Rectory & Rhinelander Bldg

Vestry Meeting

February 20, 2012

Present: Wardens Jean Geater and Dave Jacobs, Rob Ingraham, Susan Walker, Hal Barth, Inez Lambert, Virginia Borland, Eddy Coston, Jeanne Blazina, Carol Haley, Judith Jones, Clerk James Daubs, Marlin Mattson and Rector, the Rev. Michael Phillips.

Absent:  Treasurer John Ewing, Suzanne Julig.

Guest:  Franny Eberhart.

  • The meeting began with self-introductions by new and returning Vestry members.
  • The January Vestry minutes were approved UNANIMOUSLY.
  • Franny Eberhart, speaking on behalf of the Building Committee, recommended undertaking a new project:  installing a boiler in St. Christopher’s House.  According to Franny, some 30 years ago St. Christopher’s House was hooked to the main boiler (which resides under the main altar), as was the Rectory.  It’s wasteful to send heat that far; in addition, St. Christopher’s House is open continuously, “24/7,” unlike the church. The engineer’s fee for the new project will be about $10K: since the Property Preservation Trust has been accumulating spendable income, we have about $50K and Franny recommends enlisting an engineer—particularly since a year from now we’ll be paying off the last big portion of a loan from the New York Landmarks Conservancy.  We should probably also arrange for a Rectory boiler at the same time.  This project will probably result in cost savings, since it will run on gas rather than oil.  (Michael Phillips mentioned that he would like to form a Green Energy Group, whose mission would be to try to decrease energy costs.)

Treasurer’s Report:

The Vestry discussed the report prepared by John Ewing. Among the highlights:

  • Michael has placed a notice about our empty apartments at 815 Second Avenue; Eddy Coston will volunteer to share this information with EWTN, The Net, and other outlets.
  • CHT has 7 more pledgers than last year; CHT has $346K in pledges, $26K more than last year.
  • Utility bills remain exorbitant.
  • Savings are being realized in (a) the organist, and (b) the Sunday 6 p.m. musician.

Old Business:

  • Thank-You Minister Lookout:  Carol Haley suggests having this as a regular agenda point rather than appointing a person to this post, and the group consensus was that this was a good idea.  People may e-mail their ideas about thank-you recipients to James Daubs.  For now, last year’s Nominating Committee should receive notes.
  • Revenue/Expenses committee:  James Daubs asked about the status of this team.  Michael said that raising revenues and lowering expenses would be among the focuses of the Vestry overnight, and that the matter had been recently discussed by the Wardens.  Eddy Coston raised the topic of a system of church “patrons,” similar to the system museums have; Michael suggested putting this into a proposal for consideration by the Vestry.

 Committee Assignments:

  • Yvonne O’Neal will take on Carpenter’s Kids duties; it will cease to be a Vestry assignment, and Eddy will serve as Carpenter’s Kids liaison to the Vestry.
  • Michael has discussed with Wardens the idea of turning CHT’s assets into revenue; he proposes a committee charged with doing this:  “Architectural Assets for Revenue.”
  • Virginia Borland suggests a “Community Involvement” committee, especially in conjunction with current Marine Transfer Station controversy in Yorkville.
  • Hal Barth will be Vestry Thrift Shop liaison.

The Vestry will reflect on committee vacancies and discuss at the Vestry overnight.

Committee Reports:

Property (Rob Ingraham):  Garden bench slats need to be replaced.  Masonry work is needed in St. Christopher’s House.

Membership Development: There will be a Newcomers’ Brunch at the Rectory April 15, with 20 invitees.

Adult Christian Education:  in Lent, stories from Easter Vigil on Sundays, Stations of the Cross on Wednesdays. There will be August Film Series as usual.  A meeting is in order.

Communications (Dave Jacobs):  Dave continues to work on the website, and is especially interested in  developing (a) Weekly Activities and (b) Google Calendar. 

Hospitality (Hal Barth): A cake is needed for Trinity Sunday.  6/3 is R.C. Laird’s last Sunday at CHT.

Fundraisers (Virginia Borland): the Bill Minifie Cabaret brought in about $1000 dollars!  MayFair is on May 5.

Rector’s Report:

  • Music: the search committee has been formed.  Trinity Choristers seems to be losing momentum, with some members getting old enough for adult choir, and with Stephen Fraser’s departure.  Michael wonders whether Danny Beckwith’s time should be spent on a concert series instead of the Choristers.  Also:  the paid singers are very good, but they are also costly:  by Easter, we shall have spent $16K out of the $20K usually spent annually on the singers.
  • Commemorative plaque for Stephen Hamilton:  the wording was approved by the Vestry UNANIMOUSLY.
  • The Vestry overnight will be March 30-31 at Incarnation Camp, Ivoryton, CT.
  • Commissioning of the Vestry will occur at 10:30 a.m. service March 25.

Warden’s Report:

  • All material covered elsewhere in agenda.


Marlin Mattson raised an issue:  Where does New Business get its follow-up in the next Vestry meeting?  We don’t want certain matters to “fall through the cracks.”  For instance, (a) updating the sound system, and (b) revitalizing the Eucharistic Ministry.

Michael answered the above: (a) The sound system will cost about $10K to update, of which we’ve raised only $1700, and (b) Michael has contacted the Diocesan Office and he and RC will be looking into having licensings renewed.

Michael dismissed the meeting with a prayer.

Respectfully submitted,

James Daubs, Clerk