Council Minutes August 16, 2022

Bethlehem Lutheran Church
Council Meeting Minutes
August 16, 2022

Present: Megan Baxter, Rob Blount, Craig Collins, Bonnie Hare, Kelly Jirschele, Cheryl Martines, Steve McIntire, Suzanne Warner, John Volkening
Staff: Pastor Paisley LeRoy, Deacon Heather Feltman
Absent: None
Location: Ekstrom Hall
Meeting called to order at 6:34
Council Secretary: Craig Collins

Kelly Jirschele opened the Council meeting with a prayer.

Opening Devotions:
John Volkening led the devotions with questions about what each of us is devoted to, what our Council is devoted to, and what our congregation is devoted to.

Agenda Item: Elect Replacement Council Member

Rob Blount shared with Council that due to Pete Elza’s resignation, it was necessary to appoint a replacement. In June, Pete was starting his third year of a three-year term. The Executive Team recommended that Suzanne Warner complete Pete’s term until May of 2023.

Motion by John, seconded by Kelly, to appoint Suzanne Warner to replace Pete Elza on Council and complete Pete’s three-year term.

Motion carried 9-0.

Agenda Item: Check-in with David Lincoln

Director of Worship and Music, David Lincoln, was invited to attend the Council meeting as he marked seven months on the job. David reported that “things were going well,” and that he was heartened by a full sanctuary this summer with everyone singing. When asked if he was surprised by anything so far, he remarked that BLC has many ongoing and diverse ministries and that he has found the adult education sessions this spring timely and relevant to the lives of BLC disciples.

David shared that it was sometimes challenging to provide a comparable music experience for the congregation at each of the Sunday services when, for example, the choir was only singing at one of these services. With respect to future maintenance issues, he reported that the pipe organ was in need of cleaning and that several of the pipes might need replacing in the near future. He also said that some additional electric work was needed at the front of the sanctuary to accommodate more inputs for microphones.

When asked what needs to be done to involve a praise band more fully in worship, David responded that individual parts of a praise band (e.g., singers, instrumentalists) are ready to go but that it was more of a challenge to incorporate a “complete” praise band into every Sunday service if we returned to two Sunday services in the fall.

Council members shared appreciation and praise with David’s work so far, pointing to his leadership in getting Live-Streaming off the ground last winter, his ability to incorporate a variety of music styles into worship, and his overall work ethic and commitment to high quality worship.

David concluded his remarks, in response to a question about how the Council might best support him, by asking that a future Call Team consult him about how to best examine Lead Pastor candidates’ views on worship.

Agenda Item: Expansive Church Model – Are We Ready to Move Forward?

Our second three-year debt reduction campaign will end in November of 2022. Last month, Deacon Heather provided an overview of an Expansive Church model that would involve both debt reduction and fundraising for projects that would have impact both inside and outside the congregation consistent with our mission as a church.

Rob asked Council members if after hearing Deacon Heather’s presentation last month if anyone had any questions and if we were ready to authorize Heather to take the next step in pursuing this model. Questions from Council members centered around these topics: the timetable to launch and sustain this effort; providing clarity and definition to the congregation regarding this model, our debt reduction efforts, and the annual giving campaign; and the work of the team following its formation in the fall.

There was consensus to move forward with this Expansive Church fundraising model including the recruitment of the team that would further study the model, developing a game plan for execution, and with continued Council support, implementation at some future time.

Agenda Item: Faith Formation Overview

Last spring, the Rostered staff identified four ministry teams that would be formed in 2022 to advance the mission of the congregation. Faith formation was one of these teams and Pastor Paisley shared some of her initial thoughts via a PowerPoint presentation about what faith formation might look like for all ages. Highlights of this presentation include:

· Understanding and being able to articulate the “why” of faith formation is the starting point for a congregation committed to a meaningful faith journey for all of its members.

· Sunday school and confirmation would be divided into six separate but integrated stages: Preschool-K; Grades 1-3; Grades 4-5; Grades 6-7; Grade 8; and high school youth.

· A new curriculum (Spark Rotation curriculum) would replace the one used last year.

· BLC Connect would provide a small group experience for students in Grades 4-5 and would mirror what students will experience in Confirmation (e.g., service opportunities, retreats).

