Jan 05 2016

2016 January Church Council

Tuesday, January 5, 7pm Alliance Parlor


  1.  Chalice Lighting (5 min)
  2. Church Calendar (5 min)
    1. Talent Show/potluck: Saturday 1/23/16 7:00pm. (Snow date 1/30)
    2. Concert 1: “Steve Zocchi in Concert”. Saturday 2/6/15 7:00 (snow date 2/27)
    3. Concert 2: Saturday 3/12/15 7:00
    4. Auction 3/19
  3. Budgeting for committees – Treasurer (15 min)
  4. Committee Budgets (5 min)
  5. FIA Grants (5 min)
  6. Committee Reports (5 min)


Documents for this meeting : SampleCommitteeBudget.pdf , 2015-12-31-profit-loss-committee.pdf[DRAFT], BlankCommitteeBudgetFY17.xls

Minutes from last meeting   :  Dec 2015 Church Council Minutes.pdf


Committee Reports:

Grounds is at rest. We were able to fill in the ruts with soil and grass seed in December. The lower half of the daffodil beds were also turned back to grass. We are now in snow shoveling season. A reminder; if you have any suggestions for a replacement tree, please forward to the Grounds Committee Mailbox, or my email at the end of this report by March 15th 2016.

Parameters for Tree Suggestions:
Height, Width of Tree Spread, Not on Massachusetts Invasive List and Root Growth if you can find it (deep, shallow, etc). Grounds will be reviewing the suggestions during the Winter Months. The Ruts in the front lawn are behind in being filled in by one week. Please be careful walking in the vicinity of the sugar maple tree grass area when the snow has melted.

Spring should be full of color and surprises!

Membership Committee:
Met on Dec 10th.
Reviewed list of newcomers
No new signatures in the Membership Book, but there are a couple of people to approach about signing.
Planning on presenting a New UU course; Peggy SN has agreed to lead with support from Neil and other committee members
Dates and attendees to be finalized
Looking into obtaining specifically colored mugs for newcomers to use during fellowship to help identify them for approaching.

Greeter Roles were well filled during December;
Greeter assignments are set for the remainder of the church year.

Next Meeting, Jan 14.

Canvass Committee:
Met on Jan 2nd.
Lost one committee member, now down to 3; committee must recruit 4 more members
Jim to request suggestions from Church Council and Standing Committee
We need 2 full committee members and 2 or 3 limited involvement members
Still need a committee lead for next year
Reviewed draft timeline of canvass activity leading up to Pledge Sunday and after.
Agreed on the theme for this year:  Stone Soup
Will create a tri-fold handout this year with information for mailing/e-mailing prior to Kick-off Sunday.
Jim to meet with Capital Campaign leaders to discuss potential conflict/impact on pledging levels
Lots to do – next meeting, Jan 16

The Sabbatical Committee continues to meet monthly and will do so through April.  The committee has completed the Sabbatical Guide and is planning a lay led service for January 10th.  All the worship services are covered and the pastoral team is in place with direction from our ministerial intern, Justine Sullivan. The committee sent Ellen on her way at the Dec. 27th pancake breakfast with a gift basket of goodies contributed by the following committees: worship, music, pastoral care, ministry, and sabbatical.  We are anticipating a successful sabbatical for Ellen and a zestful one for all our church ministries.
Committee on Ministry:
The committee met on December 18th.  We discussed the then upcoming financial meeting with Joe Sullivan that would address norms/culture around money and roles/responsibilities in financial matters.   Ellen asked us to stay involved in balcony issues around the health of our congregations.  We will also support and promote the work of the Sabbatical Committee as we all share our ministries in our congregation.
Internship Committee:  All is going well.
Ushers: All is going well.  We have a new chalice bulb/insert that is much easier to fill.
Parish Affairs:  We can use more sign-ups.  No one signed up this past Sunday, so I got out the compostable cups CFAM bought for us about 2 1/2 years ago and limited food severely so that we didn’t need to run the dishwasher.  I brought the cups home to our compost pile as they may not compost quickly enough for the church pile.  I have ordered more compostable hot cups in case we have to do this more frequently.
Auction:  Coming on 3/19.  Jeanette Moreau, Theresa Poplowski, and I will be chairing.  Dee Halzack  will be starting publicity in this Sunday’s announcements.
Worship Committee:

Worship Schedule/Sabbatical: As reported at the last meeting, all dates have been filled on the Worship Schedule during Rev. Ellen’s sabbatical.  The Sabbatical Guide was completed in December, with copies placed in all the pew racks, mail slots, and on bulletin boards throughout the church.

The Sabbatical Committee and Worship Committee have been working hard together as a team, and I am happy to report things appear to be going as smoothly as anticipated.  The Worship Schedule for the remainder of the month is as follows:

  • January 10th: Sabbatical Committee
  • January 17th:  Neil Harmon
  • January 24th: Matt Meyer
  • January 31st: Justine Sullivan

Evening Service Team:  The Evening Service Team could still use one more team member to help with planning and setting up for evening services.  If you are interested, please contact our Ministerial Intern Justine Sullivan.

Website:  I will begin updating the Worship Schedule on our website beginning in February, job-sharing with Edith Murphy.

Music Committee :
The organ has been fixed and the organ and 4 pianos have been tuned.  We are having the piano in the sanctuary appraised to possibly add a rider to the building insurance policy to cover accidental damage.
The Talent Show is being organized for the end of this month.  Steve sent out an email to all people who participated in last year’s show and musical contributors to the evening service.  A few people have expressed an interested;  it is anticipated that now that the holidays are over more people will sign up.
Steve’s fundraising concert is scheduled for February 6th, with a Feb 27th snow date.

Standing Committee

The Standing Committee is the Church's governing board. The Standing Committee works to ensure the vitality of our community of faith. There are 10 members of the Standing Committee – nine voting members elected by the congregation and the minister, who is a non-voting member of the Committee. Standing Committee members serve a 3 year term.

The Standing Committee meets on the second Tuesday of the month at 7:00pm. Time is set aside at the beginning of every SC meeting as an open forum for members to bring forward any issues they would like to discuss.

The Standing Committee is responsible for the health and well being of First Parish. This includes maintaining communication among members and committees, managing Church property, and planning for the Church's short and long-term future. And of course members of the Standing Committee develop and manage the budget approved by the Congregation at the annual meeting.
The Human Resources Committee is a sub-committee of the Standing Committee.