Quietly powering many churches in America, Church Management Systems (ChMS) impose opportunities and limitations. Recent acquisitions and mergers between the largest industry players have led to an increasingly closed environment. As for-profit organizations, they are locking into profitable and even exclusive agreements with debit/credit card processing partners in the pursuit for increased revenues. This all comes with a price tag of higher costs and lower innovation. At the mercy of the quickly consolidating world of deep-pocket vendors and for-profit secular companies, churches are drowning under the industry’s bottom line.
Today many churches are locked in (to agreements that benefit the ChMS and its partners) or locked out (of access to technology due to budget restrictions). They are stuck. The industry is stuck. The ChMS world is being driven by the bottom line, and churches are along for the ride. Whose needs are being met here?
Rather than trying to fix this system, what if we simply re-envisioned the world of church technology? Picture a free, open, community-supported technology platform focused on innovation and flexibility. Imagine a solution that scales to meet the needs of churches from 50 to 50,000, with a constantly growing list of capabilities and features. One protected by a non-profit organization and mentored by a diverse board representing multiple churches?
In other words, what if church technology looked a lot more like the Kingdom and a lot less like the world; giving instead of taking?
Prompted by years of these questions, a vision was born and the small non-profit Spark Development Network was formed in 2011 to promote the development of just such a product. A little like David facing a Goliath ChMS industry, this innovative new platform, known as Rock RMS, is poised to change the course of the church management system world.
Rock is the open, innovation toolkit for the modern day church. Offering free, community-supported technology to ministries of all sizes around the world, Rock is connecting a community of users and vendors who are working together to make this feature-rich technology accessible and available, and beholden to no one. Developed by a team with over 30 years of experience writing ChMS products, protected and covered in prayer by a board and free from the strings of ownership, Rock’s future is unlimited.
No longer does a church’s budget need to determine its access to kingdom-building tools. Never again does a church need to find itself limited to a one-sided ChMS agreement for lack of better options.