Parish Council Minutes

November 22, 2005

The moderator began the meeting at 7:08 PM. Present were Bruce Gist, Phil Johnson, Chris Gehret, Barbara Langill, Hugh Penney, Linda Ladd, Dwight Decker, Susan Lambe, George Hayden and Mike Dunfee. Chris Gehret offered the meditation. The minutes from the October 25th meeting were approved.

Christian Education: Barbara reported there will be an Advent Workshop and lunch after church on 12/4. High school students should also plan to attend this as there will be some projects for them to work on. The Christmas pageant will be held on the 18th, this will be followed by a church-wide cookie swap and shop after church.

Phil discussed the strategy setting for CCC that Randy Russell has been assisting council with. The next step of this process will involve a lengthier meeting. It was decided that just council will meet with Randy in January, and then others will be invited to view the outcome of the sessions.

Treasurer’s Report: Dwight reported that the church’s financial picture remains the same as in recent months. Our YTD income is projected to be approximately $40,000 short. Expenses for the year will be a few percent over our plan depending on our end of year heating and snow removal costs.

Financial Secretary: Bruce reported that last Sunday’s offering was very strong. Pledge intentions received so far for the upcoming 6-month period are $98,000 for local support and $17,000 for missions. Currently, pledges are running 24% ahead, with 80 pledging units still to be received.

Stewardship: Hugh reported on the current campaign. The pony express system had a few glitches, and ideas for next time were discussed. It was noted that 22 of our members reside at Brooksby and that perhaps another luncheon should be scheduled there to coincide with the start of the 3-year campaign.

Pastor’s Report: Mike informed us that the Worship Team has decided that services on Christmas Eve will be at 5:00 and 11:00. The later service will serve as our Sunday worship time. Confirmation classes will begin in January; Jeff Langill and Perry Hayden have agreed to serve as co-leaders. This past Saturday, the Wendt funeral service was held. Mike is currently working to finish the official job description portion of our CCC profile.

Search Committee: Good progress has been made this fall. Eighty responses to the church survey were received. When the church profile is complete, council and Tom Clough of the UCC will review it.

Membership: 6 new members were received into the church on Sunday. A welcome luncheon after was very well attended. 2 additional members will be received on 12/4.

Missions: Chris reported that the City Mission tree for gifts would be put up this weekend. They are currently discussing how to best use the Christmas offering, Pakistan earthquake relief and local fuel assistance are being considered. Last weekend’s Heifer marketplace was successful. Any unused missions budget for the year will be donated to OCWM. A possible additional trip to Louisiana to assist in relief efforts is being considered for April.

Adult Education: Linda reported they would be offering a 5-week Lenten series on dealing with death; and a book group on spirituality using a book recommended by Alice Mann, "The Heart of Christianity," by Marcus Borg.

Moderator’s Report: Phil informed council the next meeting would be on January 10th, 2006. The ONA special church meeting is December 11th. A letter has been mailed to all members. Phil, Mike, Linda and Phil Triffletti will meet once more before the meeting. Notices will be posted in the church 10 days prior to the meeting. The luncheon to recognize Tower Exchange members will be held on December 7th. Phil has sent them a letter requesting that their remaining funds be used towards an endowment for CCC. Phil reported that he and Mike attended hearings at the State House on Senate Bill 1074. Church groups were successful on stalling the vote on this bill. The bill would require all churches to file full financial disclosures annually; this would cost us thousands in accounting fees. Phil informed us that the UCC now offers pledge payment via direct deposit or credit card payment. The nominating process has begun and letters have been sent to all officers and board chairs asking them to extend their terms to coincide with our new fiscal calendar. The Annual Meeting will be held on January 29th, 2006. Topics will include the search process, Missions, Membership and Stewardship. Work is beginning on the new budget. Council will meet in January on the 10th and the 24th. Annual Meeting will take place on January 29th.

The moderator adjourned the meeting at 8:35 PM.

Respectfully submitted,
Susan Lambe, Recording Clerk