Day One of HQ 2017 is complete! It was a day filled with learning, networking and new friendships being established. After an inspirational morning session, attendees took advantage of dozens of diverse break-out sessions. A warm and filling lunch was also time for laughter and shared ministry experiences. Following the dinner break, the evening session included a lively Q&A between attendees and a panel of Shelby experts (pictured above). Most of the HQ group is heading to bed early tonight so that they can finish strong tomorrow with the final day of the conference. We’ll have more reports as HQ 2017 continues.


Karen, Connie and Kristy have begun welcoming Shelby HQ Customers to the Conference.

Connie Bartemus helps to sign in Louie Salazar from the Illinois District Council Assemblies of God. 

Shelby Headquarters customers got an early start by attending the evening Intro to HQ 2017 session facilitated by Chris Benson and a panel of product owners and Shelby software experts.


As we continue our series on ideas to help increase giving in your congregation, consider these steps:

  1. Teach what the Bible teaches – It is clear God expects believers to give cheerfully (2 Cor. 9:7), regularly (1 Cor. 16:2), and sacrificially (Mark 12:41-44). If we don’t teach this mandate intentionally and passionately, we should not be surprised when our congregations don’t give. Fear of teaching about financial stewardship results only in a greater need to teach about it later.
  2. Model sacrificial giving – As a leader, consider giving more – not less – to the work of God any time you worry about finances. Financial worry is sometimes an indicator that either (a) we aren’t spending and saving wisely, or (b) we aren’t trusting God like we should. Our philosophy should be that we give to God’s work until it hurts – that is, until it stretches our faith. Only then should we be comfortable challenging others to give more.
  3. Passionately and clearly cast a God-sized vision for your congregation – God’s people are not opposed to giving; they are opposed to supporting a weak or unclear purpose. Churches that seek dollars simply to keep their doors open to minister to their own people aren’t likely to garner support from a young generation committed to the nations. Ask your congregation to state your church’s vision in a single sentence; if most can’t do it, I suspect you’re missing out on financial support as well.
  4. Teach budgeting and spending – not just giving – Many individuals operate without a budget. For some, debilitating debt is already keeping them from the mission field. Others live from  week-to-week, yet pay too little attention to their spending habits. God’s people will give more to His work if we help them first learn to budget and spend well.
  5. Train children and students to give – Consistent giving is usually learned from an early age. “Give God the first part, and trust Him with the rest.” What begins as a step of obedience, and at times was a step of faith, has now become an act of worship.
  6. Promote incremental increases – Sometimes, the concept of giving a certain percentage is frightening to folks who have given only minimally. Challenge them to increase their giving incrementally. Each increased percentage may still be a step of faith. Even an extra $5.00 per family per week can strengthen your church’s work.
  7. Tell the stories of changed lives – If you want your church to give more, show them what God is doing through the church. Plan testimonies in the services. Invite missionaries to speak. Highlight a different church ministry each month. Ask staff members to send regular emails, putting the spotlight on transformed lives. Ministries themselves seldom attract more dollars, but changed people do.
  8. Lead your church to drip with financial integrity – Review your church’s process for receiving and distributing funds. Who counts and deposits the funds? How are the records handled? How are expenditures approved? How many people sign checks? Are the books audited annually? The work we do is God’s work, and anything less than absolute integrity will lack His blessing.
  9. Challenge the church with a “Day of Sacrificial Giving.” – Invite your church members to give one week more than they’ve ever given. For some that might mean increasing their giving for one week to the breaking point – to a point of faithful discomfort. Some will develop a pattern of increased giving from this one challenge.
  10. Guide your church to pray as Jesus taught us, “Give us this day our daily bread.” – This simple and direct prayer recognizes that all we have is a blessing from God. Perhaps if we prayed this way each day, we would remember that nothing we have is really ours – and consequently be willing to give back to God more that is His already.


Source: Lifeway Resources

Shelby Systems is committed to helping churches large and small streamline their giving process. We provide the software and the plan that can help your church make the leap to digital giving. To find out how, contact one of our Ministry Consultants today. And don’t forget to ask about our special Digital Giving Package!


When you are trying to stay in touch with your congregation and get parishioners excited about what’s going on in church, using a texting service can get your younger members engaged more readily. Teenagers respond faster to texts than they do to any other form of communication, and a church that is able to text is more likely to reach Millennials.

Millennials Use Their Technology Frequently:
Millennials rely on their mobile devices like no other generation. 83% of Millennials have their cell phone next to them while they sleep at night. Cell phones are seen as a necessity to Millennials, and 41% report not having a land line installed in their home.

Create a Social Media Presence to Interact with Your Congregation:
The younger generation also uses social media frequently, and this is a great way to get initial messages out to your church members. Status updates get buried in news feeds. It’s important to follow up social media posts with targeted, automatic text messages to keep your church members both informed and reminded of events to come. These messages can be personalized for various groups within the church, or for each individual receiving the texts.

Tips for Texting:
  • Reach each ministry group easier with a group text, create content that is specific for the ministry you want to reach.
  • Create ministry lists and send out group text surveys to the group easily with a texting service for churches.
  • Send out relevant happenings in the news that might interest your Millennials. This is a way to show your younger members that you are paying attention and that you value their input.
  • Reach your members who may be in need of inspiration by sending out a relevant bible verse.

Source: Ministry Tech

Text messaging is the most essential communication source with young adults. When you want to get your message across, there is no better way than to use the technology that Millennials use every day.