· Confirmation would be divided into two groups – 6th and 7th graders engaged in foundational/traditional activities (e.g., basic catechism and Bible training, service, worship participation) and 8th graders engaged in a capstone experience where they dive into the hard questions of faith, take on a yearlong faith project, and transition into high school youth group activities.

· Stepping stones dates have been chosen for 2022-2023 and lay volunteers will be sought

· High school youth would meet every other week and continue to experience a variety of activities (e.g., discussion nights, prayer nights, retreats, Leadership Lab, mission trips)

· Intergenerational learning time would be explored and might include sporadic Sunday education focusing on basic catechumenate topics (e.g., scripture study, liturgical practice)

· Congregational support needed to run our youth and high school programs: Sunday School (minimum of 5); BLC Connect (minimum of 3); 6-7th grade Confirmation (minimum of 5); 8th grade Confirmation (minimum of 3); high school youth group (minimum of 2)

Pastor Paisley will engage the congregation in a Koinonia conversation about faith formation following the Sunday worship on August 21.

Agenda Item: Sunday Fall Worship Schedule

Rob asked Council members at the August meeting to share their thoughts about the two Sunday worship schedule options and how we should proceed with this topic. Kelly and John first expressed frustration and concern about the Executive Team’s decision to not follow through with the Council decision in July to maintain the summer worship schedule in the fall. Executive Team members responded that the Executive Team and Rostered Leaders, upon further reflection following the July Council meeting, concluded that the rationale for making the worship schedule change was not clear, there was hesitation on the part of the Roster Leaders about implementation of this decision, that further discussion with the Chicago Metro Synod about securing an Interim Lead Pastor was necessary before we made a decision about the fall worship schedule, and that soliciting feedback from the congregation about this matter, no matter what was ultimately decided, would be consistent with what the Council has done in the past.

The Council discussed the results of a congregation survey indicating that 52% of those completing the survey favored keeping the summer worship schedule in the fall and 48% supported returning to two services on Sunday. Text messages received showed 47 supporting one Sunday service and 44 supporting two Sunday services. Megan also shared the results of an informal poll that she administered with 12 families showing a majority of those responding favored holding one Sunday service at 9:30am in the fall rather than one at 8:30am and one at 10:45am.

In the discussion that followed, Council members identified the following reasons for having one worship service on Sunday: the Sunday summer schedule is the preference of those who took the survey or responded via text; one service promotes reconnection among BLC disciples as opposed to two Sunday services; worship feels lively and more satisfying when the service is well attended; and two Sunday services places a burden on those who with worship-related duties when we are experiencing a lack of volunteers (e.g., Altar Guild, usher/greeter recruitment).

Council members identified the following reasons to offer a 8:30am and 10:45am service on Sunday: more worship options provide BLC disciples with greater schedule flexibility on Sunday mornings; reducing worship services may drive down overall worship attendance; having only one Sunday service may have a negative impact on attendance in Sunday School and Adult Education; and two Sunday services provides more social distancing as we deal with a pandemic that is not over.

Kelly proposed that we continue with the summer worship schedule into the fall. Seconded by Steve.

Motion carried: 6-3.

The Executive Team and Rostered staff will share this decision with the congregation by the end of the week.

Agenda Item: Interim Pastor Search Update

A group of Church Council members met with Pastor Sunitha Mortha, ELCA Chicago Metro Synod representative to the far western Chicago suburbs, in early August to learn more about the process to identify, interview, and select an Interim Lead Pastor. Based on this meeting, the Executive Team and Rostered Leaders have identified certain job tasks that we would want an Interim Lead Pastor to do. This job description, using a Chicago Metro Synod template, was reviewed by Council members. Following a brief discussion, there was consensus to authorize Rob to submit this job description to the Chicago Metro Synod. The Synod will now attempt to match this job description with a qualified candidate(s) and share the name of a candidate(s) with the Executive Team for a possible interview.

Consent Agenda: July Minutes and June/July Financial Reports

There were no questions or comments about the July Minutes or June/July Financials. John moved, seconded by Megan, to approve the Consent Agenda.

Motion carried 9-0.

