January 19, 2015 Stated Session Meeting
Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church
Stated Session Meeting, January 19, 2015, Narthex
Attending: Ruling Elders Heather Bogan, Monty Brekke, Kristin Lavergne, Stephanie Miller, Jeff Morehouse, Fred Royal, Archie (Butch) Smith, Tina Stark, Bob Warren, Jerry Wehmueller (Treasurer) Marcia Ladd (Clerk), and Teaching Elder Rev. Mindy Douglas (Moderator)
Guests: Will Sibert
The meeting was called to order by Mindy Douglas at 7:00 p.m. Kristin Lavergne led the opening devotion, ending with prayer. Concerns and celebrations were shared.
Approval of agenda and consent agenda
The agenda was amended to include a report from the personnel committee, and a request for the approval of the annual statistical report. The agenda was approved as amended.
Stephanie Miller requested that two committee minutes be removed from the consent agenda. They were removed. The consent agenda was approved, as follows:
Approval of minutes: Stated session meeting 12/15/14
Committee minutes – Building and Grounds 12/2/14; Worship 12/14/14; Outreach 12/14/14
Report of the Committee Evaluation Task Force
Building and Grounds – Fire code inspection information, cell tower update
The two items removed from the consent agenda were discussed at this time, as Stephanie raised concerns about information provided in two sets of committee minutes:
The Children’s and Youth minutes incorrectly state that session approved the motion to find part time Christian educator.
The Finance minutes incorrectly state that session approved the use of funding the bio-retention pond from the reserves.
Neither of the items has been approved. Each committee chair was asked to let their committees know that and to re-submit amended minutes.
Pastor’s Report. Mindy reported she was at Duke last week for her final intensive week in her doctoral program. We have 5 people joining the church next week. Mindy will be on vacation from February 6 – 14.
Mindy introduced Will Sibert and and invited him to share his proposal to launch BEE (Bible Education by Extension) Healing Ministry to work with people who have fled their countries after traumas like natural disasters or war. Will presented the body of the program and the need for the church to be involved in helping people heal the wounds of trauma. He described the BEE organization internationally and his desire to network with the North Carolina Council of Churches. Will entertained questions from the session.
Monty reported that Outreach had time to discuss Will’s proposal at their meeting and recommend that the session provide seed funding to Will for a total of $4000 using part of the remaining funds from the capital campaign. He explained that Outreach would disburse the first $2000 now and would disburse the second after they receive satisfactory progress reports from Will this summer. Session discussed their desire to see the budget Will submits to BEE World. Monty will convey that to Will. Monty presented the following motion from Outreach for expenditure of the remaining Capital Campaign funds:
To disburse remaining funds from the 2010-2013 outreach capital campaign as follows:
a. $373.84 to Chatham County Literacy Council
b. $373.84 to The Farm at Penny Lane
c. $4,000 to Will Sibert for BEE ministries ($2,000 to be disbursed immediately, $2,000 to be disbursed after satisfactory progress reports have been received)
d. $2,453.56 to Pachaj Health Center in Guatemala
e. $2,453.56 to Francisco Coll School in Guatemala
f. $2,453.55 to Presbyterian Hunger Project
The motion passed unanimously.
Finance and Administration
Heather presented the Finance Committee proposal for the 2015 budget. The proposed budget includes a surplus of $12,000, which is enough to cover a part time Director of Christian Education. She went over the power point included in the session packet. Pledges for 2015 are at $270,000; expenses are anticipated to run ~$293,000, and Finance is projecting a stretch budget of $305,000. She described how the committee built the budget. The budget did cut some of the committee requests, but no cuts were made below what the committees actually spent in 2014. There was discussion about the amount of our budget that goes to Outreach, historically it has been at or slightly above 10%, although there has been a desire to increase that over the years which has not been done as yet.
