January 2016: A New Year's Update

The first update of 2016 continues the bug-eradication mission we told you about in this post. January 6 is bringing all kinds of bug fixes and improvements to your experience!

Edit 12.31.15: Invisible all-day events on public calendar fixed

Edit 1.12.16: One of the reports fixes listed here wasn't included in this release and has been removed.

Executive Pastor Dashboard

We are very excited about our recent acquisition of ChurchNumbers and what this will bring to dashboards and metrics within the Church Community Builder software in the future! (You can find out more about this exciting development in this recent blog post.)

As we seek to uncover and develop a helpful, meaningful, and relevant dashboard experience in the coming months, we have removed the link to the Executive Pastor dashboard section for our church partners using the Standard and Essential versions of our software. The ‘Executive Pastor’ link will remain for church partners using the Deluxe version of the software and will continue to show the existing metrics. We don’t yet know the exact future of dashboards, but we are excited about it and encourage you to stay tuned!

The combination of Church Community Builder and ChurchNumbers marries a powerful metrics engine with the unparalleled data found in your church management system. We look forward to what the future holds for organizing and conveying data in meaningful and actionable ways, and helping equip you and your leaders to make the best decisions for making and growing disciples in your ministry.

Announce Only Group Messages

Announce Only groups are a great communication tool when you want to keep a members list hidden. So it didn’t make a lot of sense that when a leader sent a message to all participants, the default reply-to option was ‘all participants’ ... allowing members to reveal themselves inadvertently. We’ve removed that ‘reply to all participants’ option, leaving only ‘reply to me’ and ‘reply to no one’ — neither of which allows comments on the message, either. With these changes, your Announce Only group messaging stays in line with the purpose of Announce Only groups. And don’t worry — the other group interaction types are unchanged, still working exactly as you expect.

Bug Fixes & Usability Improvements


  • 1000+ member groups: There were some issues when trying to record attendance for events in a group that has more than 1,000 participants. To overcome those we made slight edits to your input methods.
  • Attendance entry updates: We updated the attendance entry tool in a few ways. Before, when matching Attendance Groupings, we would display events whose groups had the selected Attendance Grouping. However, some events may have Attendance Groupings their parent groups do not. For this reason, we are now displaying the events that match the selected Attendance Grouping, rather than events whose parent groups match. While we were updating this, we also adjusted the look and feel of the tool to make it easier to use. It's now clearer which groups have events matching the search criteria, so you know whether you're recording attendance for an existing event or if you're creating a new attendance-only event. We also made sure that if a group has multiple events that match the search criteria, we are displaying all of the events rather than just the earliest one. Lastly, we made each row on the groups/events table clickable to record attendance.


  • Multiple positions during one service time: When an individual is serving in more than one position during the same service time, the calendar would not show them all. We made sure that the calendar and the ICS feed show all of positions, regardless of how many the individual is filling during the same service time.
  • Calendar subscription improvements:We made some minor adjustments to a few calendar subscriptions in the software. These changes should improve your experience when using your calendar tool to subscribe to a Church Community Builder calendar.
  • Campus-wide and church-wide subscriptions:We added a subscription link for the campus-wide and church-wide calendars.


  • 'Manage Event' buttons on public calendar: Events on the public calendar were incorrectly showing the 'Manage Event' button. We fixed so it does not show on any event on that calendar.
  • More information in event invitation emails: We reinstated some information into event invitation emails including location information, the event organizer, and links to access more information about the event.
  • Event-related approval notifications: Previously, event-related approval notifications (part of the bell icon in the header) were displayed according to campus context. Now if you are logged in as someone who has the appropriate approval privileges and needs to make event-related approvals, you will see these notifications in the bell icon regardless of campus context. The event-related approvals page already shows everything a user with privileges has access to regardless of the campus they're currently on, so we wanted the notifications bell to work the same way.
  • Multiple event invitations sent: If a group leader was sending out an event invitation email and clicked on the 'Send Now' button multiple times, the system would send out multiple event invitation emails. This fact combined with slow internet connections and trigger-happy clicking fingers led to rather more email than expected! Now only one event invitation email will be triggered and sent when the 'Send Now' button is clicked.
  • Consistent location/map information: We've made the event location and map link logic consistent across event overviews, event invitation emails, ICS feeds, and event API services. Event location and map link information should now be consistent across the software.
  • Inactive groups' events: Previously, searching for events on a calendar would not return results from inactive groups. Now, if you are the MA or an Event Admin (Full or Limited), you have a new 'Group Status' criteria that allows you to search for events from active groups, inactive groups, or both.
  • Invisible all-day events: All-day events were not visible on the public calendar because they lost their background color, leaving white text on a white background. The background color has returned and balance has been restored to the Force.


