Vestry News for October, 2015

Highlights of the October 20, 2015 Vestry Meeting

  • The Vestry chose a health care plan to be offered to all our employees in 2016, following the resolution of the General Convention of the Episcopal Church that church employers offer the same health care benefits to all employees, both lay and clerical.
  • Plans are in the works for a parish welcoming event for the Rev. Neal and Carol Goldsborough, to be held in December.  The Vestry also planned to meet with them briefly on Wednesday, October 28.
  • The Senior and Junior Wardens will develop a proposal concerning youth/student representation on the Vestry for consideration at the November meeting.
  • Virginia Ritchie, Co-Chair of the Annual Giving campaign, reported that 24 pledges averaging $3602 had been received as of Oct. 20.  The church website has been updated for pledging.  The Vestry warmly thanked Virginia and her co-chair Matthew Carter for their excellent efforts.
  • The City of Charlottesville Board of Architectural Review has given some initial guidelines for the proposed pollinator garden in front of the church:  it must be on the level rather than on a slope, there should be a walkway through it, and the boxwoods must be preserved.   The Board will not formally consider our plan for approval until November.
  • Pledge receipts for the current year are encouraging. The Finance Committee has begun work on the 2016 budget.
  • The Vestry examined a sample of the new chairs which will replace some of the pews in the Chapel. These will be offered for purchase by parishioners as memorials.

Complete Vestry Minutes and Financial Reports are posted in the Parish Hall.
The next Vestry meeting will be Tuesday, November 16 at 7:00 in the lounge

Treasurer's Report

To:    Vestry
From:    Lynne Weikart, Treasurer
Re:    Monthly Report: September 2015

Three-fourths (75%) of the year is passed. We are on target with most of our revenues. We are over on some categories of expense but that should even out by the end of the year. We remain with a structural deficit budget of almost $20,000. The only reason we may balance the budget at year’s end is not because we received unexpected revenues but because our rector left in August and we are not spending his salary. Our current spending is not sustainable for next year unless we increase our revenues.

2016 Budget
I want to caution the vestry. Many people will come to us with great ideas but it is the Vestry that has fiduciary responsibility to balance our budget. It is very easy to plan ways to spend money; it is much harder to find the dollars to fund those plans.

The trends are not encouraging. These are the actual pledge dollars (recorded in our audits), which we have collected in the past five years -

FY2010 $664,803
FY2011 $648,113
FY2012 $633,789
FY2013 $623,196
FY2014 $591,142

Now for the first time we may have stopped the decline. If (and that is a large if) we can collect all the pledges, we will have $590,000 in pledge revenue, and for the first time in many years turned the corner on pledge revenue. The Vestry deserves a lot of credit for coming this far. However, we are not out of the woods because that stills leaves us with a structural deficit budget of almost $20,000.

In 2016, it will be very difficult to provide large increase in salaries and benefits, no matter how wonderful the description of the programs. If we persist in spending beyond our revenues, we will be in the position of sacrificing our ongoing programs, such as outreach and Sunday and Wednesday night programs. We have already sacrificed needed maintenance.  A Vestry needs to be able to say no.

LW 10/20/2015

Vestry Minutes for October 2015 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for September 2015 PDF file

Financial - Dedicated Funds for September 2015 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for September 2015 PDF file

Vestry News for September, 2015

Minutes of Vestry Meeting of St. Paul’s Memorial Church September 15, 2015

Members present:  Charles Lancaster, Darren Ball, Michele Allen, Stephanie Bolton, Anne Cressin, Vickie Gottlob, Nancy Grable, Paul Legrand, Anne Ribble, Lynne Weikart
Members absent: Daryl Russell, Lloyd Snook
Staff present:  Rev. Elaine Ellis Thomas, John Reid
Parishioners present:  Leslie Middleton, Virginia Ritchie

The Senior Warden called the meeting to order at 7:03 p.m.  Anne Cressin, Vestry Co-Chaplain, led the opening prayer and reflection.


