Church Council Minutes


Church Council Meeting, Jan. 22, 2018


·      Bruce called the meeting to order at 6:45pm.  A devotion based on

1 Samuel 8:3-7 was shared.


·      Bruce opened the floor for Joys and Concerns and prayed.


·      Steve motioned to accept the minutes from November and December.  Shirley seconded.  All members voted in favor.


·      Bruce reviewed from reports submitted ( below for reports) and celebrated the accomplishments of St. Paul’s over the last 2 months.  This included Night in Bethlehem, Christmas Caroling, Christmas pageant, Mission Sunday, our new Singles ministry, “The Lemonade Makers”, the received Bauer funds, completed roof work, and the new Applegate plaque on the memorial wall.


·      Announcements :  Barb and Sal Marino submitted a letter of resignation due to health reasons.  Barb is resigning from Children’s message, and Sal from SPRC.  This is effective immediately.  They will support the Worship Committee, Council at Large (Barb), and Nominations (Sal) where and when possible.


·      Bruce presented “Leading Meeting Presentations”  Main theme was meeting by consensus.


·      Bruce discussed volunteers to alternate through leading Church Council Meetings.


·      A discussion took place about attending “Back to Basics” training through GNJUMC.  Council members were encouraged to attend.  Training is Monday, 1/29/18.


·      Scholarship Fund -  Anne requested a change in signer for the scholarship fund bank account as the old signer was Bill Clauser who has been absent from church.  A motion was made  by Steve to have Patty Applegate (Scholarship Committee Chair), Anne, and Steve be signers.  Betty seconded.  All members voted in favor.


·      Rich reported that there is approximately $650 in remaining Sandy funds.  There was a lengthy discussion on what to do with the funds.      Steve made a motion to move the money to Missions and to have Missions  make their best effort to use the money as closely as possible with a Sandy related activity.  A second was provided by Shirley.  Through consensus all members agreed.


·      Rich led an introduction to a new mission, Empty Bowls.  It also included further discussion on Road to Resurrection,  and the Easter Egg Hunt.


·      Shirley shared plans for Valentine’s Day and plans for activities with the Lemonade Makers.  2pm Movie, 5:30 Dinner (open to church), 7pm Ash Wednesday service.


·      We will be collecting cans of Soup for Superbowl Sunday – “Souper Bowl”


·      Steve led a discussion on our current funds for Council clarification.


·      Pastor Kee shared 2/4 will be Scout Sunday.  Rich will assist in planning.


·      Next council meeting will be 2/26 at 6:30pm.  Reports are due no later than 2/24.


·      Pete led a discussion about security at St. Paul’s and suggested a short presentation from Joe Michigan to Council and Trustees.  Pastor Kee will work to coordinate.


·      Bruce led a review of confirmation of commitments by Church Council during the meeting.


·      Adjournment was decided by consensus, Pastor Kee led a closing prayer at 8:20pm.



Attendance:  Pastor Kee, Bruce Hillner, Rich Scraggs, Steve McLaughlin, Betty LaSalla, Shirley Gilinsky, Pete Shutt


Respectively submitted by Rich Scraggs



Reports Compiled from those submitted via Email


Pastor – Pastor Kee Yang

Worship Attendance

November 26             83        December 3               103      December 10             102

December 17             122      December 24             193 (Total number from three services)

December 31             65        January 7                   75        January 14                 90

Ministry Report

1.     Meeting with Church Leaders: 12/1, 12/8, 12/14, 12/21, 1/11, 1/18,

2.     NIB Dress Rehearsal: 12/2

3.     NIB: 12/3

Thank you all for your hard work together before, during and after NIB.

I cannot thank you all enough. Special thanks to the leaders, Rich Scraggs and Kristy Gerdes.

4.     Sermon Series and Bible Study during Advent: Joseph by Adam Hamilton

Bible Study attendance was very poor.

5.     Conference Connectional Table: 12/5

With Bishop, the team reviewed the strategic plan draft.

6.     Central Region Bishop’s Day: 12/7

Bishop Schol presented the development of a new strategic plan and the work of the Commission of the Way Forward as the denomination prepares for a special General Conference about our policies on homosexuality.

7.     Weekly Praise Band Rehearsals: 11/30, 12/7, 12/21, 12/28, 1/4, 1/11, 1/18

We need more band members. Rob is not available every Sunday. Teeter has health issues. Dora has been recovery from her injury. If you have anyone with musical talents and Christian faith, please let Tom or me know.

