ADMINISTRATIVE COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES
August 30, 2007
PRESENT: Rich Hill, Sherrie Cottrell, Pastor Bill Shaw, John Machonis, Gail Bedingfield, Bruce Bedingfield, Gwen Greenwalt, Marshall Nystrom, Jill Woods-Naatz, Carolyn Meneely, Jerry McDaniel, Shirley McDaniel, Marian Wagner, JoAnne Gregorash, Linda Nordli, Sue Brown, Mike Whitehall, Steve Miller, Mary Knoppel, Mike Wojtal, and Cathy Mottar.
OPENING Prayer and Devotions:
Opening Prayer given by Sherrie Cottrell at 7:17 p.m.
Devotions: Jill Wood-Naatz provided the devotion from a passage from Roger Curless at the Northern Illinois Annual Conference that she attended in June. <See Attachment A for Notes from the Conference> In essence, he defined the church as what’s left after the building burns down and the pastor leaves town. Rich volunteered to provide the September devotion.
ADMINISTRATION: Introductions and Approval of June, 2007 minutes. Bruce made the motion to approve the minutes as written and JoAnne seconded the motion.
HUDDLE (Business of the Church)
Vision on Reationships – Presentation by Pastor Bill & Sue Brown
Sue presented her gift of Hospitality. Sue shared how she was greeted when she arrived at ORUMC. She focuses on meeting new people. Sue shared 3 of her personal stories related to hospitality. Sue shared some of the greetings and tactics she uses to develop relationships. (i.e. Don’t sit in your usual spot each week., Find someone new and ask if you can sit by them, Ask if you can pray for them this week, Invite someone to the Wesley room, Start a discussion of high/low experiences for the week.) Basically – Meet, Greet, Engage Yourself and have fun.
Bill passed out Attachment B – Vision & Process documents. Bill shared ministry accomplishments (what are we doing and what should we continue doing). What do you believe god is calling us to do? As a part of “Our Working Vision”, Bill asked that everyone send him a list of 3 items that we are doing and 3 items you think we are doing well in our church and send them to him in the next 10 days. You can write them down and email them to Pastor Bill.
We need to go beyond our immediate needs to define process and organization.
Fund Raiser – Movie memorabilia update: No Update.
Third Church Service 6:33: Based on notes from Marianne, as you all know, Our Redeemer’s is going to begin a new worship gathering on September 9th. The 6:33 gathering will be every Sunday night beginning at 6:33pm and will last about 45 minutes. 6:33 is worship “outside the box.” It will provide interactive, cutting edge worship experiences to bring Christ into your everyday life, further define and strengthen your walk with God, and provide opportunities and vision to carry out His kingdom work on earth. Whether you’re just starting your walk or continuing your journey with Christ, 6:33 will speak to you and the world we live in. The gathering will be led by our very own worship band, Ember Days.
After the 6:33 gathering, there will be a brief break with munchies provided; then from 7:30 to 8:30pm there will be small group time. We are beginning the school year with a jr. high youth group and a sr. high youth group and hope to extend that to some other small groups (including one for young adults, one for parents, etc.). We are planning on these groups being tons of fun with a discussion of the message and lots of games—the youth will really form a bond with the other students during this small group time.
Natural Church Development (NCD): Carolyn Meneely reported that the committee conducted a new survey in June and received the results in July. Evangelism was our top need in the previous survey and continuing along those lines we want to implement the ORUMC Event Planning Guide <See Attachment C> for more integration with people “outside” of our church family. This will help us have a record of these events, so we can leverage past event planning. This will be available just as any other form in the church office. The results from the most recent survey show that Need Based Evangelism is up 18 points and our new focus should be on holistic small groups (communicate and support each other to live biblically applying it to your whole life) and passionate spirituality (living with joy and the love of Jesus 100% of the time). The NCD team will be looking for help on these new initiatives while we continue with our Needs based Evangelism.
