April Vestry Meeting Minutes

St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, Arlington, VA
Minutes, April 18, 2017

In attendance: Rev. Canon Rosemari Sullivan, Julia Carter, Michele Casciano, Mary Cushing, Dwight Denson, Penelope Jones, Dan Plafcan, Karen Ruff, Thomas Sheldon, Molly White.

The meeting opened with prayer and shared concerns and joys.


The draft March 2017 minutes were approved as presented.

Finance Committee

The Vestry reviewed and accepted the March 2017 financial report.

Update on Rector Search and Profile Committees

Senior Warden Karen Ruff shared the following information from the Profile Committee:

  • As of 4/18/17, 54 responses had been received from the congregation to the committee’s survey. When the survey closes on 4/23/17, results will be compiled and shared with the congregation.
  • The committee has begun preparing the Community Ministry Portfolio and plans to submit it to the Vestry for approval in May so it can be posted to the diocesan website in June.

Building and Grounds

Junior Warden Mary Cushing provided the following update:

  • Mary expressed thanks to those who helped add new plantings and mulch to the grounds.
  • Plans for placement of containers are being considered to improve recycling at St. Michaels.
  • Mary noted that when planning events at St. Michaels, we need to comply with the Building and Fire Marshall code which sets the capacity of the sanctuary at 160.
  • A meeting of the Building and Grounds Committee is being planned for some time in May. 

Ministry Liaisons Reports

Mission and Outreach. Vestry applauded the wide range of activities supported by Mission and Outreach and discussed ways to keep the congregation informed about their progress. The Committee is asked to help articulate St. Michael’s positions and priorities in this ministry and explain how its activities support those positions. Julia Carter will convey this to the committee.

  • What does St. Michaels stand for? What are our priorities?
  • How can we be present in a meaningful way at this time in our country?
  • How can St. Michaels best address the needs of our community?
  • What is our role locally, nationally, and internationally?

Rev. Sullivan asked Vestry to help her in announcing the yellow envelope collections each Sunday. Vestry noted that it is inspirational to hear from sponsors of supported activities and suggested these sponsors be regularly scheduled to speak at Sunday services.

Vision and Planning. Dan Plafcan said this group will have a draft report for Vestry review in May.

Nursing Home Ministry. Michele Casciano said one new member will participate in LEM training in May.

Hospitality. Tom Sheldon noted that additional opportunities for hospitality are under consideration.

St. Michael’s Fund. Dwight Denson explained that money in this fund is managed by the Diocese and is very conservatively invested. He said the committee has expressed concern at the limited return. Vestry suggested the committee review options for handling future contributions to the fund.

Interim Rector’s Report

Rev. Sullivan observed that she is seeing new people in the pews and that St. Michael’s appears to be thriving. She reminded us to be gentle with one another during this time of change.

She asked Vestry to pray about how to make St. Michael’s Sunday service schedule a little more accommodating for families this summer and suggested that maybe 7:45am and 9:00am services be considered.

Executive Session

Vestry entered into executive session to discuss compensation options that can be included in the Community Ministry Portfolio being prepared for the new rector search.

New Business

Vestry Retreat: Vestry agreed to hold an extended session on Sunday, May 21 at a location to be determined. Rosemari will investigate venue options.

The meeting was concluded with prayer and blessing.

Respectfully submitted, Penelope Jones.

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