•    The minutes from the Vestry Meeting of  August 18, 2015, had been circulated electronically and were approved.
•    The Vestry expressed thanks for her faithful service to Register Nancy Grable, who has resigned from the Vestry in order to serve on the Rector Search Committee.
•    The Vestry affirmed the appointment of Vickie Gottlob to serve as Register.
•    The Vestry passed a motion encouraging the Creation Stewards to move forward with the plans for a pollinator garden and to return with more details concerning costs and timing.
(See discussion below.)


•    On behalf of the Creation Stewards (formerly the Green Team), Leslie Middleton presented a proposal for the creation of a garden attractive to bees, butterflies, and other pollinators,  to be located on both sides of the steps in front of the church’s main entrance, coming up from the lower retaining wall to the first terrace, with a width of twenty feet on each side.  The garden would be an attractive demonstration of St. Paul’s commitment to the environment and could involve many members of our diverse community, including (but not limited to) children, youth, and University students. A preliminary estimate of the cost for plants and installation of the garden is $2000 for plants plus additional costs for labor.  Costs would be covered by dedicated funds, and volunteer labor would be used as well.  John Reid suggested that the design should conform to the symmetry that governs the design of the church from the sidewalk all the way to the high altar. He stated that this change will need approval from the City of Charlottesville. The Vestry discussed the appearance of the garden over four seasons and the importance of boxwoods to the traditional look of the church (the proposal would involve the removal of some boxwoods).  If permission is obtained from the city and the Vestry approves the plan, the Creation Stewards may prepare the soil this fall with planting in the spring. 

•    Virginia Ritchie, Co-Chair of this year’s Annual Giving Campaign, presented plans for a three stage appeal for pledges, first to the Vestry (immediately), next to leaders of parish ministries in a letter to go out October 5, and finally to other parishioners on October 12.         A freshly designed pledge card will include weekly, monthly, and yearly options. The contents of the mailing will be kept to a minimum, with most information going out at church or on-line. There will be a cookie swap on October 18 at 4 PM, to be followed by the 5:30 service, supper, and music and entertainment for all ages. Pledge cards will be gathered on November 11. The Vestry will write thank you notes to pledgers. Virginia reported that the follow-up procedure for contacting non-pledgers has yet to be determined, since telephoning is not very effective.

•    Anne Ribble reported on behalf of the Outreach Committee that an additional $500 has been allocated to the Alliance for Interfaith Ministries from Jim Richardson’s discretionary fund. The Outreach Ministry Fair will be held in the Parish Hall on October 4. Displays from agencies supported by St. Paul’s will be ready after the 8:00 service, and representatives of the agencies will be present from 11:15 to 12:15. A Ministry Minute will be devoted to Outreach on October 4. The Outreach Committee is considering the possibility of a mission trip for the Youth Group (led by Joe Lenow and suitable for the age of the group), as well as a mission trip for adults with the Haiti Mission Foundation. The latter sponsors teams including both medical and non-medical volunteers for work at clinics. Volunteers pay all their own expenses. The Vestry encouraged the Outreach Committee to continue researching these proposals.

•    Charles Lancaster reported that he and Elaine have discussed the question of adding a student representative to the Vestry. Charles suggested that a small group of Vestry members consider the question.  Elaine suggested that we might amend our rules to allow a student to serve a one-year term. Darren pointed out that during the past year we have included more student input to the Vestry. No action was taken.

•    Parish Administrator John Reid reported that two new chairs for the Chapel will arrive by October 7. Work continues on signs and the lift. Heavy rain last week led to an overflowing gutter, ceiling damage, and flooding in the Chancellor Street hallway. The gutter system needs to be redesigned. There is a safety issue with a person who has been hostile and threatening to staff and others in our parking lot. Residents of Canterbury House have been cautioned. This person is known to police. Our sexton has seen him in the building and will swear out a warrant against him as a trespasser. The Vestry also discussed the safety issue of unattended children in the building.

