Serving in a Bishopric is an amazing experience, but it obviously comes with many challenges. One of the most common challenges is staying organized. With hundreds of people on the ward roster, weekly meetings, and a constant stream of callings, staying organized is a must.
However, you’re only as organized as your tools allow you to be. The Church has improved a lot of their internal tooling in the last few years, but there are still gaps that bishoprics have to fill. For example, how do you track potential callings before they’re entered into LCR? Or how do you know which member of the bishopric will attend priesthood ordinations?
Most turn to Google docs and sheets to fill those gaps, which works at first. But over time, as the number of docs expands and people forget to update the data, things end up messy. Luckily, I discovered Coda, which I use as an all-in-one doc for keeping my bishopric running smoothly (well, for the most part 😁).
Here are the 3 most common organization problems bishoprics face, along with a page in this doc to solve the problem. Do any of them sound familiar to your bishopric?
Problem #1: Multiple handoffs with interviews and callings
A large portion of a bishopric’s time is spent managing interviews and callings. From callings and temple recommends to youth interviews and priesthood ordinations, it seems like there are constantly dozens of interviews and callings to manage. Depending on the type of interview or calling, handoffs and coordination is required between the executive secretary, members of the bishopric, and families.
What’s more, with each calling extended there are domino effects of releases and additional callings needed to fill holes. Keeping track of all the moving parts and people involved can feel like herding cats.
Over the years I’ve participated in amazing and spiritually uplifting bishopric meetings, to then just forgot about my list of assignments as soon as the meeting is over. My intentions were good, but I lacked a process.
For example, each member of the bishopric often keeps track of action items in his own siloed tools. The executive secretary might write them in a Google doc, the first counselor jots down a few tasks in a notebook, and the bishop scribbles the rest on a sticky note.
Without a single source to track assignments, it becomes nearly impossible to see what’s been done and follow up on incomplete tasks.
A single hub to track meetings, assignments, callings and interviews
Enter this doc ー a single hub to track meetings, assignments, callings, and interviews. It’s a template that you can copy and customize for your own bishopric’s needs. Consider it your bishopric’s “online hub” — feel free to copy and use as much or as little of the doc as you need.
You can get started in 3 easy steps:
Copy this doc
Customize the doc for your bishopric (add/delete pages, customize or create tables, etc.)
Share your copy of the doc with the members of your bishopric (click share in the upper right of the doc).
I’m new to Coda — how do I learn how to use this tool?
I also love Coda’s YouTube videos. They’re fun and easy to watch. Here’s one on filtering tables that might come in handy as you use this doc:
Finally, if you’re stuck you can always chat with a Coda expert for free help by clicking the question mark in the bottom right of the screen. I’ve found their support team to be super friendly and helpful!
How do I share this with the rest of my bishopric?
Click Share in the top right of this page, then enter each bishopric member’s email. Once you share the doc with someone, they’ll automatically appear in the “assign to” columns of the
Yes! Many bishoprics create a second, separate copy of the doc to keep their ward council organized. That way the ward council info is in one doc, and the bishopric info is in a completely separate and private doc.
Can I add my own pages to this doc?
Yes! Once you copy this doc, it’s 100% yours and meant to be customized for your bishopric. Feel free to add pages, build tables, or take notes. Coda is a flexible doc that you can shape however you’d like.
For example, maybe you want a place to jot down notes — create a page for it! Or maybe you want to track all young men priesthood ordinations every January. You could create a new page and add a table to keep track of who is assigned to ordain each young man.
Oops! I messed something up, how can I fix it?
Because Coda is a flexible doc, you might accidentally delete a table or change a setting. If this happens, not to worry! Here’s how you can fix it:
Type Cmnd + Z on a Mac, or Ctrl + Z on a PC to undo.
If that doesn’t work, type /version history to copy from a previous version of your doc. Note that on Coda’s free tier you can only go back 7 days.
If you’re still stuck, reach out to the Coda support team! Just click the question mark on the bottom right of the screen. Coda’s support team is awesome and can help you fix your doc.
Should I use this doc on my laptop, tablet, or mobile phone?
This doc works on any device (including mobile phones and tablets), but it’s best used on a laptop. When I use it on my phone, it’s usually to pull up information or quickly change a calling status on the go. I also like to read
Currently, there’s a gap in the LCR tool set. In LCR you can record callings, releasings, and setting aparts once they are official. But there’s a lot that happens before a calling or release is official. The bishopric has to discuss, pray about, and extend the calling or release to the member. Then keep track of who was sustained or thanked over the pulpit. What’s more, there are often dozens of these assignments to manage simultaneously.
This doc fills in the gap in the LCR tool set by tracking each assignment from start to finish in the