Board Meeting Minutes
Oct. 26, 2015
Present: Rev. Ellen Debenport, Tim Alderman, Scott Price, Tommy Potts, Marianne Calvanese, Coleen Hilton, Jan Gauvain, John Lichtenberger
Absent: Andrea Ballentine, Patrick Dattore
Also: Kit Holmes, Cindy Millonzi
6:32 pm – John prays in
September minutes approved as amended
6:50 pm – Financials (John)
Note we have about $5,000 more in income than budgeted for this point in the year, but we’ve also spent about $5,000 more than budgeted. So we’re fine.
Tithing – base amount of $2600
10 percent to UWM’s Bring It Home Fund
10 percent to Unity World Headquarters
20 percent to Unity Worldwide Ministries
$1,560 split three ways ($520 each):
Southwest Indian Foundation
Carebox program at Color Cancer in Austin
7:00 pm – Minister and Staff Reports
Visitor Table -- The board decided to discontinue its schedule for staffing the visitor table in the foyer, because that area is usually so crowded with greeters. Instead, board members will gravitate to the bookstore after the service. The board also wants to reinstate a 20 percent discount in the bookstore when visitors’ blue cards are returned.
Ellen will let Jean Newsum know about the visitor table change.
Ellen also reported:
- § 15 people in the Lessons in Truth Class
- § We have an ad in the Wimberley Newcomers Guide
- § Judy Bradbury was chosen as the fourth member for the Nominating Committee, and candidate packets will be available Nov. 8
- § Ellen is speaking in El Paso on Nov. 1, and Kit will speak at the service and offer a vision workshop after the potluck.
7:10 pm -- Howling Moon
The board debriefed the Howling Moon event on Oct. 23, and Rev. Ellen offered preliminary fund-raising numbers.
Gross profit $24,805
Net income $18,062
Percentage to Operation Good Shepherd $4,515
Which leaves $13,547 for the church. That's a smaller number than last year, but we are grateful! Expenses were also lower than last year, thanks to the church members who underwrote some of the big ticket items.
Rev. Ellen said organizers Cherie Conway and Lawry Ross were discouraged by the results and were already talking about ideas to change parts of Howling Moon for next year. The board is amenable to changes.
7:28 pm – Drum Kit
Kit Holmes mentioned that she would like to have a drum kit that can stay at the church, as well as a bass amp. That way, guest musicians won’t have to carry so much equipment with them. Drummer Ric Furley is looking for a used drum kit that might run about $500, and Jason Marion will bring an amp.
7:30 pm – Beyond Our Walls (Tim)
The board had a lengthy discussion about how we might reach outside the church to do good in the world, working with organizations and also finding programs our youth could connect with.
Tim likes Native Americans, and said a woman in the church has a daughter working with a tribe to help kids read in the summer and to provide blankets in winter. The Southwest Indian Foundation asks for help buying wood stoves every year.
Other Unity churches have built beds for children in Central America. There’s no shortage of good causes, but how to decide?
Marianne suggested we revise our 2008 Vision and Mission statements to reflect better who we are now and how we want to show up in the world, recognizing the sacredness of all beings. Our goal should be to help with real transformation, not just giving money, she said, although the board agreed our tithing has made a real difference to some organizations.
(As an aside, the board agreed we should share with the congregation the thank-you notes we receive for tithes, via the newsletter, announcements or bulletin board.)
Tim also noted that a new Unity Connect program allows churches to share information about their projects online, so that several small churches can work together, if they choose.
Coleen suggested we find a way to involve younger kids, not just the teens.
At the end, Tim asked Marianne to lead a subgroup with Jan Gauvain and Scott Price, along with 11-year-old Dylan Ebbs, to talk about the Vision and Mission statements and possible projects. Other board members were also asked to bring ideas for projects to the next meeting, as long as it’s someplace close enough that we could travel there.
The goal is to present ideas to the congregation at the annual meeting on Jan. 24, 2016, then schedule a HUG meeting to talk about which project is most appealing to everyone. Pulling together for one cause seems like the next step in our church’s growth, and Ellen said she is asked more and more often by new members what the church is doing beyond its walls.
Pray Out – John