Mindy opened the floor to discussion. Stephanie raised the question about the potential effectiveness of a 10 hour a week DCE. Tina explained that this person’s focus would be on volunteer management and dissemination of information about the programming. The expectation would be that the DCE work on Sunday and perhaps two other days. Mindy was asked whether she, as head of staff, thought a 10 hour a week person could be effective. She indicated that she has reservations. She talked about some compensation issues among current staff and the need to make sure we are paying our staff appropriately and making sure everyone is at market prior to hiring the DCE. The Personnel Committee was instructed to evaluate current staff compensations to determine if they are in order.
Heather moved that we approve the 2015 revised budget.
Jeff seconded the motion. As a point of clarification the DCE is not specifically approved, and there is a consensus to make sure our current compensation is fair, but there is $12,000 additional dollars that could be used that way. The motion passed unanimously.
Heather indicated they do have a wish list that would be updated and put on the web site. There was discussion on how it be prioritized. It will be listed alphabetically and from time to time we may emphasize some items on the list as higher priorities.
Heather briefly outlined the documents that are supposed to be in the safe deposit box and how they are being secured. Heather will make sure the appropriate items are in the box.
Jerry reviewed the December financials, indicating the final numbers were good and we ended with revenues at $284k which represents a 2% increase over the previous year. The pledges ran a little short, spending was a little short at $275k resulting in an $8k surplus. Jeff moved that the surplus be put into the Operating Reserve account, Tina seconded it, the motion passed unanimously.
Bob updated session on the audio system changes. Another lavaliere microphone has been added, and there is a speaker in the narthex and a phone line in the narthex so people can be conferenced into meetings in the narthex. A PC in the supply closet will be used to record the service. Marcia will write thank you notes to the colleagues of Bob’s that helped him install these.
Butch reported that Personnel identified a search committee, they advertised for the pianist position and have interviewed two out of three applicants. They are looking for a pianist with good skills who is also a good fit.
Mindy asked for volunteers to serve as the Salem Presbytery commissioner from CITP for February Presbytery meeting, Tuesday February 10 at First Presbyterian Church in High Point. Tina might be able to go, Heather will be a backup if Tina cannot. Stephanie moved that Tina or Heather be approved as commissioners for the February 10 meeting. Monty seconded the motion, it passed unanimously.
The date of the next congregational meeting to present the 2014 Annual Report and elect the new slate of officers was proposed to be set for March 15, 2015. Jeff moved that the meeting be held on the 15th after worship, Stephanie seconded it, the motion passed unanimously.
Session was referred to the proposal for the silent auction of visual arts to be a part of Winter Visual Arts Show. Mindy explained the connection to The Brushes with Life Gallery of the UNC Center for Excellence in Community Mental Health. Monty moved we approve the proposal, Jeff seconded it and it passed unanimously.
Mindy indicated that it is good to have the committees delineated. We can help people not get burned out if we put them into three-year classes. The other good idea is to have a pot luck after church with a "Committee Fair." The session decided to schedule this for March 1. There was a consensus that we need a Task Force to delineate the "job descriptions" for each committee. Mindy asked for volunteers for the Task Force, Jeff and Fred volunteered. Marcia will ask session members to send the "job descriptions" for their committees out. Mindy asked session members to make sure they got their members’ names to Marcia.
Mindy commented on the Open Letter to the Presbyterian Mission Agency, the link to which was included in the session packet. This was shared to let you know actions were taken to curb inappropriate marketing materials that were developed.
Mindy asked that we approve of Sandy Williams as preacher for the February 15 service. Stephanie moved we approve Sandy to preach on the 15th, Tina seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Stephanie moved that the session entrust the Pastor, Office Manager and Clerk to compile and submit the Statistical report to Presbytery. Kristin seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
The next Stated Session meeting will be February 16 at the 7pm. Marcia Ladd will lead the devotion.
As the business of the meeting was concluded, Mindy led a closing prayer and the meeting was adjourned at 9:15 p.m.
Marcia Ladd, Clerk
Approved by session 3/23/15
Reminders: Remember to pray for our church each day at noon.
Called Session meeting 1/25 9:15 in back of sanctuary for new members.
Presbytery Meeting Tuesday February 10, First Presbyterian Church, High Point.
Next stated session meeting February 16, 2015 7 PM Marcia Ladd has devotion.