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Timeline of MLS

This article presents a timeline of the history of the Member and Leader Services application.

Jump to the current version of MLS: 3.4.2

Released Version General Changes Changes Related to Membership Changes Related to Finance
Jun 2002 1.0 MLS first shipped to selected stakes in Australia, New Zealand, Germany, England, and South Africa.
Dec 2002 2.0 MLS 2.0 began the replacement of MIS and FIS in four pilot stakes in Utah.
Jun 2003 2.0.4 MLS 2.0.4 began shipping to all domestic units.
May 2004 2.1.4
Aug 2004 2.2
  • System option to display full names or preferred names in name selection lists
  • Reply and forward options added to MLS messaging system

Bug Fixes

  • The MLS main screen tab, which disappeared under certain circumstances, has been fixed
  • User name field lengthened to allow longer user names
  • Error which created duplicate ward information on stake level was corrected
  • Error which deleted boundary proposals on stake version of MLS was corrected
  • During MLS message transmission, error changing unit number to unit name was corrected (this prohibited the message from being delivered to the stake)
  • A number of other minor bugs, including backend communications issues, were corrected
  • Ability to print blank home and visiting teaching report forms
  • Ability to print Melchizedek Priesthood certificates from the stake
  • Move-in and move-out reports
  • Mailing labels will include first name
  • Geo codes have been added to MLS export files
  • Officers Sustained form has been added

Bug Fixes

  • Priest has been added as an option for individuals who can ordain offices in the Aaronic Priesthood
  • Current month home and visiting teaching visits can be recorded
  • Ordinances ratified by the First Presidency will not appear in the membership validation report; various other errors with the report were corrected
  • Bishop can now be entered as president of the priests quorum
  • When transmitting marriage information, additional information not related to the marriage which was being sent to headquarters has been removed from the transmission
  • Church official name corrected on the Child Blessing Certificate in English
  • Non-essential information for out of unit members is no longer necessary
  • Improved financial reconciliation, including ability to add temporary adjustment items
  • A budget detail report has been added
  • Financial subcategories can now be added at the moment they are needed from the expense and donations screens
  • Deposit reports can be printed in the language used by the bank even if MLS language is different

Bug Fixes

  • Reimbursable stake financial categories have been added
  • A $0 dollar expense can be added so a voided check will not break the check number sequence
  • The "Next" button that appears after a donation batch is authorized now functions
  • The columns on the budget report were fixed to fit on the paper
  • Non-integer amounts for bills have been corrected; amounts such as 4.23 for bills no longer allowed
May 2005 2.3
  • Large backups will span multiple diskettes.

