Mount Vernon Unitarian Church in Alexandria, VA is a “congregational” church, meaning that we are self-governed. The following are the minutes from the March 2016 Board of Trustees Meeting

Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees of Mount Vernon Unitarian Church

12 April 2016

 

Board members present:                                                      Board members absent:                   

Pam Koger-Jesup, Board Chair                                              N/A

John Henrehan, Board Vice Chair

Tony Barkume, Program Council Co-Convener

Sarah Soulliere, Program Council Co-Convener        

Sally Lindfors,            Secretary

Kelly Campbell

Ken Pilkenton

Richard Roesel

Amy Venzke

Helen Kitrosser, Youth Member

 

Others present:

Rev. Kate Walker, Minister

Carol Graves, Administrator

Oscar Castro, Treasurer

Steve Erickson, Finance Committee Chair

Joan Darrah, Endowment Committee Chair

 

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm.  Rev. Kate shared a reading.

 

Consensus Items (March meeting minutes, administrator’s report, minster’s report, DLSG reports, program council report, financial reports)

  • Items approved unanimously

 

Sale of Artwork

  • John motioned to auction both pieces of artwork off in the commons, with the knowledge that there is currently a standing offer of $500 for one of the pieces. Richard seconded.  The motion to sell both pieces of artwork was rejected.  John motioned to sell just one of the pieces of artwork and then withdrew the motion.
  • Kate suggested we need to research the value of the artwork more thoroughly
  • Sarah and Sally believe the artwork to be part of our legacy as a church and that we should not sell
  • Richard suggested the artwork should be displayed for some time
  • Sarah motioned to keep both pieces of artwork. Sally seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Auction Update

  • The auction committee has decided the auction should be a biannual event to prevent burnout
  • The committee will aim to have another auction in 2018
  • Sally motioned to accept the committee’s proposal. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.

 

 

Preschool Lease Update

  • Discussion of possible amendments to Fort Hunt Preschool lease agreement, previously discussed via email
  • Topics included financial concerns of MVUC balanced with longstanding relationship with preschool
  • Carol continues working with the preschool to finalize terms of lease

 

Girl Scout Silver Award Request

  • Two youth would like to have a booth in the commons on two Sundays and place a collection bin for a service project to earn the Girl Scout Silver Award (see proposal below)
  • Sally motioned to accept the proposal. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Endowment Committee Appointments

  • Bruce Tinker to replace Bill Burns effective immediately and Joan Darrah to continue as Chair in next term. Sally motioned to accept the appointments.  John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

June Board Retreat Update

  • Will take place June 3rd and 4th, with Friday night being located at MVUC and Saturday at UUCA (Arlington UU church)
  • John Henrehan has expressed that he does not wish to continue from the role of Vice Chair into the role of Board Chair in the next fiscal year. He will remain a member of the Board of Trustees.
  • Nominating Committee has made the incoming nominees to the Board aware of the dates of the retreat

 

Annual Meeting Update

  • Program Council has chosen award winners
  • Annual Report is well on its way to being completed

 

Proposed Bylaws Change for Annual Meeting

  • Review of several bylaw amendments and a proposed new policy will be presented at the Annual Meeting
  • Ken motioned that the Board support and recommend to the congregation a revision to section 4.4 of the bylaws, as drafted by Richard Roesel. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Richard motioned that we accepted a bylaw amendment, incorporating the first 2 sentences from a memo dated April 6 regarding section 6.1 of the bylaws. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Quarterly Financial Review, Steve Erickson and Oscar Castro

  • The current budget is closely matching what was projected, after some small adjustments
  • Wedding income is down, looking for some solutions including extending the hours of weddings until 11pm to sell more weddings and receptions
  • Amazon contributions are down, probably because it is difficult to find the link to the page on the new web site, this is being worked on
  • The Finance Committee unanimously recommends getting another line of credit for 3 years, have a pay off the debt drive in fiscal year 2018, and at that point perhaps use Endowment Fund money to pay off construction loan debt. Burke and Herbert bank has indicated we could obtain such a line of credit, although it would also require us to pay some closing costs.  This proposal would keep our monthly payments lower for several more years while we continue considering future options to pay off the debt.
  • John motioned to authorize a new line of credit for the commons loan. Sarah seconded.  Motion passed.

 

Discussion of Next Year’s Budget

  • Proposed budget balanced with the following strategies:
    • Stewardship contributions appear strong so far
    • Scaled back projected amount from weddings and rentals
    • Lowered fundraising contributions to $5000
    • Hoping to up Amazon contributions again
    • Asking for $30,000 from the Endowment Fund
    • Small cost decreases in communications and insurance premiums
  • $4000 included for IT infrastructure, this is necessary to protect the integrity of our systems
  • More money in Property Fund, they have been putting off many important improvements for some time
  • Overdue staff raises included
  • Money included to give a stipend to our ministerial intern to show our appreciation, the Finance Committee supported this suggestion from Rev. Kate
  • John motioned to approve the proposed budget for fiscal year 2017 as recommended by the Finance Committee. Kelly seconded.  The motion passed with two abstentions.

 

Unannounced New Business

  • Reps are being sought for General Assembly
  • A Parliamentarian is sought for the annual meeting
  • Tony motioned to approve Phyllis Gilmore as interim chair of the Sunday Services Council. John seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Al Robbert will take over for Steve Erickson as Chair of the Finance Committee, although Steve will remain a committee member

 

 

MVUC Convenant

Meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Kelly Campbell, Board of Trustees Member
AGENDA – MVUC BOT Meeting – April 12, 2016

7:30 PM

 

Time Topic Type Facilitator(s)
7:00 30 min. reading time  
7:30 Welcome – call to order Pam
7:32 Reflection – chalice lighting Kate
7:35 Consent Agenda Review and Approval:

March Meeting Minutes

Program Council Report

Minister’s Report  (not attached)

Administrator’s Report

Action Pam
7:40 Sale of Artwork Action Pam
7:45 Silent Auction update Info Kelly
7:50 Preschool Lease update Info Carol/Tony
7:55 Girl Scout Silver Award request Action Pam
8:00 Endowment Committee – appointment Action Pam
7:55 Retreat update Info John
8:00 Annual Meeting update Info Pam
8:05 Proposed bylaws changes for Annual Meeting Info Pam
8:15 Quarterly financial review Info Steve Erickson
8:25 Draft budget discussion Info Steve Erickson
8:55 Unannounced new business and announcements
9:00 MVUC Covenant and Adjournment

 

BOT Priorities 2015-16

  1. Ensure continued financial health of MVUC – IN PROGRESS
  2. Plan and host 60th Anniversary celebration – DONE
  3. Implement v.2 of dashboard and establish electronic data storage/access
  4. Design and implement a process to assess mission and vision – IN PROGRESS

 

MVUC Governance Calendar

Month Task Notes
 
March Annual Meeting planning
  Annual Reports due April 1
  BOT retreat planning (confirm with nominees)
  Request delegates for General Assembly
 
April Quarterly financial review (Finance/BOT)
  Approve annual budget (Finance/BOT)*
  Quarterly membership data report (Membership Council)*
  Annual Meeting planning and official announcement (BOT)
  BOT retreat planning
May Annual Meeting*
  Set date for next year’s annual meeting
  BOT retreat planning
  Appoint GA delegates (BOT)*

 

 


 

Administrative Notes to the Board

For April 12, 2016 Board Meeting

 

My notes are very brief this month.

 

  1. As you know, the Mason Hill Citizens Association has been meeting here in Hollin Hall over the past few months as they have worked to get organized. They had an Annual Meeting for all the neighbors on April 8 from 7 pm to 9 pm here at Hollin Hall. At this meeting, voting was to take place on new officers and their plans for implementing an ambitious plan for the new year. We found out that Ken Bohannon was the chair of the Safety Committee prior to the most recent elections.

I do hope that each of you read the letter from their president, Michael Rioux, thanking us for being supportive of them. I sent an email to each of you with the letter approximately two weeks ago.

  1. Most of the Annual Reports have been completed and submitted . Tony and Sally have proved to be a formidable team in working to get all of the reports in. I am confident that all will be in by the time of the board meeting.

 

  1. 2016 Annual Report to State Corporation documents have been received. This must be completed annually since we incorporated a couple of years ago. In addition to the paper work involved, we pay an annual fee of $25 to remain in good standing with the Commonwealth of Virginia.

 

  1. The rent on both the apartment and the Preschool are current.

 

  1. UUA database listing update was due on April 7. With the substantial review of members done for the Certification of Membership in December, it was easy to review and tweak our membership data where necessary. In July we will update the church leadership to include all those elected to new terms and positions for the new fiscal year.

 

  1. As yet, we do not have a lease with the FHP ready to be signed. I’ll make a report at the meeting to provide an update.

 

 

 

Submitted by

Carol

 

 

 

 

Minister’s Board Report

Rev. Kate R. Walker

Mt Vernon Unitarian Church

April 12, 2016

 

 

Internal:

1) Stewardship: I’m delighted that early returns for pledges have come in sufficiently high enough for the Finance Committee to submit a 2016.17 budget with an increase of $40,000.  In addition they moved all debt payments to come out of the Building Fund. They balanced the budget by recommending $30,000 from the Endowment.  I think it would be wise to have a separate discussion to assess where MVUC is currently in regards to the Pillars and Foundations budget and recommendations.

 

District/Region
2) District annual meeting: Attendees at the Joseph Priestly District annual meeting, April 8-9, in York, PA voted overwhelming to disband the JPD as soon as the JPD board can confirm all legal arrangements in order to finalize the merger with the Central East Region. http://www.uua.org/central-east.

 

Outreach:

3) VOICE is conducting in 250 small group listening sessions all over NOVA in order to hear the primary concerns of residents.  VOICE leadership will then discern the top priorities and invite regional and state politicians to meet with 2000 members of VOICE on Oct. 16. At that meeting, the elected officials will be invited to commit to how they will pursue solutions to the concerns of NOVA residents.  MVUC has committed to doing 5 small group listening sessions both within MVUC and outside in the larger community.  Please watch for announcements for the small group listening sessions.

 

4) MVUC has reached out the local Mosque, ICNA (Islamic Circle of North America), in an effort to combat Islamaphobia.  The first event is on May 21, 2 p.m.

 

Professional Commitments:

5) I’ve been asked by the UUA to serve on the Ministerial Transitions Team. MTT members work with congregations that are in search as soon as their minister announces a resignation and continues until they have a new settlement.  I will work with congregations in this area, no more three at a time, more likely one or two.

 

6) I’m attending the Leading Edge Conference: Revolutionary Love in NYC this weekend (April 15-17) at the Middle Collegiate Church. Its focus is on dismantling racism through cutting edge projects, http://www.middleproject.org/conference-2016

 

7) I’m attending the annual retreat for all clergy in the two UUMA chapters in our region in Lewes, DE, April 24-27.

 

8) Continuing Education:

I’ve successfully completed my Doctor of Ministry degree at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria.  My thesis will soon be available to read in either written or digital form.

 

 

 

 

Submitted in gratitude, Kate R. Walker

 

 

 


 

DLSG Report

March 14, 2016

 

Administration

  • Drafts have been completed for both the DLSG Annual Report, and the LSG Budget. The latter has been submitted.
  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation continues, although we are down to minor and specific language. We hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • After the confusion surrounding Stewardship Sunday and the low pledging numbers reported from younger families, I have asked to attend a Stewardship committee meeting to discuss opportunities and ideas.
  • I have met with all the Teaching Teams, save 7th and 8th On the whole, things seem to be going well.  I did collect several notes to help improve the program next year.
  • SBA funds were secured for two new laptops, and to refinish Jim Kerr’s office floor. Thanks go to Jim and Helen Kafka who did the lion’s share of work on the applications.
  • LSG and Music were without computer services including e-mail Wednesday through Friday of this week. If you failed to receive a timely response from us, or your messages bounced back, please accept our apologies.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades subcommittee has met twice, and is planning a third meeting now. At their request I have been talking to surrounding congregations to see how their programs are laid out, and discuss collaborations in the future.
  • The OWL subcommittee is planning to meet in the next two weeks.
  • The Playground committee is in the process of planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, May 15. Among other things, we have been discussing getting more participation from MVUC members and FHP alumni.
  • The LSGC worship service committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pass it On” for both the service, and the spring teacher recruitment. The service will include 8the grade bridging, teacher recognition, a teacher recruitment statement, and guest homilies.

