2024 January Stewards Minutes


 Stewards Minutes

January 14, 2024

Present: Marjory Bankson (recorder), Peter Bankson, Ken Burton, Cynthia Dahlin, Joan Dodge, Elizabeth Gelfeld, David Lloyd, Sandra Miller (meditation), John Morris, Trish Nemore, Keith Seat, Brenda Seat, Margreta Silverstone, Deborah Sokolove (moderator), Jacqie Wallen, Glen Yakushiji.

Absent: Judy Lantz,

Guests:  Liz Gould-Leger, Anita Jackson

Meditation: Sandra read a passage from Psalm 139

Housekeeping: Stewards will next meet Sunday, Feb 11, 3-6pm, in person

Moderator – Ken

Recorder — John

Meditation – Dave

FOG recommendation for Bequest from Jean Adams: Marjory … APPROVED

Total bequest: $180,000

Distribution: $75,000 to Bokamoso in 3 yearly payments (2023, 2024 and 2025)

                       $45,000 to Christ House (where Jean taught art for residents)

                       Remainder put into a Money Market account at Hope Credit Union

                                  (serving unbanked low-income households in Southern states)

Additionally, we will remove $100,000 from CityFirst Bank and deposit that additional amount in Hope Credit Union, leaving $33,000 at CityFirst. Until last year, CityFirst was a local minority-owned bank which invested primarily in low-income projects in Southeast DC. A recent merger with a California bank has made our relationship with CityFirst more difficult. APPROVED.

SLT Review: Trish

Using the approved Servant Leadership Working Group report, Trish reviewed recommended actions:

  • Making service on the SLT more available to people, we have accepted the announced intention for short-term and limited participation by Margreta, Jacqie and now John Morris;
  • Responsibility for the spiritual health of individuals not in mission groups is being shared with all Stewards, OMG mission group AND a developing cadre of spiritual companions in a monthly group led by Marjory on zoom; –we need to make the value of this accountability relationship more visible!
  • Encouraging others to take on direct service responsibilities has been evident in Dave’s leadership of Vince’s care before and after V’s death;
  • SLT has decided not to pursue a “gifts & skills inventory” because we are a small and deeply engaged community;
  • Regarding “graphing relationships” within the community, we might ask “What are we after in our yearly check on unattached (not in mission groups) people?”
  • Given the number of former SLT members in the community (Peter, Joan, Brenda, Dave), the SLT does not think they need an advisory group for the Holy Spirit Fund;
  • About the recommendation that we look outside of Seekers for professional help when needed, they are willing;
  • SLT acknowledged the inordinate amount of time spent on J’s mental health issues and threats to the community;
  • Follow-up on Margreta’s sermon on loneliness as a “plague” in our society has resulted in a limited return to in-person gatherings (after Christmas service, monthly coffee after worship, some meals before in-person classes and questionnaire to mission groups about their efforts to mitigate loneliness;
  • Concern about our dwindling connection to Bokamoso led to a zoom call with the local foundation that included Trish, Peter, Paul Holmes and Ed Cooke … and a sermon at Seekers on January 21st;
  • Exploring the possibility of having non-local members is being lived out with Anita Jackson (in OMG) and Mary Mehala (in Learnerss & Teachers).

Website Report: Deborah ……………………………..……………see attached report

Summary of loneliness survey: Margreta …………………………..see attached report

Add this OMG info to the report:

  • Within OMG we feel that our call and current function address the challenge of social isolation and loneliness within the Seekers Community and the larger Takoma Park community by helping people who visit feel welcome and encouraging them to get connected.
  • Outreach
  • During COVID OMG hosted several gatherings
  • Using the front window to share posters inviting people to attend Christmas Eve service and First Day Hike
  • Reaching out to new properties such as Entwine and other new neighbors
  • Implementing Connection Cards to gather information from guests
  • Marketing can address the challenge of social isolation and loneliness by promoting activities we’re currently doing including Vigil, Carroll Cafe, etc. and finding ways to get the word out through listservs and other sources

SLT Covid Protocol: Jacqie

We have stopped collecting names of attendees at worship every Sunday in favor of

  • Asking anyone who has tested positive for covid to let SLT know if they have attended a Seekers event and might have infected others;
  • SLT will ask that person to identify him/herself and send an all-Seekers email -OR-
  • SLT will notify all-Seekers that someone attended worship and has tested positive.

Visitors departed, then pastoral concerns were offered.

Two Stewards Shared – Dave and Margreta.

Soul Talk – no notes.

Submitted by Marjory Bankson (Jan 15, 2024)

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2024 February Stewards Minutes
2023 December Stewards Minutes