October 2016 Meeting Minutes

Minutes of Board Meeting for Unity of Springfield

October 17, 2016

Board Members Present:

Mary Hilsabeck-Huber (President)                                          Simone Hite (Vice-President)

Jim Kaatz (Treasurer)                                                              Paula Armknecht (Secretary)

Tom Long (Director)                                                                Amy Burnett (Director)

Jon Anfinson (Director)                                                           Norma Vinson (Emeritus)                            

Sue Baggett-Spears (Spiritual Leader)                                     Guests: JoLynn Higgins and Lisa Landrigan


The meeting was called to order by Mary Hilsabeck-Huber at 6:00 pm with the lighting of the Christ Candle.  Sue Baggett-Spears led an opening prayer.  The guests, JoLynn and Lisa, then stepped out of the room and check-in was conducted among board members.   After check-in, the guests were invited back in and all present read the Core Values, Vision and Mission Statement of Unity of Springfield. 

Minutes were read by the board president for the Special (Congregational) Meeting – no changes were requested.  Simone Hite made a motion that the minutes be approved as written.  Jon Anfinson seconded the motion.  An affirmative vote was taken.  Motion to accept the minutes was approved.

Minutes were read by Mary for the September 19 Board Meeting – changes were requested for the following:

*Norma reported in September that “lattice” in the meditation garden was in need of repair instead of “siding”.

*Spelling corrections to the names of JoLynn Higgins, De DeArmon, Mary Hilsabeck-Huber, and Kimberley Lippelman-Nash.

*An amount given in the Administrator’s report for the Steffany Barton workshop was wrongly attributed to the Prosperity Plus workshop

*A World Day of Prayer service had been held at Unity of Springfield.

*Sue’s talks to be listed as “prosperity talks” instead of “preliminary talks” prior to the mailing of a donation request letter.

*The nominating committee would be choosing the final member from the congregation.

*The amount erroneously transferred from a church account into a personal account for Mary Hilsabeck-Huber had been listed as $200, but was corrected to $300, with acknowledgement by Great Southern Bank that the error was on the part of the bank.  All money has been transferred back into the proper account.

Lisa Landrigan presented a sponsorship opportunity for a Reentry and Resources 5K to take place on January 7, 2017.  The event is an outreach to benefit those with a criminal record who are reentering the work force.  She distributed a flyer that outlined different levels of sponsorship that included advertising opportunities for sponsors.  Lisa left after the presentation, and the board decided to discuss this during New Business.

The financial report was reviewed and the level of increased giving was discussed.  A motion was made by Jon Anfinson to approve the treasurer’s report as written.  Paula Armknecht seconded the motion.  A vote was taken and the motion carried.  A discussion followed about Jim giving a monthly treasurer’s report to the congregation.  All present agreed that would be a good plan to keep the members up-to-date on finances.

Committee Reports:

Adult Education – No report

Building and Grounds – Norma Vinson discussed the Fall Clean-Up.  Team leader is Dan Padfield.  The mowing company that is caring for our grounds was discussed with high praise for the work that they are doing.  Norma was thanked for bringing the company to us.  The possibility was discussed with recognizing them with a sign on our grounds. 

Employment – Jim had nothing to report, but did ask for a brief closed session at the end of the regular board meeting

Fundraising – Simone discussed the Spaghetti Sauce Cook-Off planned for November 6.  Kathy Westmoreland has agreed to facilitate that.  Sue suggested that we include a sign-up in the Sunday bulletin to encourage participation.  The church will furnish the pasta and the bread, and the band has agreed to play.  The Fashion Fair was discussed, and Simone agreed to get with Dee Richardson to make plans for that.  Simone also reported that a stove, microwave, and dishwasher had been donated for the online thrift store and brought in $200.00.  Jon discussed the donation of a house full of furniture, but the owner will be gone for a while.  He said that she will be taking pictures when she returns, so that we can make plans for how to get it to the church. Simone reported that we still have some dolls to sell, but that we need someone to research them to figure out a value. Sue reported on a large cherry wood desk that is being donated to us, and Tom took in a vaccum cleaner, shop vac, box of miscellaneous items, air-up bed, and tent to be put on Craig’s List. 

Long/short range planning – no report

Marketing/publicity – no report

Music – Jon reported speaking with John Merrifield about the loss of channels on the sound board.  He said that we are down to two spare channels.  John will start getting some bids.  Sue discussed the success of Michele VanHoose in getting people involved in the ministry through the choir, and suggested that we thank her for stepping up in this way.

Outreach – No report.  Simone suggested an idea that she was aware of where the church gives backpacks to congregants to give to the homeless.  She suggested that people want to help, but don’t know how. Jon shared an experience from his former church who did something similar, as well as including business cards as a way of getting our name out.  Mary shared that there is a website, “Safe Spaces” that lists LGBT-friendly businesses, to which we might sign our name. 

Volunteer service -  no report

Youth education – Paula Armknecht read the report from Julia White.  Attendance was up and plans were made for Spooktrunkular.  Makenzie Bast would be running the cake walk. Cindy Goodwin had made flyers to hang up for the event. Halloween would be celebrated that same Sunday in the youth wing. The plan for next year is to use the Celebrate My God-Self Curriculum and Spiritual Playdate material. The Giving Tree will take place in the next month and information will be shared on that after Halloween.  Parents’ Day Out is scheduled for November 19, and she will be needing help on the Sunday after Halloween as De DeArmon will be out of town.

