Newsletter #3
January, 17 2011

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Dear BVCMS Community,

You are receiving this newsletter because you have expressed an interest in BVCMS or your church uses BVCMS and you have a leader's account there. You'll find instructions at the bottom of this email about how you can opt-out of any future newsletters.

This newsletter contains tips, information about new features, and announcments of upcoming events. See past newsletters.

News & Announcements

To keep you up-to-date, here are the latest news items and announcements from BVCMS.


Starting last week, we began to implement our first round of advertising for BVCMS. We sponsored a blog post about BVCMS on TonyMorganLive. Tony is an A-List blogger and just in one week, we have had almost 40 churches contact us on our Web-site. If you are one of those churches, we want to say "Welcome!" and thank you for your interest. Be sure to watch the videos.

We have a very loyal and satisfied group of users—take a look at this post and be sure to click the poll's view results link. There's a big suprise there. And Eric's got a nice informative blog that you may want to subscribe to as well. You'll see some ads over the next three months in Church Tech Today and Christian Computing Magazine. We're a very small company, but we want to grow. Yes, to make a living, but more importantly, the more BVCMS grows, the better we can serve the Kingdom through our talents and be good stewards with what God has blessed us. Please help us by telling your friends at your church and at other churches about BVCMS. Thanks!

If you are interested in a hosting plan for your church, we are running a half off sale on our annual hosting plans. Visit the Support Packages page at our site to request a pricing sheet.

Rising Signs Kiosk for Check-in and Pictures

Our good friends at Rising Signs have built some kiosks for Bellevue Baptist Church. These kiosks are simply the best we have seen and very reasonably priced. We are using them for Child Check-in. But also these new Kiosks have built in cameras. So we are using them to take pictures of our members too.

We've made capturing photos of your congregation about as simple as it could possibly get. We use the BVCMS touch screen check-in software to do this. It’s very easy and fast, and it sends the automatically cropped picture directly to your BVCMS database. So check out these kiosks and the BVCMS check-in software for more than just Check-in. You can use this for your class picture directories too!

Online Registrations

Did you know BVCMS can handle all of your online registration needs for your small groups, discipleship programs, recreation, and events? The automatic integration with your database makes it so easy to manage, keep up with and notify all of your registrants. There are lots of options from a very simple registration that automatically places the registratant into an organization, to a complex registration for camp containing multiple pages, medical release, insurance/doctor info, multiple choices, deposit with payment plan, scholarships, and more. Recreation Leagues go even further by allowing you to organize your teams and coaches after registration. You can do round the clock hour/day of prayer signups. Manage multiple newsletter subscriptions. And you can build a custom "shell" to make the BVCMS registration forms have the same look and feel as your main Web-site.

BVCMS handles registrations that require payments. We provide integration with several payment providers including ServiceU, Sage and Authorize.NET. You just need to create your own Merchant Account. We also have a way for you to use the online registrations with cash payments. Your folks just pay cash for a coupon and they can use that coded number that you generate with BVCMS to pay for their event. This works for scholarships too.

All this is built right into BVCMS. Contact us for more information. Just schedule a conference call with us and we’ll show you some examples of what you can do and how it’s done in a private webinar.

MyData Update

Why am I not getting my monthly offering envelopes?
Has the church stopped sending the email newsletter? I haven’t gotten one in months.
Why doesn’t my teacher ever call me?

Are these familiar questions? If so, you know the answers: someone has moved, changed email providers, gotten a new cell phone number, etc.. and not notified the church. The solution: let your congregation manage their own profiles! With our new MyData Update feature they can do just that. Plus, once they create an account, they can use those credentials to log in when they are registering on-line for church events.

iPhone App Rollout Results

We have had a lot of interest in the new iPhone App. We have several groups using it at Bellevue and a church in NYC has been using it for the last month on iPads for all their meetings. Their comment was “Wow, I did not have to do any work the next day on the event, it was all done when the event was over. It saved us lots of time!”

We are so excited, but we probably jumped the gun a bit in telling everybody about the App. Karen and I are not able to authorize individuals to use the Attend module of the App ourselves. That will need to be coordinated through the department responsible for your groups at your church. They need to make sure that you are prepared and authorized for recording attendance at your small group meetings. There is a role that you need to have your groups show up. The app allows you to create meetings and add new visitors to the database so there is quite a bit of power and responsibility that comes with that. So contact your church staff coordinators and let them know you are interested in doing attendance for your small group. We can help them get you trained and started.

See our previous newsletter for more information about the iPhone App.

BVCMS Finance News and Information

Developer News

We continue to add new features and improvments to the system every week. We try to do a lot of testing before we publish but bugs will slip through and we want you to feel free to let us know as soon as you see anything that is not performing what you expected.

We continue to get folks who have some technical ability to express an interest in helping with BVCMS in the area of documentation, feature ideas, HTML newsletter design templates, and page designs.

It takes a lot of commitment and willingness to dig in and study how BVCMS works to help in these areas. We we just want to say thank you so much. We consider this technical work, working for the Kingdom. It’s all about ”And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ” [Col 3:23]

David Carroll
BVCMS Developer

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BVCMS is a an open source, web-based, church management system. Usage Defined Software, doing business as, provides hosting, services, support, conversions and and customizations for a fee.