The Rite Stuff 2.0 is the newest edition of Church Publishing’s popular liturgical planning software for the Episcopal Church. The software has been updated from its previous versions and now supports the newer operating systems for both Macs (OS X 10.7 and later) and PCs (Windows 7 and 8).
Rite Stuff 2.0 includes all of the liturgical tools one needs to plan services in the Episcopal Church. The designers of the software have made it simple to walk through the process of creating quick, attractive service bulletins for use in parishes and other settings.
This review aims to give an overview of what Rite Stuff 2.0 can do.
Upon opening the application, users are presented with a menu screen. The first step in designing service bulletins is to create a Liturgy Plan.
From this screen, users can create a new plan, make a duplicate plan from a previous liturgy, edit the type of service, change the date and time of the service, and make many other adjustments to the style and layout of the service bulletin. Once these decisions are in place, the user can return to the original menu to customize readings, collects, the proper preface (for celebrations of the Eucharist), and music.
On the Readings screen, users can choose from the list of available propers and customize the way they appear in service bulletins. On the Collect screen, users can choose from a list of collects, ranging from the collects appointed for Sundays and Holy Days to those appointed for lesser feasts and fasts.
Users can add or delete elements from the order of worship and change the look of the bulletin by selecting pre-designed style sheets with options that include font and booklet size.
The Export Leaflet screen allows users to export leaflets using three different file formats (PDF, DOC, HTML). In addition, users may choose to include front and back pages for exported PDF documents as well as a priest’s altar copy of the bulletin and copyright permission forms for music that is included in the bulletin.
Quite possibly the most powerful tool included in The Rite Stuff 2.0 is the Library screen. From this menu, users have access to PDF versions of all of the primary liturgical sources of the Episcopal Church, including The Book of Common Prayer, The Book of Occassional Services (2003), the Enriching our Worship series, The Anglican Chant Psalter, and many more.
In addition, the lectionary texts from Rite Word 2009 make it possible to print clean, easily readable lectionary texts and bulletin inserts for use during worship.
Also included in the library is the interactive hymnal browser, a tool that allows previewing and exporting of music from the Episcopal Church’s vast array of musical resources, including: The Hymnal 1982; Wonder, Love, and Praise; Lift Every Voice and Sing II, the Enriching our Music series, and others.
This browser is especially valuable for those who prefer creating service bulletins using desktop publishing or word processing programs instead of using Rite Stuff.
The full version of The Rite Stuff 2.0 is available for purchase from Cokesbury for $595.00. An upgrade price of $149.00 is available for previous users of The Rite Stuff (versions 1.5 or higher). For those interested in trying The Rite Stuff 2.0, Church Publishing is offering a free, thirty-day trial. Visit www.ritestuff.org for more information.
Eric Mancil is an M.Div. senior at Virginia Theological Seminary.