Agenda Item: Executive Session

It was moved by Steve, seconded by Kelly, to move into executive session to discuss a confidential matter related to personnel.

Following discussion in executive session, Kelly moved and John seconded to come out of executive session. Kelly then moved and seconded by John to approve the Children and Youth Ministry Seminarian Position Description and Employment Agreement as presented and authorize Pastor Paisley to post this position and initiate a search to fill the position.

Motion carried 9-0.


Bonnie moved, seconded by Steve, to adjourn the meeting at 9:24pm. Without objection, Rob adjourned the meeting.

Council Minutes July 19, 2022

Bethlehem Lutheran Church Council Meeting Minutes

July 19, 2022

Present: Megan Baxter, Rob Blount, Craig Collins, Bonnie Hare, Kelly Jirschele, Cheryl Martines, Steve McIntire, John Volkening, Pastor Sarah Rhode

Staff: Deacon Heather Feltman
Absent: Pete Elza, Pastor Paisley (absent due to high school retreat) Location: Ekstrom Hall
Meeting called to order at 6:34pm
Council Reporter: Craig Collins
Steve McIntire opened the Council meeting in prayer.

Opening Devotions: As has been our practice in the past when someone from the Council is departing, Council members shared their thoughts and offered words of appreciation for Pastor Rhode who will be leaving Bethlehem at the end of July.

Agenda Item: Expansive Church/Debt Reduction

Our second three-year debt reduction campaign will end in November of 2022. Deacon Heather reported that over the last four years our building debt (our mortgage) has gone from approximately 3.8 million to 3.4 million.

As we prepare to launch a new debt reduction initiative in 2023, Heather presented an overview of an Expansive Church model that would include both debt reduction and fundraising and would enable us to live into our mission. The highlights of this presentation include:

  • The goal of this initiative is to positively impact our giving behaviors as a community.

  • The specific focus of this ministry approach is to use our gifts to expand our work in our

    communities and retire our current debt.

  • While the presumption is that giving is a sacrificial act (i.e., giving something up so

    someone else can have more), there is research to suggest that people experience a

    bigger boost in happiness when they spend money on other people or help others.

  • An old Chinese proverb goes: “If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody.”

  • Avodah (Hebrew word) is a term at the heart of this Expansive Church model. Avodah is

    a picture of an integrated faith, where work, worship, and service are intertwined to

honor God and serve our neighbors.

  • This model equips disciples to live out God’s purpose, not just on Sundays but all seven

    days of the week.

  • Worship services are no longer the feeder system for all the church does.

  • This is how this initiative might work: a team of BLC disciples will create a grant

    application process that will advance ideas that benefit our communities. BLC disciples identify needs in the community that they are passionate about and give of their time. They propose creative solutions that BLC can help support. The amount of money available to fund grants is tied directly to the amount we receive each year to retire our debt.

  • The Avodah project is intended to successfully launch and offer fresh ways to share Christ’s love and empower disciples to participate in God’s mission.

  • BLC disciples will be asked to share what how the work, funded by the grant, is informing their faith journeys.

  • Applications for grants will change from year to year; all BLC disciples will be invited to submit a grant application.

  • A possible timeline includes gathering a team this fall and educating the BLC community on this approach, using 2023 to develop the grant application process and review grants, and early in 2024 naming grant recipients.

    Following this presentation, Deacon Heather took several comments and questions from Council members. Rob asked Council members to consider whether or not this Expansive Church model is the direction we want to go with our debt reduction and fundraising efforts and to share their thoughts at the Council meeting in August. Rob also asked Council members to email Deacon Heather with questions about the Expansive Church model and implementation issues prior to the August meeting.

    Agenda Item: Congregational Goals

    At the May Congregation meeting the following goals were presented and discussed:

  1. Redevelop our sense of community at BLC. The relational fabric of our community has weakened over the course of the pandemic. This year, we want to invest in relationships and get to know each other again. This goal takes all of us coming together, taking an active interest in each other’s stories and passions.

  2. Increase volunteer participation at BLC. Staff and leadership will prioritize informing our disciples about the many opportunities for volunteer engagement within and outside the church walls. We invite every disciple to say yes to one volunteer opportunity in the coming year that supports the mission of our congregation. Examples: greet, usher, make food for youth group, shovel snow, sing in the choir, operate the sound board, help with cleaning up a fellowship event, etc.

