AP/Class Staff Bulletin

October 2021

Your Single Destination for Everything – mybsf.org!

Whether you are a class member, leader, or area personnel, all you ever need to study and serve in BSF will be found through a single website – mybsf.org. You will find clear paths for navigation within the webpages with easy access to lessons, lecture, and the most important resources for your BSF role. Each webpage will provide explicit links to move from one page of the website to another. Simply click and go! 

We believe you will love it, and we can’t wait for you to experience it.  In this Bulletin, you will find all you need to know to prepare, and soon begin using the website when it launches Dec. 8.  Please take time to read through the NEW mybsf.org tab below and begin, as a Class Staff, to pray, plan and prepare for the launch.

With joy, love and prayers,

Your mybsf.org team

Happening Soon

  • OT/D-OT Orientation Dates: November 8-9, 2021
    • Application Deadline: Applications must be approved by October 15, 2021
  • Next TL Orientation: December 5-8, 2021
    • Application Deadline: Applications must be approved by November 5, 2021

Prayer Requests

Praise God for:

  • Growth in our in-person and online groups.
  • Our Member Support team (HQ staff and volunteers) who graciously answer chats, phone calls and emails with clarity and compassion.
  • Volunteer translators who are providing lesson questions in 12 additional languages.

Pray for:

  • Transformed lives by the Unexpected King through in-depth Bible study in community.
  • BSF Leaders to lead the way towards unity in the Body of Christ in a season of great diversity of thought and preference.
  • Growing excitement in classes preparing for the Matthew mini-studies – for every member to “bring a friend to BSF.”
  • Every BSF group to be a place of belonging.
  • Every man, woman and child who wants to study in BSF to have a place.
  • Classes to consider and plan their options while meeting during the PAUSE weeks prior to the transition to the NEW mybsf.org.

    NEW mybsf.org

    The New mybsf.org: What to Expect

    We are eager to unveil the new mybsf.org to the world in December! The upgraded website is part of the BSF 2.0 project that is enhancing BSF’s digital resources. The mybsf.org phase of this project will give the BSF member an improved online experience and continue to give access to lesson materials. The site will also be a streamlined gateway for Leaders, Class Staff and AP to access their class data as we retire class.bsf.

    The launch of this site does require a PAUSE, a shutdown from Nov. 22 through Dec. 7, of mybsf.org and class.bsf, to allow for data transfer, testing and validation. This is where we need your help as we prepare for the new mybsf.org launch on Dec. 8.

    Nov. 22 (CST): Shutdown (PAUSE) of mybsf.org and class.bsf

    Click here for what you can do to prepare for the PAUSE.

    Nov. 26-29 (CST): BSF HQ Verification and Validation

    This first verification will happen at BSF HQ. Our IT Department will lead HQ to verify and ensure a successful transfer of millions of records during this process and conduct final testing of the site’s functionality.

    Nov. 30-Dec. 7 (CST): Class Staff Validation

    Classes will receive training and validate class data, which was formerly housed on class.bsf.org, and begin using the new site. Classes will receive:

    • A Reference Guide to navigate the new site
    • An instructional video on how to navigate the new system
    • Instructions on how to verify their data

    CAs and ALs are likely candidates for the verification of their class data. Please determine now who will contribute to this important effort. The estimated time necessary to complete data validation is 2-6 hours, depending on class size and number of class leaders participating in the validation.

    Dec. 8 (CST) The NEW mybsf.org launches

    • Encourage all class members and leaders to log in to mybsf.org soon after the launch of the new website to ensure user access. (This is important to prevent members from having to reset passwords in January.)

    Important! BSF HQ will be closed from Dec. 15 to Jan. 3 to allow HQ staff and Helpdesk volunteers to focus on celebrating the birth of our Unexpected King Jesus, and to spend time with family. We encourage all class staff, leaders and members to take a full Christmas break.

    Class Information for the PAUSE

    While there will be a PAUSE in access to mybsf.org and class.bsf, Nov. 22 to Dec. 7, BSF will continue to carry on! In anticipation of the website shutdown, review your Class Calendar to determine which lessons, lectures and mini-studies will be impacted during this time. Consider these options as you plan for:

    Local Online Classes or Groups

    • Groups will continue to meet on Zoom.
    • Online giving will continue to be available by going to bsfinternational.org/support.
    • Remind and help members to download lessons before mybsf.org shuts down, or to access lessons and notes through the BSF app, or purchase a Matthew Lessons Book through the BSF Store. (See Helping One Another Through the PAUSE)
    • Use channels currently used for lecture; Facebook Live or post lectures on your class Facebook page; or download Sample lectures in advance from class.bsf to email out.

