Your Shepherd’s Staff database can be set to a variety of denominations to make it easier to compile the reports your church may be required to provide. The denomination options are Assembly of God, Catholic, Lutheran, Southern Baptist, Presbyterian, and United Methodist. With denominational reports, the information you need to report will all be gathered into a single place within Shepherd’s Staff.
Saving Time with Denominational Reports
In order to ensure accuracy, each report has specific criteria the database needs to meet. For example, the Congregation Annual Report (LCMS), which is part of the Lutheran edition, looks at the Received By and Removed By fields. Users running this report are encouraged to check that the member information in their databases uses these terms.
Some of the calculations used to generate statistics in the reports are very detailed. Using the appropriate report in Shepherd’s Staff can save your church staff hours of time—just let the software run the report, and use that time to provide spiritual care for your members!
Setting Shepherd’s Staff to Your Denomination
When you set the edition of Shepherd’s Staff to use, the system will update the names of certain fields and give you access to reports that are unique to your denomination. Here is how to select your denomination:
- From the main menu, click “Utilities” > “Settings”.
- Select the “System” tab.
- Select your edition from the drop-down menu.
- Click OK to save your changes.
- Restart Shepherd’s Staff to apply the new setting.
Two other settings to make note of on the “System” tab are “Days to keep audit log entries” and “Century cut-off for 2-digit years”.
- “Days to keep audit log entries”: The audit log tracks changes and updates users make to your database. The “days to keep” setting allows the system administrator to adjust the number of days each audit is saved. The minimum is 450 days.
- “Century cut-off for 2-digit years”: This setting controls whether a two-digit year saved in the database should be converted to a 19XX year or a 20XX year. The default setting is 15 years.
Updating Church Information on Reports
In the “Settings” window, the “Church” tab is where basic information about your church is housed, such as address, denomination, and website URL. This tab is the default tab that shows when you open the window.
The information on this tab appears at the top of many reports, so this is the place to update that information when necessary. Though the Website and Email Address fields are not required to be filled, we recommend you fill them to take advantage of the internet and email interfaces in Shepherd’s Staff.
For a list of all the reports available in Shepherd’s Staff, visit our online help center.