8.     Church Council for budget 2018: 12/11

9.     Committees Meetings: 12/11 and 1/16 (Trustees), 12/17 (SPRC),

10.  Men’s Saturday Breakfast: 12/16 and 1/20

Thank you Bruce for yummy breakfast and the biblical lessons from the video.

11.  Christmas Carol and Dinner at Skip & Maryann Applegate’s House: 12/16

Thanks to all who joined the caroling. Special thanks Skip and Maryanne for organizing the event and delicious food. (My favorite was Lobster Bisque!)

12.  Communion Visitation for Shut-Ins and Hospital Visit: 12/18, 12/19, 1/3 

13.  Membership Transfer Class: 12/19

14.  Monday Morning Prayer Meetings: 12/4, 12/18, 1/1

Thanks to Shirley for her leadership.

15.   Christmas Decoration Down:1/2

16.  Ministrium Gathering: 1/3

Easter Sunrise Service will be held at Jenkinson’s on 4/1 at 6 am.

Our praise band, True North, will lead praise session.

17.  PaCE: 1/12

Two books were reviewed. “Sea of Glory,” and “The Emotionally Healthy Church”

18.  Wesleyan Covenant Association: 1/19

Ministry Plan

1.     Scout Sunday: 2/4

2.     Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, 2/14

3.     Ash Wednesday Service at 7 pm

4.     Sermon Series: “Creed” by Adam Hamilton

Family News

1.     We are so glad that Daniel has received his college admission at Swarthmore. 

2.     Daniel took eye surgery for his cyst. He is getting better. Thank you for your prayers.

3.     Grace and I celebrate our 18th Anniversary on 1/8. 


Nominations and Leadership Development – Pastor Kee Yang

1.     Next meeting will be on 2/6 at 7 pm.

2.     Please continue to pray for the future Council Chair and the Worship Committee chair.


Lay Leader – Bruce Hillner

Continued to meet with Pastor Kee weekly in prayer, reviewing/planning worship services, discussions concerning open position for Council and Worship chairs, member's joys, needs, and concerns.  Assisting Family worship services with welcome, opening prayer, passing the peace of Christ.  Held men's breakfast Saturday, December 16, 2017, devotion on Luke 15:11-24 "Lost Younger Son" from a Middle Eastern perspective.  Next men's breakfast Saturday 8AM January 20, 2018, devotion on Luke 15:25-32 "Lost Older Son".  Shared about men's breakfast at Family worship service on January 10, during Ministry Minute.  Will be attending the Back-2-Basics conference training at Monmouth Grace UMC in Eatontown, NJ on January 29, 2018. 


Education – Kristy Gerdes

1. Christmas Pageant was a huge success!  This year we were so blessed to have some of the children learn the songs on the piano and they were able to accompany us for those songs!  

2. Night in Bethlehem was also a huge success. Thank you to all of those who were veterans of the event that helped Rich and I pull everything together.  It was truly a total Church effort!!!

3. Sunday School is going well.  We are still working our way through the Bible "In one Year" which will actually take us two years

4. Road to Resurrection plans are starting, Rich and I will be posting dates for our first meetings very soon.  This event will occur on the same day as the Easter Egg Hunt.  One of the battles of the Easter Egg Hunt that we face is that although we reach approximately 200 kids, how do we get them from the park into our doors.  This year with the Road to Resurrection, we will hold our Easter Egg Hunt at 10am at Centennial Park and then invite all of the families to make their way over to our church to experience the Road to Resurrection. The event will run for 2 hours (shorter than NIB).  It will have families walk through stations that will teach them about the events of the Holy Week of Easter.  

5. Donation Bins will be up and around church starting in February for Easter Egg Hunt.  We will need giveaway items like nerf balls, sport balls, beach sand pails, craft kits for small kids, stuffed animals, etc.  We will also need candy to fill eggs and eggs.



Worship – Pastor Kee

1.     We give thanks to Sonja Oftedal for her leadership as chairperson of the committee for last three years. 

2.     During Advent, there were about 40 people involved in worship as a team or as a family or as an individual before, during and after each service.
Thank you all for your hearts of worship toward our Lord.

3.     Thanks to those who helped Christmas decorations and those who cleaned up.

4.     Christmas Pageant was excellent. Special thanks to all Sunday school children and youth group and also to the leaders, Kristy Gerdes and Heather Jacobs.

5.     The church organ has been broken. Thankfully it is now fixed. Thanks to the family who donated monetary gift to cover all expenses.