 

Upcoming RE

  • The Green Hill project committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pursuing Your Passions: Outdoors” These outdoor workshops will take place in the months of April, May and June.  We hope to pair guests who are willing to demonstrate and teach about their skills and hobbies in an outdoor setting.  These may include outdoor games, yoga, gardening, photography, wild flowers and pollinators, knitting, drumming, labyrinth and more.  Again, we plan to pair those who are familiar with RE lesson planning and structure with those who will be sharing their time and talents, and may ask some LSGC members to assist with this.
  • This summer we plan to again use Spirit Play in a one-room-classroom format during the months of July and August. Lead Spirit Play teacher Cheryl Sabo will hold a training and orientation in the late spring, and we will ask SP teachers to each volunteer one Sunday this summer.
  • Kate, Intern Minister Alice King and I met with the YRUU advisors to discuss plans for next year, including curriculum, team planning, and the YRUU worship service. Rev. Kate met with the youth on March 13 for planning and communication purposes.  Programming for YRUU next year is becoming clearer.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We have only had a few responses to offer the Calm Parenting program, but we will run it in the announcements for a couple more weeks to see what happens. If you are interested or know someone who might be, please let me know.  http://celebratecalm.com/
  • The Hudson family has volunteered to host Game Night on April 30, so that one will be taking place. We hope to see you there!
  • Intern Minister Alice King will be offering Building Your Own Theology in our ARE program starting at the beginning of May.
  • Seder this year is April 22. In preparation and with LSGC’s recommendation, I will be looking for volunteers to coordinate this event.  Since it is not near spring break for the first time in 3 years, we are hopeful.
  • We understand that Lasagna Dinner proceeds hover around $900, which will go into our CoA account for the next group going to Boston. Please thank Kristen Reidy when you see her.  She volunteered to be on a team of 3, but due to unforeseen and unfortunate circumstances, ended up doing the planning herself.
  • On May 27 we will be resurrecting the pollinator (butterfly) garden. Mike Arnold has agreed to rototill the spot, and water it.  The children will be planting the seeds on Easter (to be replanted should there be another frost).  We are hoping to use this garden as part of the Green Hill workshops.

 

New Initiatives

  • Wednesday, March 9 MVUC held their first event in a series on race relations. This was planned in a 3-day workshop attended this fall by Rev. Kate, Mark Zimmerman and me as a team.  The workshop was based on Beloved Conversations, a UUA program which strives to explore and improve race relations in UU congregations.  This first exploratory workshop was done with the choir, but further workshops are planned, and the LSG community will likely be involved at some point.
  • Yesterday MVUC offered a workshop for parents on how to talk to your youth about sexuality. It was cosponsored by Accotink UU Church, and led by Lourdes Fernandez from Accotink, and me.  As an employee of George Mason University, Lourdes hopes to use this experience to write a paper on the importance of parent involvement in sexual education, pending consent of all those involved.
  • Plans have continued to develop for an Interfaith Dialogue. Scheduled for May 21, the event will be held at MVUC and also include members of the local Mosque.  The format will be a presentation from a guest speaker expert in the subject, then small group discussions between UUs and Muslims.  The planning committee for this event includes Doug MacCleery, Diana Harriman, Rubina and Arshed Mamood.  A second event is planned for the future that will be larger and more community wide in scope.  Rubina and members of the Mosque are also interested in an event that includes youth, and the YRUU has been invited to consider such a possibility.

 

Professional Development

  • I will be at GA in June
  • I will be taking a course on Sexuality Issues for UU DREs June-August
  • I will be working on a self study program offered by the UUA on Systems Theory during the same time period.

 


 

DLSG Report

April 11, 2016

 

RE Classes

  • As we move into fall, some classes are ending, Green Hill Project begins, and there are a number of special events like Workenanny and Creek Clean Up. Since there are differences between most Sundays from April 24 to June 30, I have made a chart to clarify things and have given copies to staff.  The chart is attached here for your reference.
  • Plans for Green Hill Workshops continue. Subject matter and lead teachers are well in hand.  I have sent out an invitation to eight people who have taught in the past, but did not teach this year asking if they would be cooperating education partners for at least one session each.  However, I have some concerns about April 24, our first workshop.  This needs to be a strong workshop, since we expect a larger number of children, and we do not currently have any prospects for it.
  • The special preschool session during June will be “Teddy Bear Month,” from the curriculum Chalice Children. I’m pleased to say we have 6 parents who haven’t taught for us before, many of them new to our program, who have agreed to teach sessions with our younger children on those four Sundays.

 

Administration

  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation is nearing an end. We still hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • LSG took possession of two new laptops paid for by SBA funds. Jim Kerr has set them up for use.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades committee met a third time, and has made some progress settling on some goals and recommendations for that age group. They anticipate meeting one more time.
  • The OWL subcommittee met, and successfully identified three woman and one man who would be willing to be trained to teach OWL, and discussed the OWL program for 7-8th graders next year. They are scheduling a meeting for the end of May to look at some of the other issues at hand.
  • The Playground committee planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, a fundraiser on May 15 is asking parents of children who benefit from the playground to donate baked goods for sale, or assist with set up or clean up for the event. A limited number of people have volunteered to bake so far.  The LSGC is invited to participate in this event either through donations or assistance.  If you are able to help in either way, please let me know.
  • The LSGC worship service committee has a draft for the Order of Service, but additional planning needs to be done.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We hope to see LSGC families at Game Night on April 30.
  • Annie Montanari has agreed to coordinate the Seder on April 23, and Rev. Walker is prepared to lead the service. Future announcements will focus on volunteers to cook and people who wish to attend.
  • The Ericksons have asked if there is anyone else who would be willing to coordinate future Popcorn Theology sessions, as they have so many conflicting commitments.
  • Holly Santillo (who has a degree in music education) has offered to begin a weekly children’s choir for elementary age students. She’s currently polling to find the best day and time, and hopes to start in the fall.
  • A draft of possible classes and curriculum for next year has been attached for discussion.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 6, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to liquidate property gifts and expend endowment principal

I request that the Board approve for submission to the membership at the Annual Meeting the following proposed bylaw amendment:

Sections 6.1 and 8.6 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 8.6::

 

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102.  Assets in the Endowment Fund above one million dollars  may be accumulated for expenditure and expended for the purpose of paying off construction costs of the Commons, unless such expenditure is forbidden by the terms of a gift from which such funds were received..

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received from the Kornfeld estate or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational approval as required by Section 6.1.  It is intended to change current bylaw Section 8.6, which forbids expenditures of Endowment Fund principal, so that principal amounts in excess of $1,000,000 can be expended on the costs of construction or improvement of church property.   This would permit use of such principal to pay off the commons construction loan.  The reference to the Virginia Code involves law specifying how words in a gift instrument are to be interpreted.


 

MVUC Finance Committee Meeting Minutes

April 6, 2016

 

  1. Review of Current Finance Reports: Overall, the finance reports through 3 quarters are fairly consistent. Our income is slightly ahead and our expenses are slightly behind. Over all we are pretty much exactly where we forecast our budget to be. One area of concern is the almost complete drop of Amazon funds. Upon review, we have found that the new website makes it very difficult to find the link that ties Amazon to MVUC, and we have received almost no fundraising from this source. I have agreed to call Keith Brophy and ask him to help right this ship and get this source back.

 

  1. Progress Report on Commons loan task force: Oscar Castro told us about the options that the task force laid out for the Board last month and we discussed it. Kate and John Henrihan were in attendance at the FC meeting and we all talked about the loan, it’s repercussions to next year’s budget, and how we all felt about how it should be taken care of. In the end the Finance Committee chose to back one of the plans from the task force.

 

We unanimously favor and submit as a recommendation to the Board that MVUC get another equity line of credit for 3 years. In the 2017/2018 fiscal year we can have a fund drive to reduce the debt to a more manageable amount, then submit to the congregation a proposal to use the Endowment fund, which we hope will grow and do quite well in the interim, to fully retire the Commons construction debt that is left after the fund drive is over.

 

We currently have enough money in the construction account to get the new line of credit and make the payments on it for the foreseeable future. We also still have money coming in to the account from people still making payments on their capital campaign pledges, so we can probably pay even longer. This takes the repayment of the loan out of the annual budget, and gives us time to continue to work on the recommendations from the Pillars and Foundations group.

 

  1. 2017 Budget: The Finance committee used the above recommendation concerning the commons loan, and information from Stewardship to finalize a budget for fiscal 2017. Included in the new 2017 Budget is $30,000 from Endowment, which is needed to balance the budget. We included a realistic amount for maintenance, as well as some much delayed raises for some staff members. I will be at the BOT meeting Tuesday night to present and discuss the budget with the Board.

 

  1. Ministerial Intern: Kate has asked us to put $2500.00 into the budget next year to pay a stipend to our ministerial intern. We discussed this at length, and understand that our intern has not asked for this, nor are we obligated in any way to provide this. This is simply something that some of us feel we should do. In the end the Finance Committee called for a vote on the issue and we decided, though not unanimously, that we should pay this money to our intern. I called a vote because the issue is thorny, and I wanted to present it to the BOT as a yes or no recommendation from us. In the end it is their decision. We included this money in the new 2017 Budget we will be presenting to you.

 

 

 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 7, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to properly hold MVUC property

I request that the BOT adopt a bylaw amendment for submission to the Annual Membership Meeting for adoption, as follows:

The current bylaw section 4.4, shall be deleted, and the following substituted:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

Our current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MVUC was an unincorporated association.  It reads as follows: “In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”  Section 57-8 created a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MVUC is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MVUC should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

Here is the text of Section 57-8:

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments.

The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

All such changes and appointments heretofore [before March 31, 1966] made are hereby validated, ratified, approved and confirmed.

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 6.1

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 6.1 as included in the official announcement.”

Sections 6.1 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 6.1

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102. 

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received by bequest or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational majority vote as currently required by Section 6.1.   That section, in pertinent part, reads as follows:  “The Board has the authority to borrow money and buy and sell property on behalf of the church, except that any loan, sale or purchase in excess of $100,000, and any sale or purchase of real estate, shall require approval of a majority of the members eligible to vote.”  The BOT views the intent of these words to be that of requiring a  majority of members to vote on purchase of property or sale of property acquired by purchase where amounts over $100,000 are involved.  It was not intended to complicate liquidation of property received by gift, or to complicate endowment fund liquidation of such property.   The proposed modification would make that understanding explicit.  In addition, the proposed change is also intended to call attention to applicable Virginia law governing interpretation of gift instruments, so that the terms of gift instruments including bequests will be appropriately honored in any sale or use of the proceeds of sale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 4.4. This change will direct MVUC to hold title in its corporate name rather than, as now, in the names of officials the Board may designate.

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 4.4 as included in the official announcement.”

Delete current bylaw section 4.4, Property, which reads,

“In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”

and substitute the following:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

The current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MVUC was an unincorporated association.  The bylaw refers to Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia, which creates a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MVUC is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MVUC should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments. The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backpacks For Brighter Futures

 

Hello, our names are Calla Reidy and Kate Wong.  We are local girl scouts working on our Silver Award.  The Girl Scout Silver Award is the highest award that a Cadette Girl Scout can earn.  To earn the award we have to complete a service award project  that creates a lasting positive change in our community.  For our project, we are trying to support one of our local elementary schools, Groveton ES.  MVUC and Groveton ES have a connection.  Calla attended this school and at least three other MVUC familes have children that attend or attended in the past.

Groveton is a Title 1 school, with 75% of the students recieving free or reduced lunches. They have diffuculty funding things such as field trips and after school clubs because parents lack the money to pay for such things.  Groveton has many needs, but we are trying to make a difference by helping with the simple basic needs of school supplies. While all school supplies are welcome and appreciated, new and/or gently used, full sized backpacks  are what we need most .  Many school supplies are shared  but backpacks are expensive, and important for carrying personal items between school and home.

We would  like to also create awareness for poverty in our own community.  Please think of our school when cleaning closets.  Donations of gently used clothing in childrens and adult sizes, as well as baby supplies, such as highchairs and cribs are needed as well.

We would like to set up a table after services in the commons on the first, and fifteenth of May to provide flyers with information on how people can help and also accept donations of supplies and money. We are also hoping to have a colletion box for ongoing donations to our cause.

Please consider supporting this worthy cause.  Thank you for your time.

Calla Reidy, stillnessmovement@hotmail.com

Kate Wong, kmeiw@hotmail.com

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees of Mount Vernon Unitarian Church

12 April 2016

 

Board members present:                                                      Board members absent:                   

Pam Koger-Jesup, Board Chair                                              N/A

John Henrehan, Board Vice Chair

Tony Barkume, Program Council Co-Convener

Sarah Soulliere, Program Council Co-Convener        

Sally Lindfors,            Secretary

Kelly Campbell

Ken Pilkenton

Richard Roesel

Amy Venzke

Helen Kitrosser, Youth Member

 

Others present:

Rev. Kate Walker, Minister

Carol Graves, Administrator

Oscar Castro, Treasurer

Steve Erickson, Finance Committee Chair

Joan Darrah, Endowment Committee Chair

 

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm.  Rev. Kate shared a reading.