NARTHEX: Jill reported on behalf of the committee that she spoke with the carpenter and the new tall cabinets will be installed on Thursday on September 6th. At this time, the new scheduled completion is for the end of September. There are many other tasks to be done after the carpenter is complete, so that is when most of our internal work begins.
Web Page & Calendar
Review: Jerry shared the events through the mid-June, 2008. Jerry asked that the committees review
the items on the 2nd page to get them scheduled and better
Action Item - Jerry will send the current schedule to all committees and ask them to update the event items that either involve members or are done within the whole church. – There needs to be a new process for the calendar maintenance and updates from the committees.
Name Tags & Church
Directory: There was some discussion on what should be done with name
tags and getting them to new members and updating of the church directory. Decisions on these topics need to be
Action Item - The Evangelism committee will discuss options and come back with a recommendation at the Administrative Council next meeting.
Annual Conference Report: JoAnne and Jill reported on Annual Conference. – <See Attachment A for Notes from the Conference>
Director of Discipleship’s (DOD) Report: Carolyn reported above on NCD.
Youth Director Report: Marianne forwarded her report prior to the meeting. Confirmation will be changing this year: In addition to the youth group on Sunday nights for the Jr. High students, there is confirmation class. Confirmation will now be held during the 9am worship service on Sunday mornings. The first Sunday of every month, Communion Sunday, there will not be class. The 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th Sundays there will be class. Pastor Bill will also meet with the confirmation students three times outside of the regular class meetings. Confirmation teachers are Marianne, Michelle Hill and Annette Brown.
During the school year youth council will continue to host an Open Mic Night in November, go on the youth ski trip to Wisconsin in January, hold the 30 Hour Famine in February, and host a graduate recognition at the end of the school year.
WTTF: Marshall reported that the web site has been updated recently. He said that he is going to remove all the email addresses from the web site except the generic email address. The task force is still looking for the committees to provide updated content and can use additional support. He also asked that the committees submit any pictures they may have for the site.
There is a Creative Worship and Designs Matter seminar on September 14th and 15th, Friday and Saturday. By helping you can attend the seminar for free.
FINANCE: John reported that Congregational giving and tithes has been holding at 94% through the summer, which is very good. Fred will be sending out a draft budget for 2008 and if no response is received then that will be the approved 2008 budget. Jill made a motion to tithe 10% of the T-mobile revenue which is $600 per month. The motion was passed.
STAFF PARISH: Pastor Bill reported that Ron Zemke has been interviewed and will be leading the Ember Days band. There will be announcements coming.
MICAH MINISTRIES: Gail
reported as follows:
1. We are very happy with our vegetable garden. One of the parts of Micah mission statement is to inform the congregation about issues of social justice. By including the day care we hope we are teaching the little ones that food should be available to all and that there is a process of that food getting to the stores. We also gave food to the food pantry and some families at the day care.
2. Some members of Micah will be attending a conference in Downers Grove at the end of September. This meeting is a celebration of 100 years of social justice ministries in the UMC.
3. We are continuing our support with the Heifer project and CROP Walk and the social justice issues surrounding these two events.
4. We will once again this year support a letter writing campaign with Bread for the World and work with the youth on Famine Weekend.
5. To help understand the concept of Fair Trade we will start selling Fair Trade Coffee once a month at the Church. We will serve fair trade coffee on Sundays also.
STEWARDSHIP: Pastor Bill said that October 28th is the luncheon.
TRUSTEES: Mike reported the trustees are looking at the current room usage fees and working on their 2008 budget.
NOMINATIONS: Pastor Bill and Carolyn meeting next week on this topic.
UMW: Sherrie reported the first meeting will be Sept 15th on children with special needs by Annette Brown. November 4th there will be a silent auction and potluck luncheon.
UMM: Marshall reported that there is a Spiritual Conference on Sept 14th and the UMM Fall Retreat is on Oct 26th and 27th.
Also planning is beginning for next year’s ASP trip with the first meeting on September 12th for information. They are trying to go for the 2nd week of ASP. Marshall reported that the next Habitat for Humanity dates are September 15th and October 27th.