Bug fixes

  • “Unordained” label removed for females on lists.
  • Temporary member numbers and out of unit member records can be deleted from MLS.
  • Clear and Save buttons in the Potential Seminary and Institute Students section were fixed to work properly.
  • By Whom fields for priesthood ordinations can now be edited.
  • Bishopric Action and Interview List now shows correct ages for members listed.
  • Membership records with errors can now be transferred from the unit.
  • The Member Progress Report was submitted to the stake, but not Church headquarters, when zeros were not recorded. This has been fixed. The stake should not receive the report from the unit unless it is also sent to Church headquarters.
  • A memory caching problem that showed endowment dates from other members in the endowment edit field for unendowed members has been fixed so the endowment date will not display.
  • Male converts who had been ordained elders continued to appear in the Unit Statistics as unordained. This has been fixed so they do not appear after their ordination.
  • When deleting a home or visiting teaching district, the companionships were “orphaned.” The default action when deleting a district allows the user to assign the companionships to another district.
  • Home and visiting teaching statistics are now transmitted properly to the stake.
  • Eighteen year old elders were not assigned automatically to the elders quorum. This is fixed.
  • The tool to create a membership record for a child who is blessed in one ward but lives in another ward has been fixed.
  • Prospective Elders are assigned automatically by default to the high priests group.
  • The Membership Record and Individual Ordinance Summary no longer list a marriage as “Terminated” after a member’s spouse passes away. The current marriage lists the spouse as “Deceased.”
  • Birth Country is now a required field when creating a membership record.
  • Members are listed alphabetically in the Home and Visiting Teaching companionship report.
  • Only those ages 12 and over are now listed as potential candidates for callings, and the unit can override this default age.
  • Merged donors now are labeled as “merged” on the donor edit screen.
  • Expenses cannot be charged to the “Other” account unless there is a subcategory in the “Other” account.
  • Only one fast offering category can be used when writing a check for welfare purposes.
  • If you are required to print an expense report, but have not recorded expenses, the report will print a message that indicates that there were no expenses recorded.
  • Sequence when pressing the TAB key has been changed when recording a fast offering expense. The TAB sequence is amount, tax, fast offering recipient, and save.
  • Year to date tithing report can be submitted for a discontinued unit.
  • A link has been added on the Tithing Declaration Report to display the amount of tithing paid by the member, along with a checkbox to suppress tithing amounts when printing the summary.
  • “Other Items” entered in the reconciliation section can now be edited until the month reconciliation is closed.
  • For stakes, a reimbursable code has been added for approved reimbursable expenses for Family History Center computers.
  • For units in Canada, the tax valid receipt has been updated with information required by Canadian law.
  • The serial number or date recorded on the deposit authorization screen now prints on the deposit report.
Nov 2005 2.3.2
Feb 2006 2.4.1
  • The Member Progress Report is now called the Stake Quarterly Report for a stake, and the Quarterly Report for a ward.
  • The quarterly reports have changes in the section for converts.
  • The Convert Action List is now called the New Member Report.
  • Additional languages have been added for MLS users. In addition to English, MLS is now available in Chinese, Danish, Dutch, Finish, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, and Swedish.
  • Quarterly Report replaces Member Progress Report.
  • The New Member Report includes additional information for recording new member lessons, sacrament meeting attendance, responsibility or calling, and whether tithing was paid within the quarter. New member lessons and sacrament meeting attendance information will be recorded directly into MLS using the new Member Report screen. MLS will use information already in the database to display a convert's responsibility or calling and whether tithing has been paid during the quarter. There are two versions of the report. The first version can be shared with priesthood and auxiliary leaders and other Ward Council members. The second version of the report contains confidential information (endowment status and whether tithing was paid during the quarter) and should be viewed only by bishoprics and stake presidencies.
Sep 2006 2.4.3
  • This release addresses some minor bugs in previous versions of MLS.
  • Receive member data displayed in upper and lower case letters from CMIS. This eliminates names being displayed in all capital letters.
  • Added Church logo to the donor statement
Aug 2007 2.6.2
  • Other Resources includes new features for MLS:
    • Church Education System: The seminary and institute student features of MLS have been enhanced
    • Confidential Forms: The forms used in conjunction with disciplinary councils are now available in MLS.
Note: This version of the Confidential Forms does not allow the saving of the form. It does allow the clerk to fill in the form and to print it. The ability to save the form will be in a future version of MLS.
  • The Directories panel (replaced by the Other Resources panel) can now be found by clicking More on the Reports/Forms panel.
  • If there is a software update waiting, you can now transmit without accepting the software update (however, after declining acceptance three times, the software will be downloaded).
  • The new Check for Updates option in the Help menu allows downloading the latest MLS version.
  • Clerk and Leader Training and Frequently Asked Questions (English only) have been added as items in the Help menu.
  • MLS now remembers the path where the backups are saved.
  • Spanish and French help information has been improved.
  • Mailing Labels are now available on most lists as a selection under the File drop-down menu.
  • If an Internet connection is available, MLS can use it (found in System Options).
  • Setting-apart status can now be tracked in MLS (the status can be set Edit Positions dialog and viewed in the Members with Callings report in Organizations).
  • The Membership Validation Report can now be viewed by stakes.
  • Attendance rolls have been improved with instructions on how to report attendance and now allows the choice of a three or four month term.
  • The Baptism Record and Confirmation Record forms have been consolidated into a single form, the Baptism and Confirmation Record.
  • Stake MLS now has a move in/move out report by ward.
  • The Household listings no longer include a Household Spouse. All household members (including head of household and spouse) are listed under Household Members.
  • Global:
    • If a member's tithing status declaration is Exempt, MLS now will only allow you to select Member in the Declared by column, not Bishop. (Church policy says only a member can declare themselves to be exempt.)
    • Add/Update Donors - Added "age" to donor lookup to assist in distinguishing between donors with the same name.
  • Specific Country/Region/Area:
    • The Canadian check format has been changed to meet new government requirements.
    • For United States and Canadian units, MLS will automatically send a message to Church headquarters when a category adjustment to expenses or donations is made.
    • In addition to a calendar-year budget period, MLS now supports a fiscal-year budget period.
Oct 2007 2.7
  • Other Resources includes new features for MLS:
    • Confidential Forms: Information recorded on confidential forms can now be saved up to 90 days. After 90 days, the confidential form will be automatically deleted.
    • Finance Audit: Financial audit forms can now be printed from MLS (only available for Church units in the United States and Canada).
    • Membership Audit: A new wizard will guide the ward clerk through the membership audit process.
  • All MLS forms can now be saved up to one year.
  • The Patriarchal Blessing Recommend form is now available in MLS for English speaking units. Other languages will be made available as translations are completed. This form can be accessed from the Print Forms section of MLS.
  • The Members Without Callings report added the options to designate an age range and specify gender.
  • For Custom Reports, added a new Marriage Status criteria which includes Single, Divorced and Widowed.
  • The Household Members screen now shows household positions (i.e. Head of Household, Spouse and Other).
  • The Move Out Report saves the information for 90 days.
  • The new donor statement report, Official Tax Statements (Letterhead), has been added. This is the preferred report to use--to be printed on the unit’s letterhead paper and to be signed by the unit leader (for U.S. and Puerto Rico units only).
  • During the tithing settlement process, members that move into the unit will now be automatically added to the tithing settlement screens.
  • Units that manage Family History Centers, Youth Camps, and Recreational Properties can now set up these facilities as a finance-only unit type in MLS. Finance-only units can be setup from the New Unit Information dialog. The dialog is displayed the first time that MLS is installed or by clicking on Add Unit in the Unit tab in System Options.
  • The Income and Expense Report now allows sub-category selection and display of sub-category detail.
  • A new option is available to suppress donation statements for those with zero donation amounts.
  • The Close Out Year process automatically starts when opened.
Jan 2008 2.8
  • Other Resources includes a new updated Family History Center Financial Audit (only available for Church units in the United States and Canada).
  • The Help menu now includes an About selection that displays the version of MLS and the modules included in that version.
