The Database and Pastoral Duties

One thing I've learned about being an on-call pastor is you're rarely prepared for you'll encounter. Three years ago, one of my first pastoral calls dealt with our...database. I received a call from a mother that was irate with Christ Community Church. Her son had died a few years previous, but yet we were continuing to send him offering envelopes. Part of the reason she was so upset is she had contacted CCC to let them know her son had passed away. It didn't make any difference. We kept sending her envelopes, thus reminding her about her son's death every couple of months. So, when she received her son's offering envelopes she called the church and wanted to talk to a pastor. She let loose on me, and then she broke down on the phone. I listened a lot, and then I apologized a lot.

There is no excuse for that happening, so why did it happen? We had no organization to our database. We didn't have a central database, but a number of them. New staff weren't trained on how to use the database. So, it's quite possible that whoever this mom talked to did take her son off a database. With how bad our databases were organized, it didn't matter.

Christ Community Church has been around 90 years, and has a Sunday attendance of 3,200. There are going to be thousands upon thousands of records in the database. It's long overdue, but we are finally overhauling our database.

Earlier this week, I received training for our upgraded database. Training like this can sometimes be monotonous, but it's going to help CCC be a lot more efficient and organized. I'm excited about that. The big thing will be getting staff to use it, and use it correctly. I think that will happen, though.

Bonnie Borgum and Michael Born have done a great job spearheading this project. Kudos to them.

The project to upgrade CCC's database is not something that excites a lot of people, but CCC will be better for it. And, hopefully we don't have any more pastoral calls like I experienced.