Running online small groups
You can easily create online groups within the Small Groups module, distinguishing them from groups that meet physically and providing group members with a simple Join meeting button in My ChurchSuite in order to access the group's designated online meeting place. Here's how...
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Online platform suggestions
The functionality outlined in this article is compatible with any online meeting platform that provides you with a unique meeting room URL. Some platforms optionally require meeting participants to enter a PIN or password to join a meeting - this will need to communicated to the group's members before the meeting and should not be included in the group's location name or description, which may be visible to others where the group is listed.
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Enabling the online group location in ChurchSuite
Working within the Groups section of the Small Groups module select to Add group (new groups) or Edit an existing group's settings.
On the Add group or Edit group pop-up, switch Location from Physical (the default) to Online.
The URL field is surfaced - you can optionally copy and paste the known online group meeting application URL, or leave it blank for your small group leaders to manage themselves from within the My Groups section of My ChurchSuite. For existing physical groups being updated to online, you may wish to optionally update some of the group meeting details such as the group Name or Location name to reflect the group's new online meeting status. Remember to Save the group changes.
Online groups are easily distinguished within ChurchSuite when viewing the location field shown on the group profile. Where a meeting URL is set, the location is clickable and launches the meeting's URL in a new browser tab.
You can easily filter the Groups section of the Small Groups module by online or physical groups using the Advanced Search option.
The online location Name (but not the URL) of small groups is also surfaced in Embed and Connect group lists...
...and the styling also carries through to group pages...
Enabling the online group location in My ChurchSuite
Group members assigned with group Roles that have Edit Group permissions enabled (typically the group's leaders) are able to manage the group's online details from within the member-facing My ChurchSuite in the My Groups section.
When viewing their group in My ChurchSuite, those with Edit Group permissions can click Edit...
...and add/update the group meeting Location and meeting URL. Remember to Save Changes to apply the changes.
Online groups are easily distinguished in My ChurchSuite when viewing the My Groups section...
Joining a meeting
In My Groups, for active members of the group, clicking Join meeting or clicking on the text in the group profile will launch the meeting URL in the device's browser.
Group members with a pending status must first be set active before they will see the Join meeting option.