Vestry minutes – August 18, 2013 meeting
ST. MARTIN-IN-THE-FIELDS VESTRY MEETING
August 18, 2013
Present: Steve Anderson, Bob Bess, Annette Duff, Aubrey Hardman, Pat Hollifield, DJ Mitchell, Joe Panther, Linda Seeber, Becky Snell, Joel Walker, Jim Wilson; Amy Haynie, Associate Rector; Glenda Morehead, Clerk; Diana Panther, Treasurer.
Absent: Gary Grant.
A regular meeting of the Vestry of St. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church was held Sunday, August 18, 2013, at 12:30 PM in the East Parish Hall. The meeting opened with prayer by the Associate Rector.
Minutes of the July 21, 2013, meeting were approved as distributed.
The written report of CE Director Corrie Cabes is attached to and made a part of these minutes.
Festival in the Fields
Dick Seeber, chair of the Festival, reported that leaders are in place in all areas of responsibility, but “worker bees” are needed in all. (See the attached listings.) He commented that many Vestry members have already volunteered and asked that those who have not yet volunteered do so. There is a special need for “floaters” – those who are not assigned to a specific area but can fill spaces where needed on the day of the Festival. No outside vendors will be invited to participate this year; only members or friends of St. Martin, and there will be no fee for participation. Silent Auction, Book Sale and Bake Sale are all planned. There will be no mail-outs this year; door-hanger invitations will be placed on the doors of our neighbors. He asked for and received permission to make announcements at the peace in all services next weekend. The Senior Warden asked that information on the Festival be included on the website and in the pew sheet ASAP.
Recommendations for Security of the Buildings and Contents
Joe Panther reported on his findings regarding the changes recommended:
A video inventory of the contents of the buildings can be done easily. The goal is to be able to list all items that need replacing in case of loss.
Smoke detectors with an 8 hour cut-off feature (to allow for the smoke caused when incense is used in services) can easily be installed in the sanctuary at a probable cost of $12 each.
Relocation of services in case of disaster would depend on what kind of disaster and the extent of its effects. Any needed cancellation or relocation notice would come from the Senior Warden via the website.
The Jr Warden will investigate the possibility of additional emergence lighting (exit signs). He will check with Tyco, our fire alarm monitoring company, to see if an alarm goes to local police department in case of fire.
Annette Duff reported that she and Susan Kleinwechter had met with Academy Director Catherine Stehlik. They will be working with her to update the Academy website.
Susan Kleinwechter reported on the status of planned changes and usage of the parish website.
Aubrey Hardman announced that this year’s stewardship campaign will use the TENS (The Episcopal Network for Stewardship) plan. Stewardship activities are all planned out, complete with suggested letters to be sent out at specified times, personal thankfulness stories to be given in services and a children’s program culminating in Commitment Sunday November 10. He distributed to the Vestry copies of the planned activities for St-Martin-in-the-Fields. (See attached.) The first public meeting of the Stewardship Committee will be September 1 following the 10:30 service, and all are welcome.
The Treasurer reviewed the monthly financial reports. (See attached.) DJ Mitchell moved the treasurer’s report be accepted as presented. The motion was seconded and carried.
The financial records of St-Martin-in-the-Fields were audited yesterday, and the report is not available at this time. It will be presented at the September Vestry meeting.
Safeguarding God’s Children: The Associate Rector asked who still needed Safeguarding God’s Children as mentioned in the CE report. Bob Bess, Annette Duff, Pat Hollifield, DJ Mitchell, Joe Panther and Joel Walker have yet to be trained.
Memorial Area for Pets: At a previous meeting she had suggested an area be set aside inside the fence of the Memorial Garden for the cremains of pets. The area outside the shrubbery and inside the fence is not designated for the repository of human cremains. If the Vestry approves, the Associate Rector plans to bless the area for pet cremains as a part of the Blessing of the Animals on October 5 outside at the 5PM service. The Vestry approved the setting aside of the area inside the fence, beyond the shrubbery for the deposit of pet cremains and the blessing of its use as such. The Vestry also approved the organization of a work group to landscape the area. At some future time the Jr Warden will extend the Memorial Garden walkway to the area.
Feedback: She asked that Vestry members contact her to give feedback on the recent sermon series and the changes in the bulletin.
Departure of Gary Grant: The Senior Warden announced that Gary Grant has not sent a letter resigning from the Vestry, and therefore cannot be replaced yet. This year is Grant’s final year of Vestry service. With these facts in mind and with so little time left on Grant’s service, it may be best not to replace him for the remaining months. The canons do not require that he be replaced. Grant is scheduled for Vestry Person in Charge duties next weekend and the weekend of November 16 and 17. Jim Wilson volunteered to handle the VPiC duties for the Saturday service, Joe Panther will cover the 8:30 Sunday service, and Bob Bess the 10:30. DJ Mitchell will cover the weekend of November 16 – 17.
Agreement with City of Southlake regarding Use of the Fields: The Senior Warden has received the proposed 10 year agreement from the City and will sign and return it to the City. He passed the agreement for Vestry members to look at. Either party can back out of the agreement at any time with a 60 day prior notice.
Lisa Neilson’s Letter: He reported that Lisa Neilson, one of our seminarians, will be attending Virginia Theological Seminary next year. She has a letter that must be signed by parish representatives and returned to VTS showing any financial support she will be receiving from St-Martin-in-the-Fields. He will complete the letter showing she will receive no financial support from the parish and return it to VTS.
Meeting with a Candidate for Interim Rector: Those present who were a part of the recent interview with the candidate for Interim Rector shared their impressions of the individual and whether the person was a good fit for St-Martin-in-the-Fields.
