Sept 26-27, 2014 Mission Council Minutes
Present: Bill Pyatt, Chair; Jodi Cataldo, Vice-Chair; Paul White; Bishop Julius Trimble; Rita Gaither-Gant; John Edgar; Harry Askin; Gail Burgess; Ouk-Yean Kim Jueng, Mark Dicken; Rick VanGiesen, Treasurer; John Boley, Secretary. Guest: Jim Searls, Communicator and Webmaster.
Call to Order and Devotions: Bill called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone. He led devotions, focusing on Ed Hayes’ book, “A Pilgrim’s Almanac.” Bill read a selection on the birthday of Johnny Appleseed. Bill offered prayer for the meeting.
Introductions: We went around the room and everyone shared how life has been and changed since we were together two years ago. Bishop Trimble offered prayer concerns concerning two recent deaths in Iowa, and then led in prayer.
Approval of Minutes: Changes to the minutes of the last meeting, September 21 and 22, 2012 were offered:
1) Jodi mentioned that it was she, rather than Ruth Ellen Stone, who reported the change in the name of the Bishop Job Center to the Dakota Wesleyan Center.
2) On p. 2, Mark Dicken’s name was misspelled.
The minutes were approved as amended.
Financial Reports: Rick offered the following reports:
- Balance Sheet. We have a balance of $681,071. Rick was almost apologetic. This is more than anticipated or desired. He offered the following reasons why the balance:
- No run on the treasury at the end of the last quadrennium, unlike what was expected.
- Reuben Job Center closed.
- West Ohio Conference has passed along $30,000 in accrued Native American Sunday offerings that have gone unused.
- Rev. Lee of the Korean Ministries is a great fundraiser and takes in more than goes out.
- Too much inactivity among some of the agencies.
- The Annual Conferences are all remitting their apportionments faithfully, including at the end of last quadrennium when all Annual Conferences paid 100 %.
- Financial Statement. Income is at 89% and expenses are at 35%. Note the return of $10,000 from Dakota Wesleyan to represent funds issued in the first half of 2013 to the Reuben Job Center.
The Financial Reports were approved and received.
Financial Recommendations: Rick made the following recommendations:
- Suspend the 90% rule: The Mission Council had previously approved paying out all funds at 90% in anticipation of the possibility of not receiving 100% of apportionments. However, since the apportionments are coming in well and we have such a healthy balance, paying out at 100% would be appropriate. Discussion. Approved.
- 2016 Jurisdictional Conference: It will be held on July 13-16, 2016 in Peoria. The Site Committee is ahead of schedule. We have received a $30,000 grant from the Peoria Tourist Bureau.
- Rick recommended that the per diem be raised from $75 in Akron to $125. Discussion. Approved.
- Display policy: The Executive Committee recommends that the Jurisdictional Conference display policy be the same as the display policy of the Annual Conference where the Jurisdictional Conference is held, as long as it is in compliance with the Book of Discipline. Discussion. Approved.
- Rick reported that he will complete his service as Treasurer at the end of this quadrennium – December 31, 2016 – in anticipation of his own retirement sometime during the next quadrennium. The College of Bishops will nominate his successor and the Jurisdictional Conference will elect.
Agency and Liaison Reports:
- Korean Mission Council / Ouk-Yean Kim Jueng: Rev. Lee is now getting a small stipend for his work. The mission is to help new church starts and then wean them off over time. Ouk-Yean believes that the funds are being well spent. We did not receive an Agency Report. It is a ministry of the Jurisdiction. Rev. Lee works with the College of Bishops.
- Town and Country Association / John Edgar: Town and Country often does joint things with Urban Network. They are good at networking among the core leadership and connecting with national programs. Example: “Shift Happens,” and General Conference Legislation. They are challenged with respect to resourcing and connecting with individual congregations in Town and Country settings.
