Leadership Council Minutes 11/26/2018

Members Present: Kent Brumbaugh, Jeff Buck, Roger Core, Sandy Dean, Jeff Fill, Ben Greenbaum, Paula Kopko, Tonya Overton, Marge Patton, Melissa Truelove, and Mike Womack

2019 New Members Present: Rick Allison, Valerie Blessing, and Pat Richard

  1. Mike Womack opened the meeting with prayer.
  2. The new 2019 Leadership Council members were invited to attend and observe the meeting and were introduced to the Council.
  3. Reflections on the Effectiveness of the Leadership Council
    1. Areas of Improvement Needed
      • Better relationship between staff and council members is needed. We need to define council roles and link to staff ministries. Staff should go to Pastor Jeff with concerns or the Staff Parish Relations Committee Chair but should not be going to other council members.
      • Better communication is needed–Leadership Council is still a mystery to the congregation, and Leadership Council and congregation are not clear on staff roles
      • Must communicate in multiple ways. Suggestions were made to consider making booklets of staff and council members explaining their roles or highlight staff and council members in the Pastor’s Point mailing.
      • The Leadership Council Reference Manual needs to be updated – if we plan to keep using it.
      • The Leadership Council could become more visible to church members by participating in worship services in different ways.
    2. Areas of Effectiveness
      • The methodology and format for creating new policies has workedwell.
      • We generally stick to the agenda, but also allow more pressing issuesto take precedence, if needed.
  4. Pastor Jeff’s Report/Concerns
    • We are preparing for Advent/Christmas. The primary focus is the upcoming play and the Christmas Eve Services.
    • Our new website will be launched November 30 and we will be doing lots of social media.
    • Children’s Ministry is stable, but not growing.
    • New sound equipment is in and will be up and running soon. New lighting will be complete in January.
    • The last 3 years have had significant transition, but things are going well, and we plan to stay the course.
    • Attendance is down, and income is down somewhat, offset by the fact that giving per capita is up.
    • The question was raised as to why attendance is down. Pastor Jeff shared that attendance is mostly down in the 2nd Service, people attend less often, some people are leaving due to the UMC issues, and Children’s Ministry is down. Mike Womack shared the average attendance in 2013 was 525 and our current average is 400.
  5. Recognition of departing Council Members
      • Sandy Dean, Paula Kopko, and Dave Sweet will be departing the Leadership Council after 2018. We are grateful to their service.
  6. WCA Membership
    • The WCA is an association of like-minded Orthodox Churches that have come together to hold to the Wesleyan theology. It was created 2 years ago, and individuals or churches can join.
    • The Council discussed the pros and potential cons of joining the WCA. The consensus was that joining gives us access to in-depth analysis and planning for future contingencies without obligating us to any particular course of action.
    • A motion was made by Tonya Overton to join the WCA and Roger Core seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
    • Mt. Auburn will host the WCA Reclaim Conference (a regional gathering of WCA members and interested parties) in January.
  7. The Bishop’s District Meeting on November 18
    • During the District meeting at Castleton UMC in November, the Bishop presented the 3 plans which will be considered by the upcoming General Conference, but primarily used the meeting to promote the One Church Plan.
    • It was obvious from the questions from attendees that many churches have not yet begun to educate their congregation on the issues being considered at General Conference.
  8. 2019 Budget
    • We will end 2018 in better financial shape than previously expected, thanks largely to a single $93,000+ contribution in October.
    • Pledges for 2019 are up, the number of giving units are up, and the dollar amount of the average giving unit is higher.
    • Every 5 years the bank reviews the interest rates. We have the option of lowering our mortgage payment from $10,000 a month to $4,600 a month and keeping the same end date or keeping the payment at $10,000 a month and paying it off sooner.
    • The Council decided to officially go with the lower payment but have Brenda Reynolds (Director of Finance) continue paying the extra in principle. The lower payment will give us more flexibility in case the extra money should be needed later.
    • The Council will approve the 2019 budget at the January meeting.
  9. Pastor Jeff closed the meeting with prayer.

From time to time, confidential items which are still under discussion and/or analysis may be deleted from the
public version of these minutes prior to posting them on the church website.