New Version 4.3 – File Access Reports and Remembering Notification Messages

WorshipPlanning.com Logo v4.3.0

This version of WP brought a couple of features that will not only save you time with your scheduling process, but it will also help you get an idea who is coming to rehearsal prepared!

File Access Reporting

WP is now keeping track of who is accessing files you have uploaded.  This is important for two main reasons:

CCLI Rehearsal License Reporting

If you have a CCLI Rehearsal License, you are required to report the number of unique accesses (stream or download) of song files covered under the license.  To make this super easy, we’ve created a page that allows you to easily see download counts, per song, for a specific time period.

CCLI Rehearsal License Reporting Screenshot

This can be accessed from the Library >> Files Library menu option.  Click on the File Access Reports sub tab and select your date!

General File Access Reporting

The other File Access Report we created, called the “General File Access” view, will list all the files accessed, including the user that accessed it, the date/time of the access, and how they accessed.  You can even filter the search for results by time period, user, related song, and file name.  It’s a great way to slice-and-dice the data to see who has accessed what!

Song File Access Reporting

And finally, we put the File Access Report info on the Song Details window.  So, if you really want to know which members of your worship team have streamed or downloaded the important files in preparation for rehearsal, you can easily see this by clicking on the song title in the worship flow (or anywhere in the site), then clicking on the File Access tab.

File Access Tab

File reports are only visible to Planners with security level 1 (worship editors) or higher.

Remembering Text from Assignment Emails

Several weeks ago, we added a “previously sent messages” selection field for sending messages to people from the Worship Flow page.  With version 4.3.0, we added that same capability on the People Schedule page.  We know that many people have been using Notepad or other text editors to copy/paste standard messages they send to various teams.  With this feature, you can keep Notepad closed and just select your previously sent message!

Previously Sent Messages from Schedule Page Screenshot

You Are A Theologian

In spiritual circles, few people are seen as intimidating as often as theologians. Theologians are scholars. Studied. Educated. Cultured. And they wear old-school glasses, vests and wool sweaters as they sit in an aged leather wingback chair in front of a stately, oversized bookcase in a home library with loaded oak bookshelves lining all of the walls, all the way up to the ceiling. (Whew . . . that was a mouthful!) Okay, maybe not all of them, but we like to think they do. The point is, when we hear the word “theologian” often we get an image in our minds that, at least in some way, represents the description above.

So what if I told you that YOU are a theologian?

bible

Well, if you’re a worship leader and/or worship songwriter, you are! Sure, perhaps you aren’t necessarily discovering any brand-spankin’ new theology. But, you are writing and/or choosing worship songs that speak a theological truth. You are communicating theology to your local church. This is why one of the most important things you do as a worship leader is pick out the songs for the weekend setlist.

Sure, key changes, arrangements, transitions, dynamics and flow are all important parts of what we do as worship leaders, but none of those things matter if we aren’t singing truths in our churches. It is widely known that ideas and messages are retained better in our brains when presented in song than by spoken word (a sermon). This is because our brains interact with music differently, thereby establishing a stronger retention of what we heard/sang. Why is this important?

It’s sad to say this, but most people don’t remember the sermon they heard last week or this morning, in some cases. Now sure, these days we have recorded sermons, sermon notes, etc. All of these allow us to go back and go through the messages again. However, overall there is a limited shelf life on the specific messages that are preached every week (hopefully the themes and lessons are learned and continue on!).

With music, however, things stick around a bit longer, including the lyrics of the songs themselves. These lyrics are a biblical message, just like your pastor’s sermon. The only difference is that yours is set to a music, may have some repetition, and may be more like 4 to 5 mini-sermons during a typical worship set. This is a big deal!

Why? Because what you sing in your worship times is going to stick in people’s hearts and minds longer than the sermon does. Therefore, it’s imperative that we sing songs that contain solid theology.

We basically have three options with the songs we sing at  church:

1. Lyrics that present false, inaccurate theology.
2. Lyrics that aren’t false, but are theologically weak and don’t really say anything.
3. Lyrics that present a solid biblical truth with rich theology.

PLEASE stay away from songs in category one. As for category two, there is nothing wrong with this category necessarily, but there are too many songs that fit this mold.

I challenge you to shoot for the third category of songs. Pick songs that are not only correct, but really drive home messages that your congregation needs to hear. One helpful way that I’ve found to pick more songs in category three is not just listening to the song on the CD (with the fancy production), but taking the time to sit down and read the lyrics without the music.

This is no easy task, but it’s vital! You are a theologian. A musical theologian. Don’t take that responsibility lightly. Invest the time into being intentional about the words that your congregation sings each week.

-Mark Logan

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