque
If the pandemic is teaching us one thing, it is the importance of the web-based tools in maintaining relationships.
This is true with family and friends as we once again are self-isolating through a second lockdown. This is also true for staying in touch with parishioners.
Many parishes have adapted and are making greater uses of Facebook Live, YouTube and Zoom. But to have that personal contact that we are missing from the lack of in-person services and coffee hours, phone trees have sprung to life again and the lost art of writing notes delivered through snail mail is back in vogue.
In short, digital tools must augment our relationships, not replace them with a click of a “like” button. Social media and digital platforms are meant to bolster relationships.
Tithe.ly Church Management Software is another tool in the modern parishes’ relationship-building toolbox.
It is a robust database that tracks events, groups and even provides a place to store all those minutes taking at each committee meeting. Treasurers can track givings, generate tax receipts and produce monthly reports with ease.
But the most powerful tool for relationship building is the ability of the ChMS to generate various reports. Birthday and anniversaries are built-in reports generated each month to enable birthday or anniversary blessings mailed to parishioners. Custom reports for life’s big moments like baptism, weddings and funerals can also be created. The importance of receiving a hand-written note on the anniversary of the passing of a loved one, the baptism of a child or celebrating that first year of marriage goes so much further in relationship building than hitting the “like” button on Facebook.
Rev. Marty Levesque is the diocesan social media officer and rector of All Saints’ in Waterloo.