 

Consensus Items (March meeting minutes, administrator’s report, minster’s report, DLSG reports, program council report, financial reports)

  • Items approved unanimously

 

Sale of Artwork

  • John motioned to auction both pieces of artwork off in the commons, with the knowledge that there is currently a standing offer of $500 for one of the pieces. Richard seconded.  The motion to sell both pieces of artwork was rejected.  John motioned to sell just one of the pieces of artwork and then withdrew the motion.
  • Kate suggested we need to research the value of the artwork more thoroughly
  • Sarah and Sally believe the artwork to be part of our legacy as a church and that we should not sell
  • Richard suggested the artwork should be displayed for some time
  • Sarah motioned to keep both pieces of artwork. Sally seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Auction Update

  • The auction committee has decided the auction should be a biannual event to prevent burnout
  • The committee will aim to have another auction in 2018
  • Sally motioned to accept the committee’s proposal. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.

 

 

Preschool Lease Update

  • Discussion of possible amendments to Fort Hunt Preschool lease agreement, previously discussed via email
  • Topics included financial concerns of MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH balanced with longstanding relationship with preschool
  • Carol continues working with the preschool to finalize terms of lease

 

Girl Scout Silver Award Request

  • Two youth would like to have a booth in the commons on two Sundays and place a collection bin for a service project to earn the Girl Scout Silver Award (see proposal below)
  • Sally motioned to accept the proposal. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Endowment Committee Appointments

  • Bruce Tinker to replace Bill Burns effective immediately and Joan Darrah to continue as Chair in next term. Sally motioned to accept the appointments.  John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

June Board Retreat Update

  • Will take place June 3rd and 4th, with Friday night being located at MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and Saturday at UUCA (Arlington UU church)
  • John Henrehan has expressed that he does not wish to continue from the role of Vice Chair into the role of Board Chair in the next fiscal year. He will remain a member of the Board of Trustees.
  • Nominating Committee has made the incoming nominees to the Board aware of the dates of the retreat

 

Annual Meeting Update

  • Program Council has chosen award winners
  • Annual Report is well on its way to being completed

 

Proposed Bylaws Change for Annual Meeting

  • Review of several bylaw amendments and a proposed new policy will be presented at the Annual Meeting
  • Ken motioned that the Board support and recommend to the congregation a revision to section 4.4 of the bylaws, as drafted by Richard Roesel. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Richard motioned that we accepted a bylaw amendment, incorporating the first 2 sentences from a memo dated April 6 regarding section 6.1 of the bylaws. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Quarterly Financial Review, Steve Erickson and Oscar Castro

  • The current budget is closely matching what was projected, after some small adjustments
  • Wedding income is down, looking for some solutions including extending the hours of weddings until 11pm to sell more weddings and receptions
  • Amazon contributions are down, probably because it is difficult to find the link to the page on the new web site, this is being worked on
  • The Finance Committee unanimously recommends getting another line of credit for 3 years, have a pay off the debt drive in fiscal year 2018, and at that point perhaps use Endowment Fund money to pay off construction loan debt. Burke and Herbert bank has indicated we could obtain such a line of credit, although it would also require us to pay some closing costs.  This proposal would keep our monthly payments lower for several more years while we continue considering future options to pay off the debt.
  • John motioned to authorize a new line of credit for the commons loan. Sarah seconded.  Motion passed.

 

Discussion of Next Year’s Budget

  • Proposed budget balanced with the following strategies:
    • Stewardship contributions appear strong so far
    • Scaled back projected amount from weddings and rentals
    • Lowered fundraising contributions to $5000
    • Hoping to up Amazon contributions again
    • Asking for $30,000 from the Endowment Fund
    • Small cost decreases in communications and insurance premiums
  • $4000 included for IT infrastructure, this is necessary to protect the integrity of our systems
  • More money in Property Fund, they have been putting off many important improvements for some time
  • Overdue staff raises included
  • Money included to give a stipend to our ministerial intern to show our appreciation, the Finance Committee supported this suggestion from Rev. Kate
  • John motioned to approve the proposed budget for fiscal year 2017 as recommended by the Finance Committee. Kelly seconded.  The motion passed with two abstentions.

 

Unannounced New Business

  • Reps are being sought for General Assembly
  • A Parliamentarian is sought for the annual meeting
  • Tony motioned to approve Phyllis Gilmore as interim chair of the Sunday Services Council. John seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Al Robbert will take over for Steve Erickson as Chair of the Finance Committee, although Steve will remain a committee member

 

 

MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Convenant

Meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Kelly Campbell, Board of Trustees Member
AGENDA – MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH BOT Meeting – April 12, 2016

7:30 PM

 

Time Topic Type Facilitator(s)
7:00 30 min. reading time  
7:30 Welcome – call to order Pam
7:32 Reflection – chalice lighting Kate
7:35 Consent Agenda Review and Approval:

March Meeting Minutes

Program Council Report

Minister’s Report  (not attached)

Administrator’s Report

Action Pam
7:40 Sale of Artwork Action Pam
7:45 Silent Auction update Info Kelly
7:50 Preschool Lease update Info Carol/Tony
7:55 Girl Scout Silver Award request Action Pam
8:00 Endowment Committee – appointment Action Pam
7:55 Retreat update Info John
8:00 Annual Meeting update Info Pam
8:05 Proposed bylaws changes for Annual Meeting Info Pam
8:15 Quarterly financial review Info Steve Erickson
8:25 Draft budget discussion Info Steve Erickson
8:55 Unannounced new business and announcements
9:00 MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Covenant and Adjournment

 

BOT Priorities 2015-16

  1. Ensure continued financial health of MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH – IN PROGRESS
  2. Plan and host 60th Anniversary celebration – DONE
  3. Implement v.2 of dashboard and establish electronic data storage/access
  4. Design and implement a process to assess mission and vision – IN PROGRESS

 

MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Governance Calendar

Month Task Notes
 
March Annual Meeting planning
  Annual Reports due April 1
  BOT retreat planning (confirm with nominees)
  Request delegates for General Assembly
 
April Quarterly financial review (Finance/BOT)
  Approve annual budget (Finance/BOT)*
  Quarterly membership data report (Membership Council)*
  Annual Meeting planning and official announcement (BOT)
  BOT retreat planning
May Annual Meeting*
  Set date for next year’s annual meeting
  BOT retreat planning
  Appoint GA delegates (BOT)*

 

 


 

Administrative Notes to the Board

For April 12, 2016 Board Meeting

 

My notes are very brief this month.

 

  1. As you know, the Mason Hill Citizens Association has been meeting here in Hollin Hall over the past few months as they have worked to get organized. They had an Annual Meeting for all the neighbors on April 8 from 7 pm to 9 pm here at Hollin Hall. At this meeting, voting was to take place on new officers and their plans for implementing an ambitious plan for the new year. We found out that Ken Bohannon was the chair of the Safety Committee prior to the most recent elections.

I do hope that each of you read the letter from their president, Michael Rioux, thanking us for being supportive of them. I sent an email to each of you with the letter approximately two weeks ago.

  1. Most of the Annual Reports have been completed and submitted . Tony and Sally have proved to be a formidable team in working to get all of the reports in. I am confident that all will be in by the time of the board meeting.

 

  1. 2016 Annual Report to State Corporation documents have been received. This must be completed annually since we incorporated a couple of years ago. In addition to the paper work involved, we pay an annual fee of $25 to remain in good standing with the Commonwealth of Virginia.

 

  1. The rent on both the apartment and the Preschool are current.

 

  1. UUA database listing update was due on April 7. With the substantial review of members done for the Certification of Membership in December, it was easy to review and tweak our membership data where necessary. In July we will update the church leadership to include all those elected to new terms and positions for the new fiscal year.

 

  1. As yet, we do not have a lease with the FHP ready to be signed. I’ll make a report at the meeting to provide an update.

 

 

 

Submitted by

Carol

 

 

 

 

Minister’s Board Report

Rev. Kate R. Walker

Mt Vernon Unitarian Church

April 12, 2016

 

 

Internal:

1) Stewardship: I’m delighted that early returns for pledges have come in sufficiently high enough for the Finance Committee to submit a 2016.17 budget with an increase of $40,000.  In addition they moved all debt payments to come out of the Building Fund. They balanced the budget by recommending $30,000 from the Endowment.  I think it would be wise to have a separate discussion to assess where MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH is currently in regards to the Pillars and Foundations budget and recommendations.

 

District/Region
2) District annual meeting: Attendees at the Joseph Priestly District annual meeting, April 8-9, in York, PA voted overwhelming to disband the JPD as soon as the JPD board can confirm all legal arrangements in order to finalize the merger with the Central East Region. http://www.uua.org/central-east.

 

Outreach:

3) VOICE is conducting in 250 small group listening sessions all over NOVA in order to hear the primary concerns of residents.  VOICE leadership will then discern the top priorities and invite regional and state politicians to meet with 2000 members of VOICE on Oct. 16. At that meeting, the elected officials will be invited to commit to how they will pursue solutions to the concerns of NOVA residents.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH has committed to doing 5 small group listening sessions both within MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and outside in the larger community.  Please watch for announcements for the small group listening sessions.

 

4) MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH has reached out the local Mosque, ICNA (Islamic Circle of North America), in an effort to combat Islamaphobia.  The first event is on May 21, 2 p.m.

 

Professional Commitments:

5) I’ve been asked by the UUA to serve on the Ministerial Transitions Team. MTT members work with congregations that are in search as soon as their minister announces a resignation and continues until they have a new settlement.  I will work with congregations in this area, no more three at a time, more likely one or two.

 

6) I’m attending the Leading Edge Conference: Revolutionary Love in NYC this weekend (April 15-17) at the Middle Collegiate Church. Its focus is on dismantling racism through cutting edge projects, http://www.middleproject.org/conference-2016

 

7) I’m attending the annual retreat for all clergy in the two UUMA chapters in our region in Lewes, DE, April 24-27.

 

8) Continuing Education:

I’ve successfully completed my Doctor of Ministry degree at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria.  My thesis will soon be available to read in either written or digital form.

 

 

 

 

Submitted in gratitude, Kate R. Walker

 

 

 


 

DLSG Report

March 14, 2016

 

Administration

  • Drafts have been completed for both the DLSG Annual Report, and the LSG Budget. The latter has been submitted.
  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation continues, although we are down to minor and specific language. We hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • After the confusion surrounding Stewardship Sunday and the low pledging numbers reported from younger families, I have asked to attend a Stewardship committee meeting to discuss opportunities and ideas.
  • I have met with all the Teaching Teams, save 7th and 8th On the whole, things seem to be going well.  I did collect several notes to help improve the program next year.
  • SBA funds were secured for two new laptops, and to refinish Jim Kerr’s office floor. Thanks go to Jim and Helen Kafka who did the lion’s share of work on the applications.
  • LSG and Music were without computer services including e-mail Wednesday through Friday of this week. If you failed to receive a timely response from us, or your messages bounced back, please accept our apologies.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades subcommittee has met twice, and is planning a third meeting now. At their request I have been talking to surrounding congregations to see how their programs are laid out, and discuss collaborations in the future.
  • The OWL subcommittee is planning to meet in the next two weeks.
  • The Playground committee is in the process of planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, May 15. Among other things, we have been discussing getting more participation from MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH members and FHP alumni.
  • The LSGC worship service committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pass it On” for both the service, and the spring teacher recruitment. The service will include 8the grade bridging, teacher recognition, a teacher recruitment statement, and guest homilies.