    In-person Classes

    • Members will continue to attend groups and lecture as normal.
    • In-class and online giving (including Text2Give for US classes) will continue to be available. Online giving is available by going to bsfinternational.org/support.
    • Remind and help members to download lessons before mybsf.org shuts down, or to access lessons and notes through the BSF app or purchase a Matthew Lessons Book through the BSF Store. (See Helping One Another Through the PAUSE)
    • Give a live lecture only; use channels currently used for lecture; use Facebook Live or post lectures on your class Facebook page; or download Sample lectures in advance from class.bsf to email out.

    Classes Outside U.S.

    Some classes outside the U.S. may consider suspending class during the PAUSE – because the PAUSE may coincide with a scheduled break. Two important reminders:

    • Make a plan to verify your class data during the dates specified above (Nov. 30 – Dec. 7)
    • Make a plan to communicate with your classes before the PAUSE, encouraging members to log in to mybsf.org after the launch on Dec. 8

    IMPORTANT: Attendance and Financial Reporting

    Giving options remain the same during the PAUSE. Always offer in-class giving when meeting in-person. Please let members know online giving is also available during the PAUSE and through the end of the year at bsfinternational.org/support.  International local online giving options are also available during the PAUSE.

    • Continue to complete the Weekly Financial Record (F 101 USA/INTL) and make deposits to your bank during November and December.
    • Continue to write any necessary checks/cheques (Host Church remunerations, SDG remunerations, reimbursements, etc.).

    Complete the Monthly Receipt & Disbursement Worksheet Report (F 107 USA/INTL) (use paper copy or downloaded fillable copy) as normal for submission BUT follow this schedule for monthly reporting for November, December and January:

    • Submit November Monthly reporting for Attendance and Finances before Nov. 22 in class.bsf (Remember that class.bsf will be SHUT DOWN Nov. 22 – Dec.7)
      • Include all banking activity prior to Nov. 22.
      • Online Giving will be available on Nov 15 and must be used to calculate host church remuneration.
      • November monthly financial and attendance reports include weeks of Nov 1, 8, and 15.
    • Submit December Monthly reporting for Attendance and Finances the week of Jan. 3 and no later than Jan. 7 through the new mybsf.org site (training will be provided).
      • Include all banking activity that was not included in the November report with the December report.
      • December financial and attendance reports include the weeks of Nov. 22 and 29 as well as all weeks your class meets in December.
      • The Online Giving Summary WILL NOT BE UPLOADED for December Monthly Financial reporting! (December will not be listed in the Online Giving Summary.) For this December report, Host Church remuneration is based upon in-class contributions only.
    • Submit January Monthly reporting for Attendance and Finances as usual after the last class day of the month.
      • BOTH December and January online giving will be combined in the Online Giving Summary for January. This online giving amount should be used to calculate host church remuneration and be included in your January Monthly Financial Report.

    Helping One Another Through the PAUSE

    The shutdown of mybsf.org and class.bsf Nov. 22 to Dec. 7 is an opportunity to continue Helping One Another. We encourage you to welcome this opportunity as we prepare for and move through the transition to the new mybsf.org.

    We need your help! While the BSF HQ Helpdesk team is eager to provide support, it is not possible for them to do it alone. Class members will receive the most efficient help and best care possible from those they know best – leaders and members in their classes.

    The September Bulletin suggested obtaining a Tech Helper for each group. While this suggestion would be optimal, it may not be feasible for all classes. Class Staffs are encouraged to determine how best to help class members through the PAUSE by creating a team to assist with accessing lesson questions, notes and lectures. Encourage GLs to connect with each group member to ensure every person has what they need to fully participate in the life-changing study of Matthew.

    We are grateful for you and the way you continue Helping One Another!

    Tips on How Classes Support the PAUSE

    Class Social Media Administrators will receive a mybsf.org social media package that includes suggested posts and PowerPoint slides for your classes and their sites, along with posts to help recruit tech helpers. (This social media package will be available on your Downloads toward the end of October.)

    Need to Know

    Be sure to read across all positional buttons related to your class.

    BSF Online GLs NEEDED!

