Category: Parish Council


ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary May 1, 2017

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of May 1, 2017
Minutes prepared by Elisa Roberts, summary by Daniel Yoder

Attendees: Aaron, Brad, Daniel, Deborah, Elisa, Rachael, Sally
Absent: Brent

Financial Report:
– giving has continued somewhat over-budget, and almost all from tithes
– in March and April spending was still somewhat over-budget due to building costs, but still below giving
– do still have some expected costs, including especially $3400 for structural repairs, expenses for mower, fixing HVAC for education wing, etc.
– have received about $3000 in “special project” giving above tithes

Rachael and Deborah will look more closely at online giving alternatives and propose one

Building Report:
– sign & women’s bathroom toilet are fixed
– awnings are removed and hope is to get those restitched

Aaron report on trip to Colorado:
– had a wonderful and invigorating time
– will be reporting back on that over the next few months

Building use discussion:
– there has been a proposal to use the building for outside activities
– need to establish a policy that makes use of the resources without compromising beliefs
– had substantial discussion on how to define that balance
– also need to put together lists of practical aspects; liability, expectations for cleaning, maintenance fees, etc.
– will continue the discussion next meeting

Lent & Easter debriefing:
– wonderful to have our own space, as it makes these special events much easier
– discussed how might make things a little easier for the children during the Easter service

Next meeting Tuesday May 23, 7:00pm at church

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary March 21, 2017

ld North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of March 21, 2017
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Attendees: Aaron, Brad, Brent, Daniel, Deborah, Rachael, Sally
Absent: Elisa

Financial Report:
– giving has continued somewhat over-budget, and almost all from tithes
– in February overspent giving by about $4000 due to building repair costs (especially HVAC and electrical)
– still have about $11000 over our stated minimum, which is encouraging
– do still have some expected costs, including especially $3400 for structural repairs

Rachael did analysis on and proposed we institute an online giving alternative
– she and Deborah will look more closely at alternatives and propose one
– the PC generally agreed to move ahead with that

Building Report:
– voted to approve $1000 for permanent sign, since the current temporary one broke and will cost $180 to replace
– should be ready in 3-4 weeks
– PC was unanimous in agreeing that Jordan Bell has been doing a wonderful job with cleaning
– Aaron proposed and PC approved a backup person for Jordan if he cannot clean
– Joy will look at costs for carpet squares for 3-5 classroom
– Aaron will announce a workday for exterior work, including planting landscaping and removing trees

Plans for lawn care
– agreed on plan to purchase commercial grade deck mower
– Daniel to build a small shed for that
– PC approved total of up to $6000 for that, hopefully substantially less
– Aaron will contribute old push mower and commercial string trimmer
– multiple people have volunteered to participate; will set up a rotation of two people each week

Holy Week planning: all in place

Aaron’s odds and ends
– planning for conference attendance is completed, with $400 contributed by ADOTS
– Rachael will make an announcement about keeping kids off of the travel areas

Next meeting Tuesday April 18, 7:00pm at church

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary Jan. 18, 2017

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of January 18, 2017
Minutes prepared by Elisa Roberts, summary by Daniel Yoder

Attendees: Aaron, Brad, Joy, Brent, Daniel, Deborah, Rachel, Sally, Elisa

Financial Report:
– giving has been somewhat over-budget
– hard to know exactly what the situation is until all the initial costs associated with the building come in
– still missing the structural repair and a few reimbursements
– will also need to purchase lawn equipment and a shed
– Cedar Springs will be gradually reducing our stipend, down to $10k this year compared to $12k in previous years
– big question mark is the utility cost; from initial takeover around Dec. 12 to Jan 9 was about $960.

Discussion of Advent
– to some degree got overtaken by the building purchase
– expressed gratitude for the beauty of the services

Covenant Journey
– will do twice a year, with the target for the 2nd being around Pentecost (June 4).
– the primary one will remain late October.

