July 27 Stated Session Meeting Minutes

Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church

Stated Session Meeting Monday July 17, 2023, 7 p.m.

Present: Tom Crosby (Acting Clerk), Karen Fisher, Alex French, Jeff Olson, Barbara Strange, Andrew Taylor-Troutman, Tim White, Sarah Whitney, Serena zumBrunnen

Absent: Bruce Raymond

Excused Absence: Sarah Daniels, Marcia Ladd

Andrew opened the meeting with a devotion. He asked for prayer concerns. They were shared and he closed with a prayer. Andrew asked for a motion to approve the Consent Agenda. Serena moved to approve the Consent Agenda, it was seconded and passed unanimously. He asked for a motion to approve the agenda. Alex so moved, it was seconded and passed unanimously. Andrew then offered as a point of privilege to move a motion from personnel to the end of the meeting after he excuses himself from the meeting.

Consent Agenda

  1. Approval of Session Minutes – Stated Meeting 6/25/23
  2. Approval of Committee Minutes – Membership 7/6/23, Finance and Administration 6/22/23 and 7/13/23, Mission and Service 7/2/23, Worship 7/6/23, Refrigerator 7/10/23, Christian Education 7/10/23, Personnel 7/11/23
  3. Head of Staff Report July 2023
  4. Correspondence – Worship Space Correspondence, Salem Presbytery Book of Order, Thank yous from Church World Service and Chatham Arts Council

Andrew offered the Head of Staff Report, suggesting he’s waiting to schedule the staff retreat until the new Minister of Member Engagement in on board. His last Doctor of Ministry class is this fall, and his plan is to write his dissertation in the spring and graduate June 2024. He will work with attendees of the Music and Worship Conference to go over changes that may be made to our music offerings. Children and Youth Ministries are moving ahead very well, and JonPaul has done an amazing job with our AV; he is working with Tom and Bruce on AV for the Pavilion. Finally, Dennis Dalke is back on the job.

Barbara noted the importance of the Livestream attendance numbers which consistently show 20-50 views per service, most of them live on the day they are presented.

Tom provided the Clerk’s Report. He asked Session members to review the Committee Matrix included in the packet to make sure no other changes are needed. He also asked that the Elders report to Teresa any ongoing Committee and Subcommittee meetings, so she has an up to date calendar for the church and noted that we are migrating to one calendar for the church. In addition, Tom lauded Teresa for the outstanding job she has been doing for the church.

Tim presented the Endowment Report. He summarized the report, saying the goal is to have the Task Force conclude its work, which started July 2022, at the end of September, following the August mailing to the congregation and Olanda Carr’s September visit.  Tim will work with Tom and JonPaul to record the endowment meeting.

The new Endowment Committee of F&A (approved by Session in April) will then take the reins of promoting, educating, and managing the endowment fund process with the congregation, staff, and with the Presbyterian Foundation. Tim provided an explanation of the endowment fund and our agreed upon $25,000 commitment. The Task Force is composed of Andrew, Sandy Williams, Joan Zollinger, Lee Strange, Stan Campbell.  Jo Ann Harllee was an original member who was not able to continue due to family obligations.

Tim asked if there were any questions about his Treasurer’s Report. He summarized it by saying 2023 continues with a positive Operating Budget result as of six months (50% of the year). Expenses continue less than budgeted. Our first construction invoice was received late June and reimbursed by the PILP loan. Looking ahead, YTD Operating Budget results will be presented to members on Sunday September 24 between services in the Fellowship Hall. A short six-month results summary will be included in the July Newsletter.

To address the 2024 Budget, “working” spreadsheets will be sent to committee elders in July now that the June results are available. Tim requests that 2024 budget estimates be returned by 8/14 to compile the August budget draft for F&A (8/17) and Session (8/21). A second Session meeting on 8/28 will include each committee presenting its budget for 5-10 minutes.

Andrew gave the floor to Barbara who presented a motion on behalf of Finance and Administration:

     Use Memorial Funds up to $3,500 to get the Endowment to $25,000.

The motion passed unanimously.

Barbara indicated that Andrew will be away for the first Sunday in November and asked to present a motion, made and seconded by her committee, to change communion from Nov 5 to Oct 29.

She offered the following motion from Worship:

     Move to change Communion from November 5 to October 29, 2023

The motion passed unanimously.

Andrew asked Karen to remind Session that there will be New Member Classes in August on the following dates at 10 a.m., each being assigned to a member of the committee to be there to help and answer questions as follows:

  • August 6: Karen, A Welcome and Tour of the Facilities
  • August 13: Marcia
  • August 20: Leslie
  • August 27: Millie and Karen

Andrew turned to Serena who indicated that the Nursery has been successfully moved to the early service. The High School and Youth Retreats have been highly successful. Joelle has completed the exam for her CE certification. July 30, there will be an Earth Care Water event. The CE committee is focusing on intergenerational activities and hopes to involve youth in helping with worship.

On August 27, there will be a blessing of the backpacks. There will be a CE Committee Book Read on Real Kids, Real Faith, Practices for Nurturing Kids’ Spiritual Faith. There will be four sessions in late July and early August, specific times to be announced. (Link to CE Plan)

New Business

Jeff reiterated with thanks the success that the church has had through the congregation generously funding 15 refrigerators for the tiny homes in the Farm at Penny Lane.

Separately, Jeff expressed difficulty with inaccurate database information provided to Marion Olson for her recent product. This led to a discussion of Realm and member information data integrity. Jeff will contact Teresa and Paul Bolig (heading Realm usage project) to receive accurate list and database information.

Andrew departed and Session then entered into a closed meeting.


Closed Session Meeting

Alex presented the following motion from Personnel:

     Move to recommend that Session hires Ginny Taylor-Troutman as Minister of Member Engagement

Alex explained that the Search Committee was impressed with Ginny’s resume and her responses during the interview. He asked Karen, as chair of the committee, if she had anything to add. Karen added that Ginny has a generosity of spirit and kindness, a clear desire for the position and is more than qualified for the post. She will be able to hit the ground running. After a discussion, the motion passed unanimously.

Following this, Session concluded the closed meeting and returned to the monthly meeting.

There being no further business, Tom adjourned the meeting with a prayer at 8:15 PM.

June New Members, Baptisms, Memorial Services and Weddings

Since the last meeting on June 22, Nick and Lindsey Byom and Jenn Abbott joined on July 2; Gail McCullough’s Memorial Service was held on June 10; Communion was celebrated May 28 and June 2; Norah Abbott was baptized on July 2; there were no weddings.

Respectfully submitted,

Tom Crosby and Marcia Ladd, Clerks



Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church

July 18, 2023

 Bruce Raymond offered the following report on behalf of the Building and Grounds Committee:

The pavilion construction continues. Currently we are waiting on more soil, which will support the concrete pad (floor) of the Pavilion. That will be the last thing to be installed, however, the additional soil around the concrete footers, which are in place, is needed to bring the soil level up to the proper height for the pad and we need that in place before setting the steel verticals. Once the steel verticals go up, the timber framing and roof will be installed.

The Implementation Task Force (ITF) met recently and have picked the colors for the paint/stain for the Pavilion and the Gazebo.

The wood that is currently on site is for Pavilion and wood for the Gazebo will be delivered shortly. Once the wood for the Gazebo has arrived, construction on that structure will commence. The pad for the Gazebo is in place already in the Remembrance Garden, so the assembly of the Gazebo can commence right away, after lumber delivery. Once the Gazebo construction starts most of the Remembrance Garden will be off limits during the week while construction takes place.