- Center for Hispanic Ministries / Gail Burgess: Their focus is on networking throughout the Jurisdiction and encouraging candidacy for ministry. It is now a 501 c 3 and has worked with Rick on their finances.
- Commission on Native American Ministries / Rita Gaither-Gant: Not very good communication between her as liaison and the directors. Their focus is educational opportunities for Native pastors, including lay servant ministries and Native American Course of Study. They also focus on youth ministry. Rita believes that they are doing what they are supposed to do. Rick is now their treasurer. Leadership has health issues. They received a grant from built up funds from West Ohio Native American offerings.
Break for Dinner
- Asian American Fellowship / Matthew Sipe. Matthew submitted his report but could not attend due to the shut down of O’Hare. Matthew questions why this group exists. Ouk-Yean added that there is not much happening. She is willing to be in contact with leadership and try to help. They have not spent any funds, but that’s ok because they are on a reimbursement basis. The Agency report does not say much.
- Urban Action Network / Cynthia Williams. Cynthia could not attend due to the shut down of O’Hare. Gail reported that she went to the event in Milwaukee and it was very well attended. “They’re alive and kicking.” The will do events in 2015 with Town and Country.
- United Methodist Volunteers in Mission / Sarah Stevens: The liaison report and agency report seem consistent – there is a lot happening and it seems to be valid.
Liaison Reports not received: Nilsa Saliceti for Hispanic Caucus; Lawrence McGuinn for Continuing Consultation Commission; Jeannette Kraus for Commission on Religion and Race; Joel Carver and Luke Sutton for Ministry with Young People. Bill will contact liaisons and agencies and see if they can report.
College of Bishops: Bishop Trimble reported:
The College of Bishops met earlier in the week and also met with the Annual Conference DCM’s. There was discussion concerning whether the current structure and practice was the best way to function. Bishop Trimble read the Mission Statement of the Mission Council from the NCJ Journal (It is also on the web site). Everyone agrees that any reduction in apportionments would be helpful. The College of Bishops decided that Bishop Trimble and Bishop Kiesey would meet with two DCM’s to further this inquiry.
Discussion: What is unique about a jurisdiction that can’t be done at the local church, Annual Conference, or General Conference? Further discussion about the status of the called group on Jurisdictions that arose of Jurisdictional Conference in Akron. Bishop Trimble convened the group, and there have been some conference calls and Basecamp work, but with no apparent resolution. People came with their own agendas. No further info.
Bishop Trimble will drive the process for a meeting with 2 Bishops, 2 DCM’s and reps of the Mission Council.
Break for the Evening
Reconvene in the Morning
Bill led in prayer and read another selection from Father Ed Hayes’ “A Pilgrim’s Almanac” entitled “Fine-Fitting Clothes.”
Budget Building Process:
Further discussion on the upcoming budget building process and convening with Bishops and DCM’s over future possibilities. Review of the Mission Statement, Vision and Core Processes: Discussion items:
- Overarching question is over what the Jurisdiction can and should do that can’t be done better by local churches, Annual Conferences and General Conference.
- What is the purpose of the Jurisdiction beyond electing Bishops?:
a. Some ethnic ministries, such as Korean ministries, are better coordinated at the jurisdictional level.
b. Disaster Response work.
c. Not everything that is going on can be de-centralized.
- Jodi will send around information on the Jurisdictional Conference Task Force.
- We should aim for a January meeting with the College of Bishops:
- Pre-meeting work with Jodi, Paul and Rick joining 2 Bishops and 2 DCM’s to do analysis and recommendations.
- Meeting with the College of Bishops and the full Mission Council sometime during the College of Bishops meetings of January 20 – 22, 2015. Specific time and direction given by the group of 7.
- Meeting of full Mission Council March 19 and 20, in Springfield, to finalize and formalize a budget process. This would be a noon to noon meeting.
Closing prayer by Rita.
Rev. John Boley, Secretary, firstname.lastname@example.org