Smile & Say "Cheese"

Good morning, Church!

Last week, Beth, our Ministry Assistant, emailed the following message to members of First Baptist:

We need more profile pictures to update the church directory for the 110th Anniversary Event. The deadline for submitting photographs is March 1, 2024. You can email your picture to Wendy or Beth ( and, respectively).

If you have a login, you can change the profile picture yourself. There’s an option for you and another one for your family. If you do not have a login, no problem! Email Beth or me with an image (.jpg, .png, or .gif) 10MB or smaller. TIP: Roughly square images with the subject(s) close to the center work best.

If you don’t have a login and want one, let us know, and we can invite you to Realm, our database software. Later in the coming months, we will print the directory for everyone -- with pictures!

 Thanks for your help with our little project. We really appreciate it.

But “why do we need a directory?” you may ask. The following information is a paraphrase of an article on explaining the benefits of a printed directory. While we won’t be doing a formal session with a church portrait company, we can print a directory that is shareable to our membership in-house.
6 Reasons to Create a Church Directory Today

Though printed materials have been falling out of favor with churches in this digital age, a photo directory has never been more important.

1.     A church directory helps people put names to faces.
No matter a congregation’s size, remembering who everyone is — and who “belongs” with whom — can be challenging. Seniors might know most of the other seniors, and youth might know most of their peers, but it’s unlikely that all members can identify one another.

2.     New members and staff can get up to speed quickly.
A compilation of faces, names and contact information is especially useful for people who are new to the congregation, whether in the pews or in leadership. Learning lots of names is much easier when a current photo directory is handy.

3.     A church directory encourages relationships.
Achieving a family-like feel and building community are important goals for most congregations. But personal connections can’t happen if people are strangers! A photo directory provides a sense of belonging and indicates that members are part of a special group.

4.     Information is always at your fingertips.
Phones, email, and social media help 21st-century churchgoers stay in touch, yet contact information is often scattered or outdated. Thanks to a one-stop directory, everyone’s names, addresses and phone numbers are together.  With your login to Realm(r), you can edit your contact information or look up someone else! 

5.     A church directory can go beyond the “basics.”
Photos and contact information are just the beginning. If you're a member of a small group at FBC, your group leader can email you and you can chat with other members in the group! You can edit your privacy settings to determine who gets to see your information and what information is available to them. 

6.     Prayer chains and other phone trees are a breeze.
Keeping one another in prayer is a key part of church membership. With a directory, phone trees FBC email lists for prayer requests and other purposes can be organized easily. FBC Staff members use this option throughout the week to keep church members updated, to remind team members about meetings, and more.
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