Rectory & Rhinelander Bldg

Vestry Meeting

October 18, 2010 Minutes

PRESENT:  Rector Michael Phillips, Hal Barth, Virginia Borland, Jean Geater, Warden Steve Knight, Liz Poole, Alden Prouty, Jim Synk, Warden Bea Tompkins

ABSENT:  James Daubs, Rob Ingraham, Suzanne Julig, Carol Stevenson, Susan Valdes-Dapena


Rector Michael Phillips called the meeting to order and led the Vestry in prayer. 

At the November Vestry meeting, Michael will offer a spiritual reflection based on the article that Warden Steve Knight circulated to all Vestry members.   

September Vestry Meeting Minutes -- MOTION made and PASSED to approve the Minutes of the September meeting of the Vestry as revised.

Treasurer’s Report – Michael distributed year-to-date financials as prepared by parish book-keeper Annie Reed.  Total income to date is within 1% of budget, but pledge income is lagging.  We currently have a $29,000 deficit which would not exist if every parishioner was current with his or her pledge.   Jim Synk volunteered to write a reminder for the Sunday bulletin urging parishioners to keep up with their pledge payments. 

In this year’s December pledge statement mailing, the letter will mention that parishioners can donate funds as gifts to the church staff.  They can include a check for that purpose along with a check for any pledge payment they’re making.  Alden Prouty will follow up on this with Erlinda.

The biggest expense we have is utilities, which are at 98% of budget – not including any fuel deliveries yet this fall.  We are current in our 2010 Diocesan assessment payments, with one more to be made this year.

The Vestry expressed their thanks for Annie’s work on the financial report and asked that the prior two years’ “actuals” be included as well.

MOTION made and PASSED to accept the financial report as submitted.


Pledge Campaign Update – Jean Geater reported that the letters and pledge cards will be mailed this week.  Each Sunday until November 17 a Vestry member will talk about the importance of pledging.  The campaign goal for 2011 is $385,000, the same amount that was pledged for 2010.  On November 1 there will be a cocktail party for the parish’s major pledgers.  Jean asked the Vestry for a commitment that all members will make a pledge for 2011. 

MOTION made and PASSED that all Vestry members present will pledge for 2011.  Susan Valdes-Dapena and Suzanne Julig agreed by email and Jean will contact remaining Vestry members Carol Stevenson, James Daubs and Rob Ingraham on whether they will also agree to pledge.

Triangle Theatre Benefit Performance – Jean also reported that the recently-performed play, Noel Coward in Two Keys, was a benefit for Holy Trinity.  She presented a check for $300 to Michael.  She also thanked him and Sarah for hosting a cocktail party to thank the members of Triangle Theatre.  She also pointed out that the expenses for this play were higher than usual, due to royalties, a one-time stipend to Director Connie George and a first-time need to pay for outside rehearsal space.



Property – In Rob Ingraham’s absence, Michael stated that we are still trying to get a date with the contractor to install the city-required water meter.   

Membership Development – Jim said the next newcomer brunch will be on December 5. 

Neighborhood Ministries – Alden reminded the Vestry of the HTNC fundraiser on October 30 – a Halloween party for children and adults.  There was discussion on the need to co-ordinate all parish and HTNC events so that they are not scheduled too close together.  Liz Poole reported that she is completing another round of paperwork needed to get the monies from the FY2009-2010 grant from State Senator Liz Krueger.  Michael said the Thanksgiving Dinner committee has met twice and is looking into having turkeys cooked off-premises, which would greatly simplify our operation.

Adult Christian Education (ACE) –  A member of a Franciscan order will be speaking at this coming Sunday morning’s ACE program.

Children/Youth – Jim is trying to get a list of Sunday School parents.  Sunday School Director Mary Ausman says there are now 21 children in Sunday School.  A member of the parish has volunteered to teach the Epiphany segment of Sunday School.

Hospitality – Hal Barth said Jackie Price was pleased with the plan to ask Ozell to add cleaning out the upstairs refrigerator to his Sunday schedule.  Michael will make sure this new responsibility gets worked into the routine.

Fundraisers – Virginia Borland stated that the Wine & Cheese event invitations were mailed last week.  Parishioner and wine expert John Tucker is choosing affordable wines for this event.  On October 17, retiring Thrift Shop President Lillian Bunth received a framed Certificate of Appreciation commemorating all her hard work at the Thrift Shop.  


Warden’s Report

Vestry Nominating Committee – Warden Bea Tompkins has received suggestions for potential new Vestry members from the nominating committee and welcomes them from the rest of the Vestry, as well.  She will review the names with Michael before approaching the nominees.

Budget Committee – Steve said that he, Rob, Jim, Hal and Jean will meet next Wednesday to begin working on the 2011 parish budget.

Vestry Potluck – Steve announced that the Vestry potluck dinner was a big success and he thanked Michael and Sarah for hosting it.


Rector’s Report

Diocesan Workshop – There is a Diocesan workshop this Saturday, October 23, called Greening Your Program.  A member of the HTNC Board as well as a Vestry member should attend.

Lairds’ Invitation – RC and Angie have invited the Vestry to their apartment for a get-together after the November Vestry meeting.

Summer Heat – A parishioner was very concerned about how hot it was in church this summer, to the point of seeking out an air-conditioned church as a temporary solution.  Michael suggested we try having Sunday services in Draesel Hall, which is air-conditioned, during July as a test and evaluate it after that.  He asked the Vestry to consider this or maybe a campaign to raise money to buy more or bigger fans for the church.

Bedbug Readiness – The Vestry should become informed about bedbugs and have a plan in place in case we need to deal with this problem.  Michael will find out whether our insurance covers bedbug eradication.

Vestry Weekend – Michael reminded everyone that the Vestry weekend will be February 18 to 20, 2011 at Incarnation Camp in Connecticut.

Search for new Minister of Music – Michael and RC are gathering data about Music at Holy Trinity, so we know a lot about it after Minister of Music Stephen Hamilton retires next June.  The audience consists of parishioners, neighbors, musicians, music students and the family and friends of performers.  Alden and Virginia offered to help with this data gathering at upcoming performances.  The next concert is November 4.  Before the search begins, we will do a parish survey and form a search committee of members of the Vestry, choir, 10:30 and 6:00 congregations and possibly some parishioners who are professional musicians.  We need a structured approach to keeping Music at Holy Trinity up and running and getting at least part of next season planned.  The Vestry would like Stephen to plan next season’s concerts.

Episcopal Service Corps – Trinity Wall St. is offering a grant in connection with Episcopal Service Corps, a group of young people recently graduated from college who live together in community and work as interns in community service-type jobs.  A parish agrees to house 4 or 5 young people and the grant covers the cost of someone to administer their efforts.  For example, if Holy Trinity were housing a small group, one of them could work at the HTNC programs, one at Stanley Isaacs, etc.  St. Mary’s Manhattanville has Episcopal Service Corps now, so Michael will speak with someone there to see how it’s working out.  He will also ask RC to come to the November Vestry meeting and tell us more about the program.  RC was a member of a similar group before entering seminary.


Next Regular Vestry Meeting – Monday, November 15, 2010 at 7pm in the Choir Room.

There being no further business to come before the Vestry, MOTION made and PASSED to adjourn.

Michael closed the meeting with a prayer.

Respectfully submitted,

Liz Poole