    Praise God! BSF Online is growing at a rapid rate and is urgently seeking more online group leaders. Demand is increasing especially for our women’s online groups.  How can you help?

    1. Pray with us for more leaders
    2. In-person Class Staff please recommend online group leaders by using the process below:

    Click the Recommend an Online GL link on the TL home page.  

    Use our guest login:
    Email:  ogl4bsfonline@gmail.com
    Password: ogl4bsfonline

    Recommend new leaders by Clicking Apply and Recommend on the Navigation menu in the BSF Online website.  Complete the Recommendation form and submit.

    Building Healthy Teams

    Building a healthy team requires humility as a core value since varied opinions and ideas are likely held by each team member. Team leadership provides protection of our unity and ultimately results in better conclusions as each team member’s opinions and ideas are valued and applied to challenging situations that may arise. Team leadership means progress may be slower because finding common ground can take time. Your team is worth it.  We are praying for you as you Magnify Jesus, the Head of the Body, and Mature as leaders in the cause of Christ working together to build a healthy, unified team.

    Lesson Questions in More Languages

    Did you know that the Matthew lesson questions are translated by volunteers into 12 different languages? BSF HQ is storing these translations to make them accessible to every class in BSF.  Find the instructions after October 15 on how to access these lesson questions in your Downloads.

    Have You Updated Your Zoom Software Lately?

    Beginning November 1, Zoom will require all users to update their Zoom software to version 5.5.0 or later. All users must be no more than nine months behind the current version at any given time. To avoid service disruption, we recommend all Zoom users (AP, class staff, leaders and members) update their software prior to November 1.

    D-OLM Collaboration

    D-OTs, D-AOTs and their AP have a workspace to collaborate on online leader’s meetings, administrative processes and ideas for leading, shepherding, and training satellite leaders.  If you are not on the Slack workspace, AP may contact RDs for an invitation.

    Time for TL Checklist Validation

    Now is the time for AP to review and validate the compliance of every leader and regular volunteer serving in the Children’s Program. To uphold the safety and security in our Children’s Programs, all CLs and regular volunteers on the TL Checklist must be up to date with necessary background screenings and recertifications required for your area. If anyone on the TL Checklist has a red box or red date listed, contact the class staff and encourage them to complete the necessary update before validating. The TL Checklist should be free of red boxes/dates (for classes meeting online or in-person). Instructions on how to complete AP Validation are located in your AP Manual. Thank you for ensuring the safety of our children and students!

    Global AP Training – November 11

    The first of two Global AP Trainings is scheduled for November 11. This training will be offered twice: 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM Central time. The training is designed to help AP and OAP understand the SP Redesign and your role in supporting both the Program and the SP leaders. AP are encouraged to attend with their teammate.

    Look for an email from Julie Goodpasture with information on how to sign-up for this training. If you have not received the email by October 19, please contact events@bsfinternational.org.

    Important Announcements On Giving

    Here is the TL/D-OT Announcement for your Next Class Meeting!

    • See Announcement #1 for cost per person information.
    • See Announcement #2 for giving and host church remuneration.

    TL Checklist Maintenance

    Please make sure your TL Checklist is up to date in the class database as your AP begin reviewing and validating compliance. In order for leaders or regular volunteers to serve with our children, they must have the necessary background check and recertification in place (based on the requirements for your area). The database will show a red box or a red date for those who are noncompliant and must be updated. If you have class members who no longer volunteer in your Children’s Program, remove them from the TL Checklist by clicking the “hide” button. The TL Checklist should be free of red boxes or red dates.  Thank you for protecting the children and students in your class.

    Monthly Financial Reports (F 107)

    All classes must submit a monthly financial report each month, even if there is no class bank account activity. The Online Giving Report will display an amount for the current month once the information has been uploaded. If HQ reports Online Giving to you, please choose the appropriate Host Church payment option for your class situation (Paid by Class; For HQ to Pay, If meeting online/No HC payment required). Refer to the Matthew Study Financial Reporting in the Matthew Resources on your Downloads for more information.

    TL Checklist Maintenance

    Please make sure your TL Checklist is up to date in the class database as your AP begin reviewing and validating compliance. In order for leaders or regular volunteers to serve with our children, they must have the necessary background check and recertification in place (based on the requirements for your area). The database will show a red box or a red date for those who are noncompliant and must be updated. If you have class members who no longer volunteer in your Children’s Program, remove them from the TL Checklist by clicking the “hide” button. The TL Checklist should be free of red boxes or red dates.  Thank you for protecting the children and students in your class.