  • File sorting: We brought sort functionality back to the Files tab for Groups. Now, in addition to having search functionality, you can also sort files to make it easier to find the file you need.


  • Full Financial admins: Full Financial admins were not able to perform the financial actions found on the 'Financial' tab of a profile associated with the campus for which they have the privilege. We've fixed that so they can complete all the actions once again.
  • Nested COA categories: When an individual account within the Chart of Accounts (COA) was edited to be ordered underneath a parent account, the COA list did not reflect this account nesting. We fixed this so that parent and child sub-account selections are properly reflected in the Chart of Accounts listing.
  • Give icon with General Financial set to Admin: When the General Financial settings were set to Admin, the software was incorrectly showing the left navigation 'Give' icon and text. We've fixed this so now only an individual with financial privileges can see this item, with one exception. The exception to this is if at least one campus has a merchant account set up, one or more active COA categories are attached to the active campus (with the merchant account), and one or more of those COA categories have online giving enabled. In those circumstances, individuals without financial privileges should be able to see the 'Give' icon and text and can use it to make one-time gifts only (recurring gifts are not permitted while the General Financial settings are set to Admin). These changes do not change the behavior of the software when General Financial settings are set to On or Off.
  • New profiles matched to new checks: Previously when a Master Admin or Financial admin scanned a check from an individual who was not in the database and, therefore, did not have a MICR match, they would create a profile for this individual ... and this new profile was not automatically matched to the scanned check. These checks will now be matched to the new profiles upon creation.
  • MICR reader improvements: We improved the way we match MICR strings within the financial 'MICR Input' section of the software. These changes should make it easier and more streamlined to use a MICR check reader with our software.


  • Ampersands in form questions with radio buttons: Form questions that used radio buttons were having trouble properly displaying the ampersand symbol (&) in the explanatory text next to the buttons. We fixed this so the ampersand symbol displays correctly.

Mail Merges

  • Mail merge labels: In certain instances when building labels from a mail merge, a user was getting unusual and unexpected label results where some individuals not included in the recipient list were showing up on the labels and some individuals who were included in the recipients list were being omitted. We fixed this so that only names included on the recipient list are included on the labels (and the appropriate names are included and grouped based upon the selection chosen for the 'Name on label' dropdown within the 'Letter Options' modal).
  • Search box showing duplicates: In some instances, when a Master Admin was working with Mail Merges and typing another person's name in the search box of the 'Assign people to send as me / Edit who can send as me' modal, the dropdown list would show the individual searched for multiple times. Don't worry, the search wasn't returning Joe Smith and Joe Smith's three evil doppelgangers. Individual people again show only once now.


  • Full Read/Write People and File privileges mix-up: An admin with Full Write People privileges was unable to delete a file from the profile of an individual who belonged to the campus in which the admin has the 'Full Write' privilege. This admin incorrectly needed File admin privileges to delete a file, when 'File' admin privileges should apply only to Group files, not Individual files. Now, Full Write People privileges allows an admin to upload and delete files from an individual's profile in the campus they hold the privilege in. The Full Read People privilege allows an admin to see and download files from an individual's profile in the campus they hold the privilege in. Finally, the File admin privilege allows an admin to delete a group's files if that group belongs to the campus they hold the privilege in.

