Resolving email delivery issues

There are a few reasons why you may be unable to send an email to someone. To discover the reason for any undeliverable emails head to the Address Book module >Reports and select the "Email Errors" report. This will generate a report on any errors encountered by your Address Book email communications.

The Children, Calendar, Giving and Bookings modules also each have their own Email Errors report. Each report provides a list of all changes made due to errors whilst sending emails in the respective module.


Usually arises from a recipient, intentionally or unintentionally, labelling you as a spam provider and as a result prevents further emails from being sent to that address from ChurchSuite (even if they subsequently mark you as a 'safe sender'). ChurchSuite will remove the relevant email address from its system; any attempts to manually re-enter the email address will be labelled as 'rejected' and will also be deleted from the system.

The purpose of this functionality is to protect people (even if they're your legitimate Address Book contacts) from being spammed by emails from your ChurchSuite account. This protection involves the contact's email address being added to Mandrill's blacklist (Mandrill process all outbound ChurchSuite account emails). Removing an email address from the Mandrill blacklist can only be done by ChurchSuite Support, and a request must come to us directly from the contact and from the email address they want un-blacklisted (again, this is for their protection).

In the event that a recipient/contact accidentally labels an item as Spam, or changes their mind, they will need to contact to be added back onto the system; any other method is ineffective.


Alternatively, your email may have been rejected by the recipient's email server and consequently added to a rejection blacklist (it has 'bounced').

Hard Bounces

If an email is labelled as 'Hard Bounce' it almost certainly means that the recipient's email, as recorded, does not exist, likely due to typing error. ChurchSuite will automatically remove the email address from its system in this case.

In the event of Hard Bounces ensure that the contact’s information you have is accurate and entered correctly.

Soft Bounces

If an email is labelled as 'Soft Bounce' it typically means the recipient's email is encountering a temporary delivery issue. Soft bounces are handled differently to hard bounces. When an email address soft bounces, it will immediately display as a soft bounce. If an email address continues to soft bounce in subsequent emails/campaigns, the address will eventually be considered a hard bounce and will be automatically cleaned from the person's record in ChurchSuite. While there are many reasons an email address may soft bounce, below are some common reasons this could happen.

  • Recipient mailbox is full (over quota)
  • Recipient email server is down or temporarily offline
  • Email message is too large for the server to handle

In cases of Soft Bounce the person's email provider will attempt to automatically deliver the email over the course of the next few days, however if the issue persists then it will be labelled as 'rejected', be hard-bounced back to ChurchSuite's mail handler, and the email address details will be deleted from your ChurchSuite account. If this occurs, and the recipient still wishes to receive emails, then they will need to contact to be added back onto the system.

If a Soft Bounce issue persists speak to the intended recipient to try and work out the problem: often it will be as simple as removing a few emails from their mailbox to clear space.

For more information on mailbox delivery issues check out Mandrill's guidance.

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