As a technology specialist (TS), it is your responsibility to learn about meetinghouse technology so you can assist members and leaders as they strive to carry out the missions of the Church. You will help members use technology as you configure, test, maintain, and troubleshoot the devices in each meetinghouse.
This training program will help you understand the resources available to you, what is or could be expected of you, and how you can improve the use of technology within the Church. We hope this will help you serve in your current calling and in future endeavors.
Area Information and Communication Services (Area ICS)
Church employees outside the US and Canada who provide technical support to the Church workforce in their respective areas.
Assistant Technology Specialist (ATS)
ATSs are called by the stake presidency to assist an STS. ATSs may be assigned to support a ward, building, or organization or to manage a specific technology.
Brothers or sisters age 12 or older may be called to serve as ATSs.
Area Information and Communication Services (Area ICS):
Church employees outside the US and Canada that provide technical support to the Church workforce in their respective area.
Facilities Management Group (FMG)
A group of Church and contract employees, led by a facilities manager (FM), that manages multiple meetinghouses, usually spread across many stakes. The FMG works primarily with stake presidents and physical facilities representatives (PFRs) to maintain Church buildings and properties.
Global Services Department (GSD)
An IT support group available to assist TSs with meetinghouse technology issues that they cannot solve on their own and that are not the responsibility of the FMG.
Information and Communication Services Department (ICS)
A Church department charged with providing technology services for the Church worldwide.
Internet Service Provider (ISP)
A local company that provides access to the internet.
Any computer purchased with Church funds for use in a meetinghouse, installed under the direction of the stake presidency, and managed in compliance with Church standards. Meetinghouse computers include clerk computers and others used for gospel-related purposes.
Meetinghouse Facilities Department (MFD)
A Church department charged with providing and maintaining Church facilities worldwide.
Meetinghouse Technology Committee
A committee at Church headquarters representing all major departments of the Church that influence technology in meetinghouses.
Meetinghouse Technology Coordination Team
A team of ICS employees charged with coordinating communications, training, and policy related to meetinghouse technology.
Physical Facilities Representative (PFR)
A high council member assigned to coordinate building needs with the FM and the TS.
Stake Technology Specialist (STS)
An assistant stake clerk called by the stake president to provide technology support for meetinghouse products, leaders, instructors, members at meetinghouses, and stake family history centers.
The most basic resource available to you to perform your calling is this website, known as MHTech (mhtech.ChurchofJesusChrist.org). MHTech has a library of articles that will instruct and assist you as you carry out your calling. The site’s structure is consistent and easy to navigate, and the articles are simple and based on tasks that you may need to perform. There are three main types of articles on MHTech:
View the information below to become acquainted with the organization of MHTech.
The home page of MHTech is organized into three main sections:
Each section within the Products category begins with an overview article. This article gives a brief explanation of the technology and lists tasks that you might need to perform. Clicking on these product tasks will send you to specific articles that provide instruction and information.
Each product overview leads to a number of how-to articles. These articles are written in a step-by-step manner to teach you how to complete required tasks. Become familiar with each task and its associated article.
Reference articles provide additional information like technology descriptions, troubleshooting advice, or device updates. Links to these articles are generally found within how-to articles. Be sure to click on reference articles when you would like to know more about a specific topic.
Understanding the flow of MHTech will help you quickly find the support and instructions you are looking for. As you practice navigating the site, you will learn about the many technologies within a meetinghouse and how to best support the members that use them.
The following “use cases” are instructive for recognizing issues that may come up and considering various solutions. Note that for any given issue, there are always resources to turn to.
In preparation for stake conference, you find that you need to limit wireless access in the meetinghouse to make sure there’s plenty of internet bandwidth available for the webcast. Since you’ve never done this before, you head to mhtech.ChurchofJesusChrist.org to find some information to help.
Once on the MHTech home page, you find the link for stake conference. This sends you to the overview article, which lists a description and the related tasks for setting up the event. Looking through the tasks, you find one called “Disabling Wireless Access” and follow the link. This brings you to a how-to article that simply explains the steps for disabling the Wi-Fi. By following the steps, you are able to limit the wireless signal.
Another option in this scenario is to look at the Webcast section on MHTech. Here, as you review the steps for setting up a webcast, you find a similar suggestion—to disable Wi-Fi in the meetinghouse. It also contains a link to the same article, “Disabling Wireless Access.”
To verify that the wireless signal has been turned off and that the wired connections are still strong, you decide to run a speed test. To find instructions on running a speed test, you go to the “Networking Overview” article on MHTech and find the bullet point titled “Running a Speed Test.” This link sends you to the how-to article about testing the network speed. You follow the steps and verify that the wireless network has successfully been deactivated and that the wired network is strong and ready for the webcast.
Ward clerks contact you and tell you that they have not been able to access the internet for two weeks. They ask you to take a look at the status of the firewall.
Since the firewall was installed before you were called as a TS, you head to mhtech.ChurchofJesusChrist.org to learn more about it. Once on the home page, you click “Networking.” This takes you to a page with links to several network-related articles. You find the one titled “Firewall Overview” and read about the device.
While reading about the firewall, you learn that access and information can be found in Technology Manager. You return to the network landing page, find the article titled “Technology Manager Overview,” and learn how to access the devices for the building.
After logging in to tm.ChurchofJesusChrist.org, you look up the firewall for the building in question and notice that it shows as offline. However, when you visit the building and look at the physical firewall, you see that all of the status lights are off. After checking the firewall cabling, you conclude that it is still receiving power. You give the GSD a call to see if they can help you, but they determine that the firewall has malfunctioned and will need to be replaced.
To find a replacement firewall, you contact the local FMG office and request a new device. They put in an order for a new firewall and collect the old one for disposal. Once the new firewall is shipped and installed, you verify on Technology Manager that it has been activated and is working properly. You review the article and follow the steps to confirm that everything is installed properly.
During the Sunday session of stake conference, you receive a call from one of your ATSs saying that the webcast at their location has gone out. They say that the internet is working fine at their meetinghouse, and it seems to be an issue with the originating site where you are. To verify this, you try to run a speed test on a clerk computer and see that you are indeed disconnected from the internet.
Since you’ve already read all the information within the Stake Conference section on MHTech, you’ve got all the backups in place and have no need to worry. You quickly notify your ATS and have them turn the volume up on the cell phone audio backups. Now that the receiving sites are playing the audio through the sound system, the meeting can carry on until you find an internet fix. Once you confirm that the receiving locations are getting audio, you move to the networking closet to assess the problem with the internet.
Since the internet is not working in the meetinghouse, you have no way of accessing Technology Manager and checking the status of the firewall. Luckily, you remembered to save the GSD’s number in your phone, and you give them a call. Once they get the meetinghouse information, they verify that the firewall is offline. They walk you through the process of safely restarting the firewall to get it connected again. Once you’ve reset the firewall, you have internet access again. You call your ATS and have them switch back to the normal webcast stream and turn down the volume for the cell phone backup for the remainder of the meeting.