  • The Officers Sustained forms have been updated to reflect the reorganization of the First Presidency and related changes to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
  • The Patriarchal Blessing Recommend form has been included so bishops may print it from MLS. (Available in English, Chinese, Danish, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Samoan, Spanish, Swedish, and Tongan.)
  • Under priesthood council direction, the Quarterly Report has been changed to provide more focus on recent converts. A formal announcement concerning these changes is being sent to priesthood leaders. However, these changes will not be visible in MLS 2.8 until after the end of the first quarter of 2008. Because these changes will impact what is reported on the first quarter 2008 Quarterly Report, it is critical that MLS 2.8 be installed in Church units before 1 April 2008.
  • The New Member Report has been changed so that it no longer provides information on New Member lessons taught, Church attendance, and endowment status. The Bishop's Confidential Copy of the New Member Report is no longer available.
  • A new feature on the Reports/Reconcile panel is called Finance Statements. Now a unit's monthly Church Unit Financial Statement will be sent to the unit through MLS. All the statements for 2007 will already be included, but stakes and wards can also request copies prior to 2007 (only available for Church units in the United States and Canada).
  • The Reports/Reconcile panel has traded places with the Transfers panel on the Finance menu. This was to make room for Finance Statements on the Reports/Reconcile panel.
Aug 2008 2.9
  • Under user rights, each user name should now be associated with a member name and membership record number. This provides additional security and prevents user names from being used by more than one person. Two Out-of-Unit Administrators are also authorized (previously these were called Stake Administrators). These might be administrators from the stake, mission, or administration office.
  • The Recommendation for New Bishop form and Recommendation for New Counselor to Stake President form are now available in stake MLS.
  • A Confidential Member Information report is now available for use by the bishop or stake president. This report provides information on members assigned to a ward or stake with disciplinary council actions. This report can only be accessed and printed by the bishop or stake president, based on user rights and position information recorded in MLS.
  • When adding a child to a parent's record, MLS now guides the clerk through the process.
  • When recording Born in the Covenant (BIC) or Sealed to Parent information on a new child's record, MLS now guides the clerk by asking a number of questions. This should improve the accuracy of BIC or Sealing to Parent information recorded for children.
  • Exported MLS files containing address information, such as family data or individual data, are now available in both .csv and vCard formats. MLS will export both file types and the user may choose the one he wants. Palm brand devices should be able to handle both formats without difficulty.
Jan 2009 2.9.3
  • Thai language support has been added so that units in Thailand can now use MLS.
  • Adding a member spouse to a household when the member spouse lives in a different ward (military, etc.) now creates an out-of-unit member record for the spouse. Previously it created a record that could not be deleted.
  • The Tithing Settlement Statement will now show adjustments made to donations during the year.
  • On the Tithing Declaration Report, an asterisk will appear beside the names of brethren who have the Melchizedek Priesthood, including those who were ordained during the year. Previously, those ordained during the year had no asterisk.
Apr 2009 2.9.4
  • All Officers Sustained forms have been updated to reflect the recent change to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
  • There have been no significant changes to membership.
  • There have been no significant changes to finance.
Jun 2009 3.0
  • Updating unit and leader information. Stakes and districts can now send and receive changes to leader and unit information electronically. A new option has been added to the “Other Resources” menu dealing with Leader and Unit Change Requests. After this information is transmitted, it will be recorded at Church headquarters. This feature eliminates the need to use the paper-based Information Change Request (ICR) forms currently used by some units.
  • Recording meeting times. When it is time to change ward and branch meeting times (usually at the beginning of a new year), an urgent task will now be displayed. Recording ward and branch meeting times in MLS is important because they are displayed on Local Unit and “Find Places of Worship” Web sites. (The “Find Places of Worship” Web site is at http://maps.lds.org.) MLS is the only place local units can record or change meeting times.
  • Name searches. The name search feature is improved. Typing characters in a name search field filters the list of names in the search results list (only names matching the typed characters will display).
  • Messaging system. The MLS messaging system has been reorganized into four folders: Received, Sent, Archived, and Deleted, allowing the clerk to organize messages. The Archived folder allows important messages to be filed while urgent messages remain more visible. The Deleted folder holds messages until they are permanently deleted by the user, allowing the clerk to retrieve deleted messages if necessary. These folders can be opened from the main screen of the messaging system. Messages can be dragged into these folders. Another new feature is the ability to preview messages on the screen without opening them.
  • Hungarian language support. MLS now supports the Hungarian language.
  • Recording Church positions (callings). When recording a calling, MLS now contains messages that encourage clerks to use standard position names and discourages the creation of custom positions. As the Church begins to provide local leaders and members access to Church applications and programs over the Web, the Church must limit access to authorized users only. For example, someone with the position of “Ward Clerk” in MLS could access a clerk Web site, but someone with the custom position of “Senior Clerk” would not be admitted to the site. Use custom positions only when no standard position fits the calling, because custom positions cannot be used to access Church Web applications.
  • Custom position review tool. In keeping with the new emphasis on using standard position names to record callings, MLS now has a tool to review existing custom positions. To access this feature, select the Organizations menu, then select Reports/Tools. Select Custom Position Review.
  • Transfer of position (calling) information between stake and ward. Wards will now be able to view stake leadership positions (callings) on their copy of MLS. The stake will be able to view each ward’s callings. When a stake updates position (calling) information, it is transmitted to the administration office and the administration office then transmits that information to a ward when that ward does a Send/Receive Changes. The same will be true for transmitting the ward positions (callings) to the stake.
  • Move restriction. Any attempt to move out a membership record with a move restriction will display a warning message to the clerk. The bishop will need to have the move restriction canceled by the administration office before the record can actually be moved.
  • Bishopric Action and Interview List. The Bishopric Action and Interview List now includes semiannual Priest and Laurel interviews.
  • Officers Sustained form. When completing a Ward or Branch Officers Sustained form, the names for stake officers are now automatically supplied by MLS.
  • Access to forms and certificates. Links to forms and certificates on MLS menus have been moved so that they are more readily visible and easier to find. You can view most forms and certificates by clicking “More” on Reports/Forms. Similar improvements have been made in the drop-down menu, where the old “Lists” menu has been replaced by the “Reports/Forms” menu.
  • There are no significant changes to finance.
Jul 2009 3.0.1
  • Release notes were the same as MLS 3.0
  • There are no significant changes to membership.
  • Transfers across major categories were unintentionally enabled in MLS 3.0. In MLS 3.0.1 they are once again disabled.
Aug 2009 3.0.2
  • MLS in Russian. MLS is now available in the Russian language.
  • Elders May Serve as Stake Clerk or Stake Executive Secretary. Elders may now be recorded in MLS for the stake callings of stake clerk and stake executive secretary, as allowed by the Church Handbook of Instructions.
  • Signature Card May Now Be Filled Out Completely. Stakes and wards may now list up to six authorized signers on the Signature Card (U.S. and Canada).
  • Financial Audit Forms Available in French and Spanish (U.S. and Canada). Stake and ward financial audit forms are now available to print in French and Spanish in the United States and Canada.
Oct 2009 3.0.3
  • File Errors during Send/Receive Changes. There were some errors during "Send/Receive Changes" receiving files concerning leadership callings from the administration office. This has been corrected.
  • There are no significant changes related to membership.
  • There are no significant changes related to finance.
Nov 2009 3.1
  • Quarterly Reports. The quarterly report has been revised to include the activity of young single adults. The revised quarterly report has added two additional fields (lines 12 and 13) to collect specific information about young single adults. All lines after line 13 have been renumbered accordingly. The revised Quarterly Report will be activated in MLS after the fourth quarter ends (after December 31, 2009)
  • Changes to Data Transfer Tracking. An extra bar has been added to the bottom of the MLS screen to more efficiently track the transfer of data to and from the administration office. This bar is always visible and may be used from anywhere in MLS.