•    Associate Rector Elaine Ellis Thomas reported that Move-In Day and the welcoming barbecue attracted large numbers of students. The August 30 launch of Adult Forum was enthusiastically received, as was Convocation Sunday with Grace Aheron preaching. The Parish Picnic was a great success, and the youth group is increasing in numbers, with parish young people inviting their friends. Elaine also reported that St. Paul’s hosted the first monthly meeting this year of Region XV Clericus, a gathering of clergy from this region of the diocese. The Vestry thanked Elaine for her inspiring leadership as we move into the full swing of fall activities.

•    Senior Warden Charles Lancaster reported that the Vestry nominating committee needs to begin work. The committee will consist of the outgoing vestry class plus other members to be determined. Charles asked for e-mail nominations for an at-large member.

•    Junior Warden Darren Ball thanked the Vestry for its hard work in the selection of a Search Committee at the August retreat. Everyone who was under consideration for the committee has been contacted. He asked that Vestry members let him know if anyone else needs a follow-up. Darren thanked Michele Allen and Kathleen Lovett for their work in organizing the Parish Picnic. He distributed pledge cards to the Vestry and asked that they be returned by October 1, if possible with an increased pledge. The goal is to include in the Annual Giving information a mention of the overall percentage increase in the Vestry’s pledge.

•     Anne Ribble reported that a considerable number of parishioners had signed up for foyers.  There will be another opportunity to sign up on Sunday, September 20.

•    Treasurer Lynne Weikart reported that the total pledges for 2015 now amount to more than $590,000 and that there are currently 246 pledgers.  She is beginning to include definitions of terms in each monthly financial report to the Vestry, with the goal of creating a complete handbook of financial terms.

The Vestry went into closed session at 9:06 PM to consider candidates for Interim Rector.
The meeting closed with prayer at 9:30.

Respectfully submitted,
Vickie Gottlob

Treasurer's Report

September 14, 2015
To:    Vestry
From:    Lynne Weikart, Treasurer
Re:    Monthly Report: August 2015

Two thirds (66.7%) of the year is now passed. We are on target with most of our revenues. We are over on some categories of expenses. We may end up with a positive ledger this year due to the growing accrual because of our rector leaving. But the current spending is not sustainable for the future unless we dramatically increase our pledges and other revenues.


Our plate offerings are up to 71% of our budget and the pledge payments are on schedule. We budgeted $590,000 for pledges and we now have pledged $590,272. We should be very proud of that number. As of August 2015 we have 246 pledgers with an average pledge of $2,400 and a median pledge of $1,350. Although we have fewer pledges than a year ago (265), the average and median pledges are higher (only $2,100 and $1,248 last year respectively).

Our rents have caught up and are now on schedule except for the rent for this building which is behind. We budgeted $17,000 and we have only collected $6,262. However, the fall season for weddings is upon us so we are hopeful that our building rent revenue will increase. The other revenues that are slow to come in are from the alumni. We should see that number shift next month as alumni receive our request for contributions.


In August we distributed $25,000 in grants to nonprofits throughout our larger community outside our church. Although we are enthusiastic about the grant giving program, it is doubtful that we can continue current spending levels in future years unless we achieve our goal of increasing and diversifying our revenues.  Our salaries are in line except for lay ministry salaries that will be over budgeted for the reminder of the year due to hiring our new youth coordinator. Our program expenses which reflect our Sunday and Wednesday night programs will remain over-budget for the year.  We might want to rethink how we are going to pay for those programs next year. Utilities are usually over budget at this time of year but since we need air conditioning less and less as fall comes, we may be within budget by the end of the year.

In terms of dedicated funds, as a reminder, we have budgeted about $20,000 for the transition. The search committee expects to use that in the coming months.  We replenish several funds through endowment interest each year: Memorial Fund, Choral Fund, Organ Fund, Flower Fund and Salvation Army Fund. We have almost $68,000 left in the maintenance fund which comes from gifts for projects this fall: the elevator and sewer repairs. Anything left over will be deposited in the transition fund.

