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Worship
For the months before Easter, the primary focus of many churches is on how to get the most people possible to the Easter service. With a tremendous amount of work and effort, Easter is often a fantastic success in terms of numbers of people attending. However, for most churches the following Sunday is often a big disappointment, with few of the new people from Easter coming back the following week. Here are 5 tips that will help you make sure this doesn’t happen at your church.

    1. Use a connection card at the Easter service – few visitors will come back without follow-up / make sure you take prayer requests on the card.
    2. Tell people what you regularly do – many churches forget to share basic information such as the time the church regularly meets.
    3. Tell them what your church can do for them – be sure to tell them in your bulletin, on your website, or with an additional, upbeat publication, what you offer for their children every week.
    4. Follow-up immediately – A follow-up email, postcard, or social media connection within the week after Easter makes a powerful impact.
    5. Invite visitors to interact outside of church – One suggestion for this tip came from a church that hosted a “latte with the Pastor.” They would send visitors a follow-up with two free coupons for lattes along with a note that said they could be used to join the Pastor at the local coffee shop any Thursday from 3-5 pm. The visitor was invited to come and ask “any question they wanted to about the Christian faith.” The response was tremendous.
The tips here do take effort, but they make certain that the tremendous amount of work you do to prepare for Easter results not only in a fantastic Easter service, but in continuing contact with your guests and a much greater possibility of them coming to know Jesus.


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Click the Image above to see the most viewed movie trailer in film history (over 200 million hits).

In Theaters Now!
Sony and Affirm’s Miracles From Heaven grossed $1.9M in its opening day (3/16/2016) at 3,047 theaters, ranking as the No. 2 film Wednesday behind Disney’s Zootopia. It is on pace to generate $10 million over its first five days of release. Audiences gave Miracles a rare A+ CinemaScore throughout all demos. Sixty eight-percent came out for the pic’s subject matter (per CinemaScore), while 20% were Jennifer Garner fans and 10% Eugenio Derbez fans. Faith Driven Consumer has bestowed four out of five stars to Miracles From Heaven, and the film has earned a 64% fresh grade on Rotten Tomatoes. The Affirm label also produced the popular faith-based films: War Room and Heaven is for Real.

Anna Beam (Kylie Rogers) lives with a rare, incurable disorder that leaves her unable to digest food. Despite the dire diagnosis, devoted mom Christy (Jennifer Garner) relentlessly searches for a way to save her beloved daughter. Everything changes in an instant when Anna tells an amazing story of a visit to heaven after surviving a headlong tumble into a tree. Her family and doctors become even more baffled when the young girl begins to show signs of recovering from her fatal condition.

People Magazine:
To those who doubt her story, Annabel has a few words.
“What I want to say is this,” she says. “Believe in it if you want to. We put this out so you could have a stronger faith and probably a better life. But we’re not trying to force it down your throat. So you can believe as you want, but we put this out there to help you, not hurt you.”

Christy, who is working on a children’s version of her book, has more free time these days, now that Annabel’s recurring hospital stays are a thing of the past. “Sometimes, it’s nice to just sit back and laugh,” she says of her family’s life now. “It’s nice to absorb it and just be grateful.”

Shelby Systems: Shelby Systems would like to encourage everyone to attend this high-quality, faith-based, Christian film.
You may want to consider inviting a friend, neighbor or family member to go along with you to experience this true, present-day miracle.

It seems appropriate that this film arrives just a few days before Easter.
Easter is, after all, a celebration of the greatest miracle of the ages.

Annabel with her parents and sisters standing in front of the tree from which she fell.
        Annabel with her parents and sisters standing in front of the tree from which she fell.


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    • Increase the average life expectancy of your children by 8 years
    • Significantly reduce your child’s use and risk from Alcohol, Tobacco and Drugs
    • Dramatically lower their risk of suicide
    • Help them rebound from depression 70% faster
    • Dramatically reduce their risk for committing a crime
    • Improve their attitude at school and increase their school participation
    • Reduce their risk for rebelliousness
    • Reduce the likelihood that they would binge drink in college
    • Improve their odds for a “very happy” life

Is there such a program?
YES, there is!