EVANGELISM: No Update.
EDUCATION: Rally Day is scheduled for Sept 9th. There is a need for a new VBS Director for this year.
MUSIC/WORSHIP: Jill reported that she has written up specific instructions and a diagram of the sanctuary. She is trying to get a copy to everyone that may move the furniture, so it can get to the right place. It is also posted in the back of the sanctuary. The trustees will give this information out to anyone using the sanctuary.
The new music season begins in September with rehearsals on Tuesdays for Cherub, Joyful Noise and Sounds of Grace, Wednesdays for Chancel Choir and Chimes and Saturday 22nd for Random Ringers. Ember Days will continue on Wednesdays.
The Music Committee will submit a proposal to Staff Parish requesting that all current music personnel (Director of Joyful Noise and Cherub, Accompanist for Cherub and Joyful Noise, Director of Random Ringers and Director of Sounds of Grace) be a part of the paid staff. The need to grow and strengthen these programs can best be met by employing qualified individuals to provide leadership.
Thanks to all those that did special music this summer.
LAY LEADER: No report.
MEMORIAL COMMITTEE: Mary reported that the committee is trying to get their financial record keeping in alignment. There is a form that has been provided to Donna for distributions. They have paid out approximately $9,000 for the Narthex. $6,300 donations have been received. They asked that committees provide a wish list if monies are desired.
CARING MINISTRIES: Bruce said that we have scheduled - Soup Kitchen dates September thru April, the blood drive is on Dec 6th the Crop Walk is on Sunday October 21st. The brochure for this committee is available which with recent 2007 updates. We try to give 3 times a year to our missionary Richard Vales and Rainbow Covenant and it is that time to provide to him again, so they will do that.
FAMILY MINISTRY: There were several families that showed up for the Fourth of July parade. The picnic was at the end of July and it was great and the band was awesome! Sept 16th is a family bowling event in the afternoon. They are checking into a family dance leader for October. Nothing formal planned for November and December. Caroling can be organized by youth council – Linda Nordli.
CHRISTIAN CORNER: Mike reported there has been some turnover in teachers and they are reviewing a new budget and considering their rates.
Jerry McDaniel agreed to take the notes in the September 20th meeting as Cathy will be out of town.
The meeting was adjourned with a prayer by at 9p.m.
Next Ad Council Meeting will be September 20th at 7:15 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by Cathy Mottar
Attachment A – Notes from Northern Illinois Annual Conference
of the United Methodist Church
Bishop Hee-Soo Jung, presiding spiritual leader of the Northern Illinois Conference, led an assembly of close to 1,000 lay and clergy members meeting for Annual Conference from June 9-12, 2007. Your delegates were JoAnne Gregorash and Jill Wood-Naatz. We heard inspiring sermons and celebrated our faith through prayer, music, dance and worship.
From 2000 – 2005 the Northern Illinois Conference shrunk by 11,147 members, a decline of 9.8%. Bishop Jung has his own large vision for the growth of the conference. The Harvest 2020 initiative is a plan to revitalize our churches. It is composed of 3 dimensions: 1) planting 100 new faith communities, 2) healthy church growth, and 3) planting, growing, and harvesting through cluster ministry. A Harvest 2020 leadership team has been appointed to coordinate and develop the plan by March, 2008. Our bishop is determined not to lead a dying church! He stated, “It is time for us to share God’s gifts to the world. Our churches need to begin to dream big. Instead of limiting what we can do, limiting what we can dream, we need to realize that we can make a difference…
For too long, too many of us have been focused inwardly not outwardly, focused on keeping present members satisfied rather than reaching out to the huge numbers that surround us, in every one of our communities, who have not yet heard and received the good news of Christ’s saving love for them.”
