Church Board notes July 2020

This is my first opportunity to submit to you a summary of our Church Board’s meeting. Before I do that, let me first say that I am proud to be a part of this group of leaders of our Church. And I am excited to be able to share with you the details of the competent, sometimes exciting, sometimes hard, but always Christ-centered work the Board is doing on your behalf.

The newly elected Church Board met for the first time July 8th online via Zoom, and began with a round of introductions, followed by reports from each committee leader.

Steve Howard still capably heads Buildings & Grounds. The re-installation of the First Street gates looks good and provides improved security for the entry alcove. The installation of cameras continues, and completion is pending the long over-due upgrade to the Church’s WiFi (which has been delayed by COVID). A new fence & lock into the playground provides better security and access only from inside the Church.

Myra Huff has taken over the Children & Youth Ministry Team, and is excited about the many things Sean Williams is doing with and for FBC’s Children & Youth.

Tai James, the new leader of Faith Formation, noted that there are 15 ongoing groups that normally meet but due to COVID have not yet returned. Tai also outlined reopening guidelines for meeting in-person.
Barbara Nelson, newly elected to head Membership, talked about accomplishments & goals during COVID.

Janet Langenwalter, heading up Missions, noted that the Team has held “email” meetings. She also let us know about the World Mission Conference which is available for online drop-in.

Georgine Benner, continuing her supervision of Worship and Community Engagement, reported that they would like to find a “Worship Producer” to help with the technical task of producing the online service. Georgine is also looking for new members to help with the work of the Worship and Community Engagement team.

Wayne Beckwith and JoAnn Sims reported, as at-large members, that JoAnn acquired a volunteer (Georgine) to keep the Church’s plants watered for at least another month, until someone steps forward to take over.

Don Watson, now the assistant Treasurer, provided a detailed financial report on behalf of Barbara Burr, the Church’s new treasurer. The net income was down for June, but is still up for the year. Don reports a continuing need to stay in touch with Church members through mailings, especially during COVID, including showing appreciation to those who have donated funds that keep the lights on, the staff paid, and enables us to work towards our various goals and missions.

Pastor Erika reported on the success of the “purple” float prepared by volunteers from the Church who entered the Pride Parade.

Dave Larmouth volunteered to take over as the new chair for the Matthew 25 Committee. Matthew 25 is preparing a manual for the minimal barrier warming shelter so that it will be in place when the weather turns cold again.

The Board is working on strategies and planning for re-gathering when feasible, given the safety concerns created by the pandemic. The Board also preliminarily discussed having a socially-distanced backyard retreat in-person at some point in order to have a longer opportunity to get to know each other and work on goal formation and long-term planning.

Pastor Erika discussed the new and exciting program underway regarding the Anti-Racist book groups. Currently, there are 48 people signed up, which are being divided into 4 discussion groups. A quarter of those individuals are community members.

The Board discussed the possibility of establishing a joint-symposium/lecture series with Linfield University. Any substantial plans in that regard will have to await changes in what the pandemic allows for gatherings.

And that summarizes the July meeting. I want to give a special thank you to Marilyn Crouser, our able secretary/clerk, for keeping wonderfully detailed notes (stored, as always, in the Church’s office) that I could lean on to enhance my recollection. Thank you for caring enough to read, and for being involved with me in this wonderful community. See you online, and right here next month.

David Ferry, Moderator