PowerChurch Software Newsletter - Fall 2013
Welcome to the Fall 2013 issue of the PowerChurch Software Newsletter. In this issue, we announce the release of Version 11.55 of PowerChurch Plus and discuss some of the benefits of keeping your software up to date. Also in this issue, we visit Roger Koons, who is doing some great work with youth in Colorado in the latest installment of our "Making a Difference" series.
PowerChurch Plus Version 11.55
A Maintenance Release dated 10/30/2013 was published for Version 11.5, which also installed the free Version 11.55 update. In between each major version release, we have been developing free updates like this, for users of the latest version, with new features and improvements. Versions 10.4 and 11.1 were both free updates that installed this way.
Below are just a few of the changes made in Version 11.55:
- Automated Messaging Service file (Voice, Text, and E-mail lists export)
- Church Directory now has Tagged Families and Mailing Category selections
- Envelope Number and Directory Sequence selections added to most Personal Profile reports
- New Allergy & Medical Information report
- New Class Family Directory report
- New Yearly Totals by Envelope report in Contributions
- New Yearly Comparison report in Contributions
- Default "No goods or services were received" message on Contribution Statements
- E-file 941 form
- Print in the Memo line on computer checks from any invoice in Accounts Payable
- "Send a copy to this address" option added to e-mail setup options
- Current Quarter, Last Quarter, and Last Sunday added to date selections on reports
Visit www.powerchurch.com/changes to see a full list of new and updated features.
Approximately every two years, PowerChurch Software releases a new version upgrade. Most new or changed features in the program come from user suggestions. Listening to the feedback of our users ensures that each time a new version is released, there are improvements being made. Below are just a few of the benefits of upgrading as new versions are released:
Free technical support. Each update includes 45 days of free technical support, which won't start counting down until your first call or e-mail for support. If you need help getting the update installed, or getting network workstations connected to the new version on the server, our friendly and knowledgeable support staff are available to help you through it.
Free updates. We have made "point" releases in between each of the paid updates over the last few years, as free updates for those that were already on the latest release. Versions 10.4, 11.1, and now 11.55 were all free updates for many of our users.
Multiple updates for the price of one. If you haven't upgraded in a while, purchasing the latest release will bring you up to date, inheriting all the improvements and features that were added through all the versions that you had previously missed.
Maintenance Releases. Maintenance Releases are free of charge and contain important bug fixes, Windows compatibility patches, and feature tweaks. When a new version of the software is released, an older version falls out of maintenance. For example, there will be no further Maintenance Release updates for Version 10.4 since PowerChurch Plus Version 11.5 was released. By staying up-to-date with the most current version, it will ensure your program is performing at its best.
Roger Koons - Creating youth camps and retreats in Colorado
Name: Roger Koons
Title: Operations Pastor, Church at the Ranch
Passion: Developing youth for service
Why PowerChurch: The price for all you get is phenomenal.
Like many churches focused on missions, the Church at the Ranch is always seeking ways to make resources go further so that they can impact the communities they serve. "We are all looking for ways to invest more of our finances into our ministries and PowerChurch Plus provides a way to do this."
One of the many ministries Operations Pastor Roger Koons is referring to is outreach to local junior high and high school students. The Church at the Ranch has become a popular destination for students and teens in the area due to the open and friendly environment. "We're growing extremely fast due to the desire of the kids in this area to belong somewhere. Their parents may not attend with them, but this group has grown significantly. There are activities for them, but more importantly, we've created a place for them."
Some of the newest programs created for these students are the summer and winter camps where they can flex their leadership muscles and learn about mission work and care for others. "At these retreats, they participate in building projects and serving food to the less fortunate. This year, a number of kids decided on their own to go into downtown Denver on Saturday nights to minister to street people. They simply go and share Christ and provide them with food and companionship, kind of being Christ to them, like our Lord ministered to people directly on the street."
The Ranch Student Ministries Winter Retreat is focused on leadership and evangelism and the summer retreat includes a rafting and rock climbing trip where students camp out. They invite their friends and develop team-building skills while enjoying the outdoors.
During the fall and summer, these students also participate in local ministry activities, spending time on a farm just outside of town that assists kids who have had tough life experiences. "In the fall, they serve at the Open Door, a ministry that serves food to the homeless in downtown Denver."
Like so many PowerChurch Software customers, Roger is searching for more time and funds and our software and services allow him to spend his resources wisely. "The contribution system is one of the best for the money. The user can post contributions and provide reports to givers any time and can generate these via email which saves time, paper, and postage. I cannot say enough about how this software package has helped me save time and money!"
A next step for The Church at the Ranch is to continue service outside U.S. borders. "In the past, we've sent teams to Uruguay and youth teams to Costa Rica and Mexico to teach Vacation Bible School and work on buildings there. We're not sure what's next, but we'll be ready."
You make a difference all over the world. PowerChurch makes it easier. Read previous installments of Making a Difference at www.powerchurch.com/stories/.
The Support Forum on our web site is a very active online community of our users and Tech Support staff members. There you can browse through thousands of questions and answers, or post your own.
From PowerChurch Online:
Q. I am trying to import LifeTouch directory photos from the DVD LifeTouch sent me, but PowerChurch Online does not seem to be able to see anything other than my hard drive. Is there a way to get it to see the DVD drive on my PC?
A. The CD and DVD drives are not available through the IDS Client. To import those files from the CD/DVD, copy the contents of the disc into a folder on your hard drive. When you're finished importing, you can delete that folder from the computer.
Q. As we enter our Personal Profile information, we are using the year 9999 for birth year, since most of our members will give us their birth day and month, but not the year. One young lady's birthday is the 29th of February. When we tried the 9999 year, we got an invalid date message.
A. When using the 9999 year, the program still needs to verify it is a valid date. For all the non-leap years, February 29th is not a valid date. Apparently, the year 9996 is a leap year and 9999 is not.
Q. Our pianist is a paid position, however this year she has decided she does not want to be paid and for that to be her contribution. Do I show that as a debit to my payroll line item and credit the income? How would I show that on a contribution statement for tax purposes if it's considered a service?
A. Per the 2013 Church and Clergy Tax Guide regarding the deductibility of donated services: "No deduction is allowed for a contribution of services. Church members who donate labor to their church may not deduct the value of their labor". It goes on to say "The value of personal services is never deductible as a charitable contribution".
PowerChurch Online, PCPlus V 9, PCPlus V 8.5, PCPlus V 8, PCPlus V 7, PCPlus V 6/6.1/6.2, PCPlus V 11/11.1, PCPlus V 11.5/11.55, PCPlus V 10/10.4
Version 11.55 Release, Why Upgrade, Roger Koons
Last updated: 04/24/2015