New Church Family Board of Directors – MINUTES -- AUG 8, 2021 Meeting; Revised Aug. 22; Accepted as revised Sept. 12, 2021
ATTENDEES -- -BOARD Members: Charlene Rywant, president; Rev. Donna Choate, pastor; Judi Omelia, Treasurer; Tom Brown, secretary. Observers: Pam Ware, Anna Kopek, Nancy Brady, Heather Choate, Tom C.
CALL to ORDER – Charlene, presiding, called the meeting to order at 11:45 a.m. Rev. Donna offered an opening prayer.
AGENDA – Pam said she had some questions after reviewing the church’s bylaws, board minutes and financial reports. Her concerns were added to the agenda as New Business Item E. Tom B. moved the agenda be accepted as expanded; approved by a voice vote.
JULY 8 MINUTES – REVISIONS – Pam noted that the minutes erroneously listed Linda Ware as an attendee. Tom B. said he would delete her name from the list. Charlene objected that one person who prefers confidentiality had been identified by his full name. Tom said he would delete the last name as we have done in the past. FILM GROUP item: Charlene said minutes of the Film Group discussion omitted information on who would do cleaning after Movie Nights. Tom B. clarified that the Film Night organizers were aware of their responsibility to do cleaning. As their August 8 update mentions, they need guidance from the board on what cleaning is being done currently, particularly for small-scale events like Game Day. Char objected to a sentence that states the board had approved the concept of Movie Nights in principle, pending a more detailed report on arrangements. Tom B. said his recollection of the July 11 discussion differed from Char’s, but the board is free to modify its record of the back-and-forth. Pam W. noted her memory agreed with Charlene’s. Tom B. suggested a change of text to “Board members discussed the concept...” deleting the word approved. The revised draft was accepted on a voice vote.
PRESIDENT’s REPORT: Charlene voiced satisfaction the church has eliminated its cell phone expense ($30 a month) and is now relying on its main phone for messages. She also thanked Nancy for donations of masks and other health items. Report accepted on a voice vote.
PASTOR’s REPORT – Rev. Donna submitted a written report, (attached), mentioning Jen Garms’ memorial, a visit to a housebound elderly member and a July 4 indoor picnic as highlights of NCF ministry during July. Report accepted on a voice vote.
TREASURER’s REPORT – Judi distributed 7 pages of financial figures for July and Year-to-Date. She noted the church’s General Fund posted a small surplus, $128, for July but its year to date deficit stands at Minus $1261. The Building Fund, which covers some of the church’s property expenses, recorded a year to date surplus of $1,096 as of July 31. The Benevolence Fund had a July 31 balance of $561 as of July 31. In discussion, Anna K. suggested the church look at the ZellePay website as another way of receiving online donations. Pam suggested the church tighten its procedures for dispensing Benevolence gifts. Rev. Donna said the church’s bylaws give the pastor or interim pastor sole discretion to make gifts of up to $100. Larger gifts require the approval of the board. If the pastor or interim pastor is absent, the board president authorizes Benevolence gifts. Donna moved acceptance of the report, Tom seconded. Accepted by a voice vote.
BUILDING REPORT: Charlene mentioned that vinegar needs to be poured into the attic drain pipes of the A-C system. She said Heather is checking on this.
SOCIAL DIRECTOR: Sharron, our volunteer handling social events, reported on further planning of the Oct. 25 craft sale in the church parking lot. She is looking into recruiting a food truck for the event and what donation the church would receive.
MASKS – In light of increasing cases of Covid-Delta virus, Charlene moved we follow CDC’s recommendation to resume mandatory wearing of masks for indoor events. Approved by a voice vote.
YARD SALE – Sharron moved we start collecting items from the congregation for a yard sale next March. Accepted by a voice vote.
CLEANING – Rev. Donna said weekly cleaning of the church has become a health challenge for current members doing this task. Charlene recommended hiring an outside firm, Cleaning for a Cause LLC, (Karlee & Willow) to take over this work. The company’s two operators have visited the church for instructions on what needs to be done. A checklist has been prepared. The cleaning cost would be $200 a month, with cleaning done once a week (Fridays). A contract will be drafted. Charlene moved we hire CC; approved on voice vote.
PASTORAL SEARCH COMMITTEE – Now that Bryan Poaches has moved to Orlando, Lois Klammer to Rhode Island and Russ Van Allan is ill, Charlene said Sharron has agreed to reactivate the Search Committee. The committee is on standby if it turns out Rev. Donna steps down as interim pastor as is her current intention (cf. her latest monthly report.) Judi volunteered to be part of the committee, to represent the board. Dave McBride also will be contacted.