Process Queues

  • Export Process Notes: The Export Process Notes option was unavailable to Process Managers and process admins. We fixed this issue.
  • People searching within a Process Queue: When searching for a person within a Process Queue, the search results were returning individuals outside of the Process Queue. We fixed this so now only the appropriate individuals show up in the search results, and clicking on the individual's name in the search results takes the user to that individual's Queue information.


  • Dynamic header count updating by campus: When running multi-campus reports split by campus, the dynamic number in the header that signifies the number of records in the report was not updating when you switched campuses. It now correctly reflects the number of records by campus.
  • Attendance Overview: The Attendance Overview report was not considering the campus selected in the report settings modal when generating results. We made sure that the campus selection criteria is now included when the report results are created.
  • Indenting nested rows for clarity: For reports that have nested rows, we indented the group name column of the nested rows to better differentiate the group rows from the departments to which they belong.
  • Printed nested rows alignment: When printing reports with nested rows, the data in the nested rows was not aligning correctly within the column to which it belonged. Now it is.
  • Attendange Grouping Summary: The Attendance Grouping Summary report was not summing the 'Avg Present' column by department, but was instead giving an average present. We have returned it to summing the 'Avg Present' to give a department-wide average sum.
  • Roster with Barcodes: When running the Roster with Barcodes group contextual report, we made sure that only that specific group showed up on the report rather than all groups within the selected Attendance Grouping.
  • Print Current View option: We removed the Print Current View option from three attendance reports (Attendance Trend, Attendance Summary, and Attendance Grouping Summary) that always print all records. The Print All Records option remains for those reports.
  • Custom report settings: When you ran a custom report and then clicked Edit Settings to adjust the 'Show one row per family' setting, it was not adjusting the report at all. Now it is correctly honoring your selection and adjusting the report accordingly.
  • Anniversary List: When running the Anniversary List report for a group, the parents of children in the group were being included. Now, it is limited to Primary Contacts and Spouses who are members of the group. Additionally, if an anniversary date was not set, it was displaying that they have been married for 2015 years. Now, both the anniversary date and years fields are left blank if data has not been entered.
  • Individual Profile: When running the Individual Profile report directly from someone's profile, users were getting an error message requiring a saved search. We made sure that this report runs as expected from the contextual report section of an individual's profile.
  • Default date range selection: We changed the default date range selection on Financial reports from Custom Date Range to Quick Date Range for ease of use.
  • Save Report link: For some group contextual reports, a Group Leader, Asistant Group Leader, Coach, Director, or Department Admin (without the appropriate privileges) was incorrectly able to see the Save Report link in the report settings modal. We've fixed this so only those with the proper privileges can see the Save Report link.
  • Category Summary by Batch or Date Range: The Category Summary by Batch or Date Range report, when run contextually multiple times, was remembering the previous batch number, rather than populating the report settings modal with the batch number from the page it was run from. It is now always showing the correct batch number when run contextually.
  • Name displays for sorting purposes: On the Process Queue, Overdue Breakdown, and Individual Attendance Detail reports, we changed the 'Name', 'Manager' and 'Attendee' columns respectively to display last name, first name to ensure correct sorting on initial load and when clicking the name, manager, or attendee columns.
  • Group Participants: In some cases, the Group Participants report was not returning all Group Leaders, and was sometimes showing individuals with an incorrect status within the group. We've fixed this so all of the leaders are properly included in the report and people are shown with the proper group status.
  • Contextual report fixes: When a group's settings under the Admin tab for Family Reports leaves unchecked the "Access group members' family information in this group's reports" box, the Family List report was incorrectly removed from the group's contextual reports for individuals with sufficient group report privileges to see that report (Master Admin, Department Admin, or Full/Limited Group Admin). We fixed this. Additionally, we ensured that a user with the proper group report privileges (Department Admin or Full/Limited Group Admin) can run the Printable Directory report with either the Family or Individual option. Also, an individual with Limited Group Admin privileges can see the same contextual reports as someone with Full Group Admin privileges.
  • Pledge Statements: When running Pledge Statements for a group of people from within Financial reports, a Full Financial Admin or Master Admin only saw pledge statements for those individuals with transactions posted during the date range. This was fixed so that when Pledge Statements are run, all individuals with a pledge have a statement generated, not just those individuals that had financial transactions during the date range.
  • Excel exports opened in Numbers: When exporting a report to Excel and opening the file in Numbers, the formulas were not calculating, instead displaying as blank cells with a formula warning/error message. We fixed this so formulas work correctly when opened in either Numbers or Excel.
  • Individual Attendance Summary: We improved the logic on the 'Individual Attendance Summary (with missed/attended)' report to ensure it includes and shows the proper individuals in the report. The logic now provides that active group members should always be shown regardless of their last attended date. Inactive group members and active or inactive non-group members who have missed three days of attendance for any event in the selected group will only be shown if they have attendance within the selected date range. Finally, deceased individuals will never be shown, regardless of status or attendance.
  • Sorting in Event List: When sorting by the 'Actual Attendance' column in the Event List report, it was not sorting numerically as it should. It now sorts in a correct numeric order.
  • First/Last Given rename: The First/Last Given report and new givers search yield different results due to how they were designed. To bring about additional clarity, we've renamed the First/Last Given report to now be called the First/Last Transaction Detail report, as this more accurately describes the results returned by this report. The report settings modal now shows 'First Transaction' or 'Last Transaction' as dropdown options instead of 'First Given' or 'Last Given'.
  • Printed Transaction Detail: When printing the Transaction Detail report, the 'Amount' column was not printing. The 'Amount' column will now print when printing landscape (which is always recommended).
  • Individual Attendance Detail: The Individual Attendance Detail report was not accurately capturing the proper number in the 'Weeks Attended' column — this column should sum how many weeks have data within the date range and then show that number, not the total number of events attended within that time frame. We fixed this so the 'Weeks Attended' column sums the number of weeks attended instead of the number of events attended within those weeks. This bug fix did not go out with the January release.