 

Upcoming RE

  • The Green Hill project committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pursuing Your Passions: Outdoors” These outdoor workshops will take place in the months of April, May and June.  We hope to pair guests who are willing to demonstrate and teach about their skills and hobbies in an outdoor setting.  These may include outdoor games, yoga, gardening, photography, wild flowers and pollinators, knitting, drumming, labyrinth and more.  Again, we plan to pair those who are familiar with RE lesson planning and structure with those who will be sharing their time and talents, and may ask some LSGC members to assist with this.
  • This summer we plan to again use Spirit Play in a one-room-classroom format during the months of July and August. Lead Spirit Play teacher Cheryl Sabo will hold a training and orientation in the late spring, and we will ask SP teachers to each volunteer one Sunday this summer.
  • Kate, Intern Minister Alice King and I met with the YRUU advisors to discuss plans for next year, including curriculum, team planning, and the YRUU worship service. Rev. Kate met with the youth on March 13 for planning and communication purposes.  Programming for YRUU next year is becoming clearer.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We have only had a few responses to offer the Calm Parenting program, but we will run it in the announcements for a couple more weeks to see what happens. If you are interested or know someone who might be, please let me know.  http://celebratecalm.com/
  • The Hudson family has volunteered to host Game Night on April 30, so that one will be taking place. We hope to see you there!
  • Intern Minister Alice King will be offering Building Your Own Theology in our ARE program starting at the beginning of May.
  • Seder this year is April 22. In preparation and with LSGC’s recommendation, I will be looking for volunteers to coordinate this event.  Since it is not near spring break for the first time in 3 years, we are hopeful.
  • We understand that Lasagna Dinner proceeds hover around $900, which will go into our CoA account for the next group going to Boston. Please thank Kristen Reidy when you see her.  She volunteered to be on a team of 3, but due to unforeseen and unfortunate circumstances, ended up doing the planning herself.
  • On May 27 we will be resurrecting the pollinator (butterfly) garden. Mike Arnold has agreed to rototill the spot, and water it.  The children will be planting the seeds on Easter (to be replanted should there be another frost).  We are hoping to use this garden as part of the Green Hill workshops.

 

New Initiatives

  • Wednesday, March 9 MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH held their first event in a series on race relations. This was planned in a 3-day workshop attended this fall by Rev. Kate, Mark Zimmerman and me as a team.  The workshop was based on Beloved Conversations, a UUA program which strives to explore and improve race relations in UU congregations.  This first exploratory workshop was done with the choir, but further workshops are planned, and the LSG community will likely be involved at some point.
  • Yesterday MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH offered a workshop for parents on how to talk to your youth about sexuality. It was cosponsored by Accotink UU Church, and led by Lourdes Fernandez from Accotink, and me.  As an employee of George Mason University, Lourdes hopes to use this experience to write a paper on the importance of parent involvement in sexual education, pending consent of all those involved.
  • Plans have continued to develop for an Interfaith Dialogue. Scheduled for May 21, the event will be held at MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and also include members of the local Mosque.  The format will be a presentation from a guest speaker expert in the subject, then small group discussions between UUs and Muslims.  The planning committee for this event includes Doug MacCleery, Diana Harriman, Rubina and Arshed Mamood.  A second event is planned for the future that will be larger and more community wide in scope.  Rubina and members of the Mosque are also interested in an event that includes youth, and the YRUU has been invited to consider such a possibility.

 

Professional Development

  • I will be at GA in June
  • I will be taking a course on Sexuality Issues for UU DREs June-August
  • I will be working on a self study program offered by the UUA on Systems Theory during the same time period.

 


 

DLSG Report

April 11, 2016

 

RE Classes

  • As we move into fall, some classes are ending, Green Hill Project begins, and there are a number of special events like Workenanny and Creek Clean Up. Since there are differences between most Sundays from April 24 to June 30, I have made a chart to clarify things and have given copies to staff.  The chart is attached here for your reference.
  • Plans for Green Hill Workshops continue. Subject matter and lead teachers are well in hand.  I have sent out an invitation to eight people who have taught in the past, but did not teach this year asking if they would be cooperating education partners for at least one session each.  However, I have some concerns about April 24, our first workshop.  This needs to be a strong workshop, since we expect a larger number of children, and we do not currently have any prospects for it.
  • The special preschool session during June will be “Teddy Bear Month,” from the curriculum Chalice Children. I’m pleased to say we have 6 parents who haven’t taught for us before, many of them new to our program, who have agreed to teach sessions with our younger children on those four Sundays.

 

Administration

  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation is nearing an end. We still hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • LSG took possession of two new laptops paid for by SBA funds. Jim Kerr has set them up for use.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades committee met a third time, and has made some progress settling on some goals and recommendations for that age group. They anticipate meeting one more time.
  • The OWL subcommittee met, and successfully identified three woman and one man who would be willing to be trained to teach OWL, and discussed the OWL program for 7-8th graders next year. They are scheduling a meeting for the end of May to look at some of the other issues at hand.
  • The Playground committee planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, a fundraiser on May 15 is asking parents of children who benefit from the playground to donate baked goods for sale, or assist with set up or clean up for the event. A limited number of people have volunteered to bake so far.  The LSGC is invited to participate in this event either through donations or assistance.  If you are able to help in either way, please let me know.
  • The LSGC worship service committee has a draft for the Order of Service, but additional planning needs to be done.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We hope to see LSGC families at Game Night on April 30.
  • Annie Montanari has agreed to coordinate the Seder on April 23, and Rev. Walker is prepared to lead the service. Future announcements will focus on volunteers to cook and people who wish to attend.
  • The Ericksons have asked if there is anyone else who would be willing to coordinate future Popcorn Theology sessions, as they have so many conflicting commitments.
  • Holly Santillo (who has a degree in music education) has offered to begin a weekly children’s choir for elementary age students. She’s currently polling to find the best day and time, and hopes to start in the fall.
  • A draft of possible classes and curriculum for next year has been attached for discussion.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 6, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to liquidate property gifts and expend endowment principal

I request that the Board approve for submission to the membership at the Annual Meeting the following proposed bylaw amendment:

Sections 6.1 and 8.6 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 8.6::

 

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102.  Assets in the Endowment Fund above one million dollars  may be accumulated for expenditure and expended for the purpose of paying off construction costs of the Commons, unless such expenditure is forbidden by the terms of a gift from which such funds were received..

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received from the Kornfeld estate or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational approval as required by Section 6.1.  It is intended to change current bylaw Section 8.6, which forbids expenditures of Endowment Fund principal, so that principal amounts in excess of $1,000,000 can be expended on the costs of construction or improvement of church property.   This would permit use of such principal to pay off the commons construction loan.  The reference to the Virginia Code involves law specifying how words in a gift instrument are to be interpreted.


 

MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Finance Committee Meeting Minutes

April 6, 2016

 

  1. Review of Current Finance Reports: Overall, the finance reports through 3 quarters are fairly consistent. Our income is slightly ahead and our expenses are slightly behind. Over all we are pretty much exactly where we forecast our budget to be. One area of concern is the almost complete drop of Amazon funds. Upon review, we have found that the new website makes it very difficult to find the link that ties Amazon to MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH, and we have received almost no fundraising from this source. I have agreed to call Keith Brophy and ask him to help right this ship and get this source back.

 

  1. Progress Report on Commons loan task force: Oscar Castro told us about the options that the task force laid out for the Board last month and we discussed it. Kate and John Henrihan were in attendance at the FC meeting and we all talked about the loan, it’s repercussions to next year’s budget, and how we all felt about how it should be taken care of. In the end the Finance Committee chose to back one of the plans from the task force.

 

We unanimously favor and submit as a recommendation to the Board that MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH get another equity line of credit for 3 years. In the 2017/2018 fiscal year we can have a fund drive to reduce the debt to a more manageable amount, then submit to the congregation a proposal to use the Endowment fund, which we hope will grow and do quite well in the interim, to fully retire the Commons construction debt that is left after the fund drive is over.

 

We currently have enough money in the construction account to get the new line of credit and make the payments on it for the foreseeable future. We also still have money coming in to the account from people still making payments on their capital campaign pledges, so we can probably pay even longer. This takes the repayment of the loan out of the annual budget, and gives us time to continue to work on the recommendations from the Pillars and Foundations group.

 

  1. 2017 Budget: The Finance committee used the above recommendation concerning the commons loan, and information from Stewardship to finalize a budget for fiscal 2017. Included in the new 2017 Budget is $30,000 from Endowment, which is needed to balance the budget. We included a realistic amount for maintenance, as well as some much delayed raises for some staff members. I will be at the BOT meeting Tuesday night to present and discuss the budget with the Board.

 

  1. Ministerial Intern: Kate has asked us to put $2500.00 into the budget next year to pay a stipend to our ministerial intern. We discussed this at length, and understand that our intern has not asked for this, nor are we obligated in any way to provide this. This is simply something that some of us feel we should do. In the end the Finance Committee called for a vote on the issue and we decided, though not unanimously, that we should pay this money to our intern. I called a vote because the issue is thorny, and I wanted to present it to the BOT as a yes or no recommendation from us. In the end it is their decision. We included this money in the new 2017 Budget we will be presenting to you.

 

 

 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 7, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to properly hold MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH property

I request that the BOT adopt a bylaw amendment for submission to the Annual Membership Meeting for adoption, as follows:

The current bylaw section 4.4, shall be deleted, and the following substituted:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

Our current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH was an unincorporated association.  It reads as follows: “In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”  Section 57-8 created a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

Here is the text of Section 57-8:

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments.

The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

All such changes and appointments heretofore [before March 31, 1966] made are hereby validated, ratified, approved and confirmed.

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 6.1

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 6.1 as included in the official announcement.”

Sections 6.1 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 6.1

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102. 

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received by bequest or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational majority vote as currently required by Section 6.1.   That section, in pertinent part, reads as follows:  “The Board has the authority to borrow money and buy and sell property on behalf of the church, except that any loan, sale or purchase in excess of $100,000, and any sale or purchase of real estate, shall require approval of a majority of the members eligible to vote.”  The BOT views the intent of these words to be that of requiring a  majority of members to vote on purchase of property or sale of property acquired by purchase where amounts over $100,000 are involved.  It was not intended to complicate liquidation of property received by gift, or to complicate endowment fund liquidation of such property.   The proposed modification would make that understanding explicit.  In addition, the proposed change is also intended to call attention to applicable Virginia law governing interpretation of gift instruments, so that the terms of gift instruments including bequests will be appropriately honored in any sale or use of the proceeds of sale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 4.4. This change will direct MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH to hold title in its corporate name rather than, as now, in the names of officials the Board may designate.

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 4.4 as included in the official announcement.”

Delete current bylaw section 4.4, Property, which reads,

“In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”

and substitute the following:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

The current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH was an unincorporated association.  The bylaw refers to Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia, which creates a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments. The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backpacks For Brighter Futures

 

Hello, our names are Calla Reidy and Kate Wong.  We are local girl scouts working on our Silver Award.  The Girl Scout Silver Award is the highest award that a Cadette Girl Scout can earn.  To earn the award we have to complete a service award project  that creates a lasting positive change in our community.  For our project, we are trying to support one of our local elementary schools, Groveton ES.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and Groveton ES have a connection.  Calla attended this school and at least three other MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH familes have children that attend or attended in the past.

Groveton is a Title 1 school, with 75% of the students recieving free or reduced lunches. They have diffuculty funding things such as field trips and after school clubs because parents lack the money to pay for such things.  Groveton has many needs, but we are trying to make a difference by helping with the simple basic needs of school supplies. While all school supplies are welcome and appreciated, new and/or gently used, full sized backpacks  are what we need most .  Many school supplies are shared  but backpacks are expensive, and important for carrying personal items between school and home.

We would  like to also create awareness for poverty in our own community.  Please think of our school when cleaning closets.  Donations of gently used clothing in childrens and adult sizes, as well as baby supplies, such as highchairs and cribs are needed as well.

We would like to set up a table after services in the commons on the first, and fifteenth of May to provide flyers with information on how people can help and also accept donations of supplies and money. We are also hoping to have a colletion box for ongoing donations to our cause.

Please consider supporting this worthy cause.  Thank you for your time.

Calla Reidy, stillnessmovement@hotmail.com

Kate Wong, kmeiw@hotmail.com

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees of Mount Vernon Unitarian Church

12 April 2016

 

Board members present:                                                      Board members absent:                   

Pam Koger-Jesup, Board Chair                                              N/A

John Henrehan, Board Vice Chair

Tony Barkume, Program Council Co-Convener

Sarah Soulliere, Program Council Co-Convener        

Sally Lindfors,            Secretary

Kelly Campbell

Ken Pilkenton

Richard Roesel

Amy Venzke

Helen Kitrosser, Youth Member

 

Others present:

Rev. Kate Walker, Minister

Carol Graves, Administrator

Oscar Castro, Treasurer

Steve Erickson, Finance Committee Chair

Joan Darrah, Endowment Committee Chair

 

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm.  Rev. Kate shared a reading.