HISTORICAL REVIEW – Pam has begun reviewing church bylaws and minutes, and has noticed some gaps. One need, she said, is a conflict resolution process. Other topics she touched on included a $72,000 brokerage expense that Hope MCC (NCF’s predecessor) logged in 2007 when it sold its Ridgewood building; reasons for Rev. Dunlap’s resignation in January; and lack of a building rental fee schedule.
OLD BUSINESS –
MOVIE/SOCIAL NIGHT: The board discussed for more than an hour whether it should withdraw its previous tentative support for a twice-weekly LGBTQ Movie & Social that would use the church’s sanctuary, lobby and rest rooms. Tom B. and visitor Tom C. represented the Film Group volunteers, submitting a further update of their planning (“Primary Draft of LGBTQ + Free Movie/Social Group of Volusia/Flagler.”) . Ultimately, at about 3:30 p.m. Tom B. moved that the issue be tabled for a month since the divided board could not reach a consensus. Rev. Donna seconded Tom B.’s tabling motion. Approved 2-1, (Tom B. and Judi favoring, and Charlene saying she no longer supports the film experiment. Rev. Donna abstained but commented she prefers a “spiritual” priority for the church.) The many points that were debated included:
Would the meetings, if downplayed as church-sponsored events, help or hurt the church’s mission of spreading the Gospel? Some warned that attendees would feel misled to find out that the event is hosted by a church. Tom C. said the series is aimed at gradually building fellowship with the unchurched and overcoming their fears, possibly encouraging some of them to attend our worship. He asked if the church has any alternative plans for outreach to outsiders.
Would the Film Group do adequate cleaning? Both Toms countered that the board has not yet provided a checklist of what cleaning is being done currently for Game Days. Nancy B. said she could provide a checklist; Tom B. said such a list should be added to the church’s files. Tom C. said the Film group is willing to hire its own cleaners if necessary, or do the wipedowns specified by the board.
Does Covid-19 and its Delta variant make the film screenings too risky? The two Toms noted that worship services and Game Days are continuing so is risk really a factor. But some argued that now is not the time to add more events to our schedule.
Should the films be shown outdoors to reduce contagion risk? Tom B. said hurricane season, summer thunderstorms and mosquitos make the parking lot impractical.
Are two film screenings a week necessary – would once a week or once a month be sufficient? Tom C. said the experiment should be at least twice a week to gain attention and give it momentum. A daytime screening could be added for the benefit of older people unable to drive at night.
Charlene cautioned against the church turning into a “pick-up” place.
Tom B. suggested a brief congregational forum be held after service later this month to see how church members feel about it. Others said the board should make the decision.
Pam W. said the meeting was becoming too tense and we should cool down.
LADDER – Char noted the donated extension ladder is now in place, giving us easier access to the attic. Heather used it one day to check on possible smoke – nothing found.
PUMP STATION – A vendor confirmed that its quote of $400 for annual maintenance of the station is still active.
NEXT MEETING – The next monthly meeting will be Sept. 12 after the worship service. The meeting adjourned at 3:55 p.m. with a closing prayer.
This text incorporates amendments approved at the August 8 board meeting.)
Present – Board Members: Charlene Rywant, Judi Omelia, Tom Brown, Rev. Donna Choate. Observers: Sharron Mitchell, Pam Ware, Linda MacMahan; Tom C.
Call to order: President Charlene called the meeting to order in the Conference Room at 11:48 a.m. and led opening prayer. Agenda approved in a voice vote as submitted by Charlene; Minutes as submitted by Secretary Tom B. approved by voice vote.
REPORTS: Treasurer – Judi submitted reports for June and year to date. Overall, the operating fund has a YTD deficit of $1,168.37, mainly reflecting a $1059 interim payment to IRS in an ongoing dispute about self-employment taxes. The church is challenging the IRS finding. Judi noted that an anonymous special gift covered nearly half the tax payment. Re the Benevolence Fund, Judi noted donations have totaled $557 over six months, while charitable gifts and expenses have totaled $315, leaving a June 30 balance of $242.
Pastor: Rev. Donna submitted a summary of her activities in June and YTD. She asked for clarification of when the church’s cell phone will be discontinued. Judi noted July will be the final month of service. As an FYI item, Donna’s report said she is still undecided about continuing as pastor, but, as of now, “I do not wish to seek the permanent pastor’s position at New Church Family.” She said she will update the board month to month on her plans.
Other reports: Charlene said a pump station maintenance project is slated for the fall, and the contractor has agreed to honor the $400 price negotiated last year. Plans are being made to deliver Pam & Linda’s gift of an extension ladder.
