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Bishops Committee Meeting Minutes

 

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Marfa, TX
Bishops Committee Meeting Minutes  – April 1st 2020

 

Attending via Zoom: Father Mike Wallens, Allison Ryan Scott, Joni Marginot, Dan Wonsowski, Patricia Seifert and Kerie Van Zeyst.

Meeting called to order at 5:35PM

Opening Prayer

Minutes –
Minutes from the February Bishops Committee Meeting were submitted by Kerie. Dan made a motion to accept the Minutes. Joni seconded the motion. Passed.

Treasurers Report –
1. Dan explained the income and expenses for the month. He informed us that the donations were down a little overall this year compared to this same time last year and that we are now set up to accept online donations.

2. Dan explained that the Diocese has taken over the Vicarage expenses and so the line item expenses related to the Vicarage will soon be removed from St. Paul’s books. He explained that we are working on getting an agreement drawn up in writing between the Diocese and St. Paul’s, as per the future of the Vicarage.

3. Dan discussed the expense of $120 per service that our new Organist would be paid.

4. Dan discussed that the finance committee was finishing up the renewal of Father Mike’s contract and that as soon as they confirmed one more number from the Diocese that it would be complete.

5. It was announced that Father Mike will be given an Easter bonus!

Joni made a motion to accept the Treasurers Report. Patricia seconded the motion. Passed.

Vicars report –
1. Father Mike explained to us that Bishop Hunn, Canon Curtis and the Clergy of the Rio Grande Diocese were holding regular Zoom meetings to discuss the concerns of the COVID-19 Pandemic and how it is affecting each church and the Diocese. It was discussed that as the situation evolves that we may need to identify our core ministry and adjust things to still be able to effectively carryout our Mission of being a welcoming community while in this situation that requires social distancing.

2. Father Mike discussed the schedule for Holy Week with us. The services will be live streamed with Palm Sunday at 10:30am. The Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday services will be held at 6pm, Good Friday will be held at Noon and Easter Sunday service will be held at 10:30am. We unanimously agreed that this was fine.

3. Father Mike discussed the possibility of holding our next “Quarterly Annual meeting” on April 26th via Zoom, if we are unable to have it in person.

Old Business –
1. It was discussed that the incoming Curate has been put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic and that as of now s/he is no longer to be expected in June.

2. There was a follow up discussion on how the phone calls reaching out to our members during this time of COVID-19 are going.

New Business –
1. We discussed how the live streaming of services was going. That the online attendance was very good and of how we could try to work out a few minor technical glitches.

2. The upcoming audit was discussed. Dan mentioned that the Diocese was possibly helping with this but that we needed to confirm that, as everyone’s schedule has been thrown off due to the current state of affairs concerning the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other Business –
1. Patricia discussed that perhaps we could have lectors rotate to read during the live streamed Holy Week services. We unanimously agreed that it would be a nice addition.

Closing Prayer

Meeting adjourned at 6:35pm

Respectfully Submitted,

——————————————
Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee

 

 

Electronic vote addendum:

April 21st, 2020, 8:53am electronic vote addendum to the aforementioned minutes.

Father Mike explained that St. Paul’s had received a gift of $25,000 to be used for Borderland Ministries and proposed the following: $20,000 to go to our two shelters in Juarez and $1,000 to go towards the shelter in Ojinaga and for the remaining $4000 to remain in the fund for future use. Allison made a motion to accept the proposal. Kerie seconded the motion. Passed.

Respectfully Submitted,

——————————————
Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee

 

 

Electronic vote addendum:

April 28th, 2020, 9:30am electronic vote addendum to the aforementioned minutes.

Kerie presented the minutes from the April 26th ‘Quarterly Annual Meeting.’ Patricia made a motion to accept the minutes. Allison seconded the motion. Passed.

Respectfully Submitted,

——————————————
Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee

 

 

 

 

 

‘Quarterly’ Annual Meeting Minutes
Sunday, April 26th, 2020
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Marfa, TX

 

Meeting via Zoom called to order at 12:40pm

Meeting led by Father Michael Wallens and Allison Ryan Scott.