    The right end of the bar allows the user to click Send/Receive Changes and connect with the administration office and transfer data. The left end of the bar shows the current status of the connection between MLS and the administration office. A gauge appears in the middle of the bar showing the progress of data transfer. This is useful for long downloads, such as for a software update.

    After data transfer is completed, the message "Send/Receive Changes was successful" will appear on the data tracking bar. The message will not appear in a pop-up as it previously did.

  • Using MLS During Data Transfer. With the introduction of the data transfer bar in MLS (see above), users may now continue to work in MLS while the transfer is still happening. This can save time in many cases. After the transfer process is complete the user will be prompted for any remaining steps. Users may also freely disconnect at any time and then resume the data transfer later by clicking again on Send/Receive Changes. The data transfer will resume where it left off.
  • Reduced Data Transfer Time. Units using a broadband connection should see a noticeable decrease in data transfer time. Units using a modem dial-up connection will see improvement, but not as significant.
  • Checking Data Transfer Progress. Under the Help menu, there is now an option called "Show Send/Receive Status." This screen will show the progress of data transfer that is currently happening, plus a history of recent data transfer (Send/Receive Changes) sessions.
  • Translation. Because of translation delays, some text changes may not be available in all MLS supported languages. Missing translations will be added as they become available. Until then they will display in English.
  • MLS Supports Ukrainian. MLS now supports the Ukrainian language.
  • Confirmation Date of Children on Parent's Record. To address concerns raised by priesthood leaders and parents, the Membership Record and the Individual Ordinance Summary (IOS) will now show the original confirmation date for all children of a member, regardless of the child’s membership status.
  • Sending Membership Records to Address Unknown. When moving membership records out of the ward without a forwarding address, MLS will ask the clerk two questions: (1) Did the bishop approve moving the record without an address, and (2) the date the bishop approved moving the record without an address. If the clerk answers that he has not received permission to move the record without an address, he will be directed to get permission first.
  • Recording Individual Telephone Numbers and E-mail Addresses. In addition to recording telephone and e-mail address information for households, clerks can now record information for one telephone and one e-mail address for individuals. Individual telephone and e-mail information can be recorded in MLS for any member, regardless of age. However, before recording or updating this information for anyone who is under eighteen years of age, the clerk needs to get permission from a parent or legal guardian. This permission does not need to be in writing or, once obtained, maintained in any way. Also with this change, only one telephone number can be recorded for a household.

    To support individual telephone and e-mail address information, the following changes have been made to the Household Record and Member Record screens in MLS:

