Minutes of Church Council
Wednesday, March 16, 2016


Council Attendance:  Gail Mead, Lani Shepp, Kathleen Wiegand, Dave Hoppock, Bob Winbigler, Kurt Sunderbruch, Kathi Kling 

Clergy Attending:  Jim Bergquist

Ministry Chairs Attending:  Sue Boudreau (Mercy & Justice); Elizabeth Kersten (Finance & Stewardship); Gwen McNeilus (Care & Fellowship); Katrina Staten (Lifelong Learning & Spiritual Formation)

Moderator Gail Mead opened the meeting with a prayer at 7:36 pm.

Minutes:  It was moved to approve the 2/24/16 minutes.  Motion was seconded and approved.

Moderator’s Report:  After a brief discussion, we decided to distribute the Council minutes to a wider audience including the standing committees, ministries, and the endowment fund.  In the interest of timely sharing, they will be sent out as “unapproved” minutes (before being approved at the next Council meeting).  Dagmar posts the minutes on the website monthly.  She’s available to help Gail with the distribution.

Review of action items from last Council meeting:  Gail’s drafted a paper on conflict management for the Council to discuss and put out for comment.  She’s also drafted an OCC organization chart to help all understand how the ministries and operations components work.  The Council does policy work but not management; it shouldn’t be directing the ministries.

Ministry Communications:  Kurt explained the new Ministry Report that’s to be completed by the Ministry chairs each month.  There are four sections:  Ministry Goals—2016; Actions—last month; Actions—this month; and Requests for help/support.  The report template shows the required information for each section.  It’s very important to include annual, actual, and planned expenditures in the appropriate sections.  The report is a living document; each month there’s a new revision so it tracks month-to-month information for the year.  Gail will collect the reports and send the whole reports package out to everyone just prior to Council meetings.  That way, everyone will be on the same page.  It will be helpful to have file name conventions for the reports.  Gail will specify the file name conventions when she sends out the Ministry Report template.

Council Calendar:  April – Mercy & Justice; May – Children and Youth

Endowment Board Request and Memorial Funds:  Gail indicated that OCC has three holding accounts:  1) Memorial Garden, 2) Memorial Designated, and 3) Memorial Undesignated.  We agreed that the Memorial Garden account is properly a holding account of the church.  When the interest-free loan to the Endowment Board has been repaid, all further funds paid into that account belong to the church.  Lani and Kathi will coordinate with the Endowment Board about the timing of repayment.

P.S.:  The Council voted unanimously via email after the Council meeting to approve the transfer of Memorial Designated Funds to the Endowment Board and that the Memorial Undesignated Funds may be used for church operations.

At-Large Member Reports:  Dave indicated work continues on the OCC website and the team has chosen Squarespace to host the website.  Right now the website is geared for public use, but at some point it may have internal pieces for members.

Treasurer’s Report:  Kathi (responsible for records) provided some accounting basics covering balance sheets and income statements.  Balance sheets contain assets (cash accounts); liabilities (holding accounts); and equity (end of year total revenue + total expenses = net income).  We have four cash accounts.  For equity, the income statements start at zero at the beginning of year.  Our holding accounts are bloated with old money in them and it would be nice to know expenses and fees to see what our programs really cost.  We need to match the revenue with the activity.  To promote transparency each ministry will have revenue and income statements.  If someone makes a donation for a specific activity, we’ll bring that into the appropriate ministry.  At the end of year, total revenue and total expenses are netted.

Lani reported on disbursements, reviewing our cash positions for 2014, 2015 and 2016. For our 2016 budget, our pledges came in $15,000 short of the estimate in the budget.  We also have a $15,000 shortfall listed in the budget.  And our budget calls for $16,000 worth of fundraising.  This means at this time we cannot account for $46,000 of the dollars we are planning to spend according to our budget.  We have $102,265 in earmarked accounts in the bank accounts so there is very little left to move into our checking account when we need to pay our monthly bills.  We’re counting on weekly pledges and other donations to pay our weekly bills.  There is very little money left for new ideas or unbudgeted expenses.  Lani will attempt to track expenses very carefully, with the help of the ministries and committees.

Lani introduced a new Project Outline—Financial Information form to track expenses.  The project organizer would describe the project and indicate the source of funds for the project. We may need to wait a month or two to pay our other expenses before approving projects.  We will attach this project outline form to the minutes and put it in Dropbox. Lani recommended having the Council approve everything for TUTH, not as a control point but as an information point so we know who is taking ownership.  Ministry leaders would email this info to Lani.  Also, the Council At-Large members can shepherd this with their members. 

