Annual Meeting of Centre Congregational Church – September 23, 2007
Church Moderator Phil Johnson called the meeting to order at 11:24 a.m. There were 70 church members present. Phil asked to dispense with the reading of the minutes from the Special Meeting held November 19, 2006, and accept them as written. A motion was made, seconded, and approved to do so. He then asked that we accept the reports of the officers and ministry teams in the Annual Report, without reading them aloud. A motion was made, seconded, and approved to accept the reports.
Planned Giving Committee
Evy Round, a member of the Planned Giving Committee, spoke in support of the proposal to establish the 1720 Founders Fund. She said that the people who participated in the Tower Exchange program would like to offer $24,000 remaining from their activities as seed money for the new fund. It was also reported that we have established a goal of increasing the size of our endowment to $2.5 million by the time of our 300th anniversary as a congregation in 2020. Phil noted that there will be a special meeting of the congregation to be held this fall to vote on the proposals.
Chris Gehret expressed her appreciation for the wonderful job people throughout the church are doing in responding to people in need. She noted the ongoing collections for the Missions Pantry. In 2006/2007, Centre Church once again met its financial obligation to support Our Church’s Wider Mission (OCWM). This year’s golf tournament profits will support Bread and Roses. Chris also said that she appreciates all that Barbara, Jill, the other Youth Group leaders, and the teachers do to help our children learn about helping others. Please watch for Blanket Sunday and other outreach opportunities this fall.
Dwight Decker started his presentation with some points about the last two budgets. Both the 6-month transitional budget (January – June 2006) and the budget for the year just completed (July 2006-June 2007) were balanced. (See page 22 in the Annual Report.) For the 2006-2007 budget, expenses were lower than forecasted. Pledge money was also lower than forecasted, but the gap was covered by income from church investments and money from Tower Day School. Tower Day School contributions to the church have been crucial in making it possible to balance both these budgets.
Looking ahead to the 2007-2008 budget, Dwight said that expenses are expected to run about the same as this year. However, even with a successful stewardship campaign and a good increase in pledges, the forecasted income will not be enough to meet expenses. The forecasted gap is $25,000.00. To balance the budget, the church will be holding a Supplemental Pledge Drive.
Dwight asked if there were any questions. In response to a question about the “Other Local Support” line item in the Income section of the budget, Dwight and Phil explained that the line item covers miscellaneous income. (In the budget year just concluded, $6,400.00 fell into this category.)
Debbie Cotting provided some additional information about the Supplemental Pledge Drive. She pointed out that it’s easier to see raising $25,000 as an attainable goal if we think of it as a shared goal – if each member contributes an average of $200, we will meet this challenge. Details will be provided in Tower Notes and in mailings to come. Debbie requested that contributions in support of this supplemental drive be so designated when checks are made out.
Debbie, Dwight, and Phil then answered the following budget-related questions:
A motion was made, seconded, and approved to accept the budget as presented.
Carol MacKendrick presented the list of nominees for approval by the congregation. In addition to the names listed on page 24 of the Annual Report, Carol added Chris Parker as Moderator and Jeff Law as Vice Moderator. In response to an invitation from Reverend Bailey for other nominations, Mark Meehl was nominated as a Delegate and agreed to serve. A motion was made, seconded, and approved to accept the slate of officers, ministry team chairs, diaconate members, and other nominees as presented by the Nominating Committee.
In Memoriam: Remembering Deceased Church Members
Phil read the list of names and invited the congregation to share a moment of silence to remember each person. (The list of all the names appears on page 25 of the Annual Report.)
Recognition of 50-year Church Members
Phil recognized the following people, who have been church members for 50 years: Ruth Coffill, William Coffill, Arthur Foulds, Lillian Foulds, Margaret Heglund, Robert MacKendrick, Doris Nelson, Robert Schmidt, Jane Thompson, William Thompson, Arliene Thorn, Raymond Thorn, and Edith Wendt. Phil also asked those in attendance who had joined the church in the last 18 months to stand for a round of applause.
In the only item of new business, Tony Lucia thanked Phil Johnson for his excellent leadership in serving as Moderator for more than seven years and presented him with a gift of appreciation. Reverend Bailey also thanked Phil for his leadership.
Reverend Bailey led the congregation in a closing prayer. Incoming Vice Moderator Jeff Law adjourned the meeting at 12:08 p.m.
Sandi Watson, Recording Clerk