Creating & Customizing a Printed Directory

This guide outlines the process for creating and customizing a church directory using platforms like Breeze ChMS or It covers conducting advanced searches, exporting data for directory creation, and template customization for specific needs. The article addresses FAQs on entry sorting, family grouping, appearance adjustments, and privacy settings. It also includes tips for saving, sharing, and editing the directory in various formats, emphasizing efficiency and adaptability to meet congregation-specific requirements.

Create a Print Directory

  1. Pull up the list of people by running an advanced search.
  2. On the right, click "Export."
  3. Select "Directory" from the dropdown list.
  4. Check your desired options and click "Download."
  5. Now you can print your Directory from your Browser!

Customize the Directory

  1. Pull up the list of people by running an advanced search.
  2. On the right, click "Export."
  3. Select "Directory" from the dropdown list.
  4. Click the pencil icon in the lower-left corner of the window.
  5. Select an alternate template format or choose "Custom" to create your format, including the information you want. If choosing the custom option, you'll be able to use the toolbar above the edit window to select which fields you would like to include.
  6. After modifying the format, you may (optionally) save it for later use by clicking the drop-down arrow in the bottom right (next to the "Download" button) and selecting "Save as New Template."
Once your directory is generated, you can modify any of the information before printing simply by clicking on that information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can we list children by age instead of alphabetically by name?

When customizing your directory, scroll down to the "children" section and choose to sort by "age" instead of "name."


Why are people in my directory who were not in my search results?

If you run an advanced search and select "group by family" when exporting your directory, even if the family members do not appear in the advanced search results, they will be included in the directory export as they are the family of someone who did match your results. 

As noted in the previous field, individuals who weren't in the search results can still appear if you choose to "group by family."  If there are people who you do not want to show up, there are three primary options to prevent that from happening. 

  1. Temporarily archive those individuals.  Archived individuals will not appear with the family.  You can archive those individuals and then unarchive them after your export.
  2. Delete the information after you've exported the directory.  Once you've exported the directory, you can still go into each family's window and delete unwanted information.  If it's a child listed, you can quickly and easily delete their name from the list.
  3. Block access from the group of people who should not be listed.  If there is a large number of people (say a group of children) who you don't want to be included in your directory, then you can create a tag called "do not list" or something along those lines and then put all of those people in the tag.  Then you can temporarily edit your role not to be able to view that tag.  If you can't view that tag, those individuals will not appear in the result.

How do I make couples with different last names appear under each last name?

Couples with different last names can be listed twice.  This is particularly useful if an individual has kept their maiden name.  Under Parents/Couples, choose to either list once or twice. 


How can I change the Text Color?

Just click on the text box whose color you would like to change, and you can either change the text color or create a colored border around it.


Can I change the column layout?

The design works best and fits best with three columns, so at this time, Breeze has made three columns the standard.  

What's the order of people being listed? 

It's alphabetized by the last name and based on Family Roles. If a child has a role and everyone else is unassigned, the child's last name will be used. If everyone has a last name, the head of the household's last name will be used unless you opt to list twice. 

Creating a directory for kids

Run a search of kids from the "People" tab, whether from age, grade, tag, or however you have them sorted.  Then click to export to a directory.  Make sure not to group by family, or the parents will also be included.  

Can I create a directory of just one group of people (i.e. just the ladies)?

Use the People tab to search for a specific group, i.e. "females."  You can narrow it down by age and include only adult females.  Then click "export" and choose "directory." Make sure not to group by family, or the rest of the family will also be included. 


How do I share the template(s) I have created with other users?

When creating the template, click the box that says "Make Available to All Users" 

How to hide private data from the directory

To Hide Private Data from appearing in the directory, you will need to click the pencil to customize the directory and then select the checkbox option "hide private data."

Can I edit an individual in the directory?

There may be times when, after exporting your directory, you notice some individual lines need to have additional attention given to them. For example, an email address is extra long and does not fit on one line. Or maybe both spouses share an email, and you want to remove one instance of it. By simply clicking on the area that needs to be edited, a new window will open up containing the individual or family info, where you can then edit the line item that needs to be adjusted.

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Can I make it show the Family name instead of the first and last name? 

When you're creating the custom directory output options, change where it lists the parent(s) names to "The [use parent dropdown to select 'last name'] Family.  


How to designate who is a member?

What does the group by family option do?

Grouping By Family allows family structures within Breeze to appear under one section of the Directory Export!

If the option is checked, the Head of Household information will be displayed for the family, such as, address, phone, etc. 
Also, the option to Include a Picture will pull from the Family Picture option under the profile.  If no picture is available, the picture will pull from the Head of Household.


Grouped by family: 


Versus By Individual:


Can I download my directory as a PDF?

Of course! Here's how to save your directory as a PDF on Mac or PC: 

On Mac:

  1. Open the document you want to save as a PDF.
  2. Press the Command key and the letter P on your keyboard at the same time.
  3. In the print dialog that appears, click on the "PDF" drop-down menu in the bottom-left corner of the window.
  4. Choose "Save as PDF" from the options.
  5. Choose a location to save the PDF and click on "Save."

On PC:

  1. Open the document you want to save as a PDF.
  2. Press the Control key and the letter P on your keyboard at the same time.
  3. In the print dialog that appears, click on the "Printer" drop-down menu in the window's top-left corner.
  4. Choose "Microsoft Print to PDF" from the options.
  5. Choose a location to save the PDF and click on "Save."

Can I save my directory as a Word document? 

If you're interested in turning your pdf directory into a Word Document, you're in luck!

After you've saved your exported directory as a pdf (which can be done in a number of ways, the most common of which is to save as a pdf from the print preview window by simply changing the "Destination" option to save as pdf), you can go to a converting site such as  Upload your pdf into the site and choose to convert to a Word Doc. 

Your directory is in a Doc form that you can edit and customize further!

How to list cell phone numbers and home phone numbers on the directory?

It can be helpful to list multiple phone numbers in your directory.  Use the dropdown menu to select home phone and mobile phone to have them both listed. Note that it will automatically designate which number is which after running the directory.


Why won't my directory export?

If you have Avast! Network Shield will block directories from exporting. If you are noticing that other exports (such as Excel) are working, but directories are not, check to see if you have Avast! Installed. If so, find the Network Shield and disable it - this will allow directories to export as expected. 

My directory changes and templates did not save?

Sometimes you will have the need to update a directory template or to save a new directory template. After you have hit "Update and Download", you return to Breeze by using the back button on your web browser and become frustrated to see that all of your hard work and changes were not made/saved to the template. Have no fear; we can easily fix this for you!  

This happens when you use the back button. When you use the back button from the directory to access Breeze again, it takes you back into the system, and your changes appear not to be reflected in your account. 

To prevent this from happening, after hitting the back button to return to Breeze from the directory export, simply hit the refresh button on your web browser to reload the page. This should update your template with your changes and relieve all fear that your efforts have been lost! Additionally, rather than hitting the back button, open Breeze in a new tab on your web browser.