    • On the Household Record screen, the "Phone and E-Mail Address" heading has been changed to "Household Contact Information."
    • The "Primary Phone Number" label has been changed to simply "Phone Number."
    • The "Secondary Phone Number" field will no longer be available. Because there was no way to reliably tell whose phone number the Secondary Phone Number was, it has not been moved, but eliminated. There was a procedure outlined in a previous communication from Church headquarters or your administration office showing how to preserve these phone numbers (if needed) in a report before downloading MLS 3.1.
    • On the Member Record's "Contact Information" screen there are now two sections:
      • The "Individual Contact Information" section displays individual telephone and e-mail address information. To use this, the telephone and e-mail address information will have to be recorded for each adult member who gives his or her permission. Information may be recorded for those under the age of 18 with parent or guardian permission.
      • The "Household Contact Information" section displays only household telephone and e-mail address information. This section can also be updated using the "Contact Information" screen of the Household Record.
Once recorded in MLS, individual telephone number and e-mail address information will be included on some MLS reports and lists. They are:
  • Membership Record
  • Individual Ordinance Summary
  • Bishopric Action and Interview List
  • Quorum and auxiliary lists
  • Home and visiting teaching lists
  • MLS export files
  • Birthday List
If this individual information is not recorded in MLS, these reports and lists will continue to use the household information. In future releases of MLS, and as resources permit, individual telephone and e-mail address information will be added to other MLS-produced reports and lists (such as forms, temple recommends, the Directory of Members, and other household lists).
  • New International Financial Audit Forms. Updated financial audit forms for units outside the U.S. and Canada have been or will be made available for all MLS languages. This release will support the English, Portuguese, and Spanish translations of these forms. The remaining translations will be added to MLS over the next few weeks
25 Nov 2009 3.1.1
  • No changes mentioned; release notes the same as 3.1.0
  • There have been no significant changes to membership.
  • There have been no significant changes to finance.
12 Dec 2009 3.1.2
  • Send/Receive Changes Success Message. After performing a Send/Receive Changes, MLS displays a box declaring that the send/receive was successful. Users can select in this box an option to not have this message appear after future transmissions. To restore this feature, go to System Options > Users. Select your user name and unclick "Hide Success Dialog."
  • New and Returning Member Progress Form. The New and Returning Member Progress form has been added to MLS. Leaders may print this form and use it within their wards and branches to track the progress of new members or less active members who are returning to full activity. Unit leaders should have received a notice recently explaining the use of this form. To access this form in MLS, go to the Reports/Forms menu, click More, and then under Forms/Certificates, click New/Returning Member Progress. This form may not be available in all languages, but will be in a future release.
  • Changes to Primary Class Names. Based on direction from the general Primary presidency, some Primary class names have changed. These changes have been made in MLS Primary class lists. The Primary organization should have sent stakes and wards information concerning these changes. These changes may not yet be available in all MLS languages. If not, the changes will display in English.
  • Changes to Names of Positions (Callings) in Relief Society and Young Women. Based on direction from the general Relief Society and Young Women presidencies, names of some positions (callings) in the Relief Society and Young Women have changed. These position name changes are currently only available in English. Other MLS languages will be added in a future release.
  • New International Financial Audit Forms. Updated financial audit forms for units outside the U.S. and Canada are available for all MLS languages except for Indonesian. The Indonesian translations of these forms will be added when they are available.
22 Dec 2009 3.1.3
  • Corrected Stake Home Teaching Data Problem. The problem that prevented stakes and districts from receiving home teaching data has been corrected.
  • New and Returning Member Progress Form. There are additional New and Returning Member Progress forms for Chinese, Hungarian, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, and Russian.
  • Changes to Names of Positions (Callings) in Relief Society and Young Women. Based on direction from the general Relief Society and Young Women presidencies, names of some positions (callings) in the Relief Society and Young Women have changed. These position name changes are currently only available in English. Other MLS languages will be added in a future release.
  • New International Financial Audit Forms. Updated financial audit forms for units outside the U.S. and Canada are now available for Indonesian.
29 Dec 2009 3.1.4
  • Corrected Organization Selection Problem. The problem where an error message appeared when trying to select organizations such as Priests or Laurels has been corrected.
  • There have been no significant changes to membership.
  • There have been no significant changes to finance.
4 Feb 2010 3.1.5
  • Dial up script problem. The MLS installer for 3.1.4 set the dialer script for transmissions to "Ignore dial up script" without this being selected by the user. For some users this prevented them from transmitting. This problem has been corrected.
  • (Stakes only) Sending a leadership change through the Leader and Unit Change Request process. The Leader and Unit Change Request process appeared to send leadership changes, such as a new counselor to the stake president, to Church headquarters. This was not always working correctly. The former leader was being deleted but the new leader was not being added. This problem has been corrected.
  • Sending Membership Records to Address Unknown. When moving membership records out of the ward without a forwarding address, MLS will ask the clerk two questions: (1) Did the bishop approve moving the record without an address, and (2) the date the bishop approved moving the record without an address. If the clerk answers that he has not received permission to move the record without an address, he will either have to get an address to complete the process or receive permission from the bishop to move the record without an address.
  • (Outside the United States and Canada) Duplicate returned finance files problem. For units outside the United States and Canada, when financial files were returned to the unit after being processed, there would be a "Batch doesn't exist" error and a duplicate returned file would be created. This problem has been corrected so that there is only one returned financial batch file.
25 Jun 2010 3.2
  • Software Bugs. Some software bugs have been fixed in this version.
  • Listing of High Councilors. In stake MLS, the Organizations menu has an option called High Council. This option lists high council members in alphabetical order only. This order cannot be changed. Members of the high council should not be listed by seniority of service. Only Apostles serve by seniority.

Over the next several months MLS will begin sending financial information to the new Church Unit Banking System (CUBS) at Church headquarters. CUBS is used to manage member donations and unit finances. Although MLS 3.2 supports this new CUBS functionality, it will not be activated in your unit's MLS until the appropriate time and after you have been notified. MLS 3.2 is being released now so all units will be using MLS 3.2 before CUBS MLS functionality is activated.

When you are notified that CUBS is being activated for your unit, you will not be allowed to enter finance transactions during the conversion period. Once the CUBS conversion has been completed for your unit, finance entries and changes will be allowed.