Vote on Letter of Agreement: The Diocese has already authorized the Senior Warden to enter into a Letter of Agreement with the candidate. DJ Mitchell moved the Vestry authorize the Senior Warden to enter into negotiations with the candidate with the goal of reaching a Letter of Agreement with the candidate. The motion was seconded and approved unanimously.
The Jr Warden announced the floors have all been stripped and waxed in preparation for the start of the school year for St. Martin’s Academy. He also had the landscape crew get the playground ready for the start of school for the Academy. The Academy traditionally begins classes on the date surrounding public schools require their teachers to begin.
Information Regarding the Academy
Christian Education Director Corrie Cabes, who has extensive preschool experience, is working closely with Academy Director Catherine Stehlik. Changes will be made in the Academy’s focus and classes this year. The Audit Committee has stated that the Academy’s financials must be included in the parish’s financial statements every month. The Vestry bears the fiduciary responsibility for the Academy as well as that of the parish.
Reminder for Vestry Person in Charge
Joe Panther asked that the VPiC remember to scrub the reusable lemonade containers inside thoroughly to remove hardened sugar. When the containers are allowed to dry out without thorough cleaning it is very difficult to remove accumulated sugar.
The meeting adjourned at 2:53 PM with prayer by DJ Mitchell.
PLEASE NOTE: NEXT REGULAR VESTRY MEETING SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 1:15 PM, EAST PARISH HALL.
Christian Education Report
CHRISTIAN EDUCATION HIGHLIGHTS
QUESTION: “What do you get when you put 23 children and youth and one Director of Christian Education together for weekly crazy fun and opportunities for growing in faith?”
ANSWER: Children’s Chapel!
Children’s Chapel: This has been an amazingly successful summer program held during the 10:30am Sunday services starting in May. Teens were trained to be “Teen Chaplains” and children enjoyed a Gospel reading, music, a children’s sermon. The children learned creeds and prayers and returned to church with a warm greeting from the parish during the peace. Teens mentored the children during group time and helped facilitate great discussions and asked questions to get children thinking. The program definitely soared this summer and will be back next year! Children’s Chapel ends on Sunday, September 1st with the return of Sunday School on Sunday, September 8th.
EfM- Education for Ministry: a program through the University of the South, equips lay-persons to be informed and knowledgeable in their daily ministry. Led by the Reverend Judy Upham, an experienced Fort Worth EfM Mentor, this group is meeting each Wednesday evening from 6:30pm-9pm in the Chapel at St. Martin’s.
“Same Kind of Different as Me”: This Friday Night program has recently wrapped up. A special thanks goes to Deacon Henry for facilitating this class, offering an amazing story and heartening lessons.
Wednesday Study: “The Heart of Christianity” by Marcus J. Borg will be the focus of this class running through Wednesday, October 23rd in the Chapel. This class will be facilitated by Flo Lowrey , The Rev. Amy Haynie and The Rev. Ernest Maddon. Grab a copy of this book and join in the discussion!
Security Update: The flatscreen television is now back in its rightful place on the wall in the Parish Hall. Thanks to Jack Bailey, Richard Cabes and Dan King for their time, talent and skill with this project! I would like to propose that a team forms specifically to form ideas and programs to continue the work started with the security installation.
Labyrinth Planning Meeting: A meeting to talk about the possibility of creating a labyrinth at St. Martins’ was on August 8th in the West Parish Hall with many in attendance. Thanks to Ron Hitchcock for bringing this idea to life with his presentation. It is exciting to think of a labyrinth on our campus! This meeting finished with prayer outside in the fields. We look forward to “walking a path” of prayer and purpose as this project continues.
Stewardship Through Chaplain Program: Everyone is called to stewardship, using their gifts of the Spirit. For my part, I have taken over all Chaplain duties and services this year with our preschool and academy. Before I started my work as the Director of Christian Education, I spent my time as a teacher and Chaplain at Colleyville Christian School. I want to try my best to link families in the community to the many ministries at St. Martin’s. I have been successful in “snagging” new families from the school to be involved with Vacation Bible School and some families have found a great new home at St. Martin’s!
As a Vestry, look for invitations from me to form a partnership with the school through special events and projects. The families should know that there are people from St. Martin’s who care about them. It is in the best of stewardship that I seek your help in tapping into the wealth of families who have no idea how fabulous St. Martin’s parish family is and what we offer with our openness and inclusiveness and many activities for children, youth and families.
Stewardship Through Christian Education Ministries: My Theme for Stewardship this year is “The Kingdom.” I am transforming how our children, youth and family will look at our education programs and the building. I will be asking them to see that “The Kingdom” is worth taking care of and will offer programs to spiff up the building, to welcome friends and newcomers, to give from the heart and to treat each other like royal subjects in the Kingdom of God! Look for more specifics in my September report.
BACK TO BUSINESS: It’s business as usual for my awesome team of Sunday School Volunteers as we head back to our classrooms starting on September 8th! Sunday school for children ages 4-12th grade begins on Sunday, September 8th during the 10:30 am service!
Annual Training: Sunday School Teacher Breakfast and Training will be held on Sunday, August 25th and will continue with a teacher blessing and installation of Sunday School volunteer staff.
Safeguarding Training: Look for a Safeguarding Training and luncheon to be held in mid-September, led by Kirsten Tiemann. You will be required to RSVP and pay a $5 fee to cover lunch and supplies for this course. Date TBA on website.
LOOKING AHEAD—More Stewardship: Annette Mayer will host an evening to inform the parish on “What to Expect” when you go to the doctor or hospital and how to have a successful partnership with medical staff, how to make a lasting financial gift to the church and will answer questions.
In His Service,
Director of Christian Education