Were you able to attend International Shelby Conference this year in St. Louis, MO? Take a moment and enjoy some of the highlights of this incredible experience. Watch the exciting Mandisa video that kicked off the event. Listen to an abbreviated version of Anne Marie Miller’s keynote address. Join the attendees for an awesome time of worship and praise led by Big Daddy Weave. Take a peek into the Arena.Core conference which was a part of ISC for the first time this year. Hear what the attendees had to say, and then make sure you watch the end of the video to discover who will be the keynote speaker for ISC 2015 in San Antonio, TX next year!

Shelby Podcast: ISC 2014 Highlights from Shelby Systems Media on Vimeo.


Are you planning on joining us in San Antonio next year for ISC 2015? We sure hope you will!! As you know, we get pretty excited about ISC here at Shelby Systems. Some folks around here have already been doing research about our upcoming ISC location. Don Alsup, from our Media Production Department, has had his eye out for interesting media and he has stumbled upon a book that will have the average to extreme history buff packing their boots and planning on meeting us in Texas.


When you think tourist attractions in San Antonio your mind probably ventures to The Alamo. The story of The Battle of The Alamo didn’t take place strictly at the Alamo itself but at multiple sites all over downtown San Antonio area. Author, Dean Kirkpatrick, searched for a book that would not only educate on these battle sites but also identify each site as well. He never found such book, so he created one himself called “The Alamo Story and Battleground Tour”. Here is an interview with the author from Texas Country Reporter. This will give you a glimpse of a few of the amenities that San Antonio has to offer when you meet us there next June.

Does anyone have any other San Antonio hot spots they would recommend? Please leave a comment below.


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Culture today is very different from culture thirty years ago. More change has occurred in culture between generation z and their parents, generation x, than any other parent/children culture comparison in the U.S. This change is largely due to technology. Technology exposes and grants an access to the world that has never been available before. Everyone can have a voice and share their point of view without limit. This voice can be spoken in cyber space without the consequences that would occur during a face to face confrontation. Opinions are mass produced and range all over the spectrum from empty encouragement to harsh criticism. This amounts to a whole lot of words and a lack of relationships.


This video from Catalyst looks at Jesus’ life in scripture and discusses online etiquette based upon the way Jesus shared opinions and lived out relationships. It definitely hits some interesting points and it will help you stop and reflect on your online presence as a believer. 



We all have safe practices we follow when going out and about in our daily routines and in places that aren’t safest, like stores, parking lots and garages, malls and crowded venues.  As part of our normal routines, we lock the doors and set the security systems on our vehicles and residences.  We make sure our keys, cash, credit cards, check books and wallets are secured.  We hold our children’s hands when crossing the street and walking in parking lots or crowded places and we remind them not to talk to, go anywhere with or take anything from strangers.  We generally try to free ourselves from distractions so we can remain alert and focused on our surroundings.

                So, how do we behave differently when we are in a place that we consider “safe” (places like the workplace, school, daycare, church or a community center)?  Do we assume the volunteers and employees at these places are automatically good eggs because of their association with these “safe” places?  Or do we make sure that these safe places have policies in place to ensure all employees are screened and any volunteer who works with children, youth, vulnerable adults, money, keys, or drives the organizations’ vehicles should be screened?

                Here are some interesting points that may help you decide what type of safety and security policies you want to implement:

-          7% of annual revenue is lost due to theft.

-          75% of employees steal from work and most do so repeatedly.

-          More than 90% of juvenile abuse victims know their abuser in some way.

-          More than four children die every day as a result of child abuse.

-          No group is immune to being a victim of abuse or theft.  These violations occur at all socioeconomic levels, across ethnic and cultural lines, within all religions and at all levels of education.

-          You can take steps to reduce the risk of this occurring within your ministries and organizations.

One of the greatest tools we have for eliminating and reducing these numbers and creating safer “safe” places is knowledge.  Our partnership with SecureSearch, a leading provider of Background checks, provides you with the tools needed to equip your ministries and organizations with this knowledge.  SecureSearch offers an extensive list of background services and have partnered with SafeGuard from Abuse to provide child abuse awareness and safety training.  For more information on the services they offer, click here or contact your Sales Rep.

                If you have found some safety practices that work well for your organization or ministry, please feel free to share them below.


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We had over 500 attendees this year at ISC 2014 in St. Louis, MO. It was truly an encouraging event; Anne Marie Miller spoke of renewal and her message resonated in many hearts. Big Daddy Weave lead us in worship and helped us grasp the Lord’s ability to redeem all that is broken. Many impromptu networking session took place during this year’s conference; attendees met together to share ideas and solutions.


St. Louis was a gracious host; the Gateway Arch and Cardinals baseball at the Busch Stadium were just the beginning of great experience!! And when it was all said and done our hearts were encouraged and our spirits revived. Organizations headed home with new skills and information that will benefit their ministries. We pray that the impact will not stop there but reach to the ends of the earth for the glory of the Lord.


Special thanks to everyone who made this event happen and to the customers that allow us to keep doing what we love!! Check out our ISC 2014 Photo Album. See ya’ll next year at ISC 2015 in San Antonio, TX

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Nick Nicholaou is the President and Founder of longtime Shelby partner Ministry Business Services. We ran into Nick at ISC 2014 in St. Louis, MO. In this brief interview he shares what event inspired Nick and his wife to start the company, what MBS does and how they integrate with Shelby Software, why the cloud is a definite game changer, what his particular area of expertise is, and how MBS can save you time, money and resources. Nick also reports on how Shelby did in his very popular annual review of church management software providers. Make sure you watch the end of the video to learn how to contact Nick and discover more about Ministry Business Services!

