February 15, 2016 Stated Session Meeting

Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church
Stated Session Meeting, February 15, 2016

Attending:  Ruling Elders Monty Brekke; Fred Royal; Al Schalk; Archie (Butch) Smith; Vicky Raymond; Barbara Strange; Jerry Wehmueller, Treasurer; Marcia Ladd, Clerk; and Teaching Elder Rev. Mindy Douglas, Moderator of Session

Excused Absence: Heather Bogan, Lynne Hoerter, Kristin Lavergne

Guest: Mitzi Lesher-Thomas, Parish Associate; Bryan McFarland, Associate Presbyter (via Skype); Todd Adams; Katie Murchison-Ross, Intern


The session meeting was called to order by Mindy Douglas at 7:00PM. Marcia led the opening devotion, ending with prayer. Concerns and celebrations were shared.

Leadership development: Mindy lead a discussion on how pastoral transitions are handled in the Presbyterian Church, entertaining questions from session members. The First Responder will be appointed by the Commission on Ministry of the eastern Salem Presbytery neighborhood on February 25th at their monthly meeting. Mindy proposed names for a Transition Team from CITP: Chuck Rickard, Sandy Williams, Marcia Ladd, Mary Donna Pond, Jeff Morehouse, Peggy Wilkerson; Alternate: Susie Smith, Karen Atkins, Vicky Raymond.

Fred moved that

the above listed names be on the Transition Team.

The motion was seconded and passed unanimously. Mindy will contact the names on the proposed team this week.  Mindy indicated session would need to ask Bryan for COM’s permission for Mitzi to serve as session moderator until an Interim is appointed.

Approval of agenda and consent agenda

It was moved and seconded that the agenda be approved as revised.  The consent agenda was unanimously approved, as follows:

  1. Approval of minutes -Stated session 1/18/16, called session 2/14/16

  2. Committee minutes – Building and Grounds 1/26/16, Membership Rolls Review 1/29/16, Strategic Planning Task Force 2/8/16, Communication and Technology February Report, Worship 2/14/16, Mission and Service 1/29/16

  3. Correspondence – Thank you from Presbyterian Mission, Communications and Technology Memo, 2.13.16 Email Nathan Kotecki

Pastor’s report.  Mindy asked if session had any questions.

Committee reports


Jerry presented an overview of the December, 2015 and January financials.

Jerry drew session’s attention to the Wish List which to his and Heather’s knowledge is up to date.


Todd Adams addressed session requesting that the angel paintings be part of an artistic rotation in the sanctuary to strive for more diversity.

Vicky Raymond indicated that the Worship Committee met February 14. She reviewed the request from Liturgical Arts Subcommittee contained in the pre-session packet. Worship voted against it on the 14th. She brought the following motion to session.

that the angel paintings should be taken down following the Easter 2016 season after May 15 and not be put back up until Liturgical Arts Subcommittee brings a policy to session that strives for compromise and session approves it.

Session unanimously approved the motion. Barbara made a motion

that the Liturgical Arts Subcommittee will develop a plan for incorporating more diversity in seasonal and permanent art throughout the building.

The motion was seconded. Session approved the motion unanimously.

Communication and Technology

Al reported that Bob Warren was stepping aside from his volunteer duties as technology support person and the Committee is researching alternative ways to fill Bob’s shoes. He is investigating potential contractors to be on call and to perform additional services ranging between $200 and $600/month, Al is going to form a "search committee" of Mary Donna, Jerry, Al and Bob to vet potential contractors and come back with a recommendation to session.

He presented the following motion from the Committee

to send the draft letter of gratitude contained in the pre-meeting packet from Communications and Technology  to Bob Warren from session

The motion passed unanimously with minimal discussion.


Barbara presented the following motion from Membership

to remove from roll of active members:

Felicia Baldwin
Ford Heath
Stan and Carolyn Southerland
Michael Tipton

and to flag as inactive (for review again in 2017):

Susan Bridgers
Judy Benson
Dianne and Bruce Birch
Taffy and Dale Chodorow
Tina Dickerman
Bill Dingwell and Betsy Chapman
Stephen and Elaine Hudak
David and Madge Webster
Marilyn Shugart

Following minimal discussion, the motion passed unanimously.

Mission and Service

Monty brought the following motion from committee to session

To approve disbursement of up to $2,000 from the mission and service capital campaign funds to Will Sibert’s trauma healing ministry. Funds will be disbursed based on a 1:1 match when Will secures grants and donations from sources outside Chapel in the Pines.

The motion passed unanimously.


Annual Report

Mindy indicated that Nana and she would be completing the Annual Report and it will be distributed to session for email approval.


Nathan will be starting a Master’s program in the fall and will not be able to continue his Strobilus role. Mindy asked for volunteers to meet with Nathan to discuss moving Strobilus forward. Barbara will meet with Nathan and seek another person to join her.

Congregational Meeting

We had previously approved two congregational meetings and the Nominating Committee is still waiting on putting together a full slate. Mindy proposed combining the February 28 meeting into the March 13 meeting on March 13. Monty made a motion

to postpone the February 28 meeting and combine it with the March 13 meeting

The motion was seconded and passed unanimously.

Mindy turned the meeting over to Bryan McFarland Associate Presbyter in Salem Presbytery. Bryan described the process that CITP and Salem Presbytery will go through once Mindy leaves, including an Interim Pastor and the search for a new installed Pastor. The First Responder will be appointed by the Committee on Ministry on February 25, his/her job will be to help us in the first stages of this process. This person will probably become the Liaison to walk us through the process of selecting a new installed pastor. After Mindy leaves we will pay vacancy dues until an Interim is appointed. Bryan will send us information on that. Mindy asked Bryan to ask the COM to approve Mitzi as our Moderator until an Interim is placed, he will put it on the Agenda. Bryan will ask Sam about Mitzi’s role and what changes we might have to make and how we can insure Mitzi is eligible for consideration as the next installed pastor. Bryan has already started looking for an Interim for CITP, would like to be able to say the interim will be ready to come within several weeks or months after Mindy leaves. We talked about being open to either a full or part time interim and the role Mitzi could play in either event.

The next stated session meeting will be March 21 at the 7pm. Fred Royal will have the devotion.

As the business of the meeting was concluded, Bryan led a closing prayer and the meeting was adjourned at 8:50PM

Respectfully submitted, 

Marcia Ladd, Clerk

Approved by session 3/21/16


Remember to pray for our church each day at noon.

Next stated session meeting March 21, Fred Royal has the devotion