It’s a Breeze! Our Move to a New Membership Database

Want to find a phone number or email of a fellow church member? Check on your contributions when you can’t find your latest giving statement? Change your own address or phone number in the church directory?  Now you can do this, with our new church membership database!

As many of you know, our church office recently transitioned to a new system, called Breeze. The old system, state-of-the-art 20+ years ago, was no longer serving us, and new database technology, linked to our online giving system, now makes it easier for the office and our finance manager to keep our membership directory and contribution records up to date.

But the system is not only for the office. Over the last weeks, we’ve been gradually rolling it out to members of boards and committees, and this Sunday, you too can learn how to have access to Breeze, during a short demonstration after worship.

Here’s why you might want to attend: To learn how to access a searchable database of members, so you can easily find contact information. You can even download an app for your phone. The system also allows you to see your own contribution history and to edit your own contact information.

To answer some questions you might have:

Can anyone have access? No – only those invited by the database administrators (the office and the team supporting the office) can have access to the database. Administrators control who has access and how much those who have access can see.

Yes, what can members see?  Once you set up your account, you’ll be able to see contact and family information for other members and see all the information about yourself in the system, including own personal pledge and giving history.  See something wrong in your contact information? You can fix it yourself right there.  Need to find a phone number or email for a fellow member?  Just type part of their name in the search bar and up they’ll pop!

What about a photo directory?  This can be our online photo directory. All you need to do is upload a photo of yourself. We’re encouraging everyone to do this.

What are other uses of the database? Members of boards, committees and teams can be granted special permissions depending on their needs. A small “data edit” team is checking on the accuracy of our listings, and the clerk can change membership status, for example. Our Sunday School program can use it to make lists of families and children, and our Diaconal Ministers will use it to keep in touch with members in need of pastoral care. Our Finance Manager and Stewardship Committee use the system to track pledges and contributions.

Are my contributions records confidential?  Yes! Access to contributions is kept confidential, shared with only a few key roles (our Finance Manager, the co-chairs of the Stewardship Committee, e.g.) exactly as it was with our previous database.

How is this secure?  Breeze uses the same security standards that are used for transferring credit card data. For more information, see this explanation.

Is this a brand new system?  Only to us! While this is one of the newer entries to the church management software market, it is well established, with many users and many high ratings from a variety of churches.

Is this how I see my program’s budget and expenses? No, this database is solely for member and contribution records. Program budgets are tracked in QuickBooks by Finance Manager Lance Jameson and the Finance Committee.

Can I still get a paper or pdf directory? Yes, the office will make pdf directories periodically. But please note that because the directory is constantly changing, these will not always reflect the latest updates.

How much does this cost?  Breeze charges a flat $50/month, which is less than we were paying for our previous system.

Do you have other questions? Want to access the database yourself? Please come to the short demonstration this Sunday, May 2, after worship.

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