March 5, 2023
Present: Dave Lloyd (meditation leader), Deborah Sokolove, Elizabeth Gelfeld, Glen Yakushiji, Jacqie Wallen, Joan Dodge, John Morris, Judy Lantz, Ken Burton, Margreta Silverstone, Marjory Bankson, Peter Bankson, Sandra Miller, Trish Nemore (recorder), Vincent Shepherd, Cynthia Dahlin (moderator),Brenda Seat, Keith Seat.
Visiting Member: Anita Jackson
Meditation: Dave brought the meditation.
Housekeeping: Stewards will next meet on Sunday, April 2nd, time to be determined. On zoom. Cynthia and Margreta will be absent.
Moderator – Ken Burton
Meditation leader – Sandra Miller
Recorder – John Morris
Preaching Report from Celebration Circle: Peter offered us a set of slides of the demographics of our preachers as well as an illustration of themes and subjects for the year. The slides are attached to these minutes. Peter noted that having Charles Patterson working as our primary zoom host has freed up folks in Celebration Circle to be a little more present to worship on Sundays. Trish noted that Pat’s commitment to preaching (he was one of the most frequent preachers in 2022) never abated during his nine months with MDS.
Revised 2022 Year End Budget report. Marjory presented on behalf of FOG. Copy of report attached to the minutes.We did, indeed, have a substantial surplus at year’s end and Marjory solicited ideas for using it, which included increasing the Holy Spirit Fund and making a gift to the Capital Area Food Bank in honor of Pat Conover. We had identified other possibilities in the January meeting, when we first learned of the surplus and should check those minutes. Brenda suggested we have a big party for ourselves. Marjory will continue to receive ideas from folks and FOG will present a plan at the April meeting. FOG may present a revised 2023 budget in June, based on more optimistic projections than originally used. SLT will contact FOG with suggestion for an increased amount to the Holy Spirit Fund.
OMG Proposal for Two Minute Stories. Joan noted the Michele, who has organized the two minutes stories, is wanting to set that down. OMG proposes that each mission group take a month to be “in charge” of the two-minute stories for that month. This could include a report from the mission group itself and/or from a mission group member about why they are called to that group. Discussion ensued, including a fair amount of pushback related to the logistical nightmare for Celebration Circle having to coordinate with not one person but a different group each month. Having one person coordinate seems very important for smooth operation. Several people expressed no interest in hearing from mission groups during gathering time. Joan thanked us for our input.
Building Use and Issues – Peter and Glen presented on behalf of Time and Space. Peter presented slides, attached to the minutes, on the building users in 2022, noting that we had 110 events in the building, compared with over 700 in the pre-covid era. Six of 15 pre-covid users have returned to the building. Both Al-Anon (ground floor office) and New Story Leadership (2nd floor of house) are no longer using their spaces, making them available for other users. The office will be painted, along with various other touch-up areas around the building. Routine maintenance generally runs between $2,000 and $5,000 per issue: we’ve had A/C, plumbing, electrical and gutter issues, among other. Dave asked that T&S reserve the building, now used regularly on Saturdays, for Martha’s Mob several times a year. Peter will follow-up. Glen introduced himself as the new Building Use Coordinator, (in addition to his other offerings of service to the building as a member of T&S). We are grateful to Glen for stepping in as Katie sets this job down. On related building use matters, Sandra noted that Carroll Cafe will start up in October with three concerts a year. Also, while there is no Art Hop this year, Sandra hopes to mount a joint exhibit with the Justice Arts Coalition, our new Takoma Park neighbor.
Retreats: Marjory announced the two Silent Retreats for 2023: April 21-23, led by Nancy Lawrence and September 22-24, leader TBA. Peter will lead a Good Friday meditation time, from 10-3. People should sign up on Dayspring Retreat website, as they continue to limit participation in “open” events. We’ll hear about Rolling Ridge and Stillpoint in April.
Ecumenical Council report: Marjory would like to step down as President of the Council and is in conversation with folks who might pick up all or part of the job. She feels no time urgency about it. Matthias (Martin) Everhope is stepping away as webmaster due to needing a full time job with a second child. This is more urgent. Adam Greene is the new director of Wellspring. The Council had conversation about what is expected of member churches due to Friends of Jesus very limited church activities and lack of worship. Eighth Day Church has met with FoJ and may invite FoJ to work with 8th Day.
Pastoral Concerns: This part of the meeting is closed and not recorded in the minutes.
Two Stewards Sharing – Brenda Seat and Cynthia Dahlin offered updates on their lives and journeys.
Prepared by Trish Nemore
March 7, 2023