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Top 5 Free and Open Source Church Management Software in 2019

Church management software refers to a tool which efficiently handles processes such as communication, Church database, community, event and worship presentation programs and many other activities. Let's take a look at top free and open source Church management software that help ease off the daily operations.

There is always a place for spirituality in this materialistic world. It explains why you have religious places of worship all over the planet. Churches, in particular, receive tremendous funding from religious organizations and individuals. They have a healthy membership base, as well. Therefore, there is a great need to keep track of donations, communicate with members, organize events, and many more activities. Religious institutions are subject to scrutiny and audit. Hence, it is imperative to maintain absolute transparency in their dealings. A church management software solution should be the ideal solution in this age of developing technology.
Let us discuss the features and benefits of church management software before looking at some of the best free software solutions.

Some of the characteristic features of church management software are as follows.

Membership Management 

Storing the details of the members of the church is essential. These personal details include names, addresses, phone numbers, and email IDs. It is necessary to streamline this information to enable the church to customize lists for outreach programs. The best church management software solution keeps a tab on volunteer information, as well.

Donor Management

Managing the contributions of the church members and maintaining perfect records is a critical aspect of any church management software.

Accounting Management 

Churches conduct various events and programs throughout the year. These events require funding. The Accounting Management solution takes care of such reporting of expenses and management of funds.

Staff Management 

Churches have priests and Bishops to run the show. There could be nuns and other staff attached to the churches. Managing their expenses is also a critical aspect of church management software.

Volunteer Management 

Apart from the regular church staff, there will be hundreds of volunteering individuals, especially during carnivals and various events. Managing the list of volunteers and their expenses is a crucial part of the functioning of a church. A good church management software solution should have this facility.

Communications Management 

Communicating with members and the general public at large is essential for the development of a church. The engagement can be through newspaper ads, emails, direct marketing, and through special activities and events.

Visitor Management 

Churches observe important events during festival times like Christmas and Easter. They also hold congregations and Sunday Mass. The visitor count for such events could be massive. An effective church management software solution can cater to managing visitor attendance, child check-in facility, and so on.

Depending on the requirements of the church, various types of church management software solutions are available. Many of them are available for free to suffice the needs of small churches. The larger ones can go for budgeted or expensive software depending on the magnitude of operations. Naturally, the top-end software solutions will come with additional security features.

Here are ten of the best church management software solutions.

Name of Software

Membership Management

Donor Management

Free

Breeze ChMS

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

ChurchTrac

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

PowerChurch Plus

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

Church Windows

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

Faithful Steward Web

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

Planning Center

Yes

Yes

Paid

MediaShout

Yes

Yes

Paid

ACS

Yes

Yes

Paid

Skedda

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

Charity Tracker

Yes

Yes

Free Trial

 

1. Breeze ChMS

More than six thousand churches worldwide use Breeze ChMS for organizing people, managing events, and other activities. This software solution permits the church to store unlimited information about members and volunteers by adding custom fields. Hence, it enables easy location of people based on the criteria. It allows the user to tag people such as members, volunteers, event attendees, and small group members to simplify administrative tasks. Breeze ChMS is a transparent software solution that effectively manages donations and contributions. Generating reports and providing statements for verification is also possible. Furthermore, it helps in scheduling events and generating reports based on the age of the attendees. It also helps in sending alerts if people stop coming for a couple of weeks in a row. Switching over from church management software to Breeze ChMS is easy. It is a secure software solution that provides accounting reports for audits and other verifications.

 

2. ChurchTrac

ChurchTrac is church management software web-based that caters to churches of all sizes. Managing membership and volunteer information are comfortable with this software solution. It is one of the best software to manage group meetings, events, and keeping track of member contributions. The membership management module helps to track contact data, baptisms, and other kinds of interactions with members and visitors. The Search Tool enables administrators to find individuals or families from the database based on specific search criteria. This solution allows the organization of members into various groups such as committees, classes, and communicates with them to track attendance and other activities. The Donor Management module keeps track of contributions, tithes, pledges, and payments for expenses including books, events and camp registrations. It is also possible to print tax statements for individual contributors. It is an easy-to-use software that works on the mobile platform, as well. Specific issues concerning the software include lack of tech support by phone and the challenges involved in database integration.

 

3. PowerChurch Plus

PowerChurch Plus is an all-in-one church management software that can cater to small, medium, and big churches, as well. This software is the ideal one for growing churches, and those looking for memberships. Ministry management is one of the strong points of this software along with church accounting procedures. This solution keeps track of every aspect of church functioning like memberships, contributions, event management, and accounting procedures. It is one of the perfect software solutions for managing events like carnivals. The Attendance Tracking and child check-in features are excellent. Managing contributions and accounting for the same appropriately is easy with this software solution. It is a free-to-register-and-use software solution. Churches can purchase and install this software for their better functioning.

 

4. Church Windows

Church Windows is a hybrid church management software to help churches manage their daily activities and interactions with members of the community. The advantage is that it is deployable both on-premise, as well as it is a church management software cloud. Church administrators can track household, church accounting, church attendance and church database while customizing data fields and creating attendance reports. This software solution caters to various modules like memberships, donations, event-scheduler, payroll and accounting. It is also possible to manage volunteer information and attendance during carnivals and other festivals. This transparent software system enables management of payroll of employees and other expenses, as well. It generates easy-to-verify reports for auditing and accounting purposes. Adequate support is available for operating the software via online videos, webinars, workbooks, and customized training sessions.

 

5. Faithful Steward

Faithful Steward is cloud-based church management software to cater to the needs of small and medium-sized churches. The accounting feature of this software is its key highlight. It helps to track expenditures and revenue. There is a church banking tool that includes managing savings accounts, cash balances, and checks. This is followed by the Donor Management module, which is ideal for maintaining incoming as well as outgoing church finances. Thereafter. the membership management module manages the records of privilege members, volunteers, and other community members. As far as pricing is concerned, free trial service is available, after which there are options to use this software solution on a monthly payment basis.

Benefits of Church Management Software

  • It becomes convenient to track membership records, donations, and expenses.
  • Event management is possible with the creation of schedules and other tools like expense trackers, volunteer attendance, and child check-in facility.
  • A church management software solution is necessary for effective management of church resources.
  • Churches receive massive donations from various sections of society. Hence, they are subject to institutional audits. A good church management software solution enables easy access to auditors to verify the details of income and expenditure.

Conclusion

In this age of the internet and technology, one cannot expect churches and other religious organizations to maintain manual books of accounts. Church management software solutions are available to make it convenient for the church to handle such responsibilities. It brings in an element of transparency to the system, as well.

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