Council met Monday, October 16, at 7 p.m. in the church library. Once again, the spending plan for 2018 dominated the discussion.
Council examined a draft plan that, despite cuts to several areas, anticipates an $11,000 shortfall next year. As noted during the meeting, a large percentage of annual spending is taken up by the fixed costs that are fundamental to the work and ministry of the church: Staff compensation and benefits, office and other administrative expenses, utilities, and property upkeep and maintenance.
At current giving levels, there is little room for spending on the ministries and benevolent activities that many want to see the church engage in. St. Philip is fortunate to have an endowment fund and other investment funds, though. Pastor David discussed the philosophical approach council has been taking to utilizing these funds — appropriating money from them mostly for one-time expenses — and questioned whether the church needs to rethink that approach.
After much discussion, council decided to move forward with developing a spending plan for congregational approval that anticipates a significant shortfall and to meet an hour early in November to devote more time to discussing both how to approach spending and how to best communicate the issues and situation to the congregation.
Pastor Kelly debuted the church’s new Twitter account, @StPhilipROA, and council discussed ways it could be put to good use. Dan Radmacher updated council on the website redesign, and Pastor David discussed the plan for the rollout of the new logo and tagline.
Sarah Parker was unable to attend the meeting but sent an email describing her experience at a training session for the Forwarding Faith Campaign, the effort to raise at least $2.5 million over the next five years to provide an endowment for faith formation activities in the Virginia Synod. That campaign is now entering the congregational phase, and council agreed that a reasonable goal for St. Philip would be to secure commitments from members of the congregation to give $25,000 over three years.
Sarah will lead that campaign over a six-week period from January 21 to February 25 with the last week corresponding with St. Philip’s 60th anniversary. The pastors shared that they had already pledged $3,000 personally and that other St. Philip families have made similar commitments.
Pastor David reported that situations requiring pastoral care continue to arise with greater frequency than normal and that he and Pastor Kelly are doing all they can to meet those needs.
Council will meet again on November 14 at 6 p.m. in the church library. Anyone is welcome to attend.