  3. Invest in spiritual growth. We want to be a community that views faith as a living, active thing that challenges and changes us. We encourage BLC disciples to participate in something that will help them actively grow in faith over the coming year – worship participation, Bible study, Adult Education classes, mentoring youth and children, service and outreach.

  4. Grow our commitment to creation care – We will continue to engage opportunities to care for earth as part of our discipleship. We will do this through composting, expanding our recycling practices, blessing bikes, pets, and plants, holding classes on climate

catastrophe, building and utilizing garden beds, and cleaning up the shores of the Fox River in our backyard.

Rob asked that the Council formally adopt these goals for the remainder of 2022 and the first part of 2023. Steve moved, seconded by Kelly, to adopt the above Congregational goals for Bethlehem Lutheran Church.

Motion carried 8-0.

Agenda Item: Fall Worship Times

For a good part of the past year, weekend worship times included a Saturday service every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Saturday of the month and an 8:30am and 10:45am Sunday worship service. During this summer we have continued with Saturday worship services on the 1st, 3rd, and 5th Saturday of each month and have offered only one Sunday service at 9:30am.

Pastor Paisley was not in attendance due to the high school retreat. She did send a written recommendation to Council members that we continue the summer worship schedule (one service on Sunday mornings at 9:30am and a Saturday service on the 1st, 3rd, and 5th Saturday of the month at 5:30pm) into the fall months. In this document she offered the following reasons for this recommendation:

  • Worship has felt lively and full. This is good for those in person and for those viewing on livestream.

  • Though worship has felt full, not too full. Space still for visitors and indeed welcoming of visitors because they can remain anonymous if they would like (less possible with less people)

  • To allow the most flexibility for programing around Sunday morning worship, either before or after the service.

  • Livestreaming is a good option for many and expands our worship times exponentially.

  • Connection! People are meeting others that they never would have met before with


multiple services.

Paisley shared a number of other thoughts in the document sent to Council members:

  • If the sanctuary becomes too full (e.g, baptisms, feast days), we may need to make adjustments to our services.

  • If we return to two Sunday services at 8:30am and 10:45,am, there is simply not enough time for her to attend to her duties officiating the 10:45am service and giving the students in confirmation her full and undivided attention.

  • If we return to two Sunday services at 8:30am and 10:45am, livestreaming should be done at the 10:45am service.

  • Once we determine the number of services we will have on Sunday (one or two), we can then move forward with planning for confirmation, youth group, Sunday School, and Adult Education in the fall.

    In the discussion that followed, Council members identified the following reasons, in

addition to those cited by Pastor Paisley, for having one worship service on Sunday: reduces the burden on our Roster staff; with Pastor Sarah’s departure it is a good idea to stay with one service because it keeps us together as a congregation; and the uncertainty of securing an interim Lead pastor.

Some Council members identified the following reasons to offer a 8:30am and 10:45am service on Sunday: when it was announced that we would be going with one service on Sunday in the summer the presumption was that we would return to two Sunday services in the fall; the congregation has not been given the opportunity to share their opinions about having one Sunday service in the fall before a decision is made; the decision to have only one Sunday service might be viewed as a “step back” as we are trying to emerge out of this pandemic; and concerns about not enough social distancing in the sanctuary if COVID numbers rise in the fall.

Following considerable discussion regarding the merits of each of the worship schedules, Cheryl moved, second ed by Craig, to return to two Sunday services times (8:30 and 10:45) and a Saturday service on the 1st, 3rd and 5th Saturday of each month beginning in September.

Motion failed 3-5 with one abstention.

The next motion regarding weekend service times was offered by Bonnie who moved that we have two Sunday service times (8:30 and 10:45) and eliminate Saturday worship services. Seconded by Steve.

Motion failed 2-5 with two abstentions.

Kelly then proposed that we continue with the summer worship schedule into the fall (this was Pastor Paisley’s recommendation). Seconded by John.

Motion failed 3-5 with one abstention.

