The meeting was called to order at 7:07 by Denise Molinari, Vice Moderator.
Cabinet members in attendance: Rev. Beth Stotts, Pastor; Denise Molinari, Vice Moderator; David Sheibley, Treasurer; Diane Sheibley, Clerk; Gordon Brailsford and Ed Buckland, Board of Trustees; Bill O’Neil, Board of Christian Outreach; Barbara Morey, History & Memorials Committee; Terry Reynolds, Board of Christian Education; Jane O’Connell, Women’s Guild & Fellowship.
Also present: Lynn Pietras, Gail Wright
Rev. Beth opened the meeting with a devotional
Diane Sheibley took attendance and verified that a quorum was present.
The meeting minutes from the August meeting were presented and reviewed. Dave Sheibley motioned to accept them; Rev. Beth seconded. The minutes were approved as presented.
Pastor’s Report – Rev. Beth Stotts
Rev. Beth reported that she is working with the senior center for a Nov. 3 All Saints/Dia de los Muertos event, to memorialize people who have passed. She attended an “Endemic Church” workshop, where they discussed a 5-year study of congregations, which began in prepandemic times and continued through the pandemic. They found that prepandmic, there was a 40% volunteer rate among congregations; and during the pandemic, it was 16%. It’s now trending back up. She noted that we need to focus on what’s inspiring us and giving us hope; the study showed that churches that do that are doing better than those that are not.
She started working on a membership packet. She reminded us that the Community Give Back fundraiser at Black Hat Brew Works is Oct. 6. On Sunday, Oct. 9, new members will be joining.
There was a question about having the American flag in the sanctuary, and whether there is objection to bringing it back. It was noted that it was discussed at length a few years ago. Perhaps on Deacons? Perhaps it should be brought to Deacons, and then to the congregation for discussion after that. Diane will look into past Cabinet minutes to see if it was discussed there. [EDIT: it was not discussed in Cabinet -ds] It may be brought up at the October cabinet meeting.
Treasurer’s Report – Dave Sheibley
Dave reported that last month’s giving was not as good as the prior month. We have gotten 16 40-for-$40k pledges to date. Expenses seem a little low because we’re not yet paying for oil for heat, etc. This month he will be taking $10,000 out of investments for cash flow. We are running close to budget.
Food Pantry – Bill O’Neil
They purchased more gift cards today to distribute to food pantry patrons. One of the Bridgewater Dunkins gave a $500 donation. Bill noted that local businesses have been very generous. There was a sizable food donation from Father Bill’s, as they get donations but can’t use the small sized cans for their own food service. Jane O’Connell noted that the Women’s Guild would once again like to provide $5 gift certificates for the rummage sale to be distributed to food pantry patrons.
Historical Church Building Committee – Barbara Morey
It’s been about 2 years since the town approved the $200k grant, and they are still working on the grant agreement. They’re finalizing a couple of changes to the deed restriction. The still need: (a) a site plan showing the building; (b) the title and property boundary docs; and (c) the names of the town council people. The next meeting of the CPC is next Wednesday. When the deed restriction comes in, will go to the Trustees for review. Barbara wants them to confirm what they’re giving us for phase 2 & 3 before signing the deed restriction. It’s still unresolved whether the town will require us to remove all the siding or not (big question). The committee feels that they can get a less expensive construction company to do the work than the original one we used for the assessment. It was noted that we spent $62,000 to put the application in to the CPC.
Church Fair – Diane Sheibley
Diane noted that the fair committee is comprised of herself, Denise Molinari, Carla Jackson, and David Hanson. The dates of the fair are Friday, 11/4 and Saturday 11/5. Pie night is back! The hours on Friday are 6:30-8:30, and the hours for Saturday are 9-1 (formerly 9-2). Barbara Morey noted that Jewelry would like as many tables as possible. Diane asked the Trustees if the dishwasher was working, and said they don’t need an answer now, but they will need the dishwasher for pie night (11/4).
Diane asked Cabinet for permission to conduct a pick-a-prize raffle at the fair. Denise made the motion, and Dave Sheibley seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
Autumnfest – Diane Sheibley
Diane noted that the church would be hosting a booth at Autumnfest this Saturday (9/24). We will be selling walking tacos and baked goods. Baked goods are needed! Anyone willing to bake should bring their goods to the booth Saturday morning.
Stewardship – Diane Sheibley for Kathleen Mosher
Work continues on the 40-for-$40k campaign. They are also creating a poster with a QR code on it, which can be displayed to the public when we have the fair, rummage sale, scouts, and other groups in the building, and when the local schoolchildren are doing their historical building tour. The poster will list the various charities and projects we are involved with, and by showing all the good things we do we may inspire people to donate.
Christian Education – Terry Reynolds
Sunday school / Kids Church began last Sunday, and the kids did a treasure hunt. Bible Sunday is World Communion Sunday, Oct 2. 3rd-6th graders will be receiving bibles. Terry has teachers lined up for all of the quarters of Kids Church this year. There are also some 7th grade “tweeners”, and Terry is working with them to see where they’d like to help out in the church. Also, 9 kids have already signed up for the Junior Choir.
Board of Christian Outreach – Bill O’Neil
Outreach is focusing on the 5 for 5 collections until their Warmth in Cold Places drive later this Fall.
Choir is back! Julia is off this Sunday, and Bob Richards will be substituting.
Women’s Guild & Fellowship – Jane O’Connell
Jane also asked about the dishwasher. The WG rummage sale is Saturday, Oct. 15. They are in need of student volunteers, and Jane asked Diane if she’s still in touch with the high school about community service projects. Diane said she’d look into it, as well as posting it on facebook and in steeple sounds. Hours would be 9-3. Jane would be the contact. The first Guild meeting of the year is a potluck on Oct. 5, and will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Guild.
Thrift Shop – Lynn Pietras and Gail Wright
Lynn reported that they have obtained a business permit for the thrift shop, and plans are moving along.
Rev. Beth thanked everyone for the party celebrating her 10th anniversary last Sunday.
The meeting was closed in prayer at 8:10pm.