 

Consensus Items (March meeting minutes, administrator’s report, minster’s report, DLSG reports, program council report, financial reports)

  • Items approved unanimously

 

Sale of Artwork

  • John motioned to auction both pieces of artwork off in the commons, with the knowledge that there is currently a standing offer of $500 for one of the pieces. Richard seconded.  The motion to sell both pieces of artwork was rejected.  John motioned to sell just one of the pieces of artwork and then withdrew the motion.
  • Kate suggested we need to research the value of the artwork more thoroughly
  • Sarah and Sally believe the artwork to be part of our legacy as a church and that we should not sell
  • Richard suggested the artwork should be displayed for some time
  • Sarah motioned to keep both pieces of artwork. Sally seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Auction Update

  • The auction committee has decided the auction should be a biannual event to prevent burnout
  • The committee will aim to have another auction in 2018
  • Sally motioned to accept the committee’s proposal. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.

 

 

Preschool Lease Update

  • Discussion of possible amendments to Fort Hunt Preschool lease agreement, previously discussed via email
  • Topics included financial concerns of MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH balanced with longstanding relationship with preschool
  • Carol continues working with the preschool to finalize terms of lease

 

Girl Scout Silver Award Request

  • Two youth would like to have a booth in the commons on two Sundays and place a collection bin for a service project to earn the Girl Scout Silver Award (see proposal below)
  • Sally motioned to accept the proposal. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Endowment Committee Appointments

  • Bruce Tinker to replace Bill Burns effective immediately and Joan Darrah to continue as Chair in next term. Sally motioned to accept the appointments.  John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

June Board Retreat Update

  • Will take place June 3rd and 4th, with Friday night being located at MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and Saturday at UUCA (Arlington UU church)
  • John Henrehan has expressed that he does not wish to continue from the role of Vice Chair into the role of Board Chair in the next fiscal year. He will remain a member of the Board of Trustees.
  • Nominating Committee has made the incoming nominees to the Board aware of the dates of the retreat

 

Annual Meeting Update

  • Program Council has chosen award winners
  • Annual Report is well on its way to being completed

 

Proposed Bylaws Change for Annual Meeting

  • Review of several bylaw amendments and a proposed new policy will be presented at the Annual Meeting
  • Ken motioned that the Board support and recommend to the congregation a revision to section 4.4 of the bylaws, as drafted by Richard Roesel. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Richard motioned that we accepted a bylaw amendment, incorporating the first 2 sentences from a memo dated April 6 regarding section 6.1 of the bylaws. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Quarterly Financial Review, Steve Erickson and Oscar Castro

  • The current budget is closely matching what was projected, after some small adjustments
  • Wedding income is down, looking for some solutions including extending the hours of weddings until 11pm to sell more weddings and receptions
  • Amazon contributions are down, probably because it is difficult to find the link to the page on the new web site, this is being worked on
  • The Finance Committee unanimously recommends getting another line of credit for 3 years, have a pay off the debt drive in fiscal year 2018, and at that point perhaps use Endowment Fund money to pay off construction loan debt. Burke and Herbert bank has indicated we could obtain such a line of credit, although it would also require us to pay some closing costs.  This proposal would keep our monthly payments lower for several more years while we continue considering future options to pay off the debt.
  • John motioned to authorize a new line of credit for the commons loan. Sarah seconded.  Motion passed.

 

Discussion of Next Year’s Budget

  • Proposed budget balanced with the following strategies:
    • Stewardship contributions appear strong so far
    • Scaled back projected amount from weddings and rentals
    • Lowered fundraising contributions to $5000
    • Hoping to up Amazon contributions again
    • Asking for $30,000 from the Endowment Fund
    • Small cost decreases in communications and insurance premiums
  • $4000 included for IT infrastructure, this is necessary to protect the integrity of our systems
  • More money in Property Fund, they have been putting off many important improvements for some time
  • Overdue staff raises included
  • Money included to give a stipend to our ministerial intern to show our appreciation, the Finance Committee supported this suggestion from Rev. Kate
  • John motioned to approve the proposed budget for fiscal year 2017 as recommended by the Finance Committee. Kelly seconded.  The motion passed with two abstentions.

 

Unannounced New Business

  • Reps are being sought for General Assembly
  • A Parliamentarian is sought for the annual meeting
  • Tony motioned to approve Phyllis Gilmore as interim chair of the Sunday Services Council. John seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Al Robbert will take over for Steve Erickson as Chair of the Finance Committee, although Steve will remain a committee member

 

 

MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Convenant

Meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Kelly Campbell, Board of Trustees Member
AGENDA – MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH BOT Meeting – April 12, 2016

7:30 PM

 

Time Topic Type Facilitator(s)
7:00 30 min. reading time  
7:30 Welcome – call to order Pam
7:32 Reflection – chalice lighting Kate
7:35 Consent Agenda Review and Approval:

March Meeting Minutes

Program Council Report

Minister’s Report  (not attached)

Administrator’s Report

Action Pam
7:40 Sale of Artwork Action Pam
7:45 Silent Auction update Info Kelly
7:50 Preschool Lease update Info Carol/Tony
7:55 Girl Scout Silver Award request Action Pam
8:00 Endowment Committee – appointment Action Pam
7:55 Retreat update Info John
8:00 Annual Meeting update Info Pam
8:05 Proposed bylaws changes for Annual Meeting Info Pam
8:15 Quarterly financial review Info Steve Erickson
8:25 Draft budget discussion Info Steve Erickson
8:55 Unannounced new business and announcements
9:00 MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Covenant and Adjournment

 

BOT Priorities 2015-16

  1. Ensure continued financial health of MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH – IN PROGRESS
  2. Plan and host 60th Anniversary celebration – DONE
  3. Implement v.2 of dashboard and establish electronic data storage/access
  4. Design and implement a process to assess mission and vision – IN PROGRESS

 

MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Governance Calendar

Month Task Notes
 
March Annual Meeting planning
  Annual Reports due April 1
  BOT retreat planning (confirm with nominees)
  Request delegates for General Assembly
 
April Quarterly financial review (Finance/BOT)
  Approve annual budget (Finance/BOT)*
  Quarterly membership data report (Membership Council)*
  Annual Meeting planning and official announcement (BOT)
  BOT retreat planning
May Annual Meeting*
  Set date for next year’s annual meeting
  BOT retreat planning
  Appoint GA delegates (BOT)*

 

 


 

Administrative Notes to the Board

For April 12, 2016 Board Meeting

 

My notes are very brief this month.

 

  1. As you know, the Mason Hill Citizens Association has been meeting here in Hollin Hall over the past few months as they have worked to get organized. They had an Annual Meeting for all the neighbors on April 8 from 7 pm to 9 pm here at Hollin Hall. At this meeting, voting was to take place on new officers and their plans for implementing an ambitious plan for the new year. We found out that Ken Bohannon was the chair of the Safety Committee prior to the most recent elections.

I do hope that each of you read the letter from their president, Michael Rioux, thanking us for being supportive of them. I sent an email to each of you with the letter approximately two weeks ago.

  1. Most of the Annual Reports have been completed and submitted . Tony and Sally have proved to be a formidable team in working to get all of the reports in. I am confident that all will be in by the time of the board meeting.

 

  1. 2016 Annual Report to State Corporation documents have been received. This must be completed annually since we incorporated a couple of years ago. In addition to the paper work involved, we pay an annual fee of $25 to remain in good standing with the Commonwealth of Virginia.

 

  1. The rent on both the apartment and the Preschool are current.

 

  1. UUA database listing update was due on April 7. With the substantial review of members done for the Certification of Membership in December, it was easy to review and tweak our membership data where necessary. In July we will update the church leadership to include all those elected to new terms and positions for the new fiscal year.

 

  1. As yet, we do not have a lease with the FHP ready to be signed. I’ll make a report at the meeting to provide an update.

 

 

 

Submitted by

Carol

 

 

 

 

Minister’s Board Report

Rev. Kate R. Walker

Mt Vernon Unitarian Church

April 12, 2016

 

 

Internal:

1) Stewardship: I’m delighted that early returns for pledges have come in sufficiently high enough for the Finance Committee to submit a 2016.17 budget with an increase of $40,000.  In addition they moved all debt payments to come out of the Building Fund. They balanced the budget by recommending $30,000 from the Endowment.  I think it would be wise to have a separate discussion to assess where MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH is currently in regards to the Pillars and Foundations budget and recommendations.

 

District/Region
2) District annual meeting: Attendees at the Joseph Priestly District annual meeting, April 8-9, in York, PA voted overwhelming to disband the JPD as soon as the JPD board can confirm all legal arrangements in order to finalize the merger with the Central East Region. http://www.uua.org/central-east.

 

Outreach:

3) VOICE is conducting in 250 small group listening sessions all over NOVA in order to hear the primary concerns of residents.  VOICE leadership will then discern the top priorities and invite regional and state politicians to meet with 2000 members of VOICE on Oct. 16. At that meeting, the elected officials will be invited to commit to how they will pursue solutions to the concerns of NOVA residents.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH has committed to doing 5 small group listening sessions both within MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and outside in the larger community.  Please watch for announcements for the small group listening sessions.

 

4) MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH has reached out the local Mosque, ICNA (Islamic Circle of North America), in an effort to combat Islamaphobia.  The first event is on May 21, 2 p.m.

 

Professional Commitments:

5) I’ve been asked by the UUA to serve on the Ministerial Transitions Team. MTT members work with congregations that are in search as soon as their minister announces a resignation and continues until they have a new settlement.  I will work with congregations in this area, no more three at a time, more likely one or two.

 

6) I’m attending the Leading Edge Conference: Revolutionary Love in NYC this weekend (April 15-17) at the Middle Collegiate Church. Its focus is on dismantling racism through cutting edge projects, http://www.middleproject.org/conference-2016

 

7) I’m attending the annual retreat for all clergy in the two UUMA chapters in our region in Lewes, DE, April 24-27.

 

8) Continuing Education:

I’ve successfully completed my Doctor of Ministry degree at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria.  My thesis will soon be available to read in either written or digital form.

 

 

 

 

Submitted in gratitude, Kate R. Walker

 

 

 


 

DLSG Report

March 14, 2016

 

Administration

  • Drafts have been completed for both the DLSG Annual Report, and the LSG Budget. The latter has been submitted.
  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation continues, although we are down to minor and specific language. We hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • After the confusion surrounding Stewardship Sunday and the low pledging numbers reported from younger families, I have asked to attend a Stewardship committee meeting to discuss opportunities and ideas.
  • I have met with all the Teaching Teams, save 7th and 8th On the whole, things seem to be going well.  I did collect several notes to help improve the program next year.
  • SBA funds were secured for two new laptops, and to refinish Jim Kerr’s office floor. Thanks go to Jim and Helen Kafka who did the lion’s share of work on the applications.
  • LSG and Music were without computer services including e-mail Wednesday through Friday of this week. If you failed to receive a timely response from us, or your messages bounced back, please accept our apologies.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades subcommittee has met twice, and is planning a third meeting now. At their request I have been talking to surrounding congregations to see how their programs are laid out, and discuss collaborations in the future.
  • The OWL subcommittee is planning to meet in the next two weeks.
  • The Playground committee is in the process of planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, May 15. Among other things, we have been discussing getting more participation from MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH members and FHP alumni.
  • The LSGC worship service committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pass it On” for both the service, and the spring teacher recruitment. The service will include 8the grade bridging, teacher recognition, a teacher recruitment statement, and guest homilies.

 

Upcoming RE

  • The Green Hill project committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pursuing Your Passions: Outdoors” These outdoor workshops will take place in the months of April, May and June.  We hope to pair guests who are willing to demonstrate and teach about their skills and hobbies in an outdoor setting.  These may include outdoor games, yoga, gardening, photography, wild flowers and pollinators, knitting, drumming, labyrinth and more.  Again, we plan to pair those who are familiar with RE lesson planning and structure with those who will be sharing their time and talents, and may ask some LSGC members to assist with this.
  • This summer we plan to again use Spirit Play in a one-room-classroom format during the months of July and August. Lead Spirit Play teacher Cheryl Sabo will hold a training and orientation in the late spring, and we will ask SP teachers to each volunteer one Sunday this summer.
  • Kate, Intern Minister Alice King and I met with the YRUU advisors to discuss plans for next year, including curriculum, team planning, and the YRUU worship service. Rev. Kate met with the youth on March 13 for planning and communication purposes.  Programming for YRUU next year is becoming clearer.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We have only had a few responses to offer the Calm Parenting program, but we will run it in the announcements for a couple more weeks to see what happens. If you are interested or know someone who might be, please let me know.  http://celebratecalm.com/
  • The Hudson family has volunteered to host Game Night on April 30, so that one will be taking place. We hope to see you there!
  • Intern Minister Alice King will be offering Building Your Own Theology in our ARE program starting at the beginning of May.
  • Seder this year is April 22. In preparation and with LSGC’s recommendation, I will be looking for volunteers to coordinate this event.  Since it is not near spring break for the first time in 3 years, we are hopeful.
  • We understand that Lasagna Dinner proceeds hover around $900, which will go into our CoA account for the next group going to Boston. Please thank Kristen Reidy when you see her.  She volunteered to be on a team of 3, but due to unforeseen and unfortunate circumstances, ended up doing the planning herself.
  • On May 27 we will be resurrecting the pollinator (butterfly) garden. Mike Arnold has agreed to rototill the spot, and water it.  The children will be planting the seeds on Easter (to be replanted should there be another frost).  We are hoping to use this garden as part of the Green Hill workshops.