Cheryl then moved we have two worship times on Sundays starting in the fall. This motion was amended to indicate that the Sunday service times would be at 8:30 and 10:45. Seconded by Bonnie.

Motion failed 3-5 with one abstention.

After additional discussion regarding the pro’s and con’s of the two worship schedules, Kelly moved and John seconded that we continue with the summer schedule into the fall.

Motion carried 4-3 with two abstentions.

The Executive Team and Rostered staff will meet to determine how and when to share this new worship schedule with the congregation in August.

Agenda Item: Pastor Sarah’s Farewell Service/Reception on July 31, 2022

John reported that Linda Cully, Alyssa Elza and Michelle Fisher are taking the lead in planning Pastor Sarah’s Farewell Reception following the 9:30am service on July 31, 2022.

Agenda Item: Meeting with the Synod – Securing an Interim Pastor

Rob reported that he is trying to arrange a date in early August for the ELCA Chicago Metro Synod Representative, Pastor Sunitha Mortha, to meet with Council members to learn more about the process of securing an Interim Pastor. He indicated that the meeting date would be set within a few days. Prior to this meeting the Executive Team will meet with Pastor Paisley and Deacon Heather to receive feedback about pastoral needs during the transition period before a new Lead Pastor is called and installed. In order for the Synod to recommend Interim Pastor candidates, full and part-time, for review by the Executive Team, it will be necessary for the Executive Team to provide the Synod with job expectations for what we want the Interim Pastor to do.

Consent Agenda: June Minutes and May/June Financial Reports

There were no questions or comments about the June Minutes or May/June Financials. Steve moved, seconded by John, to approve the Consent Agenda.

Motion carried 8-0.

Active Shooter Training

John asked if we were planning any type of active shooter training in response to the recent gun violence in our country. Deacon Heater reported that an active shooter training for Rostered leaders, staff, and ushers and greeters at 7:30pm on August 31, 2022.


Kelly moved, seconded by Steve, to adjourn the meeting at 9:10pm. Without objection, Rob adjourned the meeting.

Council Minutes June 21, 2022

Bethlehem Lutheran Church

Council Meeting Minutes

21st, JUNE, 2022

Present: Craig Collins, Rob Blount, Cheryl Martines, John Volkening, Steve McIntire, Bonnie Hare, Megan Baxter

Absent: Pete Elza, Kelly Jirschele

Staff: Pastor Sarah Rhode, Deacon Heather Feltman, Pastor Paisley Le Roy

Meeting called to order at: 6:35 PM

Meeting closed at: 7:40 PM

Council Reporter: Craig Collins

Opening Prayer: Rob Blount

Discussion: Relationships – “High/Low” activity

In an effort to strengthen relationships among those present, Cheryl asked Council members and Rostered staff to share some recent “highs” and “lows” in their work and personal lives.

Agenda Item #1: Move to Executive Session

Action Taken:

✓ Vote

Motion: Move to Executive Session

Made By: John Volkening

Second: Cheryl Martines

Result: Passed

After coming out of the Executive session, Rob suggested we postpone Heather’s presentation on the Expansive Church and discussion about goals presented at the congregation meeting in May until the July meeting. There was no objection.

Agenda Item #2: Roster Leaders Report

Discussion: Update on the roof and HVAC installation; refinance lock-in @ 3.375%; no contingency used so far

Action Taken:

✓ None


Agenda Item #3: Consent Agenda

Action Taken:

✓ Vote

Motion: To approve the financials and minutes

Made By: Craig Collins

Second: John Volkening

Result: Approved without objection

Agenda Item #4: Adjourn Council Meeting

Action Taken:

Motion: “Motion to adjourn”

Made By: Steve McIntire


Second: Bonnie Hare

Result: Passed

Council Minutes May 17, 2022

Bethlehem Lutheran Church

Council Meeting Minutes

17th, MAY, 2022

Present: Craig Collins, Rob Blount, Cheryl Martines, Judy Hanson, John Volkening, Steve McIntire, Kelly Jirschele, Bonnie Hare

Absent: Chad Carlson, Pete Elza, Pastor Sarah Rohde, Megan Baxter

Staff: Deacon Heather Feltman, Pastor Paisley Le Roy, Pong Sayasane

Meeting called to order at: 6:40 PM via zoom

Meeting closed at: 8:50 PM

Council Reporter: Cheryl Martines

Opening Prayer: Rob Blount

Devotion: Tribute to Judy Hanson – Thank you for your affirming leadership and service on the church council for the past 4 years, especially during the pandemic. Appreciative testimonials were shared.

