Becoming Familiar with the Resources under Tools on LDS.org PDF Print E-mail
Written by StacyAnn Allen   
Wednesday, 26 October 2011

The resources under the Tools menu on LDS.org provide a wealth of new applications to help members and leaders in wards and stakes.

When you sign in with your LDS Account, the options that appear in the Tools menu are personalized to your calling. Many of the tools are standard for all members, such as the directory and calendar, but some are more specialized for bishops and stake presidents, such as Leader Resources and Clerk Resources. The following screenshot shows the resources available to a stake president’s login.

LDS.org Tools Menu

Below is a brief introduction to some of these resources. If you don’t have an LDS Account yet, go to ldsaccount.lds.org and register for one first. You will then be able to access these resources.

LDS CalendarCalendar

All stake and ward members can coordinate and communicate Church meetings and activities through the ward and stake calendar. You can create as many calendars as you need for each organization in your ward or stake. You can also add any member as an editor to manage calendar events.

The 2.0 version of the calendar was released today. This new version presents a redesign of the administrative interface and many new features and fixes to make the calendar more intuitive. Click Help in the calendar to access videos and information to explain many of the new features. Several calendar training webinars for administrator and calendar editors will be held in mid-November. More detail on the webinars will be given shortly.

LDS DirectoryDirectory

You can view photos, leader callings, e-mail addresses, and other contact information for members and leaders in your ward and stake through the directory. You can upload profile and family photos, update your personal information, and keep your contact information current.

You can also decide whether your personal information is visible to other ward and stake members. Administrators, as authorized, can make changes for individual and household units. The directory can also be printed as a photo directory or exported into a spreadsheet.

On mobile devices, you can view the directory through the LDS Tools app on Apple and Android platforms. 

LDS MapsMaps

LDS Maps helps you find Church facilities, such as meetinghouses, employment resources centers, and LDS Family Services centers. You can get driving directions, worship times, and hours of operations for each facility in your area. LDS Maps can also be useful in organizing emergency preparedness plans and response efforts.

When you sign in with your LDS Account, you can see your own ward boundaries, where your ward and stake members live, view leadership contact information, and view other kinds of Church facilities and buildings worldwide. Members can also hide their location information from other Church members.

My Study NotebookMy Study Notebook

My Study Notebook is your own personal, private space on LDS.org to collect your gospel content and notes. Study Notebook is especially useful if you're doing research for a talk or lesson and are browsing resources across LDS.org, since Study Notebook allows you to gather all of this information into one place and organize, sort, print, or download it.

As you’re reading content on LDS.org, look for a black Study Notebook toolbar to appear on the footer. The toolbar appears when you’re viewing scriptures, lessons, magazine articles, and conference addresses. The toolbar will prompt you to sign in (if you haven’t already). Once signed in, you can highlight passages, add notes, and save this information to your Study Notebook.

Leader and Clerk ResourcesLeader and Clerk Resources

Stake presidents, bishops, clerks, and secretaries can sign into Leader Resources or Clerk Resources to view training, tools, and information specific to their calling. The resources include links to the ward calling list, reports from MLS, focus lists, and other useful tools for working with members.

These resources are consolidated into one secure, online location, so leaders can spend less time managing administrative details and more time ministering to members. Access to Leader Resources and Clerk Resources requires that leaders have the properly assigned, standard calling in MLS.

New this month in Clerk Resources is the ability for membership clerks to edit member information online (beyond just phone numbers and addresses). Clerks can also create, edit, and submit Quarterly Reports. Mission presidents with ecclesiastical responsibilities can access member reports and membership records of members living in units assigned to their mission.

More MLS features will continue to migrate online throughout 2012.

Please let us know your questions and how you’re using these tools in your ward or stake. You can ask questions and help others by participating in the LDSTech forum.

 

Comments  

 
# Mike Ball 2011-10-26 15:13
This ability to add custom tools based on your current calling is fantastic!

Please make something available to manage/report home teaching/visiting teaching soon! If the church doesn't come out with an app or tool soon, I may have to write my own.

Or, if the church would like my help on such a project, please let me know!
 
 
# Ty 2011-10-26 20:31
I'll second the comment on home teaching. It is SUCH an inspired and vital program to ministering to individual members. I live in a large ward and was formerly the EQ President and speak from experience in commenting on how challenging it is to keep assignments made and (most importantly) home teachers aware of who their families are. I'm convinced it would bless the lives of hundreds of thousands to have a well designed and well thought out tool to address these needs.
 