Social Director – Acting volunteer director Sharron recommended an outdoor craft show in our parking lot be scheduled for Oct. 23, after Biketoberfest is concluded. Outside crafters will be asked for donations for their table spaces. She recommended a church yard sale be postponed until March 19, 2022 with a rain date of March 26. Both projects approved by a voice vote.
NEW BUSINESS – Charlene reported she has contacted Christian singer-songwriter Marsha Stevens in Bradenton about giving a Saturday night concert at our church. The church would provide a love offering, plus $100 for the use of Marsha’s sound equipment plus an additional fee for a night’s stay at a motel. No date has been set yet. Tom moved approval of the terms; approved by a voice vote.
PROPOSED LGBTQ SOCIAL EVENING – Tom Brown and Tom C. proposed that the board let the NCF building be used for twice a week social gatherings for adults 18 and older, featuring assorted free films of special interest to lesbians, gay men, transgender people and their allies. Tom C. distributed an “On with the Show” outline proposing a Tuesday and Friday schedule, with Meet and Greet starting at 6 p.m., film at 7 and discussion and snacks at about 9 p.m. A male and female greeter would be at each screening, responsible for opening, closing and clean-up. The 2 Toms emphasized the project is in just in a preliminary phase, and more volunteers (4 so far) would be needed to work out details. Tom C. said there would be no expense to the church – he would back it financially for a six month experimental period. A launch date and film schedule has not been determined yet, but a rough target is to start around Labor Day or soon after. Tom C. asked the board to let the volunteers settle most details but to keep the board informed. Tom B. will be a liaison to the board. Tom C. suggested the group call itself “New Family” to help newcomers find the location but to avoid implying the project is sponsored by a church, since many LGBTQ people are alienated from organized religion. The hope is some attendees eventually would become interested in other NCF activities, including worship, Game Days, potlucks etc. Board members expressed support for the project but emphasized alcohol would not be allowed because of liability concerns. They also suggested scheduling be altered to take into account older people unable to drive at night. Board members further discussed the concept, pending a more detailed report on arrangements.
ADJOURN -- Meeting adjourned 2 p.m. Next meeting set for Aug. 8.
Volunteers have begun laying plans for a new social evening plus free LGBTQ-themed movies in the NCF building once or twice a week. We plan to alternate between women-oriented, transgender-oriented and men-oriented films. All genders will be welcome at all gatherings. The programs will include new releases and well as classics -- you are welcome to submit suggestions.
However, health concerns and other issues raised by the NCF board of directors may postpone the project at least a month, or indefinitely.
The group is open to anyone -- no church affiliation is required. NCF at 3520 W. Int'l Speedway, Daytona, (US 92) has been proposed as a venue simply because of its central location and projection equipment, and its history for serving the LGBTQ Community.
Our hope was to begin soon after Labor Day and on into the fall. However, the NCF Board voted August 8 to postpone the launch at least a month while the church weighs the risks of starting a new social activity amid uncertainty about the Delta variant of Covid. In the meantime, the church is continuing its in-person worship services and its Wednesday Game Day recreation program. The board voted to make masks mandatory for those gatherings, even if participants have been fully vaccinated.
The board will revisit the proposal at its Sept. 12 monthly meeting.
NEW CHURCH FAMILY Board of Directors
MINUTES – June 13, 2021
ATTENDEES: Board Members: Charlene Rywant, Rev. Donna Choate, Tom Brown; Visitors: Sharron Mitchell; Pam and Linda Ware.
CALL to ORDER: Charlene, president, called the meeting to order at 11:50 a.m. and offered an opening prayer. It was agreed minutes would be taken, but some non-urgent matters could be tabled until the next meeting.
AGENDA: Two items -- cell phone and FYI information on a church neighbor -- were added to the agenda prepared by Charlene. Rev. Donna moved acceptance of the expanded agenda; approved on a voice vote.
MINUTES: Rev. Donna moved acceptance of minutes as submitted by Tom, secretary. Accepted on a voice vote.
PASTOR’s REPORT: Tom asked clarification as to when Rev. Donna’s term as interim pastor expires. Donna said she has committed to serve until the Annual Business meeting in February 2022. She has not decided yet whether to seek reappointment as a regular pastor. The Pastoral Search Committee is in recess but expects to reconvene in November. Sharron, a member of the Search Committee, said the committee’s search is still open, but has advised applicant Rev. David Jolly to consider an offer from another church if he receives one. Rev. Donna will be out of state June 27; Charlene will fill the pulpit on that date. Tom moved acceptance of the pastor’s report as submitted.