Agenda Item #1: Congregation Meeting Feedback

Discussion: Looking for general themes and take-aways from the annual meeting discussion of aspirations and goals.

SM – Disciples were understanding and spoke to who we are at BLC. Need to be better ambassadors. Exec team existence?

JH/DH – Exploratory comments. How do we let people know what we do?

BH – Talk of children and young families. How /When will they come back?

RB – Down year for confirmation classes; liked connection hour – thinking short term concern for summer programs.

PP – Discussed attendance numbers – include those who are not in person.

CM – Traditional group – too much change is uncomfortable. Need to reinvent activities and connection methods.

CC – Random thoughts – be more intentional to newcomers.


Themes: Lacking in connection -need to invest time; youth program support; welcoming church; volunteerism challenge (read Judy Hanson’s article to define more action)

Take-aways: Look at who attended the meeting and who is in worship (60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s) vs. group who is hesitant to come back (20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 50’s). Fellowship in summer can have value to continue this discussion. Are we engaging the live-streaming disciples – can we use the comments option?

Action Taken: None

Agenda Item #2: BLC Preschool Report

Discussion: Director Pong Sayasane

We have an atmosphere of excitement with the spring weather and upcoming carnival. The summer enrollment is at 50 families which will carry over to the fall – opened a third classroom. Staff is good to go. Fall waitlist exists with our 18-20/classroom – 3 classes full day. Half day has break even numbers and room to grow. Staffing will remain the same; substitutes will be a challenge. The vibe of the staff is upbeat.

Pending projects – kitchen getting new freezer and stove; installing washer and dryer (on-site laundry); replacing classroom tables.

Looking at wage comparisons, we have a narrow range ($16.50 – $20.50) Work needs to be done on the pay scale and steps as we continue to raise salaries to be competitive. Tuition is mid-range price similar to home day care. We expect a 3% increase for fall.

Celebrate Pong’s 25 years of service at BLC preschool. Spiritual definition of 25 is grace. Thank you. Bringing a cake to you soon.

Action Taken: None

Agenda Item #3: Strategic Ministry Teams

Discussion: Brief review of the progress was given.

DH – “ Beyond Building ($)/Expansive Church” – still working on a name! Please review the agenda documents as an introduction to the June council meeting presentation.

PP – Faith Formation – Review the “Sticky Faith” document as the basis for this long-term strategy of lay leadership. Actual implementation targeted for 2023-2024 program year. Discussion will be at the July council meeting.

DH – Social Justice/FRVI (advocacy) – new team name? Looking to coordinate subgroups of FRVI; World Relief; Food insecurity.

Action Taken: None

Agenda Item #4: BLC Constitution Review

Discussion: In the by-laws of our church constitution, a review needs to take place every 10 years. Most (60-70%) of the constitution is required by being an ELCA church, using their language recommendations. The rest (30%) is our committee structure last written in 2000. A churchwide assembly will take place this summer to develop a model constitution. We could follow the model and add changes without the required 2 congregational meetings to adopt the new language.

Questions remain – Is our committee structure OK? Will the ELCA model address our concern for updates/review? Or just leave it?

Conclusion: Put on the fall agenda for council review. If interested, contact Craig Collins.

Action Taken: None

Agenda Item #5: Rostered Leaders Report

Action Taken: None


Agenda Item #6: Consent Agenda

Discussion: DH reviewed the good news from the first quarter financials.

Action Taken: Vote

Motion: To accept the minutes and financial statements from April.

Made By: Rob Blount

Second: Judy Hanson

Result: carries

Agenda Item #7: Adjourn Council Meeting Discussion: Question regarding COVID – Action Taken: ✓ Vote

Motion: “Motion to adjourn”

Made By: Kelly Jirschel

Second: Steve McIntire

Result: carries – 8:45 PM



A new meeting was called to order with the newly elected Council members.