 

New Initiatives

  • Wednesday, March 9 MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH held their first event in a series on race relations. This was planned in a 3-day workshop attended this fall by Rev. Kate, Mark Zimmerman and me as a team.  The workshop was based on Beloved Conversations, a UUA program which strives to explore and improve race relations in UU congregations.  This first exploratory workshop was done with the choir, but further workshops are planned, and the LSG community will likely be involved at some point.
  • Yesterday MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH offered a workshop for parents on how to talk to your youth about sexuality. It was cosponsored by Accotink UU Church, and led by Lourdes Fernandez from Accotink, and me.  As an employee of George Mason University, Lourdes hopes to use this experience to write a paper on the importance of parent involvement in sexual education, pending consent of all those involved.
  • Plans have continued to develop for an Interfaith Dialogue. Scheduled for May 21, the event will be held at MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and also include members of the local Mosque.  The format will be a presentation from a guest speaker expert in the subject, then small group discussions between UUs and Muslims.  The planning committee for this event includes Doug MacCleery, Diana Harriman, Rubina and Arshed Mamood.  A second event is planned for the future that will be larger and more community wide in scope.  Rubina and members of the Mosque are also interested in an event that includes youth, and the YRUU has been invited to consider such a possibility.

 

Professional Development

  • I will be at GA in June
  • I will be taking a course on Sexuality Issues for UU DREs June-August
  • I will be working on a self study program offered by the UUA on Systems Theory during the same time period.

 


 

DLSG Report

April 11, 2016

 

RE Classes

  • As we move into fall, some classes are ending, Green Hill Project begins, and there are a number of special events like Workenanny and Creek Clean Up. Since there are differences between most Sundays from April 24 to June 30, I have made a chart to clarify things and have given copies to staff.  The chart is attached here for your reference.
  • Plans for Green Hill Workshops continue. Subject matter and lead teachers are well in hand.  I have sent out an invitation to eight people who have taught in the past, but did not teach this year asking if they would be cooperating education partners for at least one session each.  However, I have some concerns about April 24, our first workshop.  This needs to be a strong workshop, since we expect a larger number of children, and we do not currently have any prospects for it.
  • The special preschool session during June will be “Teddy Bear Month,” from the curriculum Chalice Children. I’m pleased to say we have 6 parents who haven’t taught for us before, many of them new to our program, who have agreed to teach sessions with our younger children on those four Sundays.

 

Administration

  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation is nearing an end. We still hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • LSG took possession of two new laptops paid for by SBA funds. Jim Kerr has set them up for use.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades committee met a third time, and has made some progress settling on some goals and recommendations for that age group. They anticipate meeting one more time.
  • The OWL subcommittee met, and successfully identified three woman and one man who would be willing to be trained to teach OWL, and discussed the OWL program for 7-8th graders next year. They are scheduling a meeting for the end of May to look at some of the other issues at hand.
  • The Playground committee planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, a fundraiser on May 15 is asking parents of children who benefit from the playground to donate baked goods for sale, or assist with set up or clean up for the event. A limited number of people have volunteered to bake so far.  The LSGC is invited to participate in this event either through donations or assistance.  If you are able to help in either way, please let me know.
  • The LSGC worship service committee has a draft for the Order of Service, but additional planning needs to be done.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We hope to see LSGC families at Game Night on April 30.
  • Annie Montanari has agreed to coordinate the Seder on April 23, and Rev. Walker is prepared to lead the service. Future announcements will focus on volunteers to cook and people who wish to attend.
  • The Ericksons have asked if there is anyone else who would be willing to coordinate future Popcorn Theology sessions, as they have so many conflicting commitments.
  • Holly Santillo (who has a degree in music education) has offered to begin a weekly children’s choir for elementary age students. She’s currently polling to find the best day and time, and hopes to start in the fall.
  • A draft of possible classes and curriculum for next year has been attached for discussion.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 6, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to liquidate property gifts and expend endowment principal

I request that the Board approve for submission to the membership at the Annual Meeting the following proposed bylaw amendment:

Sections 6.1 and 8.6 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 8.6::

 

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102.  Assets in the Endowment Fund above one million dollars  may be accumulated for expenditure and expended for the purpose of paying off construction costs of the Commons, unless such expenditure is forbidden by the terms of a gift from which such funds were received..

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received from the Kornfeld estate or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational approval as required by Section 6.1.  It is intended to change current bylaw Section 8.6, which forbids expenditures of Endowment Fund principal, so that principal amounts in excess of $1,000,000 can be expended on the costs of construction or improvement of church property.   This would permit use of such principal to pay off the commons construction loan.  The reference to the Virginia Code involves law specifying how words in a gift instrument are to be interpreted.


 

MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH Finance Committee Meeting Minutes

April 6, 2016

 

  1. Review of Current Finance Reports: Overall, the finance reports through 3 quarters are fairly consistent. Our income is slightly ahead and our expenses are slightly behind. Over all we are pretty much exactly where we forecast our budget to be. One area of concern is the almost complete drop of Amazon funds. Upon review, we have found that the new website makes it very difficult to find the link that ties Amazon to MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH, and we have received almost no fundraising from this source. I have agreed to call Keith Brophy and ask him to help right this ship and get this source back.

 

  1. Progress Report on Commons loan task force: Oscar Castro told us about the options that the task force laid out for the Board last month and we discussed it. Kate and John Henrihan were in attendance at the FC meeting and we all talked about the loan, it’s repercussions to next year’s budget, and how we all felt about how it should be taken care of. In the end the Finance Committee chose to back one of the plans from the task force.

 

We unanimously favor and submit as a recommendation to the Board that MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH get another equity line of credit for 3 years. In the 2017/2018 fiscal year we can have a fund drive to reduce the debt to a more manageable amount, then submit to the congregation a proposal to use the Endowment fund, which we hope will grow and do quite well in the interim, to fully retire the Commons construction debt that is left after the fund drive is over.

 

We currently have enough money in the construction account to get the new line of credit and make the payments on it for the foreseeable future. We also still have money coming in to the account from people still making payments on their capital campaign pledges, so we can probably pay even longer. This takes the repayment of the loan out of the annual budget, and gives us time to continue to work on the recommendations from the Pillars and Foundations group.

 

  1. 2017 Budget: The Finance committee used the above recommendation concerning the commons loan, and information from Stewardship to finalize a budget for fiscal 2017. Included in the new 2017 Budget is $30,000 from Endowment, which is needed to balance the budget. We included a realistic amount for maintenance, as well as some much delayed raises for some staff members. I will be at the BOT meeting Tuesday night to present and discuss the budget with the Board.

 

  1. Ministerial Intern: Kate has asked us to put $2500.00 into the budget next year to pay a stipend to our ministerial intern. We discussed this at length, and understand that our intern has not asked for this, nor are we obligated in any way to provide this. This is simply something that some of us feel we should do. In the end the Finance Committee called for a vote on the issue and we decided, though not unanimously, that we should pay this money to our intern. I called a vote because the issue is thorny, and I wanted to present it to the BOT as a yes or no recommendation from us. In the end it is their decision. We included this money in the new 2017 Budget we will be presenting to you.

 

 

 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 7, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to properly hold MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH property

I request that the BOT adopt a bylaw amendment for submission to the Annual Membership Meeting for adoption, as follows:

The current bylaw section 4.4, shall be deleted, and the following substituted:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

Our current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH was an unincorporated association.  It reads as follows: “In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”  Section 57-8 created a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

Here is the text of Section 57-8:

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments.

The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

All such changes and appointments heretofore [before March 31, 1966] made are hereby validated, ratified, approved and confirmed.

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 6.1

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 6.1 as included in the official announcement.”

Sections 6.1 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 6.1

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102. 

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received by bequest or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational majority vote as currently required by Section 6.1.   That section, in pertinent part, reads as follows:  “The Board has the authority to borrow money and buy and sell property on behalf of the church, except that any loan, sale or purchase in excess of $100,000, and any sale or purchase of real estate, shall require approval of a majority of the members eligible to vote.”  The BOT views the intent of these words to be that of requiring a  majority of members to vote on purchase of property or sale of property acquired by purchase where amounts over $100,000 are involved.  It was not intended to complicate liquidation of property received by gift, or to complicate endowment fund liquidation of such property.   The proposed modification would make that understanding explicit.  In addition, the proposed change is also intended to call attention to applicable Virginia law governing interpretation of gift instruments, so that the terms of gift instruments including bequests will be appropriately honored in any sale or use of the proceeds of sale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 4.4. This change will direct MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH to hold title in its corporate name rather than, as now, in the names of officials the Board may designate.

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 4.4 as included in the official announcement.”

Delete current bylaw section 4.4, Property, which reads,

“In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”

and substitute the following:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

The current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH was an unincorporated association.  The bylaw refers to Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia, which creates a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments. The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backpacks For Brighter Futures

 

Hello, our names are Calla Reidy and Kate Wong.  We are local girl scouts working on our Silver Award.  The Girl Scout Silver Award is the highest award that a Cadette Girl Scout can earn.  To earn the award we have to complete a service award project  that creates a lasting positive change in our community.  For our project, we are trying to support one of our local elementary schools, Groveton ES.  MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH and Groveton ES have a connection.  Calla attended this school and at least three other MOUNT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH familes have children that attend or attended in the past.

Groveton is a Title 1 school, with 75% of the students recieving free or reduced lunches. They have diffuculty funding things such as field trips and after school clubs because parents lack the money to pay for such things.  Groveton has many needs, but we are trying to make a difference by helping with the simple basic needs of school supplies. While all school supplies are welcome and appreciated, new and/or gently used, full sized backpacks  are what we need most .  Many school supplies are shared  but backpacks are expensive, and important for carrying personal items between school and home.

We would  like to also create awareness for poverty in our own community.  Please think of our school when cleaning closets.  Donations of gently used clothing in childrens and adult sizes, as well as baby supplies, such as highchairs and cribs are needed as well.

We would like to set up a table after services in the commons on the first, and fifteenth of May to provide flyers with information on how people can help and also accept donations of supplies and money. We are also hoping to have a colletion box for ongoing donations to our cause.

Please consider supporting this worthy cause.  Thank you for your time.

Calla Reidy, stillnessmovement@hotmail.com

Kate Wong, kmeiw@hotmail.com

 


 

 


 

 


 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees of Mount Vernon Unitarian Church

12 April 2016

 

Board members present:                                                      Board members absent:                   

Pam Koger-Jesup, Board Chair                                              N/A

John Henrehan, Board Vice Chair

Tony Barkume, Program Council Co-Convener

Sarah Soulliere, Program Council Co-Convener        

Sally Lindfors,            Secretary

Kelly Campbell

Ken Pilkenton

Richard Roesel

Amy Venzke

Helen Kitrosser, Youth Member

 

Others present:

Rev. Kate Walker, Minister

Carol Graves, Administrator

Oscar Castro, Treasurer

Steve Erickson, Finance Committee Chair

Joan Darrah, Endowment Committee Chair

 

The meeting was called to order at 7:30 pm.  Rev. Kate shared a reading.

 

Consensus Items (March meeting minutes, administrator’s report, minster’s report, DLSG reports, program council report, financial reports)

  • Items approved unanimously

 

Sale of Artwork

  • John motioned to auction both pieces of artwork off in the commons, with the knowledge that there is currently a standing offer of $500 for one of the pieces. Richard seconded.  The motion to sell both pieces of artwork was rejected.  John motioned to sell just one of the pieces of artwork and then withdrew the motion.
  • Kate suggested we need to research the value of the artwork more thoroughly
  • Sarah and Sally believe the artwork to be part of our legacy as a church and that we should not sell
  • Richard suggested the artwork should be displayed for some time
  • Sarah motioned to keep both pieces of artwork. Sally seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Auction Update

  • The auction committee has decided the auction should be a biannual event to prevent burnout
  • The committee will aim to have another auction in 2018
  • Sally motioned to accept the committee’s proposal. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.