TREASURER’s REPORT: Tom moved acceptance of the financial report pending further review. He said he hopes an update on the Benevolence Fund will be available at the next meeting. Rev. Donna and Charlene said the fund has approximately $600.
BUILDING REPORT: Charlene said Gil Jordan has been given a key to the building and will resume being an emergency contact for the alarm company since he lives only 2-3 miles from our property. Cha Cha Squirrel of Port Orange completed a pressure washing that removed mud dauber nests on the building’s exterior. A tarp remains in place along the west wall of the building to reduce erosion. A proposal to buy a multi-use ladder for the church was tabled. An extension ladder may be donated if it can be picked up in DeLand.
SOCIAL DIRECTOR – Sharron Mitchell has agreed to take over social-director duties, now that Bryan Poaches has moved to Orlando. The board set Aug. 1 as a target date for reviving monthly gift-card raffles. A proposal to hold a joint memorial for four recently deceased members has been dropped since relatives apparently have pursued other plans. A proposal for an outdoor craft fair in the fall remains under discussion. Rev. Donna announced she plans to supply home-cooked hot dogs for a July 4 church potluck.
OLD BUSINESS – PHONE -- Board members discussed the costs vs. benefits of our $30-a-month cell phone. Rev. Donna said the phone in recent months has received almost no calls of an urgent nature. Most are from telemarketers. Donna said she believed the church could get along with just our main number (527-5952), which includes voice mail. She said she can check voice mails each evening at 6:30. Other board members can do checks when they are in the church. Tom moved we drop the cell phone service by the next billing cycle (June or July.) Approved by voice vote.
NEW BUSINESS – MASKS – Board members agreed mask wearing in the sanctuary should become voluntary if a person is fully vaccinated. The policy will take effect June 20.
TAX BILL – Rev. Donna shared that the church has been in correspondance with the Internal Revenue Service regarding pastoral iself-employment taxes allegedly due from 2009 onward. For several years, the church hired Assist Inc., a tax management compay in Lubbock Tex., to receive our tax payments and forward them to IRS. At some point, we discontinued use of Assist. Initially IRS wanted $4000-plus but later lowered its figure. More recently, IRS has sent us a letter requiring $1,059 be paid by June 24 to avoid further interest and penalties. Tom moved that we make the payment to IRS but reserve the right to appeal the matter further while we continue a records search. He noted the IRS letter acknowledges that the IR received but then lost at least one of our annual returns. He added the payment should be mailed by registered mail because sometimes IRS loses documents. Tom noted that without the treasurer and bookkeeper present, it’s impossible to pinpoint when taxes became overdue, if they actually did. Motion to pay was approved by a voice vote and further discussion was tabled.
NEIGHBOR – FYI item – Tom and Charlene said the new owner of the former Animal Emergency Clinic, 3500 W. ISB., formerly operated a bottle club on Nova Road, near 8th St., in unincorporated Holly Hill. We have not received any notice that Voluisa County has approved a change of use for the building. Charlene visited the former clinic recently after noticing cars gathering there every evening. Gil J. will continue monitoring our parking lot during nighttime drive-bys. Tom moved that we hold off from filing any complaint with the sheriff or Volusia County’s code enforcement until we have a trespassing problem. Approved by voice vote.
SPECIAL CONGREGATIONAL MEETING – We have three vacancies on the board. Members discussed whether we have enough members willing to fill those vacancies. If so, a special congregational meeting will have to be called. Rev. Donna suggested we revisit the issue in August.
NEXT MEETING – Charlene proposed July 11 for the board’s next regular meeting. Approved by voice vote. Charlene offered a closing prayer and the meeting adjoured 1:55 p.m.
MINUTES – April 11, 2021
Attendees – Board Members: Charlene Rywant, Bryan Poaches, Rev. Donna Choate, Tom Brown. Absent: Judi Omelia, ill. Other attendees: Jeff DeYoung, Lois Klammer, Bonnie Frazee, Dave McBride, and Heather Choate.
Charlene, as acting president, called the meeting to order at 11:45 a.m. in the Conference Room. She offered an opening prayer. Bryan moved acceptance of the agenda. Accepted by a voice vote as submitted. Bryan moved acceptance of the March 7 minutes. Accepted by a voice vote as submitted.
PASTOR – Rev. Donna reported more than 30 people attended our in-person Easter Service. Attendance is gradually growing as the virus situation improves.
VICE PRESIDENT – Charlene notified the board she will be traveling in Georgia for a week. She thanked Bryan, Dave, Teresa Wright and others for their help with worship services. Board members will take turns monitoring the church’s cell phone and alerting the pastor as needed.