Discussion with Arab Christian church
– discussion with them continue
– it is not clear whether they want to move or not

Facilities Committee Move-in list
– list from Committee included cleaning bathrooms, floors, painting classrooms, moving furniture, replacing fire extinguishers ad detectors. Added to the list repair of pews, grounds clean-up, and sign
– Joy and Brad will create a cleaning supplies “potluck” list
– Daniel will check on need for a grease trap
– Facilities Committee will create a janitorial task list, and propose who can do what

Additional Move-In requirements
– additional greeters to cover two doors
– child-care check-in procedures
– care of kitchen
– Aaron will check on getting website updated

Target Move-in
– keep target of Feb. 26
– Aaron will check about 4th Pres. pro-rating if we move earlier

Next meeting Feb. 15, 7:00pm at church

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary November 30, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of November 30, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Attendees: Aaron, Brent, Daniel, Deborah, Rachel, Sally, Elisa, Brad, Joy

Financial Report:
– giving has been somewhat over-budget, again allowing addition to building fund
– Oct.: tithes and offerings $13082, expenses $9742
– includes extra expenses for miscellaneous building purchase costs

Discussion of progress on Fairmont Building
– have committed to purchase and submitted $22000 earnest money
– waiting on title issues and on survey before closing
– selected an insurance policy
– have a plan for facilities improvements, including a few things that must be done before moving in
– wan to make sure that the facilities re fully accessible

Feedback on Covenant Journey process
– very positive, but will try to have more frequently
– Clergy team to propose how often and when

Feedback on annual congregational meeting
– Council examined the cards turned in on “what we want to be sure not to lose”
– emphasis on worship, with 2nd emphasis on fellowship and discipleship
– there have been several mentions of small groups, so Council discussed how to facilitate those

Feedback on Bishop Frank visit
– extremely positive

Important Dates
– Sunday, December 4, 2016, 2:00 pm, Ice skating for kids 8 and up, Ice Chalet
– Monday, December 12, 2016, 7:00 pm, Ladies night at Joy Guilford’s, 1233 Armstrong Ave, 37917
– Wednesday, December 14, 2016, 6:30 pm, Lessons and Carols, Fourth Presbyterian
– Tuesday, December 20, 2016, time TBA, Caroling for Living Catechism service day, location TBA
– Saturday, December 24, 2016, 5:30 pm, Christmas Eve service, Fourth Presbyterian
– Sunday, December 25, 2016, 9:00 am, Christmas Day service, Fourth Presbyterian
– Sunday, December 25, 2016 through Tuesday, January 3, 2017, Aaron on vacation
– Wednesday, January 18, 2017, 7:00 pm, Parish Council meeting, Deborah’s office at 322 East Burwell

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary October 19, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of October 19, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Attendees: Aaron, Brent, Daniel, Deborah, Rachel, Brad

Financial Report:
– have been very conservative in spending, so are continuing to be under-budget in order to build our building fund
– Sept.: tithes and offerings $8807, expenses $8667; includes significant extra expenses for Lake Day + building inspection

Discussion of progress on Fairmont Building
– have made substantial progress on developing cost estimates for necessary repairs
– written estimates: structural $4k, electrical $2k, dehumidifier $1k
– verbal estimates (written to follow): HVAC $10k, plumbing $3k
– Aaron will discuss with Presbytery; ask them to return $20k for repairs

Upcoming events
– Bishop Frank visit for coming weekend all set
– Covenant Journey dates all set: 1) Brad to post everything on Facebook and send out new email; 2) Aaron as major announcement this Sunday
– report from Nominating Committee on Parish Council nominations: is in midst of contacting nominees

Odds and Ends
– very busy through early November, then slight easing off until Advent

