December Vestry Meeting Minutes

Monthly Meeting of the Vestry
St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, Upper Classroom, December 20, 2016

Attendees: Julia Carter, Mary Cushing, Dwight Denson, Tad McCall, Dan Plafcan, Karen Ruff, Tom Sheldon, Alice Thomas

Actions Taken

  • Vestry approved Minutes from its November meeting.
  • Vestry approved Treasurer’s Report from 12/13/16 with the November 30th
  • Vestry approved three recommendations to the Finance committee involving the 2017 Mission Spending Plan:
    1. Add special funds to account for Stained Glass Maintenance and Slate Roof Replacement;
    2. Change the name of #14 Scholarship Fund to include funding children at VBS and the parish weekend at Shrine Mont;
    3. Increase and rename #5251 Lawn Service, Rectory to $2,700 and include servicing the Parish grounds.
  • Vestry approved Terri Katon again as the primary delegate to the 2017 Annual Diocesan Convention with Barb Adams as the alternate in January 2017 and primary in 2018.

The Vestry meeting opened at 7:35 led with prayer by Alice. All members were present.

Prior Vestry Meeting Minutes (7:35 – 7:40)

Since it met in November, the Vestry had reviewed two versions of its Minutes from that meeting. Those Minutes were approved with no further changes.

Financial Information (7:40 – 9:00)

Treasurer’s Report and Finance Committee Report

The 11/30/2016 Treasurer’s report showed receipt of 98% of the budgeted amount of pledged income, and above-budget “Other Contributions” from outside groups using the building. Because the church paid no Rector since October, we are not expending at the rate budgeted, so likely will take a surplus into 2017. The Vestry approved this report from the Treasurer at 7:50.


Three deficiencies reported in September 2016 from the in-house Audit Report of 2015 financial procedures and practices have been corrected: 1) Bookkeeping accounts and procedures were (re)named and numbered to correctly manage and describe funds and expenses; (2) A Check Card Procedure was written, reviewed, revised, accepted, and recorded. (3) The Procedure for the “Rector’s Discretionary Account” was revised so that the bank statement for that account (which is separate from the church’s operating account) will be received and reviewed by the Treasurer rather than by the Rector. The new account will be opened at the TD Bank (Mtr. Leslie’s at United Virginia has been closed out.). These actions correct the reported deficiencies (all of which actually were first reported in the Audit of 2014’s procedures).

Stewardship for 2017

This time last year, pledges permitted a 2016 budget for pledged income at $260,000. To date, pledges for 2017 suggest budgeting pledged income at $235,000. While five new families made a financial pledge for 2017, six pledgers in 2016 did not make a 2017 commitment.

MFIF Construction Report & Financing (8:00 – 8:10)

Alice provided a written report updating the tasks accomplished under the Small Church Revitalization Grant. She noted that, while construction is complete, a written report on how the Grant was used is required to the Diocese by mid-May 2017 (six months after construction concluded). Financially, she is optimistic that when the pledge period ends on 30 JUN 2017, amounts paid by the parish will equal all expenses. While some pledges likely will not be filled, others are being increased “silently”.

“Mission Spending Plan” aka Operating Budget for 2017 (8:15-9pm)

The Vestry reviewed a preliminary Operating Budget for 2017 provided by the Finance Committee. We agreed with their “budget for growth” keeping the same amount for Rector’s compensation and most other accounts.

We returned the budget to the Finance Committee, recommending doubling the estimated expense for “#5261 Lawn Service – Rectory” (from $1,350 to $2,700) so that the Parish Administrator and Sexton would not be required routinely to perform this task at the church. Clarifying tasking and hours for these two staff members was discussed and proposed as a topic for the Vestry’s Annual Retreat.

Separate from this “operating budget”, the Vestry agreed to recommend establishing two new “special funds”: stained glass window preservation ($8,000 from the original MFIF and $2,000 from the MFIF-FP has been allocated to seed this work), and re-roofing the slate roof on the original church (any excess from MFIF will go to seed this account). The Vestry also recommended that special fund #14 “Scholarship” be renamed to include VBS and children at the parish weekend at Shrine Mont (money moved from the #9 Staff Development if necessary).

This Vestry had been unaware of a Diocesan capital campaign for Shrine Mont camps ( conducted for three years beginning January 2014: Shrine Mont is independent financially and receives no subsidies from the Diocese of Virginia. Funds raised in this campaign will help Shrine Mont upgrade the camp facilities and have an endowment to maintain them in the future.” A brochure and pledge form was provided. The August issue of Virginia Episcopalian indicated that the “over the top” goal of $2,500,000 was now in sight since $2,305,007 had been pledged. This campaign had been directed to individual households (rather than parishes) with an on-line pledge form also. The Vestry in its January meeting will consider how to support it; sending $3,000 from any 2016 operating overage was discussed.

Endowment Fund: The Vestry approved the Finance Committee’s recommendation that Mick Sutter be asked to serve the five year term beginning 2017. As nominee, he must be named officially by the Rector. Continuing terms are held by Barb Adams, Vicki Barnett, Greg Hume, Dean Scribner.

Other Business: The Vestry approved the nomination of Barb Adams as alternate delegate from St. Michael’s to the 222nd Diocesan Convention in January in Reston. The Diocese appoints lay delegates (later) for its 223rd Episcopal General Convention in July in Austin TX.

The Vestry went into Executive Session at 9 pm.

Adjourn:     The Vestry emerged from Executive Session at 10:10. Alice provided a closing prayer and we adjourned at 10:15. Date of the January meeting is the 17th, and Tom Shelton (via later email) agreed to be prayer leader.

Respectfully submitted,
Alice Thomas, Register

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