TREASURER – Bookkeeper Jeff D. submitted financial reports through March. He noted tithes are lagging expenses as the church continues to experience the impact of Covid virus precautions. There was discussion of our $30-a-month cellphone service. Dave will check on whether we would qualify for a cheaper rate (approx. $14 a month) from Spectrum. It was noted that a recent month of service generated only 7 calls, all of them telemarketing-related. Bonnie said she will update our Morgan Stanley investment account by contacting their office and removing her name as a signer. Discussion of possibly switching the church’s operating accounts from SunTrust to Space Coast Credit Union was tabled because of the treasurer’s illness. Dave noted a change of church locks has been been completed as no expense to the church.
PROPERTY – Dave has brought 18 buckets of dirt to the western side of the church’s slab to fill in a gully caused by gutter spillover. More dirt will be brought to the site, and a tarp laid down as a stopgap remedy. A new refrigerator was purchased from John’s Appliances with special donations and the old one has been hauled away.
Attic stairs: Donna moved that we spend up to $300 to purchase a multi-function ladder to give us safer access to the attic than our cumbersome pull-down staircase. Approved on a voice vote. Char noted one outside light and one office light need replacing.
SOCIAL DIRECTOR: Bryan noted April 25 will be his last regular attendance at worship for a while as he gets resettled in Orlando. At his suggestion, the board tabled plans for a June 5 yard sale and a June 13 raffle. A proposal for a joint memorial service May 29 for four deceased members was moved back to June to allow more time for gauging family interest.; the annual memorial tribute for all deceased members will take place during service May 30. A plan for an outdoor craft fair has been postponed until October; Char said Sharron is working on it.
PASTORAL SEARCH – Rev. Donna, as requested, submitted a written copy of the terms the board approved for her services as interim pastor. Dave moved that the Search Committee remain in recess until the November board meeting. Interim Pastor Rev. Donna will continue leading worship through the summer. Bryan seconded the motion. Approved on a voice vote with Rev. Donna abstaining. With Bryan’s departure, the Search Committee consists of Dave (who will on vacation in Michigan through the summer), Sharron Mitchell and Russell Van Allen.
RESIGNATIONS – Dennis Brooks submitted a written resignation as president, stating the time was right, now that we have regained pastoral leadership again and have made it through the worst of the pandemic. Bryan Poaches submitted his resignation as social director, citing his impending relocation to Orlando. Tom moved that the board accept both resignations with regret and deep gratitude for jobs well done. Rev. Donna seconded, accepted on a voice vote.
BOARD VACANCIES – There was general discussion of how the board will function with three vacancies. Charlene noted Dennis has briefed her on taking over most of his duties, and Rev. Donna will generate PowerPoint files to guide the worship services (slide shows displaying prayers, Scripture, sermon topic and music videos). All board members and other volunteers will help Treasurer Judi with property management tasks. Tom moved that the board invite Sharron Mitchell, our kitchen manager, to take on social director duties as a non-voting member until the 2022 Annual Meeting. Approved by a voice vote.
SUCCESSOR CORPORATION – The church’s present bylaws designate Halifax Urban Ministries (HUM) as the inheritor of the church’s assets if New Church Family members ever voted to disband. Charlene informed the board that another non-profit, DeLand Pride, has asked to be considered as our successor in the event we decide to sever ties with HUM. Tom commented that he felt the request was tremendously premature – first, because the church is nowhere near the point of closing its doors, and, second, he was unaware of any reasons to question HUM’s performance. Charlene moved we table the discussion pending further research.
OUTREACH – Board members noted there has been favorable reaction to our efforts to broadcast our services in live time thru Facebook Live. There was a consensus to continue the effort with volunteers, and to acquire a second tripod to hold a cellphone camera.
MEETING -- With pending changes in board leadership, Charlene moved we waive a monthly meeting in May and schedule the next board meeting for June 6. Approved by a voice vote.
Rev. Donna offered a closing prayer and meeting adjourned 1:58 p.m.
2021 MEMORIAL ROSTER—New Church Family
For our 2021 Memorial Day service on May 30, we pause to remember these 97 departed members and friends who have supported our church since its founding in 1986.
Billie Abner, Bruce Austin, Jeff Allen. Bob Baglia, Bill Ballon, Jim Bebee, Ron Bergeron, Billie Boots, Dennis Blyth, Sally Brayton, Carl A. Brown, Brunhilda, Rev. James Buchanan, Jim Burkhalter, Cecil Burnette.
