CHURCH ITEMS Companies start up a partnership

One result of the deal: direct deposit of donations.
BOARDMAN -- The nation's largest producer of church offering envelopes has partnered with a company that develops church computer software.
Our Sunday Visitor, the Huntington, Ind.,-based parent company of AmericanChurch, has reached a "strategic partnership" deal with ParishSOFT of Ann Arbor, Mich.
Besides envelopes, Our Sunday Visitor and AmericanChurch are publishers of Catholic periodicals, books and religious materials.
ParishSOFT develops, sells and supports church management software and Web services.
'Targeted audiences'
"We believe that ParishSOFT's Web services will provide effective means for churches to communicate with their members, including delivering content to targeted audiences, such as those participating in various ministries," Greg Erlandson, President of Our Sunday Visitor's Publishing Division.
The ParishSOFT software enables churches to update membership lists online and respond to a growing interest in electronic funds transfer at the church level, integrating electronic giving with traditional offering-envelope giving.
ParishSOFT's software and Web services provide the capacity to distribute education and training materials to church staff and members by e-mail and the church Web site.
ParishSOFT began operations in 1998. Today, with a staff of 40, it serves 3,100 Protestant and Catholic churches and 16 Catholic dioceses.
Founded in 1912
Our Sunday Visitor, founded in 1912, also produces six periodicals, including a national weekly newspaper, stewardship resources and more than 500 active book and religious education titles.
AmericanChurch got its start in 1903. Our Sunday Visitor acquired the company in January 2002. AmericanChurch serves Protestants with offering envelopes, stewardship resources and outreach products.

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