In January, the vestry met for the first time this year and had an important training session presented by our Financial Manager, Ellen Wells. It covered all the important budget issues that we will be concerned with, not just for 2021, but for the next three years. It reminded us that Stewardship is not just a one-time occurrence, but it is an all-year process.
At that meeting the vestry approved the appointment of the parish officers for 2021:
Senior Warden - Carl Danielson, Junior Warden - John Weisz, Clerk - Kimberly McIrney, and Treasurer – Trevor Hursthouse.
The vestry also set up the Vestry Teams for the year:
Property: Adam Alphin, Kimberly McIrney, John Weisz, and Carl Danielson.
People: Michael Cobb, John Bennett, and Kathy Welliver.
Program: Krista Anderson, Dan Morton, and Lee Stroud
The Property Team is responsible for working with the ministries involved in the maintenance of the church building, the garage, and the care of the grounds including Warner Memorial Garden, St. Francis Way, and the playground. Finance and risk management also falls under this team.
The Program Team is responsible for working with the ministries for Christian education, pastoral care, outreach, ecumenical, interfaith & community relations (including programs for sharing St Francis Way with the community), hospitality, parish life and special events.
The People Team is involved in many aspects of worship including the welcoming of newcomers, new member programs, music, technology and communication, and with the many facets of parish administration and running of the office.
During our February meeting the main discussion was on the completion of the annual parochial report to the diocese and national church that for 2020 required information on how we have adapted during the pandemic. The completed report reflects that we continue to have just over 170 “active baptized members”. Disappointingly, and possibly due to the pandemic we only received 59 pledge cards for this year, a decrease of 12 pledges from last year. However, the average amount of the pledges received for 2021 shows a good increase over the average for 2020. On behalf of the vestry, I extend sincere thanks for the excellent response by members to the request made during the annual campaign to increase the level of giving, if possible. Just a note, however, if you have not sent in your pledge card for this year, it is not too late – if you need a pledge card and would still like to pledge, please contact Kaylee in the office.
We do have a balanced budget for this year, but this was achieved because of the federal CARES Act support that was made available to our church so we would not have to lay off staff during the pandemic. The amount of this assistance was $32,900.00 and the cash payment will prevent us from having a shortfall this year. The challenge, however, is that the parish will have to come up with ways to replace that amount in future years. One big assist will come when we are able to again attend in-person worship services, which will provide the opportunity to receive additional gifts and from plate offerings.