John Cadzo, Alan Columbia, Barbara Cook, Jerry Corlis, Marty Cox, Helene Coyne, Rick Croley, Ruth Cronk, Jim Cruzan. Tom Damron, Matthew Dilworth, Donnie Dudenhoffer, Kirk Dudenhoffer
Jeff Farance, Bill Finn, Jennifer Garms, Eve & Eric Gillin, Ed Grinsell, Mark Haseman. Hazel Holt, Robert Hunold. Aris Johnson, Fay Kelley, Lowell Kelm, David Kennedy & Bonnie Kennedy, Scott Kline. Walter Konak. Dave Leathers. Gerald Legg, Gloria Lesko, Rev. Jean Levy.
Helen Martell, Gretchen Martin, Gayle Meade, Michael McCray, Rev. Beau McDaniels, Dennis Moreno, Rev. Ted Morgan. William L. Murphy. Donna "Mom" Morris.
Linda Nelson, Gil O'Donnell, Frank Olzewski. Mary Agnes Page. Roy Panella. Rocky Wayne Pickett, Rev. Larry Ponder, Rev. Carol Pyles. Robert Quantino. Bill Rebola. Jack Reed. Tom Reynolds. Charles Rigoll. Rev. John Rogers. Tim Ryan.
Holly Ann Scott, Tony Silvestro. Gene Sims. Sylvine Smith. Michael Smolen. Jack Snyder. Al Steady. Rev. Steve Steele. Mark Sverha. Nicole Turner, Mary Ann Taylor
Will Verick, Clarence Vion, Larry Vion, Jeff Walker, Rev. Tim Ward, Jackson Weaver, Stan Wetherald, Douglas Whiton, Margaret Wickham, Edmond J. Wieckowski, Chuck Wilford, Steve Womack, Ross Wyss, Bill Zimmerman
Scraps of 1900-year-old parchment with a few words from the Old Testament have been found in caves near Jerusalem.
The scores of pieces are the first texts to be added to the ancient Dead Sea Scrolls after 60 years of exploration in the Judean desert. The discovery, announced March 16 by the Israel Antiquities Authority, gives scholars their earliest gllimpse of a few phrases in Greek translations of the Books of Nahum and Zechariah.
Carbon-dating has traced the fragments to the Bar Kokhba Revolt (132–136 A.D)., when Jews resisted the Roman Emperor Hadrian. The fragments, along with coins and arrowheads, were recovered from the Cave of Horrors, where earlier excavations identified remains of dozens of men, women, and children hiding from the Roman army..
“When we think about the biblical text, we think about something very static,” said Joe Uziel, head of the IAA’s Dead Sea Scrolls unit. “It wasn’t static. There are slight differences (among the scrolls), and some of those differences are important.”
The recent IAA investigations at the Cave of Horrors are part of a campaign to survey hundreds of secluded caves in canyons 25 miles south of Jerusalem. The Israeli scholars saying they are trying to head off looting of artifacts in the West Bank area. The project,. which began in 2017, has recovered an exceptionally well-preserved woven basket dating to 10,500 years ago, and the mummified remains of a child who was laid to rest in a cave more than 6,000 years ago.
(This article was condensed from the Biblical Archaeologicial Review.. Issues of the Review are available in the New Church Family library.)
The directors of New Church Family, meeting after service on March 7, voted unanimously to hire Rev. Donna Choate as its interim pastor while it continues seeking a permanent clergy person to lead its ministry.
Rev. Donna previously spent five years in NCF’s pulpit, first as Lay Leader and then as interim pastor and permanent pastor. She stepped down in February 2020 to pursue secular employment. She officially returns to a pastoral role in April and will lead the Easter service April 4. Meanwhile, the church’s Pastoral Search Committee, led by Bryan Poaches, continues accepting applications and reviewing candidates for the permanent position.
Terms approved for the interim position call for a part-time salary of $800 a month for 60 hours of work, including Sunday sermons.
Vice President Charlene Rywant offered the motion to hire Rev. Donna. Voting to approve were Charlene, plus President Dennis Brooks, Social Director Bryan Poaches and Secretary Tom Brown. Treasurer Judi Omelia was absent. The board’s sixth seat is vacant.
In other business, the board:
Heard member reports on a developer’s plan to build a 470-space RV resort on the south side of 92, opposite the church. Vice President Charlene Rywant attended a city hearing on the project and learned planners want the developer to build an access road alongside 92 to prevent traffic back-ups on the highway. The entrance would be somewhat east of the church, closer to the merger of I-4 and US 92 traffic lanes. Dennis Brooks, board president, said the resort, once built, may generate more visitors to to NCF services. He asked the board to think about how best to present nondenominational, GLBT-friendly NCF to tourists as an “all affirming” church.
