Solutions to the most common PDF Problems

This page outlines our requirements for Adobe Reader, which is needed to view select Portable Document Format (PDF) files on this website. It also offers some solutions to common problems related to PDF files.

Note: To utilize interactive features on PDF files on this site you will need Adobe Reader DC. We highly recommend updating to the most recent version available, as bug and security fixes are common and important to ensure maximum stability and security.

What is PDF, and why do I need Adobe Reader?

Portable Document Format, or PDF, is used to preserve pages as they were designed in a desktop publishing or page layout application. Many documents on our website are available only in PDF. This includes forms, legal documents, large documents (i.e. many pages in length), and documents originally designed for print. In select cases, PDF files can also contain interactive elements for forms, presentations, and more. These elements will only work in Adobe Reader and not in many PDF "viewer" programs included with modern web browsers, MacOS, or Windows 10/11. All PDF files created by the United Church are saved in a format that ensures accessibility, both for assistive devices and search engines.


The reader can be downloaded for free from for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, and iPadOS.

Known issues and fixes

Can't "Submit" a Form Electronically

We have a select few PDF forms with the ability to submit data electronically on this website. Please note that you will need to use Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat to properly fill out and submit these files. Alternative PDF readers like those included in Mac OS, Windows, and viewers built into modern browsers (Chrome, Firefox, and Edge) will not work correctly for these files.

Trouble opening the file from the Web

If you experience difficulty with a file, try right clicking (ctrl + click on a Mac or press and hold on mobile) the link to the PDF, and select "Save target as" (or "Save link as" or "Save file as"); and save to your device. Opening the file from the downloads folder should launch Adobe Acrobat Reader, if installed. If another program opens instead of Adobe Reader, you can right click (ctrl + click on a Mac or press and hold on mobile)  on the file and select Adobe Reader from the "Open With" command.

Other Issues

More detailed resolutions for Adobe Reader can be found on the Adobe Website.