Wesley Memorial UMC Church Council
September 21, 2021
Present: Matt Seaton, Rick Hamilton, Matt Zimmerman, Rocky Shoemaker, David Sandridge, Carolyn Ball, Maury Early, Sue Lewis, Sherry Lambert, Sara Malpass, Sandy Staggers.
OPENING: Rocky opened the meeting with prayer.
MINUTES: Minutes of August meeting were approved without changes.
FINANCE/TREASURER: David reviewed the report
From the balance sheet-
We are purchasing the new AV system from the Lentzsch gift
Pastor Matt organized the staff retreat and the $350 for that I took from the Davenport bequest fund since that fund has been largely undesignated.
It was suggested that we close some of the very small inactive funds and moving the money into the Minister’s discretionary fund to kickstart that. Suggested closings include the Davenport Bequest ($5.29), cap.camp 2015 ($26.64), church dinners ($19.28), t-shirts ($45.00), worship gifts fund($55.00), large print bibles($35.47), memorial fund undesignated ($63.56). We will discuss this at the meeting. Council agreed.
As many of you are aware, we have a few investment funds that are not a part of our budget. These funds are held in conference investment.
Below is a listing of these investments showing the value on 01/01/2021 and the value as of 8/31/2021.
FUND. VALUE 01/01/2021. VALUE 08/31/2021
JARMAN BEQUEST. $59,403.24. $65,471.00
JARMAN BEQUEST. $143.77. $144.27
(Avum dev co)
MEMORIAL FUND. $19,926.58. $19,995.56
CAPITAL CAMPAIGN FUND. $25,171.93. $25,259.07
TRUSTEES: Carolyn reviewed the report.
* The CS Preschool resumed with about 25 children on Sep.9. They are operating almost exclusively outside and needed to install a temporary fence to separate their 2 groups. We pared and trimmed back the gardens and worked with Hughes landscaping to have the space ready for them to fully use the space.
* Hughes landscaping will clear out the brush at the corner of the parking lot by the road exiting Emmet St. It is both unsightly and obstructs the view to the right. Estimate was $250 to clear and remove and it will be done soon now that mowing is decreasing.
* The photo eye on the elevator needs to be replaced. It is causing the door to "stutter" and take 2-3 passes to close. The part has been ordered and total cost with labor estimated to be $625.
* Repairs to Maria's bathroom in progress. Part was ordered for her commode and her sink had only one faucet working which is also being fixed by Bob Newsome, plumber.
* Maria's car will be towed Wednesday 9/22 to a private address in Charlottesville as she did not wish to have it sold for junk. The tenant at Moosetrap graciously agreed for us to use her second parking space so that Maria's car was not in a football parking space.
*Football parking with the illustrious Sue Lewis has resumed!
* AssaAbloy met with Sue Lewis and Pastor Matt Sep 20 to work up an estimate to install an exterior button to automatically open the Emmet Street entrance door. It had been brought to our attention that there could be quite a struggle to get the door open for our disabled congregants. Estimate not ready yet but could be up to about $10,000.
*An Ad Hoc committee was created to explore Wesley Memorial’s energy efficiency. Christine Alancar leads this committee. Rosie Snow, Roger McDonald, and Gabe Alencar serve in this group. They are exploring how Wesley Memorial can make better use of energy, this includes vetting the cost and benefits of solar power for the church, as well as replacing light bulbs. (submitted by Pastor Matt)
* We are looking into getting the kitchen certified by the health department to further support Maria's movement towards supporting herself financially. Certification is not required for the city market but is for catering and other types of events. Carolyn Ball met with Maria Niechwiadowicz who has experience in the process to look at the kitchen and what might need to be done. Maria Chavalan has taken the course through ServSafe in food handling and will continue with the course work for "Kitchen Manager" so that she is able to comply and be listed on the application for the kitchen's certification.
It was noted at council that the estimate for the exterior button to open the Emmett St door may actually be in the range of $2500 to $5000.
SPR: Sherry reviewed the report.
The SPRC met on September 14 and accomplished the following tasks:
1. Reviewed a draft of a new job description for Monica. This new description combines the work she is currently doing as Director of Communications and Office Manager. This position is now titled Church Administrative Assistant.
2. Continued work on putting together a Staff Handbook.
3. Talked about Pastor Compensation. The committee will discuss this further and also talk about raises for all staff at the next meeting on Oct. 5.
4. Reviewed forms for Charge Conference.
Discussion followed regarding determination of salary for Pastor Matt. It was determined that SPR should make a recommendation to council as to the salary and council needs to approve it. Pastor’s compensation needs to be finalized before Charge Conference on October 18. SPR will send a recommendation by email for council approval.
Post-COVID Re-entry Group report: Matt Zimmerman
It was noted the name of the group is less than accurate at this time. PRG met via Zoom on Aug 31 in response to a sharp increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases in the Charlottesville area due to the Delta variant.
- Because we exceeded the 25 daily new cases per 100K population threshold we had previously set, we made the recommendation that we should pause indoor in-person worship.
- We also made specific recommendations for the Horn funeral on Sept 4, including having a signup to limit attendance to 30 congregation members.
- Since that time, COVID-19 cases in our area have continued to rise.
- We met again via Zoom on Sept 20.
- There was some discussion about funerals, which we can potentially support with a similar protocol as was used for the Horn funeral, but will work with families for funerals to be as safe as possible.
- Indoor services can resume as soon as we cross back under the 25 new case threshold.
- We will meet again in Oct to evaluate again.