Internal Controls: The topic today is revenue description as of 2015.

Plate Offerings Account: Cash and checks collected from all three services which are not identified as pledged.

Pledge Payments Account:  All cash and checks received from parishioners who have signed up as pledgers unless the cash and checks are designated for another party, such as the Haiti Relief, etc.

Endowment Income: The church has an endowment of $1.5 million operated by a separate entity with a board appointed by the vestry. We receive a portion of the interest and dividends from that endowment- $69,867 this year.

Givers of Record: If we receive large checks ($1,000 or more) from people who are not pledgers, we record their donation as a giver of record.

Wheat Fund: This is a small, separate endowment fund that existed prior to the establishment of the endowment fund.

Diocese of Va. – Budget: Each year we receive a donation from the Diocese of Virginia.

Bldg. Rent & Other Income: Although we lend out our church to many groups without payment, we do charge for weddings and sometimes various receptions.

Parishioner/Mission Revenue: This account is a pass through, such as collecting funds for kids’ backpacks before school, earthquake relief in Haiti, etc.

Canterbury/Skinner Alumni: This is a new category as we seek to diversify our revenue streams and actively recruit contributions from former UVA students.

Rental Incomes:

IMPACT: this organization pays us $4,800 to rent office space.
Canterbury Rent: The rent from students in the Canterbury House is $28,000.
Rent: Booker House: We receive $18,213 from UVA that rents the Booker House.
Rent: Chancellor St Daycare Coop: We receive $7,670 from a daycare organization that rents our space.

Interest Income: We receive a small amount, less than $100, in interest from our various bank accounts.

Vestry Minutes for September 2015 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for August 2015 PDF file

Financial - Dedicated Funds for August 2015 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for August 2015 PDF file

Vestry News for August, 2015

Date: August 18, 2015

To: Vestry

From: Lynne Weikart, Treasurer

Re: July Treasurer’s Report

Seven months have passed in this fiscal year and to date we have spent slightly more than we have received in revenue. Given that it is the summer when many parishioners are away, we are right on schedule. We will build up accruals for the remainder of the fiscal year because we stopped paying Jim Richardson’s salary starting August 1. As a result, I think we can end the year in the black, assuming pledges keep coming and the alumni send in their financial support. However, we have to be very careful that there are no extra expenses this fall. It will cut into our cushion if there are more expenses than we anticipated.


Our plate offerings are up to 64% of what we budgeted. Given that only 58% of the year has passed, that is a very good sign. Our pledge payments are rolling in at a hefty 60.2%. We don’t yet know what the alumni drive will yield. And the building rent comes in during the fall. Our Canterbury rents are low at only, 49.4%, but all else is fine.


Our salaries are slightly over budget to date using 61.4% of our resources. Once again it is our health insurance costs that drive us to despair. We have already spent 68.8% of what we have budgeted and while that may drop a bit, it is an upwardly mobile expense. Utilities and maintenance are both over budget, so we need to reconsider what we are budgeting for next year. And we have the program line which includes Sunday and Wednesday night dinners. We have budgeted $8500 for the year and have spent 95% of that and we have five months left in the fiscal year.

Internal Controls

We have taken out short-term disability insurance for all full-time staff and part-time staff over 20 hours a week. It costs $1200 a year. Although the Diocese provides disability insurance for clergy, there is none for staff; that is up to the individual churches. I think that this is a good investment for St. Paul’s as an institution and for our hard working staff.

Next Year

Next year will be challenging. It is commonly believed that churches take in less revenue in the midst of a transition. We will be out to prove that belief wrong by asking our members to get involved in the annual giving campaign which will start up in September.