Nothing But Nets was initiated by Rick Reilly, Sports Illustrated columnist, in April 2006. The United Methodist Church has joined the United Nations Foundation and the NBA in a global grass roots campaign to stop the spread of the deadly disease of malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. Just $10 buys an insecticide treated anti-malaria net, distributes that net, and educates families on its use and installation. Bed nets work in 2 ways: they prevent mosquitoes from biting during the night and the insecticide kills the mosquitoes. The Measles Initiative is distributing the nets in Africa. You can make donations to this campaign by going to www.NothingButNets.net or www.UMC.org. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is matching Nothing But Nets donations dollar for dollar.
The Global AIDS Fund was established by the UMC in 2004 with a goal of raising $8 million over 4 years to address the AIDS pandemic around the globe. Each congregation is encouraged to contribute $1 per member. Of the funds raised, 25% will stay in our conference to be used in programs combating HIV/AIDS and 75% will be sent to the General Council of Finance and Administration for distribution around the world. ORUMC has already contributed beyond $! per member!!
Retired Bishop Fritz Mutti, who lost 2 sons to AIDS some years ago, addressed the Annual Conference on this issue. The UMM responded with an offering of $1,000 to the fund and the Annual Conference members responded by collecting an offering which brought the total to $10,000!
Steve Nailor, Northern Illinois Conference UMM President outlined plans to reach out to all of the men in the conference and to guide district UMM presidents to help enable the ministry of UMM and to improve skills in the following areas : 1) invitation (including business card templates, small group development) ,2) communication (about conference, jurisdictional, and national events), 3) training (on use of the NIC UMM web site), 4) partnerships (Letter from Dad, Man in the Mirror, etc.)
IN HIS LAITY ADDRESS, ROGER CURLESS DEFINES THE CHURCH AS WHAT’S LEFT AFTER THE BUILDING BURNS DOWN AND THE PASTOR LEAVES TOWN. THAT’S US, THE LAITY!
Roger challenged us to fly in part by telling a parable from Kierkegaard about ducks. “He describes a town where only ducks live. Every Sunday the ducks of the town waddle out of their homes, down Main Street to the church. They waddle into the sanctuary and squat in their proper pews. Yes, even ducks sit where they always sit. The duck choir waddles in and takes its place. The duck pastor comes forward and opens the duck bible. The pastor reads: Ducks! God has given you wings! With wings you can fly! With wings you can mount up and soar like eagles. No walls can contain you! No fences can hold you! You have wings. God has given you wings and you can fly like the birds. All the ducks shouted amen. And then they all waddled home.
So do we believe that God is done with us? Do we believe that all things are possible with God? If we believe that to be true, then what is keeping us from living large, risking more, imagining more, trying more, dreaming more. Why do we insist on waddling when God has given us the ability to fly?
What I believe to be true my brothers and sisters is that we cannot just sit here. God wants us to fly. To fly free of yesterday’s “this is how we have always done it before.” To fly free of today’s paralysis of shrinking numbers and waning influence. To fly free of tomorrow’s uncertainties about what the church of the 21st century will look like. We just don’t know.
But we do know that the Spirit of God continues to breathe life into us. We do live. We will live. There is hope. It is a promise and a proven reality.
I believe we need to see as God sees. We need to start telling a different story because we have a different story to tell. We have a God who longs to set us free of our denial and despair so we can fly, fly into a future that is bright, amazing, full of adventure and more than we can imagine or ask. God has said it. God will do it. On our own we can do nothing …..but with God, everything is still possible.”
Inclusiveness Resolutions: A number of resolutions around the issue of “inclusiveness” including, “affirming all families”, an acceptance of the definition that “Inclusiveness means openness, acceptance, and support that enables all persons to participate in the life of the Church, the community, and the world and denies every semblance of discrimination” were passed.
Pursuing Peace & Justice in the Holy Land: United Methodist Church agencies are encouraged to use financial leverage to push for accountability among corporations conducting business in regions of the world with civil and political unrest, particularly in the Holy Land.
To learn what is happening in the UMC locally and around the world, you are encouraged to subscribe to the “United Methodist Reporter”. Send your name and address, name of our church and its location, and a check for $25 payable to Northern Illinois Conference to Margaret Lundahl, Circulation Manager, The Reporter, c/o Northern Illinois Conference, 77 W. Washington Street, Suite 1820, Chicago, Il 60602.