 New case numbers from CovidActNow for the Charlottesville metropolitan area (see https://covidactnow.org/us/metro/charlottesville_va/?s=23221242) for the past year.
-It was noted that if people test positive for Covid they should notify Pastor Matt so that appropriate follow up for those potentially exposed can take place.
NURTURE: Rocky reviewed the report.
Congregational Care: Visits have been made or greetings sent to all hospitalized members. Pastoral visits to two. Consultations have been made with other committee chairs and professional attendants on behalf of two members.
Prayer Group: Members have raised and responded to all requests that have been forwarded to the group or requested in worship.
Worship Committee: Worship has formed into two groups; General Worship, and Worship Visuals. The Visuals group has met twice to study upcoming lectionary readings and choose visuals for the alter that complement the sermons. Alter plans have been made for the next 6 weeks, and coordinated with Monica for assistance in production.
Children's ministries: Rocky has been part of the discussions about Wesley's ministries to children, has assisted with care of the children, and has represented our ministries to children in discussions with the Healthy Church committee.
Adult Forum: has resumed meetings by zoom, and the current class is moderated by Renita Banks.
-Rocky will get funds for altar decorations in coordination with the sermon from the Worship Supplies fund.
WITNESS: no report
OUTREACH: Maury reviewed the report.
IMPACT: House Meeting by Zoom Thursday Sept. 23, 7-8:30 PM, 2 focus questions
1. How have you, or someone you know, been struggling to have decent accessible and affordable housing or struggling to get children into preschool or childcare?
2. How have you or your loved ones been impacted by floods, heat, pollution, mold, hunger, utility bills or lack of transportation?
Annual assembly of network members Oct. 26 (to pin down topic for research concentration for IMPACT 2021-2022 year)
Re: Affordable housing From Sarah Malpass
The comprehensive planning/rezoning process continues to move forward in Charlottesville. It's been very contentious, with lots of pushback on affordable housing from our wealthier white neighborhoods. There will be opportunities for Cville residents and institutions to weigh in on the land use maps, which will set the baseline for what affordable housing can be developed in our community over the next 20-30 years. I'd like to suggest we raise the question of whether WMUMC would like to weigh in during the planning process - is this something we might have time to consider during the Outreach portion of our next Council meeting?
Time is of the essence for weighing in.
• Schedule for upcoming meetings: https://cvilleplanstogether.com/stay-involved/
• Current draft materials: https://cvilleplanstogether.com/document-media-center/
Recommend the church focus not just on proposed land use around the church property itself, but get engaged with advocating for upzoning city wide and other policies and map approaches that support the expansion of affordable housing across the city as a whole. This will be the biggest opportunity to influence what is possible regarding affordable housing for the next several decades.
PACEM: Premier Circle Meal Service Sign up : Dinner meals are needed every night for the guests housed at Premier Circle. Premier Circle Meal Service Sign-Up Genius link
Hypothermia Congregate care will be November through March for the 15-20 men a night, similar to last year, a church hosts for a month, dinner meal brought in, all monitoring done by PACEM staff
November is being hosted by Unitarian Universalist Cville. Wesley will not host the hypothermia shelter.
Maria: Desperate need for folks to help Maria selling her goods in September and October at the following:
Wednesday afternoons at Meade Park
Friday Sept. 24 afternoon and evening at the IX Arts Festival
Saturday Mornings at City Market
Contact Andrea Zimmerman or sign up using https://www.signupgenius.com/go/8050549AAA62AA1FE3-hands
Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women: Now through early November, Collection of hygiene items (toothpaste 6 oz, lotion and shampoo each 15 oz size, 2.6 oz stick deodorant), cards, stationery, forever stamps and unsharpened wooden pencils. Sandy had sent email to Monica to send out and will collect and deliver these items.
Discussion followed regarding the position of the church on the city’s land use plans. Sara is involved through her neighborhood association. Wesley is involved through our work with IMPACT. IMPACT has sent input to the Board of Supervisors and the city council but not specifically to the planning commission, and the input has not been specifically about the land use plans. Sara and Maury will draft a letter to be sent to the planning commission from the church stating our support for affordable housing without specific comment on the land use plans at the current time. Council will review the letter which may then be sent to the planning commission.
COUNCIL RETREAT: Pastor Matt reviewed the plans for this which will be on October 2 and October 16. He would like to consider the mission statement and vision for Wesley. We do not currently have a mission statement. Included on the agenda is the use of the NOW model. We will also discuss the grounds and building planning. Pastor Matt is planning some discussions to occur in break out sessions. Current staff members will be invited to these meetings.
MINISTER’S REPORT: Pastor Matt
-Pastor Matt reports the virtual worship is going well with new sound system and recording equipment. -He is continuing to get to know the congregation through small groups, virtual and outside.
-October 3rd is World Communion Sunday. He plans a hybrid service with worship online followed by outside communion. People can watch in their cars and then receive communion. It will be followed by lunch which will not be pot luck but will be served to people.
-Pastor Matt reported that staff will be recording their parts of worship so as to maintain social distance from each other.
-Charge conference will be on October 18 at Aldersgate. It will be with 2-3 churches. People can attend in person or via Zoom. It was noted that the pastor’s compensation needs to be finalized so it can be reported at charge conference. It was also noted that in order to grant a raise to the pastor, Wesley will need to have paid 75% of our apportionments for the year. David reported this will be $16, 219. Council approved the payment.
-Sandy will be the secretary.
CLOSING: Pastor Matt closed the meeting with prayer.