Learn how your church can reach Millennials (with Shelby Software) by contacting one of our Ministry Consultants today!




Did you know that 86% of US churches can’t meet their monthly budget requirements? As we continue with our series on encouraging generous giving in the church, Will Graham, General Manager for The Rocket Company, joins us to share his top tips. Watch and discover the answers to these important questions: what causes headaches for churches when it comes to raising money, what startling statistic do most ministries struggle with and what is your top tip for increased giving. We’ll be posting more information (here on the blog) soon about how Shelby Systems is teaming up with The Rocket Company to help you maximize contributions during the upcoming giving season.

Shelby Systems is committed to helping churches large and small streamline their giving process. We provide the software and the plan that can help your church make the leap to digital giving. To find out how, contact one of our 
Ministry Consultants today. And don’t forget to ask about our special Digital Giving Package!



Every church that wants to effectively communicate with its congregation should understand the power of design, because how the information is presented is as important as what the information says. This short video from Column Five reminds us, “your message is only as good as your ability to share it.”


Allow Shelby Systems to assist you in communicating with your congregation with our award-winning software.

Please contact one of our Ministry Consultants today!


This is the first installment in a series on encouraging generous giving in your church. As we begin to enter the giving season, be watching over the next several weeks for tips to help fund your ministry’s goals and vision. 

From church youth groups to sports teams to missions trips to non-profit businesses: no matter what your ministry or endeavor, if you need to raise money to put a project in motion, these 8 tips will help you make your fundraiser more successful.


  1. BE ENTHUSIASTIC – People don’t want to give money away, but they do want to be a part of a great cause, an exciting dream, or a bold vision. So when you ask for a donation, have enthusiasm and energy!
  2. ASK PEOPLE TO JOIN YOUR TEAM – When you ask people to give you money, you’re asking them to join your team. So make sure you tell people why they need to be a part of your cause or mission.
  3. REMEMBER GENEROSITY IS CONTAGIOUS – A recent study showed that 85% of the time, people donate to a cause when they are asked. People are looking for ways to be unselfish, kind, and benevolent. Give them that opportunity!
  4. DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK – The fear of asking prevents other people from receiving the benefits of giving. If you’re afraid to ask (or you feel like you’re begging) remember people always feel better about themselves when they’re generous.
  5. THE PRINCIPLE OF GIVING – Fundraising is based on the biblical principle of giving. When people give to you and your cause, they’ll begin to be blessed by this principle almost immediately.
  6. SET A GOAL – It’s important to give your group a goal, an overall goal and individual goals. It’s best if your goal is a “set” dollar amount. Even if you don’t reach that amount, everyone will have something to strive for, and less will be likely to quit until your group brings in the funds needed.
  7. SET A DEADLINE – It’s best to fundraise over a shorter period. The most successful fundraisers are always done in 2 to 3 weeks.
  8. CELEBRATE! – When your fundraiser is complete, don’t forget to thank and congratulate your team. Fundraising is hard work. Your team members deserve a high-five!

Shelby Systems is committed to helping churches large and small streamline their giving process. We provide the software and the plan that can help your church make the leap to digital giving. To find out how, contact one of our Ministry Consultants today. And don’t forget to ask about our special Digital Giving Package!




Since 1915, Harvard University’s Cruft Laboratory has played host to leading-edge research and historic innovations. The lab was used to research antennas and batteries in the early days. During WWII it was instrumental in the development of radar and sonar. In 1944, the first electromechanical computer was assembled in the basement of Cruft. It was utilized by the Navy to solve complex mathematical problems, and later by the Manhattan Project to calculate the effects of imploding the first atomic bomb.

From the street it was impossible for a casual passerby to recognize Cruft’s innovative legacy. What you could see from the street was the accumulation of random ‘techno-junk’ piling up in the windows.

As the legend goes, by the 1950s MIT students had adopted cruft as slang for the trash and debris that accumulates over time. Since then, the term has quickly spread as jargon for anything unwanted or poorly constructed. In software for example, cruft is code that is obsolete, redundant or poorly written.

Wherever the word came from, the reality is that our churches are full of it. Maybe cruft isn’t stacking up in your windowsills, but take a look at your sound booth, backstage, closets, offices, equipment racks, and even on stage. The importance of our mission makes it easy to become like the researchers of Cruft Lab—too focused on the work at hand to notice the swelling heap of yesterday’s tools.

In the long run, each church needs to build systems to proactively avoid cruft. We need to systematize our decision-making for retaining or replacing equipment based on cost analysis. We need to establish a process for upgrades, including steps for disposal or repurposing old gear.

But if you’re drowning right now, here are three steps to clear your church cruft:

  1. SORT—Make a pile of cruft that’s worth the effort to sell. Everything else goes straight to the dumpster. When in doubt, throw it out.
  2. SHARE—Before you sell anything, contact neighboring churches & ministries with a list of gear that you can give them. Make sure to explain that you don’t want to add to their cruft problem, but they’re welcome to anything that will immediately help. One church’s cruft is another church’s treasure.
  3. SELL—Use tools like Craigslist, eBay, Reverb, or Facebook Marketplace to list the remaining cruft. Decide if you will ship items or require local pickup. Use the proceeds to upgrade the seating in the sound booth or improve other spaces used by volunteers who serve your church. If the sound tech isn’t happy, nobody’s happy.

Source: Ministry Tech

Shelby Systems has decades of experience helping churches in all aspects of ministry, for assistance contact one of our Ministry Consultants today!