November 14, 2011 Stated Session Meeting

Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church
Stated Session Meeting, November 14, 2011 – Douglas Home, Briar Chapel

Attending:  Ruling Elders Lynne Hoerter, Michelle Morehouse,  Vicky Raymond, Rachel Stevens, John Walkup, Jerry Wehmueller, Mary Donna Pond (Clerk),  Jack Zollinger (Treasurer), The Rev. Mitzi Lesher-Thomas and the Rev. Mindy Douglas Adams (Moderator).   Deacon representative:  Lee Werley.   Excused:  Forrest Johnson, Marcia Ladd, Cindy Massey

The meeting was called to order by Mindy Douglas Adams at 6:30 p.m.  Rachel Stevens led the opening devotion, ending with prayer.  The agenda was amended and approved.  Pastoral concerns and celebrations were shared.

Leadership Development.   "New Form of Government:  A Look Inside" from The Presbyterian Leader was discussed.  Jerry asked that a link to the free download of the new Form of Government be sent to Session members.

Approval of Minutes.  Minutes of the September 12, 2011 Stated Session meeting were revised.  Michelle moved that the minutes of the September and October Stated meetings and the minutes of the October 16 and November 6 Called meetings be approved.  The motion was seconded and passed without dissent.

Correspondence.   A letter from the General Assembly Mission Council thanking us for the Pentecost Offering, a letter from Salem Presbytery about our continued support, and information about free child sexual abuse prevention training were distributed.

Pastor’s Report.  Mindy thanked everyone for attending the officer retreat and expressed delight that attendance was so high.  Dianna Wright did a good job as facilitator.  Mindy and Mitzi along with a couple of others from CITP attended the recent national conference of the Covenant Network in Durham.  That network’s national coordinator, Tricia Dykers Koenig, preached a great sermon on Romans for us on November 6.  Mindy then shared that she has received a request from Ford Heath and Woody Shearin that they be removed from the CITP membership rolls.  Their reasons for making this request are complicated and Mindy has been in communication with them about the decision.  Several Session members expressed surprise and concern over this request.  Mindy urged people to write, call, or email Ford and Woody to share feelings and thoughts.  Lynne moved that the Session accept their request with regret.  John seconded the motion which passes unenthusiastically.  Mindy then urged anyone who is upset or concerned about anything happening in the church to speak up so that the matters can be aired and resolved.

Treasurer’s Report.  The Balance Sheet and Report of Revenues/Expenses through October were distributed prior to the meeting.  We continue to be in very good financial shape this year with none of the budgeted reserved needed to date.  Revenue continues to be strong.  The informal review of the 2010 books is complete and Jack will send out the report to Session members when he gets it.


Community QuadrantThe quadrant still needs a leader.  Mindy pointed out that the other 3 quadrant leaders are all active Ruling Elders.  She asked the others to give serious consideration to taking on leadership in this important area of church life.

Outreach.  Amanda Briggs and Julia Trimmer have agreed to serve as co-moderators of Outreach.  Monty Brekke will serve as vice moderator.  Michelle reported that following a conversation with University Presbyterian’s outreach chair, we learned we do not need to pay any additional funds for the recent visit by our friends from Guatemala.  Those expenses have been covered.  Michelle asked for a few more volunteers for the upcoming Alternative Gift and Fair Trade market, November 18-19, at Evergreen Methodist Church.  Baked goods are also needed for the bake sale.  And she invited everyone to come and shop at the market.   She also reported that Take and Eat received a $7500 grant from Carolina Meadows.


Education QuadrantRachel reported on the quadrant’s "audit" in October where programs were reviewed and a vision for what comes next was explored.  Opportunities for more mid-week discussion groups or after-worship discussions are being discussed.


Fiduciary Quadrant   

Stewardship.  Jerry reported that about 45 pledge cards were turned in on Sunday.  They have not been tallied yet.

Finance/Administration/Budget (FAB).  The 2012 proposed budget was distributed prior to the meeting.  Funds for child care are included in the 2012 budget at a rate of $40/week.  A final budget will be presented at the December meeting for approval.

Personnel.  In Marcia’s absence, Mindy asked that the Session consider and approve Christmas bonuses.  Mitzi and Mindy then left the meeting.  The Session approved bonuses for all staff (Mindy, Mitzi, Nana, Janet, Jeremy, and Adam as well as Rosy, Peaches, and Kelly).

Mindy and Mitzi returned to the meeting.  Mindy described a proposal to employ Dennis Dallke, UPC’s property manager, to provide custodial and maintenance services for CITP.  After a brief discussion about employment status, Michelle moved to offer Dennis a contract on a temporary basis, to provide weekly cleaning and maintenance for $100/week.  John seconded the motion which passed.  The Personnel Committee will revisit the employment status of this work (outside contract vs. on-staff employee) and return with a recommendation.


Worship Quadrant

Communion Dates.  The Worship Committee moved that the Session approve, in perpetuity, serving communion on the following days:  the first Sunday of every month, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Easter Sunday, Pentecost, Christ the King Sunday, Christmas Eve. The motion passed unopposed.  The Committee then requested that communion be served this year on December 11 and December 25.  This too passed without dissent. 

Communion Servers.  Vicky stated that the worship committee would like to include youth as well as non-ordained members to serve communion.  She moved that members of Chapel in the Pines who undergo prior instruction be allowed to serve communion.  John seconded the motion and it passed following a brief discussion.

Children’s Sermons.  Five or six more people are now involved in children’s sermons.  Mindy asked that they all be reminded that the sermon should be directed to the children, that it be kept brief and very simple.


Quadrant Restructuring.  Vicky distributed a new chart describing the various groups in the Worship Quadrant.  She moved, and John seconded, that the Inclusion Committee as well as Greeters and Hospitality be moved from Worship to Community.  The proposal was approved.