Important Dates
– Saturday, October 22, 2016, 10:30 am, Old North Abbey service day at Fourth Presbyterian (landscaping)
– Saturday, October 22, 2016, 6:30 pm, Parish Council meeting with Bishop Frank, Brad and Joy Guilford’s
– Sunday, October 23, 2016, 9:00 am, Bishop Frank visit to Old North Abbey
– Sunday, October 23, 2016, 3:30 pm, Old North Abbey picnic at Holston River Park 3
– Saturday, October 29, 2016, 10:00 am, discovery session for those new to Covenant journey, location TBA
– Saturday, October 29, 2016, 11:00 am, first Covenant Journey breakout option, location TBA
– Sunday, October 30, 2016, 11:00 am, second Covenant Journey breakout option, Rusty and Rachel Moorman’s
– Wednesday, November 2, 2016, 6:30 pm, third Covenant Journey breakout option, location TBA
– Friday and Saturday, November 4 and 5, 2016, ADOTS Synod meeting, Holy Cross Cathedral, Loganville, GA
– Sunday, November 6, 2016, 6:00 pm, fourth Covenant Journey breakout option, location TBA
– Sunday, November 13, 2016, after worship service, Covenant Journey covenanting ceremony and annual congregation meeting, location TBA
– Wednesday, November 16, 2016, 7:00 pm, Parish Council meeting, Deborah’s office at 322 East Burwell

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary September 21, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of September 21, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Attendees: Aaron, Brent, Daniel, Deborah, Erik, Rachel, Brad

Financial Report:
– have been very conservative in spending, so are continuing to be under-budget in order to build our building fund
– giving has been somewhat over-budget, again allowing addition to building fund
– August: tithes and offerings $10,419, expenses $7,463

Discussion of progress on Fairmont Building
– loan application was approved by Wesleyan Investment Foundation
– results of inspection showed a long list of little things, but several potentially significant ones: possible structural issues as evidenced by cracks in block and brick; repair of various HVAC elements to the tune of about $10k; electrical components and wiring not up to code.
– a visit from a structural engineer has been scheduled for Oct. 4
– Aaron will propose to Presbytery that they turn us back $20k from the $220k purchase price for us to use to repair these issues
– Council recommended formation of two standing committees:

– Operations Committee
– charged with maintenance, repair, and improvements to the facility to maintain and enhance its function
– initial task: using the Inspection report, developed a prioritized list of recommended changes and associated costs for proposal to Parish Council
– long-term tasks:
– develop and carry out a routine maintenance and janitorial plan for the facility and grounds
– maintain a prioritized list of short-term and long-term projects for proposal to the Parish Council
– carry out projects approved by the Parish Council
– proposed membership: Russ Moorman (Chair), Becca Rogers, Jordan Bell, Marci Wood, Rusty Moorman
– Daniel to contact to determine interest in serving

– Beautification Committee
– develop short-term and long-term vision for the facility and grounds, involving the congregation as much as possible
– based on that vision, develop a list of proposed projects and associated cost estimates for proposal to the Parish Council
– work with the Operations Committee to oversee carrying out an approved project
– proposed membership: Britton Sharp, Elizabeth Inman, Katherine Lewis, Rachael Bell, Meg Wohlford
– Aaron to contact
– Council confirmed being bound by the previous commitment to keep $30k in a rainy day fund even through the building purchase and repairs

Discussion of upcoming events
– Lake Day Sunday Sept. 25. , starting at 3:30
– Nancy Moorman has arranged for meat and has set up potluck list
– Nancy and Rachel Moorman checking on plates, cups, napkins, utensils, etc.
– Daniel has arranged for portable toilets to be delivered
– Aaron has arranged for activities
– Covenant Journey process, starting Saturday Oct. 29 and culminating in Congregational Meeting Sunday Nov. 13
– Erik presented minor changes in written description of process; approved by Council
– will start making announcements Sunday Oct. 2
– Aaron checking on using 4th Pres for Oct. 29 and Nov. 2, and will ask Beth and Daniel about Nov. 6
– visit of Bishop Frank weekend of Oct. 23: no new details
– Congregational meeting Nov. 13
– hope to hold at Fairmont
– Lyndsey DaSilva has asked to step down from the PC due to other increased responsibilities
– the Council expressed its appreciation for her service and accepted that request
– Nominating Committee will come up with an additional name to recommend for the slate

Odds and Ends
– Aaron will be preaching a series of sermons on what Christian Community really means