And it is supported by research from Duke University, Indiana University, The University of Michigan, The Center for Disease Control, Barna Research Group, Gallup, Pew, The National Institute for Healthcare Research and several other national surveys.

How much would a program like this be worth to you?
What if I told you it was free, and only took about 2 hours a week?

Would you be interested?
Well, it’s not a dream.

The program is called active church participation.
Shelby Systems would like to encourage you and your family to attend a church service this Sunday and start collecting all these benefits.

Easter Sunday would be a great time to begin.


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Shelby Podcast: NEW from ShelbyNext – Ministry Workflows! from Shelby Systems Media on Vimeo.

The new Ministry Workflows feature is available now for ShelbyNext customers! This piece of game changing technology helps you to automate your most repetitive processes allowing you to reclaim hours of time, never miss a follow-up, track progress and promote growth. Inside Technical Sales Representative, Steele Billings, joins us to explain everything you need to know about this new tool and then he demonstrates a complete walk-through of the process for Contributions, Attendance and Groups. Let Ministry Workflows put the system to work for you! Make sure to watch the end of the video to learn how you can attend Ministry Workflow classes at ISC 2016 this summer in Orlando, FL.


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With the recent success of films like: War Room, Woodlawn and Risen, a whole new generation of faith-based films is scheduled for theaters and television in 2016. The Christian community has proven that it will support quality, biblically-accurate motion pictures and television series. Risen is currently the #1 new film in theaters. A number of new faith-based movies are scheduled to be released in the next few weeks for Easter. As long as Christians continue to support these films, they will continue to be produced. Mark the follwing dates on your calendar and keep the momentum going.

Click the images (below) to see the film trailers.


March 11, 2016
The Young Messiah
(aka: Christ the Lord)
Rating: PG-13
Plot: This film tells the story of the young Messiah at age seven as he and his family depart Egypt to return home to Nazareth. Told from His childhood perspective, it follows young Jesus as he starts to learn his special capabilities and struggles to grasp the holy purpose of his life.
Early Review: I’m not issuing any spoiler alerts. I’m not going to tell you much about the movie’s twists and turns. I’m just going to tell you it is faithful to the time period, it is gorgeously filmed, it is extraordinarily well acted, and the story is utterly amazing, endearing and inspiring. Though the story is obviously extra-biblical, its spirit is in harmony with the message of the Scriptures. ~WND


March 18, 2016
Miracles From Heaven

Rating: PG
Plot: This film, based on a true story, is about a family that is turned upside down when their little girl (who is diagnosed with a rare disease) is cured after experiencing a serious accident.
Early Review: If the record breaking trailer views for Miracles From Heaven, a new faith-based offering starring Jennifer Garner, are anything to go by, we might be seeing the beginnings of a huge Easter hit. The film trailer (across all social media channels) has had over 200 million views (a Hollywood record). ~CinemaBlend


April 1, 2016
God’s Not Dead 2
Rating: PG
Plot: After answering a student’s (Hayley Orrantia) question about Jesus, a junior high-school teacher (Melissa Joan Hart) faces an epic court case that could end her career.
Early Review: The original “God’s Not Dead” is arguably one of the most successful faith-based movies of all time. The film cost just $2 million to make, and grossed over $60 million at the box office. The sequel will feature a slew of cameos from well-known celebrities, including an appearance from “Duck Dynasty” star Sadie Robertson. ~Christian Post


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In theaters today, “Risen” is the epic Biblical story of the Resurrection, told through the eyes of a non-believer. Clavius (Joseph Fiennes), a powerful Roman military tribune, and his aide, Lucius (Tom Felton), are tasked with solving the mystery of what happened to Jesus in the weeks following the crucifixion, in order to disprove the rumors of a risen Messiah and prevent an uprising in Jerusalem.

Click the large image (above) to discover the vision and purpose of this exciting new motion picture from the perspective of the film director and actors.