I also want to share with some data about our attendance. Below you will see trends in attendance from the annual parochial report which we file with the diocese each year. You will see that church attendance has been declining since 2001 although we have stabilized at about 340 in the last few years. Our attendance decline is consistent with other mainstream Protestant churches that face declining enrollment in the age of secularism. We have made a good start in turning this around with church programs and services that people need and appreciate. Next year we can increase our attendance if we continue with our excellent programs.


Trends in Attendance – Parochial Report

St Paul's Memorial



Sunday Attend.



































Vestry Audited Financial Statement for 2014

Vestry Minutes for August 2015 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for July 2015 PDF file

Financial - Dedicated Funds for July 2015 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for July 2015 PDF file

Vestry News for June, 2015

Midyear Financial Report to the Parish as of June 30th, 2015

This year has been difficult financially although we are now seeing positive trends. The hard work of the staff, vestry and parishioners has resulted in a substantial increase in pledges and in pledge revenues.  We budgeted $590,000 in pledges and we now have $586,000 in pledges which is a major increase from where we started ($544,000). We have taken in almost 55.71% of pledge revenues. Plate offerings are also up - We have collected 60.85% of the $34,000 in plate offering.

The overall financial strategy this year is to balance the budget by diversifying the revenue streams. To this end the letters to the Canterbury Alumni will soon go out and these revenues will be a welcomed addition to our revenue stream. A long-term strategy is increasing our planned giving which has already begun under John Reid’s leadership.

I want to thank all of you who have given so generously this year. We delivered and participated in excellent programs this year and provided many needed services. In the midst of the transition to a new rector, we must keep those pledges coming as we focus on welcoming new people and developing a strong pledge drive for next year. The financial reports can be found on St. Paul’s website.

Lynne Weikart

Vestry Minutes for June 2015 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for June 2015 PDF file
Financial - Dedicated Funds for June 2015 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for June 2015 PDF file

Vestry News for May, 2015

Highlights of the May 12, 2015 Vestry Meeting              

Skinner Scholars Daniel Wise, Lex Booth, Paul Gleason and Richard Potter presented the results of a survey they conducted with 15 UVA Undergraduate and 16 UVA Graduate students. They wove in the findings of national studies as well. You might want to engage Daniel in discussion about what he learned. Bottom line, here at St. Paul’s our way forward with UVA students includes providing a “radical welcome”, continuing to engage in social justice initiatives, supporting same-sex marriage, placing particular focus on first-years, bringing student and parish groups together, continuing and growing evening services and communal dinners.

Gillian Breckenridge reviewed our approach to student ministry over the last two years. Our returning undergraduates have increased from 6 in 2013 to 26 in 2015. Attendance at the Sunday 5:30 service has increased by 34% over the last five years. The Young Women’s Prayer Group is strong with effective leaders emerging. The Young Men’s Prayer Group is growing. Their approach is to invite students to a place where they can connect spiritually.

The Welcome Commission is moving ahead with plans for clear, consistent church signage and more organized materials for newcomers and pews.

Treasurer Lynne Weikart reported that “we are not out of the woods yet, but our budget deficit is much better.” Our combined budget and pledge deficit of $64,000 has been reduced to $30,000. Thank you to all.  Jim Richardson spoke about the establishment of the Alumni Episcopal Canterbury at UVA Fund. Janice Dean, Hilary Smith, Sandy Gilliam and David Poist have been named honorary co-chairs. Their focus will be on support for student ministry.

The Vestry voted to appoint Paula Kettlewell as Associate Rector Emeritus. Paula has been advised so it is appropriate for all of us to reach out to her and thank her for her wonderful contributions to St. Paul’s.

Jim Richardson will be away from May 19-June 4 and then again from June 24-July 6 to attend the General Convention in Salt Lake City. On the agenda for the convention is the election of a new Presiding Bishop and a review of proposals for a Same-sex Marriage Rite.

The next Vestry Meeting will take place at 7:00pm on June 23, 2015.

More detailed versions of the latest approved Vestry Meeting Minutes and the Treasurer’s Report are posted on the Vestry Bulletin Board in the Parish Hall.