Opening Prayer

Financial Report – Presented by Dan

1. Dan explained that the Vicarage had been paid off and that the Curate was put on hold until further notice, so we no longer have those two big expenses.
2. He went over the profit and loss statements, comparing the first quarter of 2019 to now, the first quarter of 2020. Overall we are doing very well. We are at 37% of our annual budget income.
3. He explained that expenses would continue to go down even more due to having no Vicarage or Curate.
4. He presented the balance sheet. We are ahead of where we were last year at this time on our general operating funds.
5. Father Mike brought up that we didn’t budget for social media and that due to the unforeseen COVID-19 pandemic and moving to an online platform that we may need to adjust to include social media in the budget. Kerie explained that it could be done starting at $25 per month.
6. Dan discussed that we are in the application process for the CARES act grant but that it is uncertain at this time if we will qualify, due to details related to our small size.
7. Dan explained that the Vicarage will be moved off of the asset list.
8. Dan asked if there were any questions and said that if any questions came up later to feel free to call or email him.

Vicars Report – Presented by Father Mike

1. Father Mike talked about the process of any crisis, including this COVID-19 pandemic and how the Diocese has been having weekly discussions concerning it. He outlined three parts of a crisis…
–Part 1: Fear, creativity to adjust to doing things differently and trying to figure out what is going on and how to adapt to it.
–Part 2: Push back and anger. He explained that as a church we need to focus on the love of God throughout all of this.
–Part 3: Our values in moving forward. To understand that God is everywhere, not just in a church building. But with us in every form – online, on the phone and in every other way. That our primary mission is to love God and that a church is a place of safety and that we must keep it safe.
2. He explained that after this weekends COVID-19 testing in the area that we may have a clearer idea of our local situation and that it is important to understand that 30% of COVID-19 tests are false negatives and that a very large percentage of people that are positive can be asymptomatic. That we must understand this moving forward to keep St. Paul’s and the other churches in our region safe.
3. Father Mike presented three phases of the COVID-19 pandemic situation, as per how and when we move forward.
–Phase 1: The phase that we are in now – Stay in Place. That we still need to remember what is important while in this phase. Worship (online for now). Communication (calls and emails to stay in touch). That we also need to keep in mind our mission and how we carry out that mission of being welcoming online. We also need to understand what is essential in our larger community / towns. He said that we have made donations to several local organizations to help those in need during this time.
–Phase 2: What happens and how we will begin to open up again. The church, as a safe place, will not necessarily follow government guidelines but lean toward being more cautious than those guidelines to insure that our safety stays in place. He explained that each church is expected to come up with a re-opening plan and submit it to the Diocese. It is anticipated that the re-opening phase will take anywhere from 18 months to 2 years to complete. It was also discussed that perhaps after this weekends local COVID-19 testing results are in that we may have a better idea of how to move forward with a plan.
–Phase 3: Back to public life and how our church will look different when we have fully reopened again.
4. Father Mike asked what peoples needs are. Community, online services, resuming the book study group, an emotional process support group, gas money for people to go long distances to school in the Terlingua area to pick up assignments were all needs that were addressed.
5. Father Mike discussed where we are as a church now. People brought up concerns and frustrations with using technology. Wifi signal boosters were discussed. Viewing recordings rather than watching live services was a suggestion and dialing in on the telephone rather than video conferencing for those that don’t want to do things online were discussed.
6. Father Mike announced that there are a few upcoming presentations / seminars that will be attended to help with online presence and social media.
7. Father Mike explained that he has been in touch with the National Church about the Evangelism Grant that we received and that they understand that the Curate (which was written into the grant) will not be coming at this time anymore, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He said that in the long-term it is possible that we may need restructure our plan as to how to use the grant money in a different Evangelical direction.
8. Father Mike asked for suggestions on how we would like to proceed into phase 2. Suggestions included social distancing, wearing masks, outdoor services, ushers to space people at proper distances apart, obtaining a supply of masks and understanding that we may not be in control of how many visitors show up once we do reopen the doors.
9. Father Mike explained that when we do fully reopen that it may be different than the church has been in the past. That we needed to understand that and that now the Bishops Committee will begin to work on a plan on how to move forward.

Allison asked if there were any additional questions or concerns and Father Mike said that if any questions or concerns came up later to feel free to call or email him or any member of the Bishops Committee.

Closing Prayer

Meeting adjourned at 1:29pm.

Respectfully Submitted,

——————————————
Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee

 

 

 

 

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Marfa, TX 
Bishops Committee Meeting Minutes – March 4th 2020

 

Attending:  Father Mike Wallens, Allison Ryan Scott, Joni Marginot, Dan Wonsowski, Patricia Seifert and Kerie Van Zeyst.

