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By Rev. Marty Levesque

As part of the Google Business Suite (now known as Google Workspace) that is available to every cleric in the Diocese of Huron is Google Forms.

With Google Forms, you can manage event registrations, whip up a quick poll, collect email addresses for a newsletter, create a pop quiz, and so much more.

I have used Google Forms primarily for surveys to help the parish leadership with difficult decisions.

Forms allow for a quick poll or survey to get out to the parish, and I can monitor the results in real-time and produce instantly visually stimulating reports.

Thinking ahead to the fall and the possible return of Sunday School and Youth Group, Google Forms offers an important tool in helping to keep our children safe. A standard form easily created to screen in Sunday School and Youth Group participants. The records are kept in Google Workspace, allowing for the easy storage of information but more importantly, quick access to students and parents information for contact tracing should the unthinkable happen and Covid spread in one of our churches.

Having a dedicated tablet or smartphone will go a long way in making this a seamless part of the new church year. Simply have the Form loaded and ready to go and as each parent checks in a child or youth. It will take no more than a minute.

As we continue to move through the pandemic, technology has become key to helping the church continue to offer vital and effective ministry. From live streams of worship services, Zoom coffee hours and online bible studies, screening forms is just another extension of technology helping us to effectively deliver ministry and promotes healthy and safe communities. Both of which are foundational to any Christian community: teaching the next generation effective discipleship and caring for the safety of those entrusted to our care.

Rev. Marty Levesque is the diocesan social media officer and rector of All Saints’ in Waterloo.