6.     The Committee will meet on 1/23 at 7 pm.

7.     Until we have a new chair, I will work closely with the committee.


Missions – Rich Scraggs

1.  We started our new second collection for Missions on 1/7.  The special collection received $245.08 for the first attempt out of the gate.  We will continue this special collection each month on our communion Sundays.  The money will be banked and used at a later date.

2.  Our Christmas collection brought in $1,156.  This collection will be split evenly between St. Gregory’s and our own scholarship fund.

3.  In the next couple weeks we will begin building Flood Buckets again using money that was already raised.  We currently have $1879.16 in the bank and are still awaiting $1000 employer match.  

4.  Kristy and I are getting ready to start working on the Easter Egg Hunt and Road to Resurrection which will take place over the Easter weekend.   More details to come but be sure we will need lots of help.

5.  I am very excited to announce we will be starting “Empty Bowls” at the beginning of March.  This will be a two month long program wrapping up at the end of April focusing on local and distant hunger needs.  In brief, with Heather Jakub’s assistance and leadership, the program will have a couple different pieces.  First, starting 3/3 people (both at Heather’s store Wish Upon a Jar and through a special session at church) will purchase and paint a bowl for $15.  This bowl once painted will be donated for later use.  Heather will take these bowls and fire them once complete.   We will use these bowls in an open to the public dinner and for a suggested donation of $10 participants will be fed with these bowls, and will keep the bowl they eat from, a constant reminder about world and local hunger.  This dinner will correspond with he end of the 30hour famine.  All funds from both Empty Bowls and the Famine will be donated to local in distant hunger resources.  Heather is giving us the bowls at cost and donating the remainder.   This event will be publicized both at St. Paul’s and at her store and open to our community to participate in both the painting of bowls and the dinner.  

6.  Thanks to Shirley, our newest mission ministry, our seniors group, the Lemonade Makers, had a very successful New Year’s eve Party.  (See her report for details). They are planning the next event for Valentine’s Day afternoon.  We are trying to wrap this into our Ash Wednesday service.  

7.  Our Feb. 4th services will also celebrate our yearly Scout Sunday service.   We will have our church open to local Cub and Boy Scouts and the boys will be assisting in our service that day.

8. As a follow up, our website and new email provider has been functioning almost flawlessly since its launch.  As the year continues we will be expanding uses, including providing emails to additional council members and using various aspects of google sheets and google docs with Kristy providing training.  Stay tuned.  


Membership – Shirley Gilinsky

1. Combined personal contact/cards for November and December from the committee = 72. This figure does not include the individuals that the committee reached out and invited to the singles New Year's eve Party. 

2. The committee partnered with Mission/Outreach for a New Year's Eve Party where 35 were in attendance throughout the day, some stayed until 5 o'clock, several stayed after church for lunch and left around 3 o'clock.  Their committee helped set up, cook, and clean up for this new outreach.

3. In response to our request for information to be used for a church flyer only Rich contacted the committee. So we do not have a prototype to present to council at this time. The committee will attempt to reach out to committee heads individually.

4. The committee has collected and compiled a list of names, addresses, emails, and birthdays of families who attended the NIB. This information will be used in partnership with Ms Kristy and her committee. 


Staff Parish – Betty LaSalla

We met in December to wrap up business for 2017. We have a lot of good ideas and expectations for 2018.  We hope to carry through with them with the help of our new members.  An email will go out in the next week to welcome our new members. Our next meeting will be held in February, date will be sent to members shortly.


Trustees - Matt Gerdes

·       Investments paperwork is being finalized with AXA.

·       All Funds have been received from Bauer Endowment.

·       Roof is finished but painting needs to be done around windows when weather permits.

·       Paperwork being updated on procedures and costs for use of facility.

·       Security Camera and front door locking system quotes have been received by three companies and under review.

·       Memorial plaque is being made up to be placed in memorial garden. Finance computer has been donated.

·       Repairs are ongoing in hallway upstairs.

·       There was a recent increase in the heating bill which could be due to mismanagement of the heating unit by groups using the church. There are guidelines everyone should use listed on the thermostats. Trustees are looking into a safeguard to insure this will not occur again.


Finance – Steve McLaughlin

See attached excel files - Available in Church Office


Memorial – Skip Applegate:

After Bethlehem drop was removed I was able to install the plaque from the Robert Applegate family.  A couple of people have mentioned to me they are planning to do a plaque.