When CUBS is activated, the following MLS changes will be noted:

  • No Reconciliation. For units in the United States and Canada, there will no longer be a reconciliation of the Church Unit Financial Statement to MLS. Units outside the United States and Canada already do not do reconciliations.
  • New Church Unit Financial Statement. All units will receive a new Church Unit Financial Statement with many more categories listed. For example, Humanitarian Aid, Temple Construction, and Perpetual Education will have their own columns on the new statement.
  • Direct Charges. There will be a new subcategory for direct charges, such as those from Distribution Services. Stake and ward finance clerks will then need to move amounts from this subcategory to the correct budget subcategories to keep the information in MLS correct.
  • Balance in the Budget Category. Units in the United States and Canada will begin having a balance in the Budget category. Previously, units wrote checks from Budget that were taken out of the category and then reimbursed so that the balance remained at zero. After CUBS is activated, when wards receive budget allowance from the stake, it will appear as a balance in the Budget category and will decrease as the ward writes checks. Budget allowance will continue to be allotted every three months, so that an increase in the balance of that amount should happen every quarter. Wards and stakes should still try to estimate their yearly budget so that they can plan accordingly.
  • Stakes Distribute Budget Allowance. Stakes will use a new screen to calculate and distribute budget allowance to the stake and its wards.
  • Donor Names. Each donor name will be the name on the membership record and not the preferred name. The membership record name is the one that will appear on financial reports and other MLS finance-related printouts. There will be a checkbox to include the spouse name with the donor name, if needed.
  • Donation Screens. There will be no changes to the donation screens.
  • Tax Reimbursement. In the United States, the states of Utah and North Carolina charge the Church sales tax on purchases. In Canada, all Church units are charged a goods and services tax on purchases. For each area, all or a portion of the tax can be reimbursed to the unit. On the Expense screen there will no longer be a Tax field. Instead, the amount of the expense will be split between the expense and the tax on the expense. Both will be entered under the "Category" and "Amount" columns. For units in Utah and North Carolina, the entire amount of the tax will be left in the unit's account. Only the amount of the expense will be deducted from the account. For units in Canada, half of the amount of the tax will be left in the unit's account. The other half of the tax amount plus the expense will be deducted from the account.
  • Computer or Software Failure. There is no change to the procedure used if there is a computer or software failure and the unit cannot record and transmit financial data. This procedure is included in both the online help and the MLS Software Handbook found on the clerk and auditor training site on LDS.org.
29 Jul 2010 3.2.1 (Released 7 July 2010 in the UK, 29 July 2010 elsewhere)
  • Software Bugs. Some software bugs have been fixed in this version.
31 Aug 2010 3.2.2
  • Software Bugs. Some software bugs have been fixed in this version.
07 Oct 2010 3.2.3
  • Software Bugs. Some software bugs have been fixed in this version.
12 Nov 2010 3.2.4
  • Software Bugs. Some software bugs have been fixed in this version.
15 Dec 2010 3.3.0
  • Windows 7 Compatibility. MLS is now compatible with Windows 7. MLS will also continue to be compatible with Windows XP. Those using computers with Windows 7 (as well as those using XP) will not be required to run MLS as a Windows administrator.
  • New Patriarch Recommendation Form. The New Patriarch Recommendation form used by the stake to recommend a high priest to become a patriarch is now in the stake version of MLS. At this point not all languages are available. More languages will be added as they become available.
  • Leader and Unit Change Request and Unit Information. The Leader and Unit Change Request feature used by stakes to change some limited information about the stake and the wards in the stake is now allowing the stake to change information about the unit itself.
  • Duplicate Position Assignments. Because of an MLS bug that has since been corrected, duplicate or incorrect position assignment (calling) information may have been recorded at Church headquarters for your unit that have not been visible to you before now. If these position assignment errors still exist they will now be visible in MLS 3.3. If duplicate or incorrect position assignment information is found, please correct it in MLS. This corrected position assignment information will then be sent to Church headquarters as part of your next MLS transmission.
  • New MLS Software Manual. Beginning with MLS 3.3, the online help is replaced by the MLS Software Manual, which is a PDF document. The MLS Software Manual is accessed by clicking Help on the menu bar and selecting Help from that menu (or by pressing F1). The MLS Software Manual is available in the language used by the unit in MLS. Because of the size of the manual, it will be sent as part of the next Send/Receive Changes after MLS 3.3 is installed. Some units may have trouble searching through this document because the PDF reader they have does not have a search feature. The Adobe Acrobat Reader will search PDF documents and is free. To download this reader, on the Internet go to mls.lds.org (no "www"). In the Unit ID field, enter your unit number. In the Password field, enter the password obtained from the stake clerk. Click Submit. Click Additional Local Unit Software. From here you can download the Adobe Reader.
  • Membership Record Number No Longer in Export File. When leaders and clerks use the Export feature in MLS to extract membership information to a PDA, the membership record number (MRN) will no longer be included. This decision was made due to security concerns because the MRN is a key LDS Account component used by members to access Church websites.
  • Recording Melchizedek Priesthood Ordinations at the Stake Level. Now both stakes and wards can record Melchizedek Priesthood ordinations (elder and high priest), with stakes taking the lead so that these ordinations are recorded in a more timely manner. The procedure for stakes is below.
    • On the Membership Records menu, click Individual Record.
    • In the window that appears, select the name of the person receiving the ordination and click OK.
    • On the left side of the screen, click Ordinances.
    • In the Priesthood Ordinations section, click Add Ordination.
    • Fill in all information and click Save.
After the stake records the Melchizedek Priesthood ordination, the ward receives notification that it has occurred. Clerks should inform their unit leaders of this change in policy.
  • Child Blessing Record and Baptism and Confirmation Record Revisions. Previously there were two versions of the Child Blessing Record and the Baptism and Confirmation Record, a regular version and a consent version for those areas where legal consent was needed for the Church to record and keep membership information. These have now been combined into one Child Blessing Record and one Baptism and Confirmation Record. The consent language is in the combined forms.
  • Reports and Lists That Contain Personal Telephone and E-mail Information. In a previous release, MLS added the functionality to record each member's individual telephone number and e-mail address. At first, this information appeared on a limited number of reports and lists. More reports and lists now contain this information. They are:
    • Abbreviated Directory
    • Baptism and Confirmation Record
    • Directory of Members
    • Endowed Members without Recommend
    • Household Reports
    • Members with Callings
    • Members without Callings
    • Potential Seminary/Institute Students
    • Request for Released Time form
    • Telephone and E-mail Directory
  • Changes to the Request Household Records and Individual Records Screens. On the Request Household Records information and the Request Individual Record screens, the "Individual" category has had some changes to its fields. Mostly these are format changes that more clearly show what information is needed. However, a full birth date is now required. This has been done to increase the success for finding the correct record and to reduce the number of requests for more information sent to a unit from the administration office.
  • Changes to the Membership Audit. The following changes have been made to the Membership Audit in MLS:
    • The three tabs on the Priesthood screen have been changed to three separate screens (High Priests, Elders, Aaronic).
    • The Baptisms screen has been changed to include a column for the child's telephone number. If the child is under 18 years old, the telephone number will be the household number. If the child is 18 years old or more, the individual telephone number will be displayed.
    • The Training Lessons screen has been removed and has been replaced by the Key Leaders screen. This new screen displays the office title, the name of the person in the office, and the date sustained for each key leader.
    • When the Membership Audit is completed, click the Submit button. This will cause the results of the audit to be sent to Church headquarters for statistical purposes. However, clerks should still print the report that is taken to the stake president.
  • Application to the First Presidency. There have been some changes to the instructions for the Application to the First Presidency form. Leaders and clerks should read the instructions carefully when completing this form. At this point not all languages are available. More languages will be added as they become available.
  • Perpetual Education Fund (PEF) Priesthood Reports. Units that are involved in the Perpetual Education Fund (PEF) now have access to PEF Priesthood Reports in MLS. The PEF staff will be providing instructions concerning this to these units.
  • Budget Reports and CUBS. If your unit has begun to use Church Unit Banking Services (CUBS), your Budget Report will be updated to reflect the features of CUBS, such as a real dollar amount in your Budget category and estimates of future budget allotments. If you are not yet using CUBS, you will be informed when this transition will begin.
18 Feb 2011 3.3.1     Finance Changes for Units Supported by CUBS
  • Changes to Format of Budget Reports. Some changes to budget reports have been made to align with the improved Church unit budgeting process. See the document titled "Local Unit Budget Instructions" for details. (This document was e-mailed to stake clerks and should also be found on your Finance Statements screen with the title "Local Unit Budget Instructions.")
  • Change to the Income and Expense Report. Some changes to Income and Expense Reports have been made to align with the improved Church unit budgeting process. The Income and Expense Reports by subcategory and by detail no longer contain budget items. These are in the new budget reports that may be accessed by clicking the Budget Report button at the bottom of the Income and Expense Report screen. See "Local Unit Budget Instructions" for details.
  • Budget Allocation Subcategories. When 3.3.1 is installed, all unit subcategories under Budget allocation subcategories will be adjusted to a zero balance and marked "inactive." If any of these unit subcategories have been used in the current year for expense or deposit, the transactions should be adjusted to the appropriate new standard subcategory introduced with CUBS and marked "inactive." If a stake is using these unit subcategories to track payments made to their units, and the stake wishes to continue to use them, then no actions are necessary.
1 Jun 2011 3.3.2 This release was pushed only to stakes and districts. Standard callings for Seminary and Institute. Added support for the following callings in stake MLS:
  • District Institute Supervisor
  • District Seminary Supervisor
  • Stake Institute Supervisor
  • Stake Seminary Supervisor
 