Meeting called to order at 5:40PM

Opening Prayer

Minutes –  Minutes from the previous Bishops Committee Meeting were submitted by Kerie.  Dan made a motion to accept the Minutes.  Patricia seconded the motion.  Passed.

Treasurers Report –
1. Dan explained the income and expenses for the month. He informed us that the donations were down a little overall this year compared to this same time last year but that it is not so much lower as to be of concern.
2. Dan explained that we are still waiting for the Diocese to reimburse us for some of the Vicarage expenses owed to St. Paul’s.  He explained that we are working on getting an agreement drawn up in writing between the Diocese and St. Paul’s, as per the Vicarage. As of now, the Vicarage remains on the St. Paul’s books.
3. Dan informed us of how we can now use a tax-free Amazon account for St. Paul’s orders and told us that he was still moving forward on working out the details of obtaining a church credit card.
Patricia made a motion to accept the Treasurers Report. Kerie seconded the motion. Passed.

Vicars report –
1. Father Mike explained that the Seder would be held on April 8th and we discussed putting a sign up sheet for who will be bringing food and for volunteers to set up for the meal.
2. Father Mike informed us of 2 upcoming dinners with Border Patrol. A Marfa dinner and an Alpine dinner, that the dates and specific details were still being worked out.
3. Father Mike said that we were considering hosting block dinners, for people living in different areas of Marfa, so that Marfa residents from all areas of town could get to know us better.  He said that he had been discussing the idea with Carlos Morales from NPR and that perhaps we could invite the Blackwell School to collaborate with St. Paul’s in some way with these dinners.
4. Easter Vigil was discussed.  Father Mike said that in the past it has alternated yearly between being held at St. Paul’s in Marfa and St. James in Alpine. Last year it was at St. Paul’s, Father Mike will talk to St. James about it as well to decide if and where it will be held this year.
5. Father Mike read us an invitation from the Presbyterian church inviting St. Paul’s to their Palm Sunday service, lunch and concert afterwards. We decided that we would prefer to have Palm Sunday services at St. Paul’s but agreed to contribute something to their event, such as possibly the desserts for after the concert or similar.
6. Father Mike told us that the 5th Sunday service will be held at St. Pauls this time and that it will be a St. Pauls service. We decided that we needed to hold a reception with snacks afterwards.
7. Father Mike explained that we may have an organist, that he had discussed the job with her and would be meeting her on Monday to look at the Organ in person.
8. Father Mike said that he needed to purchase speakers for events, such as ‘Voices from both Sides’.  We looked at 3 speaker systems that had been recommended to him for the uses that St. Paul’s requires. Kerie made a motion to approve the purchase of 2 Bluetooth speakers for $400. Dan seconded the motion. Passed.
9. Father Mike announced that the Living Legends Committee would be meeting on March 22nd, after church.
10. Father Mike asked for approval to spend the Evangelical grant money without having to get Bishops Committee approval for every purchase over $100. Kerie made a motion to accept that. Joni seconded the motion, Passed.

Old Business –
1.  We discussed when the first T-shirt order would submitted.  We will be announcing it one more time in church on Sunday to allow anyone wanting a T-shirt to get their order in before the first batch is printed.  Then we will submit the first order mid-month.
New Business  1. Allison informed us of the main items that were discussed during the Building Committee Meeting. Scott will be replacing light bulbs. More outdoor lighting is needed, kneeling rails need improvements and the rails into the church need to be addressed for safety concerns. More varnish will be applied to the parish hall flooring. Father Mike volunteered to clean out the gutters. The lawn is going to be prepared for the warmer season arriving and we are still looking toward moving forward with recommendations in the 2015 building report.
2.  Kerie discussed the social media campaign that is running on Facebook.  Explaining that our posts are being boosted to target users in Marfa, Fort Davis and Alpine.
3.  Dan discussed the need for updating our St. Paul’s group photo.  We all agreed that it needed to be updated and that we will try to do this soon, possibly on Easter after church, if the Easter Egg Hunt allows us time to do so.
4. The possible incoming Curate for the area was discussed. St. Paul’s would be responsible $1300 a month towards the expenses. Allison made a motion to accept. Dan seconded. Motion passed.

Other Business –
1. Dan explained that on Monday May 4th that a “Livingroom Concert” like he had hosted before was available to host at St. Paul’s again. It would be from approximately 8:00 – 9:30PM. Tickets wouldn’t go through St. Paul’s, they would be sold online only for $20 each through another company, we would only provide the space. The musician is Will Johnson. It would be BYOB. Kerie made a motion to do the concert. Patricia seconded the motion. Passed.