Agenda Item #8: New Council Executive Committee


Discussion: Craig Collins presented the nominees for the exec team.


Action Taken: Vote


Motion: To appoint the following council members to the executive committee effective at the conclusion of this meeting: Rob Blount, President; Cheryl Martines, Vice President; Craig Collins, Secretary; Steve McIntire, Treasurer.

Made By: John Volkening

Second: Kelly Jirschele

Result: passed


Agenda Item #9: Adjourn Council Meeting


Discussion: Rob thanked all for their time.


Action Taken: Vote


Motion: “Motion to adjourn:

Made By: Kelly Jirschele

Second: Steve McIntire

Result: carries – 8:50 PM

Council Minutes April 19, 2022

Bethlehem Lutheran Church

Council Meeting Minutes

19th, APR, 2022

Present: Craig Collins, Rob Blount, Chad Carlson, Cheryl Martines, Steve McIntire, Kelly Jirschele

Staff: Pastor Sarah Rhode, Deacon Heather Feltman

Absent: Judy Hansen, John Volkening, Pete Elza, Pastor Paisley Le Roy

Meeting called to order at: 5:30 PM in Eckstrom Hall

Meeting ended at 8:45 PM


Council Reporter: Cheryl Martines

Open Forum: Informal dinner at 5:00 PM in the Welcome Center – Happy Birthday Cheryl.

Agenda Item #1: Council Retreat

Discussion: Craig C. continued explanation of LIFO inventory results taken by the individual council members and rostered leaders. The survey group results were highlighted.

Conclusion: This awareness will enhance the ability to work together and add value to each member’s contribution.

Action Taken: None

Agenda Item #2: Congregation Goals 2022

Discussion: The rostered leaders prepared their recommended congregational goals for the council retreat in March. The retreat was canceled and the discussion postponed to the April council meeting, Beginning with “We want to be the church that . . . “ , the breakout session narrowed the list of ideas in order to craft the actual goals. PS will be continuing this work around 3 ideas –

● Welcomes everyone

● Actively grows in faith

● Creates excellent worship

Going from these aspirational goals to congregational goals for 2022, it was noted we are still in the pandemic state of mind and participation. The recommended goals would need to be initiated with smaller goals for the remainder of this year. Actual completion of the goals may take up to 2 years.

1. Invest in spiritual growth

2. Hold a BLC retreat

3. Practice invitation

4. Grow our commitment to creation care

PS will bring an updated recommendation to the May council meeting.

Action Taken: None


Agenda Item #3: Council Goals

Discussion: In order for the council to support the congregational goals, council members were encouraged to think of SMART goals for the group. This discussion will take place after the congregational goals are agreed upon.

DH is continuing to work on the formation of teams as introduced at the January annual congregation meeting. An emphasis is being placed on using our daily living professional expertise into our spiritual gifts.

Action Taken: Tabled


Agenda Item #4: Summer Worship

Discussion: PS presented a summer worship schedule to take place from Memorial Day to Labor Day, 2022. Based on previous attendance in the pandemic, it was proposed to reduce the Sunday services to one worship (new) time and continue with the Saturday schedule.

Action Taken: Vote

Motion: To accept the recommendation of one Sunday service at 9:30 AM and evening services on the 1st, 3rd, 5th Saturdays of the months from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend.

Made By: Kelly Jirschele

Second: Cheryl Martines

Result: passed


FYI – PS announced a worship change for Sunday, May 15th: There will be one service at 8:30AM, followed by the reconnection hour, followed by the congregation meeting at 10:45AM.

Agenda Item #5: Insurance Coverage

Discussion: DH is in the process of reviewing the insurance coverage as the 3-year renewal is up in May. Church Mutual has been the BLC carrier since 1982 with our property, auto, WC, professional liability, and umbrella policies. Brent Baxter has assisted DH in presenting a new proposal from GuideOne Insurance. Council members are to review both proposals and email any further questions to DH as soon as possible.

Action Taken: None

Agenda Item #6: Consent Agenda

Action Taken: Vote

Motion: To approve the financials and March meeting minutes.

Made By: Rob Blount

Second: Kelly Jirschele

Result: passed

Agenda Item #7: Adjourn Council Meeting