Minutes; March 29, 2015

Present: Dianne Rush Woods, Barbara Stone, Janelia Thurman, Debbie Alvarez-Rodriguez; Becky Wheat, Kit Schweizer, John Schweizer, Judy Cayot, Fred Jardin, Linda Loessberg-Zahl, Lloyd Elliott, Annette Cayot, Glenn Eagleson, Jeanne Olson, Shan McSpadden,

Dianne opened the meeting with song

Minutes of March 21st approved with the following revisions:

  • Spell out BOOM; Board of Ordained Ministry.

  • $900 is the correct amount for the Adult Council budget(pg.2); 

  • Clark Kellogg is a member of the Building Committee meeting.

Visioning:  Debbie Alvarez-Rodriguez led us in a discussion of what is a vision.  She collected the responses.  Two doors – looks inward and looks outward.  Vision is future-oriented.  Debbie based the discussion on the necessary components:  courage and creation.  Visioning carries with it enormous risk.  The process is important; however, what we want to create is what empowers the process.

“Our process for visioning needs to model our intention – bold, courageous, passionate, spiritual, transformational…..”   Disruptive creation/creativity

“Risk is the pathway to Vision.”

Policy Discussion:  Designated and Undesignated Funds led by Annette Cayot

The policy recommendations from the task force were presented by Annette (see attached.)

Undesignated Funds

Linda stated that there needs to be a statement that the Church Council is authorized to make case-by-case exceptions re: allocation of funds which do not match the typical % allocation of the total undesignated funds.  

Kit:  Finance Committee has actually been functioning as a gift committee.




  • Which groups are included in the description “committees charged by church council?”

  • Do all requests go to the gift committee or to the church council?

  • Could the gift committee function for program requests and be allowed to recommend more than $1000/year?

  • Could the gift committee receive all requests since this committee would have the overview of all the requests being brought?

  • Could groups which are not “standing committees” go to the committee which is programmatically linked to the goal of the request?

  • Could the gift committee be made up of a small number of members of church council?

  • How would the gift committee know “how much is in the bucket?”


  • Essential to keep on top of what has been approved and what has been spent

  • There needs to be a clear accountable process structure.

  • Something built in so not all funds are expended early in the year.

  • Member of Finance Committee on the gift committee; also Lay Leader. 

  • Linda:  important to have one or two people outside of the current leadership which is one reason she supports having a gift committee.

  • Small gift committee (4-5 persons) to deal with smaller requests and includes persons as Linda recommends.

  • Any group doing ministry here at Epworth could come

  • Linda: important to have a clear channel for each ministry, e.g. Children’s Choir, to connect to a formal committee, e.g., worship committee or Children’s Council.

Designated Funds

  • Questions raised about the Trustees being charged with oversight regarding whether a request fits into the intent of the gift.

  • Recommendations come to the Trustees so that the Trustees ensure that the request fits within the instructions/intent that came with the gift.  Trustees will also consult with relevant committee(s) and/or the benefactor.

Dianne:  if anyone has recommendations/questions, get them asap to Annette.  If we don’t receive such comments within the next week, we will move forward so that we will have a policy to be voted upon at the next Council meeting.

Pastor’s Report:

  • Bridges District gathering May 16th.  10 a.m. – 3 p.m.  Will have many activities.  Urging folks to go.  Market Place; Training; Briefing

  • Berk-land Circuit has received a grant of $15,000 from GBGM [General Board of Global Ministry] for a Community Developer!!! (See attached) Still need to find $5,000 to complete salary which should not be difficult.  Will work with the Berk-land Food Ministry currently housed at Taylor UMC.  .  Will form a Steering Committee. 

Committee Reports:

  • Adult Council:  Shan McSpadden Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction [MBSR] Program information distributed

  • Lloyd Elliott: 9 persons signed up for Nicaraguan trip

  • SPRC: Glenn Eagleson

  • Extending time for Youth Director position

  • Updating personnel policies

  • Amy and Susan are taking the lead on Safe Sanctuary

  • Building Committee: Judy Cayot 

  • Reporting for Paul Nasman -- keypads and control systems for the sanctuary lighting are in place. We are bringing this project to improve lighting successfully to a close!

  • Architect (Greg) will bring drawings to next meeting.  He has also looked at kitchen issues. 

  • Developed a Statement of Desired Qualities (below)

Epworth provides a Fellowship Hall and adjoining spaces that welcome and support differentiated communities.  The spaces are warm and welcoming whether in use or no, and should reflect the people who are part of Epworth.  The spaces tell visitors “please come in.”

The Fellowship Hall is adaptable for a wide variety of uses but also has distinct and purposeful spaces that create comfortable, human-scale places.  The Fellowship Hall accommodates people of all ages and generations and allows them to make the spaces their own.



  • Trustees:

  • Question re: amount/cost of repairs needed for the parsonage. 

  • Two defibrillators have been purchased—one for each floor.  There will be instructions for use.

Linda closed the meeting with prayer.

Submitted by Shan McSpadden

March 29, 2015