Every year at Annual Conference a Bible study teacher holds sessions first thing every morning. It sets the tone of the day and gets everyone settled into a good place from which to conduct the day’s business. Every year I find myself absolutely captivated by that year’s teacher and think that this one can never be topped. And every year, they top it. This year was certainly no exception! Pastor Grace Imathieu is a Pastor from Africa who pastors a small church in Wisconsin. You have heard Pastor Bill tell some of her stories. She was not only a wonderful teacher, but a teacher that that really made us take a good hard look at ourselves and how we live or do not live our daily lives based on the teachings of the Bible. I feel so privileged to have been able to attend these studies with her and actually get to meet her and talk for a while.
This year was an election year for annual conference. We elected both lay and clergy to represent the Northern Illinois Conference at General Conference and Jurisdictional Conference both to be held next year. Once everyone got the hang of the little hand held voting machines, it took the clergy much longer than the lay, the voting was held and after many ballots, we had elected our representatives. I am proud to say that this year, we elected a very diverse group of delegates and I feel our Conference will be well represented.
Commissioning and Ordination
As happens every year at Annual Conference, a commissioning service and an ordination service was held. Twenty-four individuals were ordained as elders. Four individuals were ordained as Deacons. Three people were commissioned towards elders order and two additional people from the Democratic Republic of Congo were also commissioned. There were also three people commissioned towards Deacons order.
Every year a special service is held for those clergy and/or deacons that are retiring at the end of June. They are all given the opportunity to say a few words about what being a pastor has meant to them over the years (however, being clergy, brevity is not one of their long suits).There were 16 clergy retiring this year and among them was Jay Walkington, who unfortunately was not able to attend. The stories they tell are both touching, impressive and downright hilarious. I think someone could publish a book of their remarks each year and it could be used by stand up comics.
Every year at Annual Conference awards are given both to individuals and churches and other Methodist institutions in many different categories. For instance the Bishop’s 2007 Ecumenical & Inter-religious Award is recognition of witness by word and action to God’s purpose for human community, in the field of ecumenical or inter-religious activity was given to North Central College. There are also scholarships awards to young people seeking to further their education by the Board of Higher Education & Campus Ministries. There is the Denman Evangelism Award given both to a clergy and to a lay person for outstanding work in Christian evangelism. At conference the certificates for Rainbow Covenant churches are also given and I am proud to say that Our Redeemer’s has been recognized again as a Rainbow Covenant church which recognized the church’s “second mile” giving.
e-Safety and Ethics
This was a topic touched on at Conference due to the overwhelming influence and availability of the internet today especially among the youth. While I did not get the resource kit that was offered, I do have a couple of brochures if anyone would like to see them. They list a lot of good references that will help us keep our children and ourselves safe from predators.
Our legislation this year was as diverse as the entire conference was. Several of the issues addressed (the issues that passed will be sent on to the General Conference for the consideration of the United States United Methodist Church as a whole) included the Israeli-Palestinian conflict entitled pursuing Peach and Justice in the Holy Land. Also debated were Protecting Marriage, Affirming All Families, Affirming Inclusiveness of the Church, Fast Food, Fair Food, which focused on paying a fair wage to the farm workers in Florida that pick the tomatoes for the fast food industry.. It also paid attention to the living conditions of these farm workers, their treatment by the landowners and sought improve their standard of living. Many of these workers have been earning the same substandard wages since 1978. The fast food industry is a HUGE consumer of these tomatoes.
Coming together each year as the Northern Illinois Conference is such an opportunity for lay and clergy to interact with the other churches in the conference. We all have a great deal to learn from each other and with the Holy Spirit there to guide our thoughts and actions, hopefully we are true representatives of the body of Christ, seeking to not only live as Christians within our church walls, but to spread the good news of Christ’s saving grace in all that we are and in all that we do.
Attachment B – Vision & Process Document from Pastor Bill
Attachment C -- ORUMC Event Planning Guide from Carolyn