Vestry Minutes for May 2015 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for April 2015 PDF file
Financial - Dedicated Funds for April 2015 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for April 2015 PDF file

Vestry News for January, 2015

The Vestry reviewed the numerous vibrant ministries of St. Paul’s during their retreat January 30 – February 1.  We have so many wonderful ministries and have much to celebrate as a community of faith, grace and intention.  As a result we are called to welcome new people, invite new people and create meaningful ways for members and newcomers to grow in their connection to our great church.

During the retreat the Vestry determined that the focus project for 2015 will be to work on improving our welcome to those attending St. Paul’s for the first time.  This work will be driven by a newly formed Welcoming Commission focusing on the ministry of hospitality and invitation.  We will take measures to help newcomers have an experience that leaves them wanting to learn more about this wonderful faith community.  We will help them find reason to return for a 2nd, 3rd, 4th time and to discover that they have found a home in our parish.  For more information please contact Darren Ball, Junior Warden, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Vestry Agenda for January 27, 2015 PDF file
Vestry Minutes for December 16, 2014 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for December 2014 PDF file
Financial - Dedicated Funds for December 2014 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for December 2014 PDF file

Vestry News for December, 2014

The Vestry met on November 18, 2014 at 7 p.m. 

We were excited to welcome the Reverend Elaine Thomas to her first Vestry meeting.  In her report, Pastor Elaine shared with us that she is doing a “listening tour” with many parish leaders to learn more about the university community, pastoral care needs, newcomers programs, outreach activities, liturgy/music, and Christian education consistent with St. Paul’s Be Bold long-range vision. 

We addressed several business items including:

•    The Vestry reviewed the Treasurer’s report prepared by Jack Bocock.  As of October 31, our year-to-date income is $ 612,751 or 72% percent of the projected income for 2014.  Our year-to-date expenses are $728,463 or 85% percent of budgeted expenses for the year. Overall, income was considerably down for the month though expenses were slightly under budget.  The net result was a monthly loss of $16,700, bringing our year-to-date deficit to $115,700.  If pledges are fulfilled as promised, we will make up this deficit and the budget will balance at year end. 

•    Daryl Russell gave a report on the Annual Giving Campaign.  As of the date of this writing, we have received 155 pledges for a total of $402,830 for 2015, compared to 190 pledges for a total of $454,492 at this point last year.  Annual pledges fund the church’s operation and support all that the Church does in its many ministries.  At the December meeting, the Vestry will formulate and approve the annual operating budget based on total number of pledges received for 2015.  Pledging is critically important because the vestry is committed to a balanced budget. 

•    The Vestry approved a resolution for the clergy’s 2015 housing allowances that are part of their total annual compensation package. 
We were updated on the activities of various Vestry committees, including:
•    Darren Ball gave a Worship Task Force update.  The Worship and Building Task Forces met on November 9 and agreed to pursue purchasing a sample chapel chair. 

•    John Reid provided an update on the Building Task Force.  The kitchen project is nearing completion with the installation of cabinets, shelving and storage spaces.  We are ordering a new compressor for the Flower Guild’s cooler to replace the broken one.  The new bathroom is functional and in working order.  We are also focusing on posting church signage and making additional repairs to the organ. 

The next Finance and Operations meeting will be on Monday, December 15th at 7 p.m. in the Library.  The next Vestry meeting will be on December 16th at 7 p.m. in the Lounge. The primary agenda topic at both meetings will be the development and approval of the parish’s 2015 budget.  Vestry meetings are open to all parishioners with the exception of closed sessions to address staffing and sensitive legal issues.

Vestry Agenda for December 16, 2014 PDF file
Vestry Minutes for November 18, 2014 PDF file
Financial - Balance Sheet for November 2014 PDF file
Financial - Dedicated Funds for November 2014 PDF file
Financial - Income and Expenses for November 2014 PDF file
Financial - Treasurer's Report for November 2014 PDF file

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