Teen activities – no report.  Simone shared that the teens will not be attending rally.

Communications – Copy of administrator’s report was shared.  Sue read a letter that was received from a non-member with a check for $1,000.00.  Sue also shared a letter from a congregant who increased their giving by $28.00 per month for the rest of the year, along with the amount to cover a $28.00 donation for four other congregants. 

Administrator’s report – Sue discussed the need for asking for donations during classes.

Spiritual leader’s report – Sue reported that she had six counseling sessions, met with Michelle VanHoose, and shared that the previous three weeks had been hard for her and that she was grateful for the opportunity to go deep with preparing her talks. She said that this had changed her perspective and wants to empower the congregation to change, as well.

Old Business:

Review the calendar –  Spooktrunkular on October 30, Spaghetti Sauce Cookoff on November 6, Voting in the sanctuary on November 8, Soulful Saturday on November 12, New Member Classes on November 13 and 20, Men’s and Women’s Groups on November 18, Parent’s Day Out on November 19, decorating the church on November 27, wedding on December 3, reception on December 10.  Mary suggested talking to people to become members. Holiday Bazaar will not take place due to lack of leadership, and was not budgeted for.  December 18 was discussed for an open house.

Peapod – Mary reported that Peopod has complied will all requests, but one small one, and that they are still working on getting that done.  She said that the youth wing looked good after requests were met.

Pledge drive – Mary will talk to Dee Richardson to encourage people to do automatic withdrawals for donations, and that we will ask congregants to pledge what they are willing to donate, as of the first of the year.  Monthly letters were discussed to update donors of where they are in donations, on a monthly basis.  No decision to be made on that, at this time.  We will look in to where to get envelopes. Harry Sparks is willing to help with the drive.

Appointing board member – Mary has spoken to a couple of members, but both are not interested at this time.  Sue mentioned the importance of asking someone willing to give of their time, treasure, and talent.

Donation letter – Kari was not present, but a discussion ensued on the need to set a date for when this letter will go out.  Plans were made to start discussion on the pledge drive on November 6.  We need to discuss with Kari, where she is with the letter.  Sue said that it would be good to aim for November 26 or 27, but that we need to get the letter out soon.

Media blitz – Paula reported on committee meeting, and that we decided on window stickers and clings.  She shared designs that Cindy Goodwin had created for these.  Simone gave prices that she had obtained on clings and stickers, as well as round stickers that could be used for buttons.  Simone said that she was waiting on prices for tee-shirts.  After discussion, it was decided that we would have to look at how many tee-shirts to order.  The decision was made to order 100-125 each of bumper stickers and window clings.  We discussed starting the blitz in November, and having the Open House as the finale.  Ideas were shared on what an Open House might entail, but it was decided that December would not be a good month for participation, and that it might be better after the first of the year.  It was decided that getting the media blitz started was the most important thing with flyers and bumper stickers needed to start in November, but the Open House would need to be postponed until maybe February.  Sue suggested that we might put out Christmas items for sale in the Fellowship Hall in December, even without doing a Bazaar.  Sale of stickers would commence as soon as we can get them.

New Business:

5K – it was decided that sponsoring would be setting a precedent, and that we could look at this as advertising with our name on the tee-shirts.  Jim Kaatz made a motion that we invest $300.00 to get our name out on the tee-shirts for the event.  Jon Anfinson seconded the motion.  A vote was taken, with Amy Burnett abstaining from the vote.  Motion carried.  We will not promote the event. 

Love offerings – Sue suggested that we consider giving to Unity Worldwide Ministries, Silent Unity, Unity FM, and The Council of Churches.  We discussed that we need an outreach budget. We will discuss this further next month.  Jim suggested that we consider a bake sale for outreach.

Dogs in service – Simone shared a congregant request to bring a dog to service.  After discussion, the decision was made that only service dogs would be allowed during services.  An informational sign will be placed outside.

Community event for spring – Jim discussed an event for spring where the community would be invited in, perhaps on May Day.  He suggested forming a committee to plan this.  The idea is to do this on one or multiple days, with possibly liquor and music.  Sue suggested starting with a one day event in April.  Simone and Amy agree to be on the committee. 

Business cards for windshields – Jim suggested that we print business cards to give to congregants to share in the community.  He suggested making it a contest with gift card prizes for the most people brought in.  Sue suggested gift certificates for the book store.  We discussed what would need to be on the cards that would draw people in. 

JoLynn Higgins was given an opportunity to speak to the board members.  She discussed an acquaintance who puts together programs for Suddenlink Communications, and has expressed a desire to produce an advertising spot for Unity of Springfield as a “Pay it Forward” gift.  She would like to use the children, or Unity music in a Christmas theme.  It was decided that we would like to go forward with that, but not using the children.  JoLynn also suggested that we post progress on some of the projects that are underway, and offered assistance if needed to make buttons to promote Unity.  She shared ideas for live connections via video technology.  JoLynn was thanked for her input.

Meeting adjourned at 8:45 p.m.

Board went into closed session.