Received a treasurer’s report showing the church was running a $459 surplus as of Feb. 28.
Scheduled a women’s luncheon of light, wrapped snacks for March 28 and an ice cream & cake social for April 18
Scheduled an Easter egg hunt on the church property for April 4
Designated Merrill Hendler to lead shopping for a refrigerator to replace our current leaking appliance. A total of $965 in donations has been earmarked for the project. Merrill also will recommend whether church members can complete an installation of new locks and re-keying for the church or whether a locksmith needs to be hired
Heard Dave McBride report he is continuing efforts to reduce rainwater erosion along the west side of our building.
The board also met in executive session with the Pastoral Search Committee for about 20 minutes for an update on applicants and a discussion of the background checking process.
ATTENDEES: Board members Dennis Brooks, Charlene Rywant, Judi OMelia, Bryan Poaches, Tom Brown, Rev. William Dunlap. Absent: Keith Henry. Visitors: David McBride, Jeff DeYoung.
CALL to ORDER & REPORTS: Dennis Brooks, president, called the meeting to order at 11:56 a.m. in the Corlis Conference Room, and led opening prayer. Judi moved acceptance of the agenda submitted by Dennis; Bryan seconded. Accepted by a voice vote. Minutes of the November board meeting were corrected (changing a name from Dennis to Bryan). Bryan moved acceptance; Charlene seconded. Accepted by a voice vote.
PASTOR – Rev. Bill handed out a written summary of his church activities October through mid-December.
PRESIDENT – Dennis noted the church’s recent accomplishments: drafting of a new church information brochure by Wayne & Rev. Bill; raising more than $1600 for the Teresa’s Kids Christmas gift-giving project; and delivery of more donated men’s clothing, estimated value of $200, to the First Step homeless shelter. Dennis noted many churches are watching our experience with in-person services, which we resumed in May, so far with no further cases of Covid 19 virus. He also mentioned the Word AIDS Day observance in our parking lot has received pledges of $700 in sponsorships, and a portion may be shared with the church.
VICE PRESIDENT – Char is working on organizing a “phone tree” with each board member assigned several names to contact once a month. This will help us keep in touch with people not attending church on a regular basis. Char moved approval of the project; Judi seconded; approved on a voice voice.
Char said Sharron has volunteered to take over our greeting-card outreach. Quotes received on refrigerators so far have ranged by $279 to $590. Dennis made a motion that we set our target price for a refrigerator at $400, plus $50 more for delivery and removal of the old refrigerator. Judi seconded; approved on a voice vote.
TREASURER – Judi noted she has been filling in as building and grounds manager temporarily. She will contact Keith about completing the re-keying of our locks. Our Dec. 5 Clean-Up Day attracted only two volunteers (Judi & Char). A bicycle run on US 92 that day interfered with access to the church. We will try to organize another clean up project in the new year. Judi cited as our most pressing needs the replacement or repair of our attic stairs, and the need for crushed rock to fill in eroded places along our western wall. Charlene will pursue quotes on both projects. Judi will seek a quote for cleaning out our gutters, saying she may be able to get the gutter work done for $75.
Judi said she is researching the terms of transferring the church’s operating accounts from SunTrust Bank to Space Coast Credit Union, and will keep the board informed. Bryan moved that Judi be given authority to transfer the accounts at hear discretion. Tom seconded; approved by voice vote.
SOCIAL DIRECTOR: Bryan handed out a list of special recognitions coming up for December through April. He moved board approval for two presentations scheduled for January. (UPDATE: Teresa Wright will receive the Human Rights Award, while Slava Melnikov, Charlene Rywant and Lois Klammer will receive monthly Outstanding Service Awards. ) Tom seconded, approved by a voice vote. Bryan said a human rights plaque to be presented in January will cost about $70. Dennis moved that Bryan be reimbursed for the $70 expense; Tom seconded, approved by a voice vote.
2021 BUDGET DRAFT – Bookkeeper Jeff presented, for discussion only, a draft of two 2021 budgets (Operating and Building) that would authorize spending of $31,005, about the same as the 2020 budgets of $30,750. (Actual spending in 2020 year to date has been under $24,000 so far.) He noted the church may run a deficit of $6,000 or more unless it boosts income through tithing and/or fundraisers or other sources. The board’s vote on the budget is scheduled for the January board meeting.
MEETING DATES – Dennis proposed the board meet Jan. 17 to finalize items for the Annual meeting. The Annual Meeting would be held on Feb. 7. Dates were approved on a voice vote. The board discussed which board seats are up for election. Church records will be checked to verify, but it appears at least 3 or 4 of the 6 seats are slated for election or re-election.
