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This weekend's tip: No "DNC" on membership records

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 2:06 pm
by birdld-p40
Here's a copy of this weekend's tip that will be going to all units in US and Canada. The wiki has been updated as well to show the most current information. Enjoy!

Do not contact membership records.docx
(11.94 KiB) Downloaded 989 times

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 2:57 pm
by calebpusey
For those that don't have Office 2007 yet, here's the tip in PDF format:

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 3:10 pm
by crislapi
And for those who just want to read it here:

Title: Do Not Contact Membership Records

Description:
Membership records should not be adjusted or coded in MLS using any method designed to show the record as DO NOT CONTACT.
...
Members that no longer wish to be contacted by the Church need to have their wants addressed with sensitivity and care. These cases should be reviewed on an individual basis by the local priesthood leader and a plan made without making adjustments to the member record.

Out of curiosity, what type of adjustments are you talking about? Creating a custom member field? Removing contact info? There needs to be some way to keep track of this. More helpful would be telling us HOW to do it.

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 3:23 pm
by aebrown
crislapi wrote: Out of curiosity, what type of adjustments are you talking about? Creating a custom member field? Removing contact info? There needs to be some way to keep track of this. More helpful would be telling us HOW to do it.


In the past, wards have created a variety of ways of tracking members labeled as "Do Not Contact." A couple of the things you mentioned above have been tried.

The problem is that once people were labeled this way, they were too easy to ignore. I see this new directive as encouragement to continue to seek ways to minister to those who may have said at some time that they do not want to be contacted.

I know that these situations can be challenging, but we should never give up on anyone. I believe that is why we are now not only not being told "HOW to do it"; we are being told NOT to label people this way in MLS in any way.

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 5:54 pm
by russellhltn
Do not contact membership records


Whew. For a moment there I thought clerk support was giving us the brush-off! ;)

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 8:31 pm
by crislapi
crislapi wrote:Members that no longer wish to be contacted by the Church need to have their wants addressed with sensitivity and care. These cases should be reviewed on an individual basis by the local priesthood leader and a plan made without making adjustments to the member record.


Yes, but this basically leaves the only option to them of contacting the local leader and requesting their names be removed from the church records. Is that really preferable?

authority of this tip ?

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 9:04 pm
by atticusewig
I know that many clerks in my Stake don't
even read the tip of the week, and if they
read it, would only consider this a "tip".

Which authority has given this specific direction,
and will it be followed by a letter sent to the
Bishops ?

Without a letter from the Office of the Presiding
Bishopric, I really don't see many wards following
this direction.

My ward currently keeps a Do_not_contact label
in the primary telephone number field (because
the primary telephone number shows up in the
majority of the ready-made reports), for those
who don't want contact, but also don't want their
names removed from the records of the church either.

If this is a direction from the Brethren, we will of
course follow it. If it is just a "tip", it will be harder
for me to sell my Bishop on the importance of following
the "advice". The whole, "But our ward's needs are
different..." defense is bound to come up. Unfortunately,
"Do not contact" lists will probably be kept outside of MLS,
by local leaders.

- Atticus

Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:46 pm
by russellhltn
atticusewig wrote:Which authority has given this specific direction,
and will it be followed by a letter sent to the
Bishops ?

Without a letter from the Office of the Presiding
Bishopric, I really don't see many wards following
this direction.


I have to agree with this one. The purpose of the clerk is to support the bishopric. If the bishop wants a way to mark "no contacts" the bishop gets it unless someone can change his mind. This isn't something the clerk dreams up on their own. They do it because the leaders ask for it.

I think the way some wards deal with this is to create a special HT/VT district. At least that keeps the monthly visitors off their doorstep.

OTOH, there could be a certain stigma attached to an explicit "do not contact" that is counter productive to our goals. I know some members ask that we put "unlisted" for the phone number to remind those who have it to be careful about who they give it to. That's different.

Posted: Sat Sep 19, 2009 5:20 am
by aebrown
atticusewig wrote: Without a letter from the Office of the Presiding Bishopric, I really don't see many wards following this direction.


RussellHltn wrote:If the bishop wants a way to mark "no contacts" the bishop gets it unless someone can change his mind.


I would recommend that you review the original MLS message. It was addressed to "All Priesthood Leaders," not just to clerks. This directive comes from the Membership Department, which has responsibility for setting policies regarding how membership records are kept. It does have authority in this area, under the direction of its own priesthood leadership, which ultimately is the same priesthood leadership we all have.

I have no inside knowledge, but I am confident such a message was not sent out casually. I would be very wary of simply disregarding this; rather all priesthood leaders and those who support them should carefully consider the spirit as well as the letter of these instructions and seek to "remember" and "nourish" all members of the Church.

Posted: Sat Sep 19, 2009 7:30 am
by greggo
crislapi wrote:Yes, but this basically leaves the only option to them of contacting the local leader and requesting their names be removed from the church records. Is that really preferable?


I'm very tempted to say "yes." It would certainly make things much easier for church leaders and administrators to allow those who no longer want to be members of the church (many of them already thinking they are no longer members) to have their names removed. Having said that, each case should be carefully dealt with individually by the bishopric - I'm sure that there are opportunities not only for re-activation but also for missionary work, as many of these are part-member families. ... but that would be a topic for another thread.

There are certainly other options to modifying the membership record. It was already mentioned that these families can all be assigned to a special HT/VT district. Also, if MLS lists are restricted to only ward leaders, and the only "public" list is from the LUWS, then names can be removed from the "public" list without modifying the membership records.