 

 

Preschool Lease Update

  • Discussion of possible amendments to Fort Hunt Preschool lease agreement, previously discussed via email
  • Topics included financial concerns of MVUC balanced with longstanding relationship with preschool
  • Carol continues working with the preschool to finalize terms of lease

 

Girl Scout Silver Award Request

  • Two youth would like to have a booth in the commons on two Sundays and place a collection bin for a service project to earn the Girl Scout Silver Award (see proposal below)
  • Sally motioned to accept the proposal. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Endowment Committee Appointments

  • Bruce Tinker to replace Bill Burns effective immediately and Joan Darrah to continue as Chair in next term. Sally motioned to accept the appointments.  John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

June Board Retreat Update

  • Will take place June 3rd and 4th, with Friday night being located at MVUC and Saturday at UUCA (Arlington UU church)
  • John Henrehan has expressed that he does not wish to continue from the role of Vice Chair into the role of Board Chair in the next fiscal year. He will remain a member of the Board of Trustees.
  • Nominating Committee has made the incoming nominees to the Board aware of the dates of the retreat

 

Annual Meeting Update

  • Program Council has chosen award winners
  • Annual Report is well on its way to being completed

 

Proposed Bylaws Change for Annual Meeting

  • Review of several bylaw amendments and a proposed new policy will be presented at the Annual Meeting
  • Ken motioned that the Board support and recommend to the congregation a revision to section 4.4 of the bylaws, as drafted by Richard Roesel. Tony seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Richard motioned that we accepted a bylaw amendment, incorporating the first 2 sentences from a memo dated April 6 regarding section 6.1 of the bylaws. John seconded.  The motion passed.

 

Quarterly Financial Review, Steve Erickson and Oscar Castro

  • The current budget is closely matching what was projected, after some small adjustments
  • Wedding income is down, looking for some solutions including extending the hours of weddings until 11pm to sell more weddings and receptions
  • Amazon contributions are down, probably because it is difficult to find the link to the page on the new web site, this is being worked on
  • The Finance Committee unanimously recommends getting another line of credit for 3 years, have a pay off the debt drive in fiscal year 2018, and at that point perhaps use Endowment Fund money to pay off construction loan debt. Burke and Herbert bank has indicated we could obtain such a line of credit, although it would also require us to pay some closing costs.  This proposal would keep our monthly payments lower for several more years while we continue considering future options to pay off the debt.
  • John motioned to authorize a new line of credit for the commons loan. Sarah seconded.  Motion passed.

 

Discussion of Next Year’s Budget

  • Proposed budget balanced with the following strategies:
    • Stewardship contributions appear strong so far
    • Scaled back projected amount from weddings and rentals
    • Lowered fundraising contributions to $5000
    • Hoping to up Amazon contributions again
    • Asking for $30,000 from the Endowment Fund
    • Small cost decreases in communications and insurance premiums
  • $4000 included for IT infrastructure, this is necessary to protect the integrity of our systems
  • More money in Property Fund, they have been putting off many important improvements for some time
  • Overdue staff raises included
  • Money included to give a stipend to our ministerial intern to show our appreciation, the Finance Committee supported this suggestion from Rev. Kate
  • John motioned to approve the proposed budget for fiscal year 2017 as recommended by the Finance Committee. Kelly seconded.  The motion passed with two abstentions.

 

Unannounced New Business

  • Reps are being sought for General Assembly
  • A Parliamentarian is sought for the annual meeting
  • Tony motioned to approve Phyllis Gilmore as interim chair of the Sunday Services Council. John seconded.  The motion passed.
  • Al Robbert will take over for Steve Erickson as Chair of the Finance Committee, although Steve will remain a committee member

 

 

MVUC Convenant

Meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted, Kelly Campbell, Board of Trustees Member
AGENDA – MVUC BOT Meeting – April 12, 2016

7:30 PM

 

Time Topic Type Facilitator(s)
7:00 30 min. reading time  
7:30 Welcome – call to order Pam
7:32 Reflection – chalice lighting Kate
7:35 Consent Agenda Review and Approval:

March Meeting Minutes

Program Council Report

Minister’s Report  (not attached)

Administrator’s Report

Action Pam
7:40 Sale of Artwork Action Pam
7:45 Silent Auction update Info Kelly
7:50 Preschool Lease update Info Carol/Tony
7:55 Girl Scout Silver Award request Action Pam
8:00 Endowment Committee – appointment Action Pam
7:55 Retreat update Info John
8:00 Annual Meeting update Info Pam
8:05 Proposed bylaws changes for Annual Meeting Info Pam
8:15 Quarterly financial review Info Steve Erickson
8:25 Draft budget discussion Info Steve Erickson
8:55 Unannounced new business and announcements
9:00 MVUC Covenant and Adjournment

 

BOT Priorities 2015-16

  1. Ensure continued financial health of MVUC – IN PROGRESS
  2. Plan and host 60th Anniversary celebration – DONE
  3. Implement v.2 of dashboard and establish electronic data storage/access
  4. Design and implement a process to assess mission and vision – IN PROGRESS

 

MVUC Governance Calendar

Month Task Notes
 
March Annual Meeting planning
  Annual Reports due April 1
  BOT retreat planning (confirm with nominees)
  Request delegates for General Assembly
 
April Quarterly financial review (Finance/BOT)
  Approve annual budget (Finance/BOT)*
  Quarterly membership data report (Membership Council)*
  Annual Meeting planning and official announcement (BOT)
  BOT retreat planning
May Annual Meeting*
  Set date for next year’s annual meeting
  BOT retreat planning
  Appoint GA delegates (BOT)*

 

 


 

Administrative Notes to the Board

For April 12, 2016 Board Meeting

 

My notes are very brief this month.

 

  1. As you know, the Mason Hill Citizens Association has been meeting here in Hollin Hall over the past few months as they have worked to get organized. They had an Annual Meeting for all the neighbors on April 8 from 7 pm to 9 pm here at Hollin Hall. At this meeting, voting was to take place on new officers and their plans for implementing an ambitious plan for the new year. We found out that Ken Bohannon was the chair of the Safety Committee prior to the most recent elections.

I do hope that each of you read the letter from their president, Michael Rioux, thanking us for being supportive of them. I sent an email to each of you with the letter approximately two weeks ago.

  1. Most of the Annual Reports have been completed and submitted . Tony and Sally have proved to be a formidable team in working to get all of the reports in. I am confident that all will be in by the time of the board meeting.

 

  1. 2016 Annual Report to State Corporation documents have been received. This must be completed annually since we incorporated a couple of years ago. In addition to the paper work involved, we pay an annual fee of $25 to remain in good standing with the Commonwealth of Virginia.

 

  1. The rent on both the apartment and the Preschool are current.

 

  1. UUA database listing update was due on April 7. With the substantial review of members done for the Certification of Membership in December, it was easy to review and tweak our membership data where necessary. In July we will update the church leadership to include all those elected to new terms and positions for the new fiscal year.

 

  1. As yet, we do not have a lease with the FHP ready to be signed. I’ll make a report at the meeting to provide an update.

 

 

 

Submitted by

Carol

 

 

 

 

Minister’s Board Report

Rev. Kate R. Walker

Mt Vernon Unitarian Church

April 12, 2016

 

 

Internal:

1) Stewardship: I’m delighted that early returns for pledges have come in sufficiently high enough for the Finance Committee to submit a 2016.17 budget with an increase of $40,000.  In addition they moved all debt payments to come out of the Building Fund. They balanced the budget by recommending $30,000 from the Endowment.  I think it would be wise to have a separate discussion to assess where MVUC is currently in regards to the Pillars and Foundations budget and recommendations.

 

District/Region
2) District annual meeting: Attendees at the Joseph Priestly District annual meeting, April 8-9, in York, PA voted overwhelming to disband the JPD as soon as the JPD board can confirm all legal arrangements in order to finalize the merger with the Central East Region. http://www.uua.org/central-east.

 

Outreach:

3) VOICE is conducting in 250 small group listening sessions all over NOVA in order to hear the primary concerns of residents.  VOICE leadership will then discern the top priorities and invite regional and state politicians to meet with 2000 members of VOICE on Oct. 16. At that meeting, the elected officials will be invited to commit to how they will pursue solutions to the concerns of NOVA residents.  MVUC has committed to doing 5 small group listening sessions both within MVUC and outside in the larger community.  Please watch for announcements for the small group listening sessions.

 

4) MVUC has reached out the local Mosque, ICNA (Islamic Circle of North America), in an effort to combat Islamaphobia.  The first event is on May 21, 2 p.m.

 

Professional Commitments:

5) I’ve been asked by the UUA to serve on the Ministerial Transitions Team. MTT members work with congregations that are in search as soon as their minister announces a resignation and continues until they have a new settlement.  I will work with congregations in this area, no more three at a time, more likely one or two.

 

6) I’m attending the Leading Edge Conference: Revolutionary Love in NYC this weekend (April 15-17) at the Middle Collegiate Church. Its focus is on dismantling racism through cutting edge projects, http://www.middleproject.org/conference-2016

 

7) I’m attending the annual retreat for all clergy in the two UUMA chapters in our region in Lewes, DE, April 24-27.

 

8) Continuing Education:

I’ve successfully completed my Doctor of Ministry degree at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria.  My thesis will soon be available to read in either written or digital form.

 

 

 

 

Submitted in gratitude, Kate R. Walker

 

 

 


 

DLSG Report

March 14, 2016

 

Administration

  • Drafts have been completed for both the DLSG Annual Report, and the LSG Budget. The latter has been submitted.
  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation continues, although we are down to minor and specific language. We hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • After the confusion surrounding Stewardship Sunday and the low pledging numbers reported from younger families, I have asked to attend a Stewardship committee meeting to discuss opportunities and ideas.
  • I have met with all the Teaching Teams, save 7th and 8th On the whole, things seem to be going well.  I did collect several notes to help improve the program next year.
  • SBA funds were secured for two new laptops, and to refinish Jim Kerr’s office floor. Thanks go to Jim and Helen Kafka who did the lion’s share of work on the applications.
  • LSG and Music were without computer services including e-mail Wednesday through Friday of this week. If you failed to receive a timely response from us, or your messages bounced back, please accept our apologies.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades subcommittee has met twice, and is planning a third meeting now. At their request I have been talking to surrounding congregations to see how their programs are laid out, and discuss collaborations in the future.
  • The OWL subcommittee is planning to meet in the next two weeks.
  • The Playground committee is in the process of planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, May 15. Among other things, we have been discussing getting more participation from MVUC members and FHP alumni.
  • The LSGC worship service committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pass it On” for both the service, and the spring teacher recruitment. The service will include 8the grade bridging, teacher recognition, a teacher recruitment statement, and guest homilies.

 

Upcoming RE

  • The Green Hill project committee (Ann, Donna, Aimee) met, and chose the theme of “Pursuing Your Passions: Outdoors” These outdoor workshops will take place in the months of April, May and June.  We hope to pair guests who are willing to demonstrate and teach about their skills and hobbies in an outdoor setting.  These may include outdoor games, yoga, gardening, photography, wild flowers and pollinators, knitting, drumming, labyrinth and more.  Again, we plan to pair those who are familiar with RE lesson planning and structure with those who will be sharing their time and talents, and may ask some LSGC members to assist with this.
  • This summer we plan to again use Spirit Play in a one-room-classroom format during the months of July and August. Lead Spirit Play teacher Cheryl Sabo will hold a training and orientation in the late spring, and we will ask SP teachers to each volunteer one Sunday this summer.
  • Kate, Intern Minister Alice King and I met with the YRUU advisors to discuss plans for next year, including curriculum, team planning, and the YRUU worship service. Rev. Kate met with the youth on March 13 for planning and communication purposes.  Programming for YRUU next year is becoming clearer.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We have only had a few responses to offer the Calm Parenting program, but we will run it in the announcements for a couple more weeks to see what happens. If you are interested or know someone who might be, please let me know.  http://celebratecalm.com/
  • The Hudson family has volunteered to host Game Night on April 30, so that one will be taking place. We hope to see you there!
  • Intern Minister Alice King will be offering Building Your Own Theology in our ARE program starting at the beginning of May.
  • Seder this year is April 22. In preparation and with LSGC’s recommendation, I will be looking for volunteers to coordinate this event.  Since it is not near spring break for the first time in 3 years, we are hopeful.
  • We understand that Lasagna Dinner proceeds hover around $900, which will go into our CoA account for the next group going to Boston. Please thank Kristen Reidy when you see her.  She volunteered to be on a team of 3, but due to unforeseen and unfortunate circumstances, ended up doing the planning herself.
  • On May 27 we will be resurrecting the pollinator (butterfly) garden. Mike Arnold has agreed to rototill the spot, and water it.  The children will be planting the seeds on Easter (to be replanted should there be another frost).  We are hoping to use this garden as part of the Green Hill workshops.

