Parish Council Minutes

October 26, 2004

The moderator convened the meeting at 7:05 P.M. Present were Phil Johnson, Bruce Gist, Bill Hoey, George Hayden, Tony Lucia, Mike Dunfee, Hugh Penney, Linda Ladd, Barbara Langill and Susan Lambe. Sally MacDonald, director of Tower Day School, was a guest at the meeting. Tony Lucia offered the meditation. The minutes from the 9/28 meeting were approved.

Phil thanked Sally for all her hard work and success with Tower Day School and noted the new, expanded Kindergarten program. Linda Ladd reported that Tower Day School cash transfers from last year were $104,700. This was a record year. The Lynnfield Public Schools opened an optional full-day Kindergarten program this year, which has affected the TDS enrollment a bit. Two Kindergarten classrooms are still being operated. The possibility of advertising the school programs was discussed., as was installing a sign. Other items reviewed included security and entrances, student-teacher ratios, square-footage requirements, teacher reviews and signing to keep the first-floor bathrooms strictly for TDS use during the week. The school employs a total staff of 21 for 13 classes. We also discussed trying to increase CCC membership by inviting TDS families to participate in our church. Sally informed us that the current cleaning company is keeping up with the school’s needs pretty well. Linda Ladd will speak with the Properties Commission about installing an extra gate for the playground to prevent children from leaving via the back stairs and ramp. Sally departed the meeting at the end of this portion. Parish Council then discussed thanking Sally and the rest of the TDS staff for their efforts at the service on the Sunday before Thanksgiving.

Pastor’s Report: Mike presented his Tower Notes article for the coming week. It outlined a plan to review or church’s "history" as a congregation. He suggested a potluck dinner on Sunday, Dec. 12th. He and Barbara will discuss the logistics of including the Youth Groups and children. Mike also reported on his week-long interim ministry training; he felt it was quite worthwhile. Developmental tasks covered included: church history, celebrating the good and leadership and power shifts. Anxieties can be caused by the shifting of power and the search for a new church identity.

Christian Education: Our new rotation program "The Good Samaritan" began last Sunday. All 3 Youth Groups are thriving. The Senior High group participated in a retreat last weekend, the subject was homelessness. On Saturday, 10/30, a pumpkin carving will be held. All pumpkins will be displayed on Sunday morning. Votes may be cast for your favorite pumpkin with donations, all proceeds will benefit a missions group. An organizational meeting for the new confirmation group has been held. Our Advent Workshop will be held on Sunday, 12/5.

Treasurer’s Report: Hugh reported on our finances through September. We are down approximately $28,000 from where we need to be. Most of the shortfall is in pledges. Our income year-to-date is $223,000, and the budget thus far has been $259,000; leaving us with a shortfall of $36,000. Expenses so far this year are in line at $290,000. Hugh then presented a breakdown of finances by area.

Financial Secretary’s Report: Bruce reported that 80% of the year has passed and we have received 78% of our pledges. December is usually a busy month when people catch up on their pledges and prepay for the following year.

Stewardship Update: Phil informed us of an after church meeting scheduled for 10/31 that will give folks an up -to- date understanding of all CCC finances. Having used our endowment to pay for our budget these last 10 years has eroded it, it could run out as early as 2005-2006. The stewardship campaign this year will emphasize support for the Operating Budget. Lengthier discussion on all aspects of stewardship ensued. The average pledge at CCC is $20.00 per week or $1000.00 annually. A considerable challenge is before us. Phil challenged the Council members as the elected leadership of the church to make a significant increase to their pledges for next year as an example to the congregation. Mike will do a sermon on stewardship this coming Sunday.

Board of Administration: Bill reported that Properties is considering contracting with the company we’re currently using for maintenance. The landscaping committee will attend next month’s Council meeting to present ideas, this discussion will include church signing. Bill will discuss touch-up paint on the church’s main sign with Bob MacKendrick.

Board of Faith Development: Linda reported that her group has met with Mike. They have also looked at web sites for alternative Christmas gifts.

Board of Parish Life: Tony reported that the Membership Commission has met recently, and Tony has met with prospective members. The Youth Center project will not happen at this time due to a lack of volunteers. The ‘Villager" newspaper will be interviewing Mike. A national UCC ad campaign will begin on Nov. 15th. We have hung a banner to support this, it will be moved to a more visible location.

Board of Worship: George reported that Mike’s changes in the worship format have been well received so far, and that the Worship team is looking for additional feedback.

Moderator: Phil read a letter of congratulations that he sent to our fellow UCC church in South Lynnfield to mark their 150th anniversary. A letter of thanks was also sent to Barbara Brigham to mark her 35 years of service as our church historian. She will also be recognized at annual meeting and a brick will be engraved to commemorate her service. Barbara Langill requested permission to sell stock shares to help fund a High School summer mission trip to North Carolina for Habitat for Humanity. This was OK’d.

The meeting closed with a prayer at 9:40 P.M. The next Council meeting will be on 11/23 at 7:00 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Lambe, Recording Clerk