Closing Prayer

Meeting adjourned at 7:15PM

 

Respectfully Submitted,
——————————————

Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee

 

 

Electronic vote addendum:

March 29th, 2020 8:40pm electronic vote addendum to aforementioned Vicars Report line item number 7.

Father Mike explained that the organist is suitable for St. Paul’s needs. Dan discussed that she agreed to be hired for $120 for each Sunday that she played, as well as for other official church services such as Good Friday, Easter or Christmas. Dan discussed that she would pay her own taxes and transportation and that the $120 per service would be paid at the end of each month by check. Patricia made a motion to accept this agreement. Kerie seconded the motion. Passed.

Respectfully Submitted,

——————————————
Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee

 

 

 

 

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Marfa, TX
Bishops Committee Meeting Minutes – February 9th 2020

 

Attending: Father Mike Wallens, Allison Ryan Scott, Joni Marginot, Dan Wonsowski, Patricia Seifert and Kerie Van Zeyst.

Meeting called to order at 12:00PM
Opening Prayer

Minutes
1. Minutes from the previous Bishops Committee Meeting were submitted by Allison. Patricia made a motion to accept the minutes. Dan seconded the motion. Passed.

Treasurers Report
1. The Treasurers Report was presented by Dan. Items discussed were income, expenses and the financials of the Diocese taking over the Vicarage. Dan also explained that he was working out the details for obtaining a church credit card. Kerie made a motion to accept the Treasurers report. Patricia seconded the motion. Passed.

Vicars report
1. Father Mike announced that the next “Quarterly Annual Meeting” would be held on April 26th. He said that any special projects would need to be discussed before then and that the Building Committee and the Finance Committee should meet before then as well.
2. Father Mike explained that we had enough people for the Building Committee but that another person was needed for the Finance Committee. Allison volunteered to be on the finance committee.
3. Father Mike explained that there will be an opportunity to attend a Vestry Workshop on either March 7th in Albuquerque, NM or on May 2nd in Carlsbad, NM and encouraged Bishops Committee members to attend, if possible.
4. Father Mike announced that Yoseff Ben-Yehuda would be leading The Seder on April 8th at 6:30PM.
5. Father Mike announced that the Marfa Ministerial Alliance is considering a Prayer Walk at some point in the future.
6. Father Mike announced that a Lenten Study group focusing on ‘The Way of Love’ with Soup and Bread would be held Tuesday evenings in March at St. Paul’s from 6:30-8:00PM.
7. Father Mike announced that he and Susan will be hosting a Shrove Tuesday open house at their home on February 25th from 5:00-7:00PM.
8. Father Mike announced that Connor Davis, of Young Life, was looking for office space to work from. The Bishops Committee unanimously agreed to offer him the back room to work out of as needed.
9. Father Mike informed us of the upcoming meetings with Canon Lee Curtis on Saturday February 15th at 11:00AM to discuss fundraising and with Bishop Michael Hunn and Canon Lee Curtis to on Saturday February 22nd at 3:00PM to discuss the possible incoming Curate and the Evangelical Grant.

Old Business
1. Allison announced that Dedie Taylor had volunteered to fill the final Delegate spot needed. Patricia made a motion to accept Dedie as Delegate. Dan seconded the motion. Passed.

New Business
1. Allison discussed the need for a new printer that will cost $500. It was unanimously agreed that it would be listed in the “Giving Opportunities” section of the newsletter.
2. Kerie discussed the ‘Sacred Places’ grant that St. Paul’s is in the process of applying for.
3. Father Mike presented a final T-Shirt design.
4. Kerie agreed to increase the text size on the T-Shirt and to make a T-Shirt order form.
5. The Finance Committee will go over the financial details to renew Father Mikes contract, which will be renewed in June.

Other Business
1. Patricia informed us that the Marfa Presbyterian church offered to collaborate on special events with St. Paul’s.
2. Dan explained that he will look into setting up a tax exempt Amazon account for St. Paul’s.
3. The next Bishops Committee Meeting was set for March 4th at 5:30PM, instead of the second Sunday, March 8th, due to several Bishops Committee members being out of town for Spring Break during the middle weeks in March.

Closing Prayer

Meeting adjourned at 1:00PM

Respectfully Submitted,

__________________________
Keri van Zeyst, Secretary of the Bishops Committee