 

New Initiatives

  • Wednesday, March 9 MVUC held their first event in a series on race relations. This was planned in a 3-day workshop attended this fall by Rev. Kate, Mark Zimmerman and me as a team.  The workshop was based on Beloved Conversations, a UUA program which strives to explore and improve race relations in UU congregations.  This first exploratory workshop was done with the choir, but further workshops are planned, and the LSG community will likely be involved at some point.
  • Yesterday MVUC offered a workshop for parents on how to talk to your youth about sexuality. It was cosponsored by Accotink UU Church, and led by Lourdes Fernandez from Accotink, and me.  As an employee of George Mason University, Lourdes hopes to use this experience to write a paper on the importance of parent involvement in sexual education, pending consent of all those involved.
  • Plans have continued to develop for an Interfaith Dialogue. Scheduled for May 21, the event will be held at MVUC and also include members of the local Mosque.  The format will be a presentation from a guest speaker expert in the subject, then small group discussions between UUs and Muslims.  The planning committee for this event includes Doug MacCleery, Diana Harriman, Rubina and Arshed Mamood.  A second event is planned for the future that will be larger and more community wide in scope.  Rubina and members of the Mosque are also interested in an event that includes youth, and the YRUU has been invited to consider such a possibility.

 

Professional Development

  • I will be at GA in June
  • I will be taking a course on Sexuality Issues for UU DREs June-August
  • I will be working on a self study program offered by the UUA on Systems Theory during the same time period.

 


 

DLSG Report

April 11, 2016

 

RE Classes

  • As we move into fall, some classes are ending, Green Hill Project begins, and there are a number of special events like Workenanny and Creek Clean Up. Since there are differences between most Sundays from April 24 to June 30, I have made a chart to clarify things and have given copies to staff.  The chart is attached here for your reference.
  • Plans for Green Hill Workshops continue. Subject matter and lead teachers are well in hand.  I have sent out an invitation to eight people who have taught in the past, but did not teach this year asking if they would be cooperating education partners for at least one session each.  However, I have some concerns about April 24, our first workshop.  This needs to be a strong workshop, since we expect a larger number of children, and we do not currently have any prospects for it.
  • The special preschool session during June will be “Teddy Bear Month,” from the curriculum Chalice Children. I’m pleased to say we have 6 parents who haven’t taught for us before, many of them new to our program, who have agreed to teach sessions with our younger children on those four Sundays.

 

Administration

  • The Fort Hunt Preschool lease negotiation is nearing an end. We still hope to have the new lease completed and approved at the next BOT meeting.
  • LSG took possession of two new laptops paid for by SBA funds. Jim Kerr has set them up for use.

 

Sub-Committees

  • The Middle Grades committee met a third time, and has made some progress settling on some goals and recommendations for that age group. They anticipate meeting one more time.
  • The OWL subcommittee met, and successfully identified three woman and one man who would be willing to be trained to teach OWL, and discussed the OWL program for 7-8th graders next year. They are scheduling a meeting for the end of May to look at some of the other issues at hand.
  • The Playground committee planning for Stories and Music in the Garden, a fundraiser on May 15 is asking parents of children who benefit from the playground to donate baked goods for sale, or assist with set up or clean up for the event. A limited number of people have volunteered to bake so far.  The LSGC is invited to participate in this event either through donations or assistance.  If you are able to help in either way, please let me know.
  • The LSGC worship service committee has a draft for the Order of Service, but additional planning needs to be done.

 

Special Events and Programming

  • We hope to see LSGC families at Game Night on April 30.
  • Annie Montanari has agreed to coordinate the Seder on April 23, and Rev. Walker is prepared to lead the service. Future announcements will focus on volunteers to cook and people who wish to attend.
  • The Ericksons have asked if there is anyone else who would be willing to coordinate future Popcorn Theology sessions, as they have so many conflicting commitments.
  • Holly Santillo (who has a degree in music education) has offered to begin a weekly children’s choir for elementary age students. She’s currently polling to find the best day and time, and hopes to start in the fall.
  • A draft of possible classes and curriculum for next year has been attached for discussion.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 6, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to liquidate property gifts and expend endowment principal

I request that the Board approve for submission to the membership at the Annual Meeting the following proposed bylaw amendment:

Sections 6.1 and 8.6 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 8.6::

 

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102.  Assets in the Endowment Fund above one million dollars  may be accumulated for expenditure and expended for the purpose of paying off construction costs of the Commons, unless such expenditure is forbidden by the terms of a gift from which such funds were received..

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received from the Kornfeld estate or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational approval as required by Section 6.1.  It is intended to change current bylaw Section 8.6, which forbids expenditures of Endowment Fund principal, so that principal amounts in excess of $1,000,000 can be expended on the costs of construction or improvement of church property.   This would permit use of such principal to pay off the commons construction loan.  The reference to the Virginia Code involves law specifying how words in a gift instrument are to be interpreted.


 

MVUC Finance Committee Meeting Minutes

April 6, 2016

 

  1. Review of Current Finance Reports: Overall, the finance reports through 3 quarters are fairly consistent. Our income is slightly ahead and our expenses are slightly behind. Over all we are pretty much exactly where we forecast our budget to be. One area of concern is the almost complete drop of Amazon funds. Upon review, we have found that the new website makes it very difficult to find the link that ties Amazon to MVUC, and we have received almost no fundraising from this source. I have agreed to call Keith Brophy and ask him to help right this ship and get this source back.

 

  1. Progress Report on Commons loan task force: Oscar Castro told us about the options that the task force laid out for the Board last month and we discussed it. Kate and John Henrihan were in attendance at the FC meeting and we all talked about the loan, it’s repercussions to next year’s budget, and how we all felt about how it should be taken care of. In the end the Finance Committee chose to back one of the plans from the task force.

 

We unanimously favor and submit as a recommendation to the Board that MVUC get another equity line of credit for 3 years. In the 2017/2018 fiscal year we can have a fund drive to reduce the debt to a more manageable amount, then submit to the congregation a proposal to use the Endowment fund, which we hope will grow and do quite well in the interim, to fully retire the Commons construction debt that is left after the fund drive is over.

 

We currently have enough money in the construction account to get the new line of credit and make the payments on it for the foreseeable future. We also still have money coming in to the account from people still making payments on their capital campaign pledges, so we can probably pay even longer. This takes the repayment of the loan out of the annual budget, and gives us time to continue to work on the recommendations from the Pillars and Foundations group.

 

  1. 2017 Budget: The Finance committee used the above recommendation concerning the commons loan, and information from Stewardship to finalize a budget for fiscal 2017. Included in the new 2017 Budget is $30,000 from Endowment, which is needed to balance the budget. We included a realistic amount for maintenance, as well as some much delayed raises for some staff members. I will be at the BOT meeting Tuesday night to present and discuss the budget with the Board.

 

  1. Ministerial Intern: Kate has asked us to put $2500.00 into the budget next year to pay a stipend to our ministerial intern. We discussed this at length, and understand that our intern has not asked for this, nor are we obligated in any way to provide this. This is simply something that some of us feel we should do. In the end the Finance Committee called for a vote on the issue and we decided, though not unanimously, that we should pay this money to our intern. I called a vote because the issue is thorny, and I wanted to present it to the BOT as a yes or no recommendation from us. In the end it is their decision. We included this money in the new 2017 Budget we will be presenting to you.

 

 

 

To:       BOT

From:   Richard Roesel

Date:   May 7, 2016

Re:       Bylaw modifications necessary to properly hold MVUC property

I request that the BOT adopt a bylaw amendment for submission to the Annual Membership Meeting for adoption, as follows:

The current bylaw section 4.4, shall be deleted, and the following substituted:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

Our current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MVUC was an unincorporated association.  It reads as follows: “In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”  Section 57-8 created a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MVUC is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MVUC should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

Here is the text of Section 57-8:

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments.

The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

All such changes and appointments heretofore [before March 31, 1966] made are hereby validated, ratified, approved and confirmed.

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 6.1

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 6.1 as included in the official announcement.”

Sections 6.1 shall be amended by adding the following paragraph at the end of paragraph 6.1

Any property, whether real or personal, received by gift, may be sold subject to the prior majority vote of the Board of Trustees.   Funds received from the sale of such property shall be held and expended in accordance with the terms of the gift,  interpreted as provided in Virginia Code Section 64.2-1102. 

 

Explanation.  This proposal is intended to change current bylaw Section 6.1 so that property received by bequest or other gift can be liquidated subject to BOT approval, rather than congregational majority vote as currently required by Section 6.1.   That section, in pertinent part, reads as follows:  “The Board has the authority to borrow money and buy and sell property on behalf of the church, except that any loan, sale or purchase in excess of $100,000, and any sale or purchase of real estate, shall require approval of a majority of the members eligible to vote.”  The BOT views the intent of these words to be that of requiring a  majority of members to vote on purchase of property or sale of property acquired by purchase where amounts over $100,000 are involved.  It was not intended to complicate liquidation of property received by gift, or to complicate endowment fund liquidation of such property.   The proposed modification would make that understanding explicit.  In addition, the proposed change is also intended to call attention to applicable Virginia law governing interpretation of gift instruments, so that the terms of gift instruments including bequests will be appropriately honored in any sale or use of the proceeds of sale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proposed Bylaws Change

 

The Board of Trustees recommends the congregation approve a change to Bylaws Section 4.4. This change will direct MVUC to hold title in its corporate name rather than, as now, in the names of officials the Board may designate.

 

Proposed Motion: “Move to approve the change to Bylaws Section 4.4 as included in the official announcement.”

Delete current bylaw section 4.4, Property, which reads,

“In accord with Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia (1950), all real and personal property of the church shall be vested in such officials as the Board may designate.”

and substitute the following:

Title to all real and personal property of the church shall be held in the corporate name of the church.

Explanation:

The current bylaw relating to holding of church property dates to the years when MVUC was an unincorporated association.  The bylaw refers to Section 57-8 of the Code of Virginia, which creates a means whereby unincorporated associations, which are not legal entities and thus cannot hold property in their own names, could hold property through designated persons.  MVUC is now incorporated, and so the provision no longer applies.  MVUC should hold property in its corporate name.

____________________________________

  • 57-8. Appointment of trustees to effect the purposes of conveyances, etc.; validation of certain appointments. The circuit court of the county or the circuit court of the city, or the judge thereof in vacation, wherein there is any parcel of such land or the greater part thereof may, on the application of the proper authorities of an unincorporated church or religious body or branch or division thereof, from time to time appoint trustees, either where there were, or are, none or in place of former trustees, and on such application and without notice to the trustee or trustees change those so appointed whenever it may seem to the court or judge proper to effect and promote the purpose and object of the conveyance, devise, or dedication, and the legal title to such land shall for that purpose and object be vested in the trustees for the time being and their successors.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backpacks For Brighter Futures

 

Hello, our names are Calla Reidy and Kate Wong.  We are local girl scouts working on our Silver Award.  The Girl Scout Silver Award is the highest award that a Cadette Girl Scout can earn.  To earn the award we have to complete a service award project  that creates a lasting positive change in our community.  For our project, we are trying to support one of our local elementary schools, Groveton ES.  MVUC and Groveton ES have a connection.  Calla attended this school and at least three other MVUC familes have children that attend or attended in the past.

Groveton is a Title 1 school, with 75% of the students recieving free or reduced lunches. They have diffuculty funding things such as field trips and after school clubs because parents lack the money to pay for such things.  Groveton has many needs, but we are trying to make a difference by helping with the simple basic needs of school supplies. While all school supplies are welcome and appreciated, new and/or gently used, full sized backpacks  are what we need most .  Many school supplies are shared  but backpacks are expensive, and important for carrying personal items between school and home.

We would  like to also create awareness for poverty in our own community.  Please think of our school when cleaning closets.  Donations of gently used clothing in childrens and adult sizes, as well as baby supplies, such as highchairs and cribs are needed as well.

We would like to set up a table after services in the commons on the first, and fifteenth of May to provide flyers with information on how people can help and also accept donations of supplies and money. We are also hoping to have a colletion box for ongoing donations to our cause.

Please consider supporting this worthy cause.  Thank you for your time.

Calla Reidy, stillnessmovement@hotmail.com

Kate Wong, kmeiw@hotmail.com