We have the commitment but don’t have the cash to do everything the ministries have planned.  Dixon is aware of this and will work on year-round stewardship.  When leaders have an event outside of the budget, it will need to be self-supporting (e.g., charge a fee).  We’re not trying to restrict anyone, just raising awareness of our budget situation so our treasurers aren’t blindsided.  We need to use what we have effectively and efficiently.  Team leaders need to think about what they want to do and then allot their monies to those projects.  Teams can work together to do a project.  They can also apply for grants from the endowment fund (green application in church office).

Gail will put together a ministry/committee chair/member list to facilitate communications.  The list in the 2015 Annual Report is incomplete.  Kathi will give a balance sheet (pdf) to all leaders every month.  Lani will talk to Patti, Andy, and Bill to fill them in on the new project outline form and will also give it to David.

Ministry Reports:  Gwen for Care and Fellowship:  Met on Monday, welcomed new members, reviewed mission statement and are fine tuning it.  C&F has three events planned for the rest of the year.  They want to incorporate more care into what they do.  It makes sense that whoever is in charge of the care teams, currently Patti Grier, be an ex-officio member of C&F.  This is a structural challenge that Jim and Gail agreed with.  Gwen asked about the need for a new next-steps café this year but there are still enough activities from the first café to implement.  The dishwasher is fixed but the instructions for it need updating.  Gwen is working on choosing a clean-up crew for kitchen activities.  Asking for volunteers doesn’t yield good results.  She wants to have an event leader and a clean-up leader for each event.

Sue for Mercy and Justice:  Just had their first meeting that was very productive.  Will be a flexible commission, if you show up you get to help make decisions.  They are mindful of the budget and will be self-funding most of the time. Will make it easy and quick for members to learn about projects and indicate their interest in participating.  Will complete report for Gail by next month.

Elizabeth for Finance and Stewardship:  Elizabeth is new to F&S and Dixon is coachingher while remaining the lead on stewardship.  Will do a silent auction in the fall.  Looking at other ways to raise revenue, e.g., there may be others that want to use our facility.  Greg McCall is a new addition and has a good understanding of the church.  Next meeting is April 12.

Katrina for Lifelong Learning and Spiritual Formation:  Had 30-40 people at the Feb. events they sponsored.  It was a wonderfully rich program and was their big effort for the year.  Nate is the staff person working with them and it has been wonderful to have him.  The Zealot event is coming up soon.  On April 3, Karl and Leslie S will do something on Gods of the East.  The final event is June 5, a Life Journey Forum by the Kerstens.  Since there is a CCC Food Bank food sorting on April 3, and it is also spring break week, they may need to change that activity date.  To avoid date conflicts, there is an online calendar updated by Dagmar as well as the weekly postings in the Sunday service program.  Hopefully, with the new reports, event dates will get calendared ahead of time for all to see and plan accordingly.

Senior Minister Report:  We welcome 3 new members next Sunday.  Karen is going on the Belize trip for a total of 5 who will build a house for a single mom.  We need new substitutes to backfill for Dagmar and Dion when they go on vacation or are sick.  Paying a service for a sub costs more than what we pay these two employees.  If anyone is interested or knows of someone else that may be interested, let Jim or the church office know.  The subs are paid for their services.  Jim did staffing and personnel reviews recently.  We will have three services for Holy week.  The Lenten small groups were very small with two and then four people attending.  The adult education Sunday school class has been consistent with a pretty good size audience.  We will have four speakers at the May pot luck talking about their charity projects.  The funds for this came from the pastoral fund and from M&J.

Vice Moderator’s Report:  Gail reported for Fred.  He’s the liaison for the OSV expansion and is heading the OCC task force while Bob Thompson of OSV is heading its task force.  This is still at a preliminary stage with the expansion proposed for the upper parking lot area.  We would get rent which would be a huge boon to our budget. OSV needs another church board member.  Please refer names to Gail.

New Matters:  Gail reported that Dagmar purchased a module that works with Church Windows software for databases.  Gail provided a printed questionnaire to capture the necessary information but will see if she can use Adobe to create an online version.

Sue encouraged everyone to take photos of their commission at work and funnel them to Dave for the website.  She inquired about the possibility of a projection screen for the sanctuary.  Jim indicated it had already been discussed with the question remaining on where to put the screen.  Sue will discuss with Jim.

Action Items:

·        Gail--send “unapproved” Council minutes to the newly expanded recipient list.  Include new Ministry Report template specifying file name conventions.  Include the new Project Outline—Financial Information template

·        Gail--send ministry/committee list specifying chairs and members out to all, FYI

·        Gail--send Ministry Reports package out to all before next Council meeting

·        Lani--update 3 leaders not at Council meeting

·        Leaders--get Ministry Report to Gail by Monday, 4/25/16 (4th Monday of month)

Next Meeting:  Wednesday, April 27, 2016, at 7:30 pm

Kathleen Wiegand, Clerk