8 Jul 2011 3.4
  • Member and Leader Services (MLS) Software Manual Update. The MLS Software Manual can be accessed by clicking Help on the MLS menu bar and then selecting Help on the drop-down menu. It can also be accessed by pressing F1. This PDF manual has been updated to include changes to MLS that have occurred over the last two years.
  • MLS Supports Mongolian. MLS now supports the Mongolian language.
  • Changes to Seminaries and Institutes (S&I) Reports. Changes to the Seminary and Institute reports are being implemented one area at a time. If these changes are not yet available in your area, contact your S&I representative for assistance. The new options to choose from under "Seminaries and Institutes" on the "Other Resources" panel are:
    • Potential Institute Students. This is very similar to the old "Institute" option. This option allows bishops to identify the Institutions of higher education (if any) where the individual will be studying. This may be printed or exported at the request of ward or stake officers.
    • Institute Attendance Report. This report is downloaded to MLS by S&I and lists each student attending institute and how attendance at classes is going.
    • Institute Graduation Report. This report has not changed.
    • Potential Seminary Students. This combines information from the old "Seminary Daily and Home Study" and "Seminary Released-Time" reports. Now it asks for which seminary year is being reported on and which school the student attends. Both of these are drop-down menus the bishop uses to fill out the report. One difference is that the bishop only has to set the seminary year for each student once. At the end of the year, the seminary year will increase by one automatically.
    • Released-Time Preregistration. All students registering for released-time seminary must complete a Request for Released Time form. This option allows the bishop to print a form for any student who might be taking released-time seminary. If the Potential Seminary Students screen has been completed, the information will print on the Request for Released Time form. The parents should sign the form and return it to the bishop.
    • Seminary Attendance Report. This report is downloaded to MLS by S&I and lists each student and their percentage of attendance. It is divided into two parts, one for students who have been baptized and one for students who are children of record who have not been baptized.
    • Seminary Graduation Report. This report has not changed.
    • Stake Summary Report. This report is available to stakes only. It has two sections, one for seminary and one for institute. It lists the number of students eligible, the number enrolled, the percent enrolled, and what percentage of classes each student has attended.
  • Guidelines to Find the New Address of Members Who Have Moved Out. When units move out an individual or a family and answer the question "Is the new address known?" with a No, a list of guidelines on finding the new address will pop up. Following these guidelines will often help clerks find the new address. The guidelines are:
    • Call any known telephone numbers
    • Send an appropriate e-mail to any last known e-mail addresses
    • Contact known relatives
    • If available, call family telephone numbers
    • Contact known friends and other Church members
    • Contact all ward priesthood and auxiliary leaders
    • Contact the occupants at the member's last known address to see if they have a forwarding address
    • Contact the neighbors on both sides of the member's last known address to see if they have a forwarding address
    • If available in your area, visit the local post office for forwarding address or contact information
    • If available in your area, visit the local library or other locations to check electoral registers
  • Do Not Recommend a Currently Serving Temple Sealer as a New Bishop or New Counselor to the Stake President. A statement has been added to the Recommendation for New Bishop and the Recommendation for New Counselor to Stake President forms. It states, "Generally those currently serving as temple sealers are not to be recommended."
  • Young Single Adult (YSA) and Student Wards Can Now Move Several Members (Move-ins or Move-outs) on One Screen in MLS. When YSA and student wards use the "Request Records" or "Move Records Out" feature in MLS, they now have a third choice in the window that appears, "Move Multiple Records." This allows the clerk to select the names of members that will be moved and enter their address and telephone information. Only YSA and student wards will have this feature available.
  • Changing or Updating Callings. When changing or updating callings, you may not see the change in MLS reports until you have done Send/Receive Changes two or more times.
  • Change to Delivery of Internal Record of Purchase (IROP) Statements. For units in Canada, Guatemala, and the U.S., the IROP statements will no longer be delivered by postal mail. They will be sent through MLS, available on the same screen used to access Unit Financial Statements. The MLS IROP will be the official copy and available on the screen, reducing the need for IROPS to be printed. IROPs will also be maintained in MLS for the financial records retention period required by local law.
  • Cannot Change the Amount on a Cleared Donation or Expense. Once a donation (in a deposit) or an expense has cleared the bank, units will not be able to go into the closed batch and change the amount of the donation or expense. It will still be possible to transfer an amount from one category or subcategory to another. If the total amount needs to be changed, contact the administrative office.
19 Jul 2011 3.4 build 20025 Changes related to Seminary and Institute
  • Fixed an error in Summary Report.
  • Added export data functionality back into potential student screens.
   