Shelby Podcast: Nick Nicholaou – Ministry Business Services from Shelby Systems Media on Vimeo.


Check out the winner for ISC 2014 Most Creative Testimonial. This video testimonial was shot at ISC 2014 by the Shelby Production-Media team. It was so good, we gave them a special award during the closing session on Friday for being most creative .

Thanks Heather Smith and Christine Stammer.

Do You Wanna Use Arena? – Most Creative Testimonial Video from Shelby Systems Media on Vimeo.

To meet their Regional Shelby Rep mentioned in the video, visit Kenny’s info page here.


Have you ever wondered what type of leader you are? When we hear the term “leader”, our minds have been trained to think of a pastor, someone who has influence over a large group or someone who is invited to give motivational speeches at conferences. This is not the case. There are many types of leaders and just as many ways to lead. Every type is crucial to the body of Christ.


I remember in college, the church I was a part of at that time would give all new members a spiritual gifts test to show their strength and weaknesses. The purpose of administering this test was to help each person know where to get involved and how to serve in the church. I thought this was a great idea. This test helped me learn things about myself that I had never really thought through before. Now, many of our readers are church leaders. So, chances are many of you have probably taken some type of test like this to identify your leadership style. I came across an interesting test that is different than tests I’ve seen. The Six Christian Leadership Styles was advertising a free leadership style evaluation. So, I thought, why not? It turned out to be pretty helpful. This test focuses on three main categories; each one is modeled after Jesus’ ministry and teaching. The categories are strategy, chemistry and spirituality. You need all three to be balanced but you will have one area that is the strongest. Being aware of your weakest category is also helpful for leadership purposes.


Here are the definitions of each category from Six Styles website.

  • Spirituality encompasses all that it means to love God.
  • Chemistry encompasses all that it means to love people.
  • Strategy encompasses all that it means to love the world, by fulfilling the mission of God for the world.

My results were above average in Chemistry and below average in strategy and spirituality. Therefore I am a “Relational” leader. I had two other friends at work that took this test and they both scored highest in strategy. One of them is a “Missional” leader and the other is an “Imaginative” leader. I think the results were accurate for each of us. I think this is a pretty cool test because it helps us see how the Lord has equipped us uniquely to lead and also how dependent we are on Him to help influence others for His glory. It may be worth checking out for yourself.


Arena Standard is Shelby Systems’ exciting new line of cutting-edge software designed with your budget in mind! In this brief video interview, Director of Business Development, Mark White, explains what this new software suite can do and what type of ministry would find it most valuable. Shelby Sales Manager, Alfred Johnson, reveals why Arena Standard is such an incredible value and gives us the support and training options. Finally Arena Project Manager, Kyle Barker, describes the hardware and staff requirements. Make sure you watch the end of the video to learn more about the features and benefits of Arena Standard!

Shelby Podcast: Introducing Arena Standard from Shelby Systems Media on Vimeo.


When natural disaster hits, we are all affected. Our hearts ache as we watch those who live through tragedy struggle to make sense of the remains. The recent tornados that hit Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas and Mississippi were tragic. They left behind a path of destruction that goes far beyond the physical ruin. Yet in the darkness we are more aware of light. Light brings with it hope and peace; when life is dark we have a better understanding of our need for light.


One story that has been all over the internet since these recent tornados is the story of April Smith. She and her husband Daniel were seriously injured by the tornado that hit their town of Vilonia, AR on Sunday, April 27th, 2014. Sadly, their two sons, Cameron and Tyler did not survive. Yet amidst this dark time April is clinging to the hope of the Lord. Even as she lays with two broken legs in a hospital bed she confidently clings to the fact that her sons fulfilled their purpose in this life and are now with their heavenly Father. She admits that there was more darkness to come, more then she can predict, but she also has an overwhelming peace that calms her. This peace allows her to say, God is good, all the time.


I read a blog post written by a close friend of April’s. I found this post on Facebook. I mention this because Facebook now has a feature that gathers related articles and lists them below the original posts. Under this blog post was a testimony video. As I looked closer I noticed it was a video of April’s spiritual journey. Once I realized this was the same April from the blog post I had to watch it. In twenty minutes, I had learned about a women who was loving God in the midst of one of the hardest trials imaginable and I also learned the story of how she came to know the Lord. Was this by chance or did the Lord want people to know of this women’s faith?


One detail that really stuck out to me in the video was an encounter April had, when she was young, with a man at a camp meeting. This man prophesied that April would be a mighty women of God one day and would save hundreds and thousands of people. I heard this and immediately thought, PROPHECY COMPLETE! It is safe to say April Smith is a mighty women of God. She rejoices in His goodness while her heart is experiencing the agonizing loss of her two children. Her response to this event resonates that God’s love is greater than life. To add to this, April’s story has been seen by thousands of people. Now, how the Lord uses this story in the lives of those who view it isn’t as easy to trail but I do know it has impacted me.


Please pray for the victims who were impacted by the tornados that hit in late April 2014. Many of them have to rebuild every aspect of their lives because they lost, family, homes, schools, work buildings, grocery stores etc. God has compassion on those in need, He does not ignore the cries of those who suffer.