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary August 17, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of August 17, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Financial Report:
– have been very conservative in spending, so are continuing to be under-budget in order to build our building fund
– giving has been somewhat over-budget, again allowing addition to building fund
– July: tithes and offerings $13,712, expenses $7,260
– note that there were five Sundays in July

Discussion of Parish Council nominations
– according to Bylaws need 5-9 voting members (including Rector, but not other clergy)
– two members stepped down this year (Alex Doyle and Pryor Baird)
– Deborah Broome is the only member rotating off this year due to end of 3-year term, but can renew once
– decided to develop a small form for nomination process, which includes listing of required qualifications

Discussion of progress on Fairmont Building
– all necessary material have been submitted for a direct loan from Wesleyan Investment Foundation
– Aaron will proceed with a first informal inspection, to be followed by a more detailed one if this finds issues or if the loan requires it
– will also submit application to a second lender as backup; Deborah will pursue.

Discussion of Fall schedule
– Lake Day Sunday Sept. 25. Daniel take care of what PC provides (meat and buns, and two Porta-Pottys).
– Erik and Daniel re-examining Covenant Journey process. Council agreed to keep process roughly the same. Attendance at Discovery portion will only be expected of first-time covenanters not participating in Confirmation, and this will take place the morning of Saturday, Oct. 19. Will have Journey sessions the morning of Saturday Oct. 29 after the Discovery meeting, the evening of Wednesday Nov. 2, and immediately after the service Sunday Oct. 30. The Covenant process will take place on Sunday Nov. 13 following the service, in turn be followed by the annual Congregational meeting.
– for the Annual Meeting, besides the normal business (Treasurer’s Report, election of Parish Council members, State of the Congregation Report, etc.), the theme for discussion will be: “In the midst of all this change, what do we not want to lose? What must we hold on to?”

Odds and Ends
– discussion about Bishop Frank’s visit. Will probably want to meet with PC on Saturday Oct. 22, then will preach on Sunday Oct. 23.
– sharing of congregational concerns

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary July 20, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of July 20, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Financial Report:
– have been very conservative in spending, so are actually under-budget in order to increase our building fund
– giving has been somewhat over-budget, again allowing addition to building fund
– June: tithes and offerings $10,950, expenses $10,450
– tithe to ADOTS ($3000), storage unit rental ($743) as major one-time expenses this month

Discussion of progress on Fairmont Building
– Presbytery provided a proposal, but seems relatively unattractive
– are pursuing a direct loan from Wesleyan Investment Foundation instead; gives lower monthly cost, and all of it goes towards purchase. Parish Council reviewed and approved the application, to be submitted by Deborah Broome.
– Aaron will proceed with a first informal inspection, to be followed by a more detailed one if this finds issues or if the loan requires it
– Aaron contacted the pastors of the Arab Christian church, which is very active and growing and would love to share the space with us.

Discussion of Living Catechism
– report of all who attended that seems to be going very well; good attendance (25-30% of Sunday attendance), good enthusiasm
– more demand for childcare than we thought we would have, but dealing with it

Discussion of Parish Council membership
– Pryor Baird has resigned from the Parish Council to focus on the upcoming birth. The Parish Council is still well within the numbers required by the Bylaws (5-9 voting members), so decided to not look at replacements until the normal nomination and voting process associated with the November Congregational meeting.

Odds and Ends
– Aaron thanked the Deacons for covering during his vacation
– Erik will be helping Daniel re-examine the Covenant Journey membership process to propose any changes by next meeting

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary June 15, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of June 15, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Financial Report:
– have been very conservative in spending, so are actually under-budget in order to build our building fund
– giving has been somewhat over-budget, again allowing addition to building fund
– May: tithes and offerings $14,113, expenses $7,894
– some upcoming major expenses (tithe to ADOTS, payment for storage unit, building inspection)

Discussion of progress on Fairmont Building
– Presbytery still in process of working out paperwork to allow them to sell. They will need to wait 45 days after that before they can actually commit to sale.
– Greg Brown is drafting a proposal to give to Presbytery, which is also discussing a proposal.
– Aaron is checking on a building inspector for commercial buildings, and will order an inspection. Likely to cost $2-3000.
– Aaron plans to contact Arab Christian church to begin discussion of possibilities.
– would like to start process of some ideas and renderings on possible changes to front of sanctuary. Not clear how approval by Presbytery would work while they are still owners. Decided that if the congregation grows so we need the space, and we have the funds to move ahead, there would be nothing keeping us from purchasing the building in order to make necessary changes.

