Eleventh Sunday After Pentecost - Pastor's Message

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name” (Psalm 103:1).

Hopefully by now, you too are getting excited about the launch of REALM in just a couple weeks. Again, REALM (short for Real Ministry) is our new church management software and online community that will go live on Rally Weekend, September 7-8. The coolest thing about REALM is that everyone in the congregation will have access to this online ministry tool anywhere and anytime through the REALM app on your mobile device. In so many ways, REALM will help us live out our congregation’s mission to be and make disciples of Christ TOGETHER!

I’ve already shared with you about how REALM will allow us to access an online directory including pictures and contact information for all of the disciples at St. John’s. You will now be able to manage and change your own contact information as needed. I’ve also already shared with you about how REALM will allow us to manage our giving to St. John’s, including constant access to your own giving records as well as the ability to change our giving levels online. But wait, there is more!

One of the most useful parts of REALM is the ability it provides to facilitate and manage communication within groups in the congregation. Every single group at St. John’s, whether that group is a Ministry Team, Task Force, Small Group, Bible Study, Committee, Board, or whatever, will have its own group on REALM, each managed by your group’s leader. Group members can then post and share information with one another easily and effectively. For example, our St. John’s Chancel Choir will have its own group on REALM. By posting information in the Chancel Choir group, our Choir Director Sue can easily distribute important information to all members of the choir, such as rehearsal times or cancellations, reminders, birthday greetings, and more. She will even be able to post music on REALM for choir members to practice at home! Group members will receive notifications whenever new material is posted to their group. And, each group member is able to manage how they receive such notifications, as well as how often! One very helpful option on REALM is the ability to receive a single summary notification at the end of each day, containing all the new material that has been added to each group of which you are a part. The possibilities for more effectively sharing and communicating information, as well as involving more people in these ministries, are nearly endless.

So, watch your e-mail inbox for an e-mail invite coming soon from Rhonda Neubauer, our Church Administrator, inviting you to connect to REALM. Simply click on the link in Rhonda’s e-mail and then follow the instructions to set up your account. If you need any help, staff members will be available through Rally Weekend in the Adult Meeting Room (AMR) to assist you. And, if you have any questions whatsoever along the way, please do not hesitate to ask. Any of our staff members here at St. John’s would be happy to help! Certainly, making REALM work in the life of St. John’s will take some growing into. However, we are confident that it will be totally worth it as we live and serve TOGETHER.