St Andrew’s United Reformed Church, Cheam
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St Andrew’s • Cheam

Managing pulpit supply

The basics

All the information regarding pulpit suppy is held in a database which can be accessed from this website. In order to do so you must be logged in and must have been given write permission for the Songs and services database, which is accessed from the Worship menu.

The page which fronts the database has 5 tabs: 5 tabs

The ones you will use for pulpit supply are Services and Leaders.

The services page

Go first to Services. You will at first see details of the next upcoming service, and links allowing you to display prior or subsequent services. You will need this later, but for now, click on all services: Services

You will now see a list including all future scheduled services, with preachers shown in blue and any other service leaders in green. Normally there will be one preacher and optionally zero or more other leaders, but you can record any number of people in either catgory, including none.

Also on that page you can click on Show past services to look back at previous services, and you can click on any service date and time to see more details about the service.

The leaders page

Now click on the Leaders tab. Leaders

The list of leaders is divided into 3 categories:

  • Willing, indicated by ✔
  • Maybe, indicated by ?
  • Do not contact, indicated by x

Initially you will only see the willing preachers, but you can see (or hide) the others by ticking (or unticking) the boxes in the 'Show categories' line.

Also shown in the table are the number of services at which the person has preached or led, the date they last did so and, where applicable, the date they are next booked to do so.

At the right hand end of each entry there are normally two symbols, ≣ which allows you to view all the services they have led and ⇆ whch allows you to view or edit their details, inluding contact details. You may also include any notes about them, but be aware that they could ask to see such notes.

As noted the top of the table, you can only allocate a willing leader to a service. If you want to allocate a 'maybe' leader you will have to edit their data to show that they are willing, although you can then revert them to the 'maybe' category if you wish.

At the foot of the table is a button that will allow you to add a new leader to the list.

The easy case

Let’s look first at the easy case: adding a preacher from the willing list to a service already in the list of scheduled services.

First, find the service details. Go to the Services tab and use the 'all services' link to find the relevant service, click on its date to get to the service details page. Service details

The entry you are going to change is the one labelled 'Led by'. Click on the 'edit' link on that line.

You will now see two drop-down lists: one for preachers and one for other leaders. If you make a selection in either column (or both) and click on Save, your selection will be saved, and a new drop-down box will appear so that you can add another name if you wish. Leaders

Normally you will just enter the single preacher, but occasionally a service is led by someone else, and sometimes (eg for the Carol Praise service) there will be no preacher.

You can remove a name by selecting a blank entry, which you'll find at the very top of the list.

Once you are happy that you have selected and saved the right names, click on Finished, and you will be back on the service detailswith the selected name(s) shown in the 'Led by' line.

More complicated cases

What if the proposed leader doesn't appear in the drop-down list?

In that case you will need to go to the Leaders tab and either add a new leader (button at the foot of the list), or possibly, if the preacher has been marked as 'maybe' or 'do not contact', tick the boxes to show those categories, and promote the person to being willing.

What if the service isn't in the list of future services?

On the Services tab, one of the options listed just under the tabs is 'new service'. Click on that, and you'll get a largely blank service details page. The date will have been filled in as the first Sunday that hasn't already been added, but you can change that date by clicking on the edit on the 'date and time' line.

Is there another way to do it?

Since you ask, yes. On the Leaders page you'll see a link Assign leader to service. That will alow you to choose aservice and assign the leaders on one page. This may be faster once you have gained familiarity with the process.

Still stuck?

Call Peter on 01372 728593 or 07599 992350, or email him at pj,campbell,smith^gmail,com.