ChurchTools Version 3.63

Translations: Deutsch (Deutschland)

By the time you read this, I will already be… on holiday. 😎 But good planning is half the work. After all, my colleagues knew that I was on vacation and absences are well taken care of, everyone knows who is or is not there and when. Did you know that absences can also be maintained in ChurchTools?


Version 3.63 is now here and I am happy to present you many nice features and changes. Not to forget the meanwhile obligatory change for the group homepage. 😉 Let’s start right away without losing many words.

Checkin Redesign

Loyal readers of this blog will already know it, we have visually redesigned the check-in module and it now shines in new splendor. Not only have we given the module a new coat of paint, but there are also a few new features. So it is now possible to undo the last checkin with a single click. This is very helpful if you have checked in the wrong person by mistake.

To enhance the visual overview, the columns now use the full height of the browser window, and the relatively new role filter feature now allows you to select more than one role.

It remains important to mention that a completed check-in does not allow new check-ins.

Changes in the Events Module

There are two significant changes in the Events module:

Attaching files to an event

That you can add files and links to events is no secret. But now we have revised the dialogue for this and also the way to inform the people on duty. The dialog is now more clearly structured, so you can easily add files or links. In other words, you can now upload files without sending a mail directly. But if you want to do so, you can switch to the mail-mask immediately and there you will find all files and links.

This means that you can now attach the corresponding files to a mail and send them with every mail, even later. And if you have the permissions to do so, it is now also possible to directly add the link to the agenda.

Invite people on duty automatically to ChurchTools

The second change can be found in the Admin Settings > Modules > Events. Here not only the design was adapted, but we made the fields optional. That means, you can now set if and when service requests or service reminders are sent.

And you can now set whether you want to invite people to ChurchTools who have been asked for a service. ChurchTools has always invited requested people, so this is nothing new. It is only logical that people requested for a ministry should be able to accept or decline it. For this they must have access to ChurchTools.

Changes in Persons & Groups

Also in the persons & groups module we were busy again. Let’s start with our – in the meantime – mandatory change on the group homepage. 😎

Individualize registration title (Group-Detail page)

Many use the new group homepage to realize church service registrations. Others use it to promote seminars and retreats. Still others use it for their small groups. We are happy that this function is used so actively. However, there was one thing that was still bothering.

The group details page always said “Register for group”. This could confuse some people, because it is not visible for outsiders that there is a (ChurchTools) group in the background. Now the problem is solved. With version 3.63 you can customize this text. For example, one group might say “Register for church this years church retreat” and another group might say “Join our connect group”.

We also offer two placeholders for the text: [Group] is replaced by the respective group name and [Group Type] is replaced by the group type name. This provides enough flexibility and the grammar is now also right. 🤓

The text can be adjusted in the group setting.

In the group settings you can now adjust the heading of the registration.

Markdown for group description

Each group can have a group description. This is displayed on the public group page and can also be read in the app. Especially for events sometimes more text is needed or creative small groups can describe themselves in more detail. Until now this text was unformatted.

Version 3.63 takes the description to a new level and introduces Markdown. Markdown is a simple format which can format the text using certain formatting characters like # or *. For example, you can mark text with a double star as bold. If you want to know more about it, I recommend to read the syntax here. But the new editor also offers keyboard shortcuts and buttons to use the typical formatting, so everyone should enjoy it.

The text will be displayed correctly in the group list, on the group details page and of course in the app. Now you can present the text even better.

Open persons or groups in a new tab

In the list of persons and groups we have changed a little something, which is not so obvious at first sight, but which can be of great help for the own workflow. Behind the persons and groups names there is now the respective link. This means that you can now open the link in a new tab and it ends up directly back up in the list and the respective person or group is opened.

If you want to have several persons open at the same time, you can e.g. click on them with the mouse wheel (middle mouse button) or you can select Open link in new tab with a right click on the mouse.

Warning for mass mailings

ChurchTools offers with its flexible permissions system a good basis to map the most different church situations. There are those who work rather restrictively, and on the other hand there are more open churches, which for example make ChurchTools available to all their members.

No matter how you use ChurchTools, if there are many people on the list, it can happen that you accidentally send mail to hundreds of people, even though you only wanted to send it to your own group. To prevent this from happening again, there is now a small warning when the list has become very large. So you don’t have to apologize 99 times next Sunday. 😁

Wiki REST APIs

Last but not least a message for all our programmers and techies. There are new API endpoints again. This time, we’ve taken the Wiki and you can now query categories, pages and versions. There is also a search endpoint that allows you to run a full text search on all pages of a wiki category.

Creating and changing pages are not yet implemented as endpoints, but this will also come. So we have done the first step and can build on that. (Where do I find the Api documentation?)


Further changes

If this is not enough for you, you will find all changes of this and earlier versions in our Changelog.

We hope you like the new version as much as we do. As always, you may leave praise and criticize in our forum.

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