29 Sep 2011 3.4.1
  • Language Fixes. Some mistranslated words and phrases in some languages from MLS 3.4 have been fixed in this version.
  • Bug Fixes. Various bugs have been fixed in this version.
  • Revised Record-Keeping Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). The FAQs (English) have been updated on both the MLS Help menu and the LDS.org "Record Keeping and Auditing Training" page. This update is aimed mainly at those English-speaking units that are using Church Unit Banking Services (CUBS).
 
  • Resending a Donation Batch in MLS. Units that are on Church Unit Banking Services (CUBS) will no longer be able to resend a donation batch. At this point, countries using CUBS are the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, and Guatemala. All other countries may still resend donation batches. For those on CUBS, if there is a problem with a donation batch, they should contact the administrative office.
  • Payee Fast Offering Warning. When preparing a check in MLS, if the payee and the fast-offering recipient are the same, you will receive a warning. It will state that the ward should make payments to providers of goods and services when possible, and not to the fast-offering recipient.
  • Using Tab Key on Budget Screen. You can now use the Tab key to move from field to field on the Budget screen.
  • Requesting Unit Financial Statements. When requesting Unit Financial Statements for the financial retention period, you will now be able to select from all 12 months of previous years in the retention period. The financial information retention period varies from country to country. In the United States it is three years plus the current year. In Canada it is five years plus the current year.
  • Change to the Budget Reports and Income and Expense Reports. This change affects only CUBS units (those on Church Unit Banking Services). Budget Reports and Income and Expense Reports will now take into account the date a financial transaction is posted. The end result is that MLS reports and the Unit Financial Statement will match when run for the same time period. It also means that when these reports are run for prior periods (after adjustments had been made) they will appear the same as when the data was first entered; and adjustments will appear in the month they are made.
  • For CUBS Units Only: In order to comply with escheatment laws that deal with unclaimed property (outstanding checks), changes have been made to disbursement statuses in MLS to allow headquarters to better track checks that need to be reported as unclaimed property. Please refer to the following table for valid statuses:
Status Description Actions
Not Printed Initial status of disbursement after user inputs into MLS Can change amount and void/Category change allowed
Not Sent Disbursement authorized and printed in MLS but not sent to HQ Can’t change amount/Can be voided/Category change allowed
Sent Disbursement recorded in MLS and sent to HQ Can’t change amount/Can be voided/Category change allowed
Issued Disbursement recorded in MLS and received by HQ Can’t change amount/Can be voided/Category change allowed
Cleared Disbursement cleared bank and matched at HQ Can’t change amount or void/Category change allowed
Void Disbursement voided No changes allowed
Escheated Sent to HQ for escheatment purposes Can’t change amount or void/Category change allowed
Recorded Non-check disbursement recorded Can’t change amount or void/Category change allowed
18 Nov 2011 3.4.2
  • Bug Fixes. Various bugs have been fixed in this version.
   
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