Discussion of Living Catechism
– how do we make catechism about not just learning, but about living? How do we turn it into discipleship?
– will incorporate and expand the weekly evening prayer meeting, continuing to include prayer and Eucharist.
– July will be an introductory month, focused on book “You are what you Love” by James K. A. Smith
– in August will begin more standard sequence: 1st week on how to read specific book of Bible; 2nd week reading and discussing; 3rd week descending on action item arising from reading and doing that together; 4th week on traditional catechism discussion of that; 5th week (if applicable) discussing related outside event or topic.
– will be some disruption in that schedule for confirmation and covenanting activities in September and October, but will resume pattern after that.
– ONA will provide paid childcare during those meetings.

Odds and Ends
– Aaron will be vacationing in beautiful Kansas from the afternoon of Sunday July 10 through Tuesday July 19. On the Sunday he is absent Brad will preach, Nick do Deacon’s mass, and Joy serve as Deacon.
– Parish Council approved monthly budget of $75 for Party Planning Committee to use for activities.

ONA Parish Council Minutes Summary May 18, 2016

Old North Abbey, Knoxville, TN
Parish Council Meeting Summary, meeting of May 18, 2016
Minutes prepared by Brad Guilford, summary by Daniel Yoder

Financial Report:
– received full report at previous meeting and Deborah indicated there were no unexpected changes in giving nor expenses, so postponed full update to next meeting

The remainder of the time was spent discussing the opportunity to purchase the Fairmont Presbyterian building at 2537 Fairmont Blvd. in Knoxville (37917). This discussion included Greg Brown and Spencer Hall, specifically to give very valuable guidance regarding the legal and financial implications of such a purchase.

1) Question: how best to continue to involve the congregation in the decision?
– the Open House went very well, and so far the feedback received by PC members has been uniformly positive;
– Aaron will ask Mert Cowsert to plan one additional Open House date for those who could not attend;
– once that date is set, Daniel will send an email to the entire ONA listserve announcing the date
– will also ask for any concerns to be shared directly with one of the PC members.

2) Financial specifics:
– until we actually receive a formal document from the Presbytery, we are planning based on Mert’s discussion with Aaron. Receipt of the official offer should probably occur within the next week or so;
– agreed that $220k seems like a very good purchase price;
– if things move forward, we will pursue inviting the Arab Christian congregation to share the space with us, perhaps asking them to contribute by taking charge of the regular janitorial work. This might provide good work for one of their members while easing total costs;
– there is substantial uncertainty regarding actual utilities cost, as we only have one bill and that represents the previous congregation?s very limited use made of the building. We will try to get a fuller cost history;
– given that a commercial loan at this point would completely drain our savings and that the proposal from the Presbytery has a very low interest rate, we agreed to pursue the lease-to-own option;
– once we receive the formal proposal and submit a response (see below), we will ask for a full inspection;
– after extensive discussion, it was agreed that we should propose the following to the Presbytery:
a) we agree to the three years to purchase;
b) ONA would assume all insurance payments and maintenance of the property;
c) any proposed changes to the property would only proceed once approved by a Presbytery representative;
d) the 10% down payment and the non-interest portion of the monthly payment ($1000 of the $1500) would go into escrow. If the congregation chose at any point to purchase, the amount in escrow could be used as part of the loan down payment rather than reducing the property purchase price, and we would borrow funds for the full $220k purchase price. If during the three years we chose not to purchase, half of the escrow would be kept by the Presbytery as a non-purchase penalty.
e) we ask the Presbytery to provide a warranty deed, and if they are not amenable to that, we will do a title search.