- Written by Fred Hartmeister Fred Hartmeister
- Created: March 16 2021 March 16 2021
The meeting was called to order at 6:01 PM with in-person attendees in the Large Fellowship Hall and four other Council members connected via a Google Meeting link. Prior to leading the Council in prayer Pastor Nettleton provided a devotional centered on Psalm 147, its relationship to the fifth Sunday of Epiphany and how our Lord never forgets about his people. The minutes from the January 12. 2021 meeting were approved as circulated. Pastor noted attendance figures for January worship services and highlighted the transfer of Paul and Susan Dumke from Peace With Christ in Fort Collins. In Eric’s Treasurer’s report he mentioned how having five Sundays in January helped with the month’s contributions and overall budget stability. He also mentioned unique annual expenses for the past month including paying health plan premiums for Pastor and Tom, the preschool’s favorable financial picture based on an enrollment increase, and a slight increase in our natural gas usage in comparison with January 2020.
Steven gave a preschool report updating the Council on the Colorado Shines rating process. All paperwork and videos have been submitted and a new rating is expected by the end of February. One-to-one open house tours will begin next week for parents of prospective enrollees. There are currently ten four-year-olds enrolled in the 2021–2022 M/W/F preschool morning sessions and three three-year-olds in the T/Th morning sessions.
Following the meeting Eric sent an email to Council members summarizing recent Trustee activities including a heating system update that allows trustees to monitor usage via their smartphones for greater energy efficiency, options for installing a radon detection system, and improving video surveillance and security for the Garden area.
Parish Administrator’s Report
In his report Tom began by discussing provisions for having a security presence during Easter services.
Tom’s second agenda item raised the issue of continuing the current annual practice of have an external accounting firm review St. John’s financial operations. Subsequent discussion focused on the costs and limited perceived benefits of continuing to rely on the modest annual review compared with relying on either a more-costly periodic “financial review” or a less-frequent but even more formal financial audit. Other options discussed included convening a small group of congregation members to conduct an informal internal audit/review on an annual basis. Don noted that the Constitution requires Congregational approval for conducting a formal financial audit. No formal action was taken at this time but it was noted that the current budget has a line item for $750 to cover the cost of the annual review that has been done the past several years.
The third item on Tom’s report raised the question of whether the Council is presently willing to expand access of our facilities to outside groups. Following discussion the Council agreed to postpone a decision on this issue until May when COVID constraints will hopefully have come into clearer focus.
Pastor confirmed that following last month’s Council vote to approve postponing the Synodical Convention to 2022 all necessary paperwork has been submitted memorializing the decision. The overall outcome of the Synod’s request for postponement is unknown at this time. Pastor has submitted his application to serve as our pastoral delegate to the District convention which he expects will be postponed until 2021 and there may still be an option for adding a lay delegate representative from St. John’s if someone is interested in serving in this capacity.
The only New Business agenda item consisted of scheduling upcoming Holy Week and Easter service times. Following discussion it was agreed to maintain the same service schedule as in the past including both an Easter sunrise service followed by the regular Sunday worship service at 9:00 AM.
Open Agenda Items
A comment was made commending Pastor for the recent stewardship letter he wrote that was sent to Congregation members in conjunction with their annual contribution summaries.
Member uncertainty about the outcomes of last November’s Voters meeting elections and possible sale of the St. John’s easement at 308 Garfield St. was discussed. It was noted that results had been included in the November 29, 2020 church bulletin but the Council concurred that the Congregation will benefit from wider dissemination of results in future elections.
The third open agenda item involved a question about building the shed that is proposed for the church easement property. At present storage needs are being met and the Council concurred that further progress on shed construction will be deferred until warmer weather is expected in the spring.
The meeting adjourned at 7:12 PM with everyone saying the Lord’s Prayer.
The thirteen members of the Church Council are the “Board of Directors” of the congregation, tasked with general oversight of the life and activities of the congregation to the end that everything be done in accordance with the Constitution and Bylaws.