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Church Directory Returns

Many members of our church community will be familiar with the 'Directory' which would be released on a regular basis and contain the contact details of many members of the parish. Those who do know what the directory is, will also likely have in their possession a very old copy of it dating from around the beginning of 2021.

There have been several reasons why the directory has not been re-released. The first is a technical one. With a change in the software we use for the parish roll, the ease of publishing has not been as straight forward and generally required a skillset the office has not had in that period of time. The greater challenge, however, has been the privacy act.

A key component of the Privacy Act is the institutions ability to delete the information we hold on an individual when this request is made. This is easy enough within the digital and written platforms of the church office, but the directory has proven a more difficult hurdle to leap. Once we publish the directory as an organization we have little to no power over who sees it, shares it, or returns it if information is requested to be removed. Originally, this lead us to a path of exploring a 'digital' directory that would come from the parish roll software itself - a path we are still looking to implement. However, we also recognise the demographic of our community is one that would much prefer a physical directory than to have to have yet another account and password.

In light of this, we intend to publish a new directory in the weeks following the AGM. This will come with several conditions:

  • There will be no digital versions of the directory shared or emailed.

  • To receive a new directory, you must request one from the office.

  • The directory is given on the commitment that you return the physical copy when it is asked for so that we can remove any details requested.

  • If you cannot return the physical copy of the directory, you will not be issued a new one when there are changes made. This does not apply to the present directory printed in 2020.

  • Only the Vicar and Wardens will have discretion to bypass the above rule in extenuating circumstances.

We realise that this all sounds very serious and official, and it is. When a person gives us their personal information it is handed over in trust that we will only use it for the purposes we have said we will, and that we can remove it if requested. We hope that the seriousness with which we are approaching the issue of privacy in this matter helps you and others to be more willing to share that information that helps us to build our community and connect people to one another and to God.

The new bulletin will be listed alphabetically by first name, and only contain the phone numbers of the those who have requested to be included in the directory. If you are a regular attending member of All Saints' and do not wish to be in the directory you will be given opportunity to say so. If you are not likely to attend in the coming weeks, you are welcome to email the office and let them know.

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