    Important Announcements On Giving

    Here is the TL/D-OT Announcement for your Next Class Meeting!

    • See Announcement #1 for cost per person information.
    • See Announcement #2 for giving and host church remuneration.

    D-OLM Collaboration

    D-OTs, D-AOTs and their AP have a workspace to collaborate on online leader’s meetings, administrative processes and ideas for leading, shepherding, and training satellite leaders.  If you are not on the Slack workspace, contact your AP.

    TL Checklist Maintenance

    Please make sure your TL Checklist is up to date in the class database as your AP begin reviewing and validating compliance. In order for leaders or regular volunteers to serve with our children, they must have the necessary background check and recertification in place (based on the requirements for your area). The database will show a red box or a red date for those who are noncompliant and must be updated. If you have class members who no longer volunteer in your Children’s Program, remove them from the TL Checklist by clicking the “hide” button. The TL Checklist should be free of red boxes or red dates.  Thank you for protecting the children and students in your class.

    Attendance: New Feature for Matthew

    Automatic attendance is a new feature for the Matthew study in BSF Online.  When members click the Join Meeting button on the My Group page and leaders click the Join Meeting button on the My Training page, their attendance is automatically marked in the attendance screen.  OTs/AOTs may edit the OLM attendance and OGLs may edit their group attendance after the meeting occurs, if needed.

    BSF Online GLs NEEDED!

    1. Pray with us for more leaders
    2. Recommend new leaders by clicking Apply and Recommend on the Navigation menu in the BSF Online website.
    3. Complete the Recommendation form and submit.

    Building Healthy Teams

    Building a healthy team requires humility as a core value since varied opinions and ideas are likely held by each team member. Team leadership provides protection of our unity and ultimately results in better conclusions as each team member’s opinions and ideas are valued and applied to challenging situations that may arise. Team leadership means progress may be slower because finding common ground can take time. Your team is worth it.  We are praying for you as you Magnify Jesus, the Head of the Body, and Mature as leaders in the cause of Christ working together to build a healthy, unified team.

    Lesson Questions in More Languages

    Did you know that the Matthew lesson questions are translated by volunteers into 12 different languages?  BSF HQ is storing these translations to make them accessible to every class in BSF.  Find the instructions after October 15 on how to access these questions in your Helps and Resources.

    Have You Updated Your Zoom Software Lately?

    Beginning November 1, Zoom will require all users to update their Zoom software to version 5.5.0 or later. All users must be no more than nine months behind the current version at any given time. To avoid service disruption, we recommend all Zoom users (AP, class staff, leaders and members) update their software prior to November 1st.

    Global AP Training – November 11

    The first of two Global AP Trainings is scheduled for November 11. This training will be offered twice: 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM Central time. The training is designed to help AP and OAP understand the SP Redesign and your role in supporting both the Program and the SP leaders. AP are encouraged to attend with their teammate.

    Look for an email from Julie Goodpasture with information on how to sign-up for this training. If you have not received the email by October 19, please contact events@bsfinternational.org.

    Important Announcement On Giving

    Here is the OT Announcement for your Next Class Meeting!

    Tips

    Culture Toolkit

    There are some new trainings in your Tool Kits to build self-awareness and other-awareness in leaders when leading a diverse group of people.  Diversity comes in many ways: age, church denominations, health practices, life experiences, family values, and much more.  Use this valuable resource and allow the Holy Spirit to guide you as you lead the group God has entrusted to you.

    Inspiration

    Generations of Friends & Family

    It is so exciting to hear stories of multiple generations of family members and friends attending BSF together. Recently we have learned of friends who attended the Children’s Program together online now bringing their toddlers to their BSF local class. Another story was shared with a photo of mother, daughter, and grandmother all attending BSF together. Please continue sharing your photos and stories how you are passing your faith from one generation to the next in BSF!

     

    From a Local Men’s Class

    A man with a previous arrest attended his first BSF discussion group and found his arresting police officer in the same group. The man who had been arrested had attempted to contact the officer, to thank him for praying for him the night of the arrest. The officer had previously shared about a man he’d arrested, who he prayed for in the back of his patrol car, because the man was so distraught and broken. The officer prayed this man would get the help needed to overcome his problem.   God reunited these two men in a powerful way by placing them in the same group – giving them the gift of studying His Word together for the Matthew study!