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Insert your data. Create Merge.

If you have ordered Option 1 or Option 2, you will need to insert your names, dates or other information into the file before you print.

Here is a method for doing that in MSWord.

How to insert names, dates etc into the certificate.

  1. Open a new Word document, then create a table using as column headers, all the fields that you want to use in your certificate.

For example:

First Name Last Name Date
Joseph Blow Saturday 20th March 2010
John Smith Sunday 21st March 2010
Jane Doe Sunday 21st March 2010


Save this document with a name that you will remember or recognise and in a place that you can find it. (eg. Myparish Reco 2010.docx  – saved on desktop)

  1. Open your certificate file in Word. (The screenshots here are Word13 – the process is the same in other versions, but may look a bit different)
  2. Click on the tab at the top “Mailings”, to open the options. Click on “Select Recipients” to drop down the submenu. Select “Use an existing list”


  1. From the folder that opens, locate your file that you saved previously (it may not be in that folder, you will need to go to wherever you saved it). Click on the file that you saved – clicking it will close the window, but not appear to do anything else.
  1. Still under the “Mailings” tab, the option to “Insert Merge Fields” will now be available. Click on it to drop down the fields available.


  1. On your certificate, highlight the field that is the same as the one shown in the dropdown.
    <<First Name>> , then select from the dropdown, First_Name.


Word will replace your placeholder <<First Name>>  with its own placeholder First_Name.      As shown.

It will retain the original fonts and sizes.

  1. Repeat that action for all the other fields.
    Highlight on the certificate first, then click the appropriate field in the dropdown of “Insert Merge Field” until all fields are replaced.
  1. Make sure when you are highlighting on your certificate, that you cover any <<, or they will be left on the certificate. Word will put its own new ones in. You’ll know if you missed, because when you come to view the certificate with the names in it, there will still be << as well as names. They can be edited out later.
  1. Click on “Preview Results” to show the certificate with the names, etc.


  1. Use the next feature to the right “Find Recipient” to cycle through the certificates and see all the names.
  1. To print your certificates, use the next feature along, “Finish and Merge”. The dropdown will give you options to print or edit or email. When you choose an option, it will then ask which records to use, all or select a number from and to.

If you use the print option, it goes to printer setup and then prints. 🙂

My preference is to edit, as it then shows all the certificates and you can still print from there. That, therefore, allows you to double check for such things as names spilling over onto the next line, or a triple check for spelling.

If you use the edit option, it opens all the certificates in a new window. If you find you are not happy with something, the original window with one certificate is still there and you can change things around before selecting the finish and merge option again.

Alternatively, under the “Mailings” tab, click the “Start Mail Merge” option and select “Step-by-step Mail Merge Wizard”


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Adding the Graphic

So, you have purchased the graphic and set up your page…. now what?

Add your graphic with the insert menu , or the icon on the objects toolbar for earlier versions of publisher . Your graphic should now cover the page, whether you are A4 or A5 size, with 1 cm margins all round.

For Word: Some of the graphics have a piece that overhangs the edge particularly on the left hand side (eg. grapes on Euch2) This will give the illusion that your graphic is not 1cm from the edge – which of course the main section of the graphic is not. If your printer can handle it, make the LH margin a bit smaller, perhaps .75cm. You can also drag the right hand side and the bottom to suit your preferences.

For Publisher: You can place the graphic wherever you like on the page and stretch any corner or straight side to get it to sit where you want it.

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Setting up the page.

Creating and printing your own certificate… first time around, perhaps a bit daunting. How do you start?

Start by deciding what program you would like to use to create your certificate. Any instructions found on this site will be for MSword or Publisher, in Windows format. Many documents created in Office for windows can be opened in Office for Mac without any modification, but menus and methods may vary.

Then, decide whether you want to create an A4 or A5 sized certificate. The graphics are set up to suit those proportions.

Open a new document of your chosen size in your chosen program.

The next and pretty important thing to do, is to set the margins on the page. If you are using options two or three, the next step is not relevant, it will be done as part of those options.

My recommendation is margins of 1cm all round. The program will usually tell you if it can’t handle that margin with an error message something like… Your print margins are outside the printer limits, ignore, fix or proceed?  If you are going to have the certificates printed by a copy shop or similar, they may have their own limits. Ask, or look up their templates (if available) on their website. They should handle 1 cm easily.