REALTOR CALL – Rev. Bill notified the board that a realtor contacted him to discuss a possible purchase of wetlands on the west side of our property. Dennis and Tom will contact the realtor to get details of the request.
ADJOURNMENT – Judi moved to adjourn the meeting at 2:15. Dennis seconded; approved on voice vote. Rev. Bill offered a closing prayer.
NCF Board Meeting – NOV. 8, 2020 – MINUTES
ATTENDEES – Board members Dennis Brooks, Bryan Poaches, Charlene Rywant, Judi OMelia, Tom Brown. (Absent: Keith Henry; Rev. Bill Dunlap on vacation). Observers—David McBride, Merrill Hendler.
CALL to ORDER & REPORTS -- : President Dennis Brooks called the meeting to order in the Corlis Conference room at 12:05 p.m. and offered an opening prayer. An agenda submitted by Dennis was approved on a voice vote. Minutes of the October board meeting were submitted. Dave McB. noted Tom’s name was omitted as an oversight. Judi moved approval of the corrected minutes; Charlene seconded. Accepted on a voice vote.
President’s report – Dennis noted briefly the success of our Sept. 27 Pastoral Installation service. T-shirt and mask sales are continuing. He said Sunday attendance since May has ranged from 13 to 22; weekly cleaning continues.
Vice President’s Report – Char is organizing a “phone tree” so board members can increase contacts with absent church members. She also displayed a blue-jean quilt to be raffled off 2021 to benefit the church.
Treasurer’s Report -- Judi and Char suggested more outreach to the hundreds of people who have contact with us only through Facebook or our newsletter. Tom will work on end-of-the-year request for donations to be posted on Facebook, our web site and Word Up. Char, Slava and Tom are roughing out a video to reinforce the message that our church is open for in-person worship and is continuing many of the ministry activities that we had before the Covid-19 outbreak.
We are publicizing our need for a refrigerator to replace our aging leaky appliance, which is at least 10 years old. So far, we’ve had no offer of a used refrigerator. An anonymous donation of $100 has been earmarked for a refrigerator fund (either used or new). Merrill offered to help shop for a refrigerator if we go that route. Tom recommended that Sharron, our kitchen manager, also be involved.
Judi reported our 2020 budget still has a slight surplus of about $200 as of October, but a stormwater bill and other end-of-year expenses could push us into a small deficit.
Building and Grounds – At Judi’s suggestion, the board set Dec. 5, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. as a Church Clean-up Day, to tackle bigger projects not included in weekly cleaning routines. Approved on a voice vote.
Social Director – Bryan recommended that greeter Gil Jordan be honored with a Monthly Outstanding Service Award for November. He also recommended another church member (to be made public later) be recognized for a Human Rights award in January. Both were approved on voice votes.
Our Christmas season schedule includes DEC. 13 for a grab-bag exchange and a gift-wrapping bee for the Teresa’s Kids project. DEC. 20 will be our Christmas sermon (with candlelight arranged by Rev. Bill.)
Charlene moved we reschedule our Joint Memorial Service in May, moving it to Saturday May 29, 11 a.m. in order to give special honor to our most recently deceased members – Frank Olzewski, Jerry Corlis, Dave Leathers and Jim Cruzan. Rev. Donna will be contacted to see if she wishes to take part (as requested by Frank.) Our other 90-plus deceased members will be remembered and prayed for at our Memorial Sunday service.
Items tabled included lift station maintenance; installation of new door locks and improvements needed in the parking lot.
Judi reported we now have signers authorized for our Morgan Stanley investment account. She is researching a possible transfer of other church accounts from SunTrust to Space Coast Credit Union. She will keep authorized signers Dennis Brooks, Charlene Rywant and Dennis Poaches (plus Judi herself) informed.
The board briefly discussed contacting Spectrum to make sure our WiFI “hot spots” within the church are in working order.
Dec. 6 was set for the next monthly meeting.
ADJOURN -- Meeting adjourned 1:52 p.m., with Tom offering closing prayer.
Here is a list of guest preachers who will lead New Church Family worship services in coming weeks. If you have any suggestions, questions or comments, please contact NCF Board President Dennis Brooks.
Feb 07 Chaplain David Jolly:
Feb 14 Chaplain David Jolly:
Feb 21 Lay Minister Alice Lewis:
Feb 28 Lay Minister Alice Lewis:
Mar 07 Rev. Donna Choate:
Mar 14 Chaplain David Jolly:
Mar 21 Rev. Dr. Alan Austin
Mar 28 Chaplain David Jolly
April 4 EASTER -- Rev. Donna Choate