Building Committee Report.  Lynne reported that the final pieces are coming together, carpet is down, light fixtures are in, heat is working, and we passed the soil stabilization inspection.  We expect a Certificate of Occupancy on November 30.  After that date, moving can begin.  She announced that UPC’s Endowment granted us the full amount to pay for the custom doors between the sanctuary and narthex.


Building and Grounds Committee.  Lynn made the following motion: 

"I move that a Building and Grounds Committee be established within the Fiduciary Quad. The committee shall be appointed by Session and consist of four members plus a chairman.  Initial terms of service would start with one to five years.  Thereafter on a five year term.  The chair would start with five.  Others would start with four to one years.

The Building and Grounds Committee shall be charged with the oversight of the maintenance and care of the building and grounds of Chapel in the Pines.

Prior to any and all additions, alterations or improvements to the building and/or grounds, a proposal shall be submitted to the committee for its review and approval.

The Liturgical Art Committee (formerly Chancel Art) would provide for all art and decor within the Sanctuary and Narthex.  These would correspond to the church calendar in general and to specific worship enhancements as suggested by our pastor.  Liturgical Art would continue to function within the Worship Quad."

Vicky seconded the motion.  The motion was amended to remove "be appointed by Session and" from the first paragraph.  Another amendment was made to make the terms 3-year terms, a committee member may serve no more than two 3-year terms consecutively, and that the chair of the committee serve a two-year term as chair.  The motion, restated, reads as follows and passed without dissent:


"I move that a Building and Grounds Committee be established within the Fiduciary Quad. The committee shall consist of four members plus a chairman.  Initial terms of service would be staggered from one to three years.  Thereafter members would serve a three year term and may serve no more than 2 three-year terms in succession.  The initial chair would serve on the committee for three years, serving as chair for the first two, and may serve a subsequent three-year term.   The chair will serve as chair for a two-year term.

The Building and Grounds Committee shall be charged with the oversight of the maintenance and care of the building and grounds of Chapel in the Pines.

Prior to any and all additions, alterations or improvements to the building and/or grounds, a proposal shall be submitted to the committee for its review and approval.

The Liturgical Art Committee (formerly Chancel Art) would provide for all art and decor within the Sanctuary and Narthex.  These would correspond to the church calendar in general and to specific worship enhancements as suggested by our pastor.  Liturgical Art would continue to function within the Worship Quad."


Loan Report.  Jerry gave a brief report and distributed a Future Cash Flow Analysis prior to the meeting.



Building Use Policies and Guidelines.  The Task Force, comprised of Phyllis Greene, Emily Smith, and Mary Donna Pond, distributed the proposed guidelines prior to the meeting.  It was suggested that the guidelines specify that the stated fees would cover meetings up to three hours in length and that longer meeting may be subject to additional fees.  The language about returning the building key was changed to state that the key should not be removed from the premises.    Michelle moved and John seconded that the guidelines be adopted as revised.  The motion passed.

Covenant Network.  A letter to the Session regarding joining the Covenant Network from Karen Atkins and Steve Mann was received too late to be distributed in the Session packet.  In the absence of Cindy Massey, who had brought the initial request to the Session, John moved that the topic be tabled until next month.  The motion was seconded and approved.

Transition Team.  John reported on the activities of the Transition Team and stressed that the team is there to think ahead and to consider ideas, but is not a decision-making or policy-making group.  Quadrant and Committee leaders are being included and solicited for feedback.  John said the team is always open to others joining it; all are welcome.

Presbyterian Campus Ministry Board.  Chuck Rickard has agreed to return to the PCM Board as CITP representative.

Presbytery Meeting Report.  Lynne reported that she and Susan Walkup attended the meeting in Boone on October 15.  She said the meeting was a very long one and that there were no big issues or votes.



Baptism Request.  John moved approval of the baptism of Eileen Bogan on December 18.  Michelle seconded the motion.  Eileen’s mother, Heather, will join the church on that day.  Eileen was born February 22, 2011.  The motion passed unanimously.

Wedding Request.  A request to use our building for a wedding was received from Ben Bienert.  Ben is a resident of Albuquerque, NM, and will marry his fiancé (Stephanie) on July 28, 2012.  Mindy has corresponded with Ben and learned that the couple has no plans to relocate to Chapel Hill and does not plan to use our pastors or our musicians.  Neither has a church home; Ben was raised Catholic and Stephanie is Presbyterian.  After discussion it was decided that Mindy should convey to the couple that we do not have wedding guidelines at present and thus are not able to respond to their request at this time.  Mary Donna said that the task force that developed the building guidelines is working on wedding guidelines.

Christmas Eve Service.  A discussion about the time for the Christmas Eve service resulted in the decision to have the service at 4:00 p.m.  It was felt that starting the service after dark might prove difficult on the unimproved road.  It was suggested the earlier time would be better for parents with small children.  John made the motion, Jerry seconded it, and it passed.

Guest Preacher – Peter Hausmann.  Mindy requested approval of Peter Hausmann, an ordained Presbyterian minister currently working for CT Wilson, to preach on New Year’s Day.  Mindy plans to take that Sunday off as vacation.  John moved approval, Michelle seconded, and the request was approved.

Building Dedication.  Lynne moved that the new building dedication be January 22, 2012, at 4:00 p.m. and that The Rev. Robert E. Dunham of UPC be approved to preach,  Rachel seconded the motion and it passed.

The next Stated Session meeting will be December 12 at the new building.  Michelle Morehouse will give the devotion. 

A motion to adjourn was made and seconded.  Mindy led a closing prayer and the meeting was adjourned at 9:10 p.m.


Respectfully submitted, 



Mary Donna Pond, Clerk


Approved by Session December 12, 2011