Rooms & Resources

  • Deleting a room or resource tied to past events: Previously, when a user attempted to delete a room or resource, if the room or resource was tied to any event (past, present, or future) it would prevent the room or resource from being deleted. We've edited this functionality so now if a room or resources is only associated with past (yesterday and prior) events it can be deleted.


  • Serving assignments showing in calendars: When you had accepted a serving assignment, it was showing up in every group calendar you navigated to. Now it only shows up in that group's calendar, along with My Calendar and Family Calendar.


  • Customized list order in searching: There are lists of choices, such as School Grade, where you can customize the order. The custom order was not being reflected in searches and was displaying alphabetically instead. Now your custom order is being respected.
  • Searching for inactive and administrative groups: We gave Department Admins and Limited Group Admins the ability to search for inactive and administrative groups. Now when these admins click the magnifying glass to open the 'Group search' modal, they will find 'Interaction Type' and 'Inactive' pulldown menu options to further filter and refine their group search results.


  • Group_profiles and group_profile_from_id: When run, the group_profiles service and group_profile_from_id service were producing an Access Denied error. They are working properly again.
  • Individual_notes: When using the individual_notes API service and passing in a valid date_start and date_end, the API was not pulling any notes. Now, the individual_notes API service is pulling notes from the date range and shows date_created for each note.
  • Group_profiles: The group_profiles API service now has an optional parameter called campus_id to filter groups by campus.
  • Login tracking: The following API services have been updated to track logins (but not passwords): create_individual, execute_search, individual_search, individual_profiles, individual_profile_from_micr, individual_profile_from_login_password, individual_profile_from_id, and update_individual.
  • Import_batches: The import_batches API service was setting the transaction_date to the time the import happened if the user didn't provide a transaction date, even if the user provided a batch post date. This is now showing the correct date when importing a batch. A user can provide a date in the date field, or if a date is not provided, the current date and time will be populated. Also, post_date and date are now required parameters.

Topics: This entry was posted in Software News, This entry was posted in Blog, This entry was posted in Release Notes

Posted by Updates Team on December 30, 2015