Vestry Meeting/Day Session
March 31, 2012
Present: Virginia Borland, Rector the Rev. Michael Phillips, Suzanne Julig, Wardens Jean Geater and Dave Jacobs, Inez Lambert, Hal Barth, Jeanne Blazina, Eddy Coston, Marlin Mattson, Carol Haley, Judith Jones, Clerk James Daubs, Lilly Fellow the Rev. R.C. Laird (part-time attendance).
Absent: Rob Ingraham, Treasurer John Ewing.
First Session (Choir Room):
Michael announced that he would be leaving the parish at the end of June. He will begin part-time work on July 1 at Trinity Church in Saugerties, NY. Because of this, the rest of the morning session was devoted to a careful examination of the document “Leading a Parish through a Transition in Clergy Leadership,” which can be found on www.dioceseny.org.
Noon Prayer was held in the Memorial Chapel.
Lunch was served in the Paul Room.
Afternoon session, 1 p.m., the Paul Room:
A long discussion of funding was held in the afternoon. The Vestry discussed John Ewing’s Treasurer’s Report, then discussed ways to increase revenues and cut expenses. Guiding the discussion was John Ewing’s insistence that CHT needs to save $150K/year via a combination of revenue increases and spending cuts in order not to further erode the Investment Fund.
Discussion was devoted to three different topics: Music; Apartments; and Staffing.
Music: discussion centered on how to keep the current high level of music when the reality is that it is costing us too much. As Carol Haley observed, CHT is spending $500+/week on paid singers. Among the topics discussed:
- Forming a Music Patron program, including inviting back past supporters of the music program.
- Offering the church as a performance/rehearsal space, or “Gospel Pit Stop.”
- Interim Music Director Danny Beckwith’s recruitment of an all-volunteer choir.
- “The Story of the Rieger Organ” in tandem with concerts and a competition.
- Michael observed that CHT already hosts such music societies as the Gay Men’s Chorus, the New York Choral Society, and the Oratorio Society.
- An invitational benefit performance for potential Patrons to meet Danny.
It was decided that 3 Vestry members would meet with Danny after Easter to pitch these and other ideas to him (Virginia Borland, Inez Lambert, Carol Haley). Michael will initiate the discussion with Danny on Monday April 2.
Apartments: discussion centered on how best to utilize the 8 apartments owned by the church to increase revenues. A motion to establish a Real Estate Committee with Eddy Coston as chair passed UNANIMOUSLY.
Fourth floor Rhinelander House: Matt Moretz (back), Erlinda Brent (front)
Third floor Rhinelander House: Rhinelander Volunteer Project staffers
Second floor Rhinelander House: Temporary (till October) (back), Milos (front)
Ascension Apartment: Vacant
Rectory: Occupied till July
Staffing: the Vestry engaged in a long discussion of the future of the Rhinelander Volunteer Project, but tabled any decision-making until a later date.
Michael closed the meeting, and the Vestry adjourned to the Rectory for the Rector’s Sherry Hour.
James Daubs, Clerk.