 
# Tom Johnson 2011-10-29 13:01
I know the HT/VT apps have been a popular request, and there have been previous efforts to create one. There may be some reporting apps to fill this need sometime in the future. Unfortunately, I don't have any specific details or timelines for you. I will try to post some more official info and preview info about this topic within a few months. Sorry.
 
 
# Tom Johnson 2011-12-06 14:19
FYI, there has been some movement on this effort. I think it will see light some time in the near future (think 2012).
 
 
# Mike Ball 2011-12-06 14:46
Quoting Tom Johnson:
FYI, there has been some movement on this effort. I think it will see light some time in the near future (think 2012).


That's really good to hear! Let me know if I can help beta test anything. Right now I save PDF versions of the HT assignments on my iPad/iPhone. It helps, but the workflow is still pretty messy. Thanks!
 
 
# Troy Dinkel 2011-12-08 03:53
There is mention here of new releases forthcoming in 2012. I gather this is referring to the expected Phase 2 release of Leader Resources which was expected in 2011? Is this correct?
Also, is there any update on the release of the new Ward and Stake Websites which was also expected for 2011?

We are VERY eager to get this new functionality as it will be helpful in so many regards. I second the offer to do testing of the new apps. Technology is a wonderful thing! Keep up the great work!
 
 
# Tom Johnson 2011-12-08 11:04
Troy, we published some roadmap info about this with the calendar. See

https://tech.lds.org/wiki/Calendar_FAQs#Requests.2C_Roadmap.2C_and_Missing_Features_Questions

In short, stake and ward websites is coming, but not as you might expect. Rather than one site, think of it as a suite of applications for local units. The Lesson Scheduler site will be released hopefully by the year's end, maybe Q1 2012. There's also a Stake and Ward News site that will follow. And finally a Member Resources site that will be added later as well.

Sorry we haven't been better at communicating this. I have this on my list to write.
 
 
# Troy Jonathon Dawson 2012-01-02 16:44
Quoting Tom Johnson:
FYI, there has been some movement on this effort. I think it will see light some time in the near future (think 2012).


That is good to hear. Last year as I went around to each ward on our last round of ward conferences (12 wards) the number 1 request was for some type of Home/Visiting teaching tool on the main LDS website. The number 2 request was to see other wards calendars, but that was usually our Stake people wanting that.
 
 
# Mike Ball 2012-01-30 16:02
(Continuation from previous comment.)

Quoting Tom Johnson:
FYI, there has been some movement on this effort. I think it will see light some time in the near future (think 2012).


Tom - do you know if we can expect to see anything in the first quarter of 2012 (by March)?

If not, I think I will go ahead and start work on my own ideas of how a Home Teaching tool should work. There seems to be a huge demand for such a tool, and I will make it freely available for anyone to use.
 
 
# Mike Ball 2012-01-30 15:52
I just attended a meeting of all the Elders Quorum Presidents in our Stake last night. Many things were discussed, but there was a great desire for a web site or app to make Home Teaching easier to manage and track.

I've been thinking this for years, but I'm a software engineer, so I often see the potential for technology to help almost everything. I was surprised there was such a strong demand for a technology tool to help with this part of our callings.

One person mentioned his ward was evaluating a web site that would cost $89/year to help his ward with Home Teaching and Visiting Teaching. I didn't like the idea of paying for a tool, but I've been brainstorming building one for years. I realized if I built a tool myself it would cost me much more than $89 in my time and hosting fees, etc. I checked out the site he mentioned, but it is pretty awful. I don't even want to mention its name it was so far from what I expected.

Continued in next comment ...
 
 
# Harvey Thomas Conner 2013-05-05 21:04
As the ward emergency preparedness coordinator it would be great if the sketch function could be made available in maps so we can add layers where zones and their section coordinators and members can identified
 
 
# Curtis D. Rindlisbacher 2014-04-05 13:08
Home teaching and visiting teaching assingments could simply be filtered on the membership directory for the user account to show a list of the household assigned to the user. A simple checkbox that could be completed by the user when hometeaching visit was completed would keep track. Having tools to assist members and priesthood leaders minister to members and direct the work would be helpful.
 

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