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Vestry minutes for February 9, 2022

Updated: Aug 7, 2022

Grace Episcopal Church

Martinez, California

Meeting by Video Conference

Minutes of Vestry Meeting

February 9, 2022

Present: The Reverend Dr. Deborah White (Rector), Amelia Brooks (Sr. Warden), Liz

Charlton, Chandra Damele, Amy Eudy, Ann Fisher, Dru Grissom, Sally Hanson, Jane Ramsey,

Absent: Shannon Kleinschmit (Jr. Warden),

Guests: LJ Jennings of Bay Area Community Benefit Organization; the Rev. Columba

Salamony, Marj Leeds, Treasurer; Sarah Williams, Parish Administrator, Jennifer Sabroe.

M/S/C denotes motion made, seconded and carried. The names following M/S/C in parenthesis denote the persons who made the motion and seconded.

Call to Order and Opening Prayer. The meeting was called to order at 6:33 p.m. and led in

prayer by Rev. Deb.

Bible Study. The group read and discussed Matthew 11:25-30.

Upper Lot

The Rev. LJ Jennings of the Bay Area Community Benefit Organization ( introduced himself and the organization. He is a pastor with a background in banking and real estate. BACBO focuses on housing for vulnerable groups. They assist churches who want to turn their extra land or buildings into a resource for assisting the community while helping to support their budgets. His organization insists on helping the churches to retain their land and gain benefit from any project built, rather than simply selling it or allowing development that doesn’t help the church. They can help in various ways, depending on what the church chooses. Some organizations want to build a project that supports their existing ministry to the community; some prefer to provide only the land and not manage a project themselves.

The Vestry asked questions and discussed the possibilities. They agreed to get back to Pastor Jennings after further discernment.

There was further discussion about returning to the idea of putting “tiny homes” for formerly unhoused individuals on the Upper Lot. Rev. Deb reminded the group that she has had conversations with several groups interested in doing that but that the congregation at large has not been supportive of this idea. She will forward the information for these groups to Amy Eudy, Chair of the Upper Lot Committee, who will see about inviting them to speak to the vestry.

Treasurer’s Report

Marj gave some background on how the finances of the church work, and explained to the

Vestry how she organizes things. She listed routine tasks that she does every month, and gave a guided tour of the monthly financial reports she will give.

She introduced a proposed 2022 budget. It was M/S/C (Liz Charlton/Ann Fisher) to accept the 2022 as presented.

Consent Agenda. It was M/S/C (Amelia Brooks/Amy Eudy) to approve the consent agenda

items: Minutes of the regular January Vestry meeting, minutes of special meeting, January 22; minutes of special meeting, January 23; Rector’s report; Treasurer’s Report, Senior Warden’s Report.

Ministry Liaisons for 2022. The vestry discussed the various ministry areas and assigned

responsibility as follows:

Outreach (Service) Dru

Worship and Liturgy Sally

Welcoming Ann

Education Chandra (As Chandra had to leave the meeting early, Reverend Deb will talk to

her and make sure she is okay with accepting this role)

Parish Life Amy, Ann

Pastoral Care Liz, Jane

Stewardship Jane

Building and Grounds

The outgoing Junior Warden, Liz Charlton, reported on the effort to explore reasons for what seem like extra-large water bills. She and Jimmy Maniatis first ruled out a water leak and then put locks on outdoor hose bibbs in case any outsiders are helping themselves to water. Liz kept track of water meter readings over a number of weeks and compared them to the billing, and it may be that the water company has our meter mis-classified and is therefore billing us for much more water than our meter actually shows.

Lights in the parking lot are out and need work, and there is a plan and a donation for having this work done.

Rev. Deb proposed that Grace restrict contracts to companies that require workers to be

vaccinated, so as to avoid having unvaccinated vendors or contractors on the premises.

It was M/S/C (Jane Ramsey/Amelia Brooks) that contractors and workers performing work at the church be fully vaccinated and boosted.

Time and day of Vestry meetings this year: The vestry agreed to change to second Tuesdays

of the month, 6:30 p.m.

Vestry Retreat Rev. Deb asked vestry members to email her with their availability for March

12, March 26, or April 2, so we can have a retreat that everyone can attend.

Security Training at Grace Rev. Deb mentioned that the Diocese has recommended that

churches increase their security measures. She shared some of her thoughts about safety on the premises, including during worship services and at other times.

COVID protocol: We have no plan to change it at the moment.

DISMISSAL Rev. Columba dismissed the meeting at 8:54 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Sarah Williams

Parish Administrator

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