“This is the kind of movie that you can bring your friend to and say: 1) I’m proud of the quality and 2) there’s spiritual value to take away from someone who doesn’t know the whole story of the Gospel. What’s exciting is that we have more faith-based films that we can actually support today. And I really believe as Christians and as the church that we should support these. Christians should attend this film and bring a non-believer with them to help them experience the Resurrection in a powerful new way.”
    Craig Groeschel
    Senior Pastor Life.Church
    Edmond, OK


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attracting an audience
The global internet population grew 18.5% from 2013 – 2015 to 3.2 billion people. That is nearly 45% of the world’s population – 7.4 billion, or higher depending on when you read this post. Predictions indicate this number will only continue to grow as technology becomes more and more accessible.

Domo, a business management software platform, collected and analyzed data on how users were spending their time on the internet. Here is a list of some of the things that happen in an internet minute:

    Facebook users like 4,166,667 posts
    Instagram users like 1,736,777 photos
    Vine users play 1,041,666 videos
    Tinder users swipe 590,278 times
    Twitter users send 347,222 tweets
    Snapchat users share 284,722 snaps
    Skype users make 110,040 calls
    Netflix subscribers stream 77,160 hours of video
    Apple users download 51,000 apps
    Buzzfeed users view 34,150 videos
    Reddit users cast 18,327 votes
    Pinterest users pin 9,722 images
    Amazon receives 4,310 unique visitors
    Uber passengers take 694 rides
    YouTube users upload 300 hours of new video

How many minutes of your day fed the statistics above? What drove users to these sites or apps? What can you do to make your ministry website and app more appealing? If you don’t have an app or a website or if your website is dated and lacking appeal, we can help. We have the tools you need to help ministries on the go grow.

Join us Thursday, February 18th at 2PM CST for an overview webinar on ShelbyNext | Websites.


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Resurrection-Sunday-at-Woodland-Park-2014-1024x506 generic
Easter is the #1 time of the year to reach out to those who seldom attend church.
Here are eight simple tips your church can use to prepare for Easter.

    1. Reach out to the dechurched – Easter is the perfect opportunity for your church to try something new (focus on reaching the dechurched in your community).
    2. Enlist extra volunteers – for several different areas of service (children, greeters, parking lot attendants, etc.) in the church.
    3. Consider service or venue – Easter can often be used as a launching point for a new service, site, or venue.
    4. Promote small groups – Easter is a prime time to connect people to a small group or enroll them in a membership class.
    5. Take the opportunity to improve the facility – (clean up the clutter) it’s important to make a good first impression.
    6. Reconsider welcome cards – Welcome cards are your only opportunity to know exactly who was new to your church.
    7. Get your website ready – Remember to update your church’s website with any changes to times or schedules you may make for Easter.
    8. Consider Facebook ads – include your service times, location, phone and web address on an Easter image (as in the example above).


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“Risen”, in theaters February 19th, is the unofficial sequel to the movie “The Passion of the Christ” and it begins with the crucifixion of Christ. It tells the story of a Roman centurion who is charged with guarding the body of the crucified Christ and his investigation to locate the body of Christ after it goes “missing” in order to disprove that the resurrection occurred.

There are a couple of things that set this film apart from what is seen as the “norm” in the stories of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection. This story is not told from the point of view of a disciple of Jesus or an all-knowing point of view. This story is told from the point of view of a person who represents the forces (Roman Empire) responsible for crucifying Jesus in their attempt to snuff out Christianity. It is the story of a non-believer who sets out to disprove that Christ is risen, but during the course of the movie, he discovers the truth of Christ through his interactions with Christ’s disciples and followers.

This sounds like the kind of story that will engage its audience, believers and non-believers alike. My hope is this film will provide a starting point for non-believers to begin a relationship with Christ. For believers, I hope this movie provides an opportunity to reflect on how we relate the Good News of Christ to non-believers and people that are not firm in their belief. I can’t wait to catch this one in theaters.