Management Board Meeting Report: Mission Possible, Communications, Finances, and Annual Conference

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Board Approves Advocacy Statement; Updates on Mission Possible, Communications and Finances; Annual Conference Begins


The Foundry Management Board, a nine-person elected group, meets monthly to discuss and make decisions concerning the management of the church. Any member of Foundry is welcome to attend these meetings.


Members present at the May 23, 2017, meeting were Leigh Carter, Louise Franklin, Matt Hansen, Sam Kilpatrick, Doug Steele, Samantha Sweeney, P.J. Taylor, Dan Vock, and Gwen Williamson. 


Also present were Pastors Ginger Gaines-Cirelli and Dawn Hand, Al Hammer, and members of the Strategic Communications Ministry Team — Suzanne Anthony, Barbara Cambridge, Sigma Chang, Mike Hacker, Carol Hammer, David Lanford, Elder Wellborn, Stan Wellborn and Drew Williams.


Annual Conference

The Baltimore-Washington Annual Conference will be May 31 through June 2 in Washington, D.C. Ginger will be preaching at the first service on June 1, a memorial service. 


The clergy session will May 31, which is when the Board of Ordained Ministry report of candidates approved to be commissioned/ordained is presented. Foundry’s pastors are in discussion about how to respond to the May 10 decision regarding the commission of T.C. Morrow. Jan Lawrence is coordinating the lay response, in which Foundry members can participate.


Pastor Ginger Gaines-Cirelli also reported that she has been asked to write a book this year on Sacred Resistance, as a resource for other congregations.


Mission Possible Report

Mission Possible Phase II Co-chair Paul Hazen reported 180 pledges, totaling roughly $2.3 million, which is 140 pledges below Phase I’s final number. The Phase II team continues to encourage pledges.


A memo on the coffee house ministry outlined a May 8 meeting with the Building Team and consultants from Street Sense, Building Partnership, and ACG Architects.  The Building Team for asked authorization to:


1. Development of rendering of the interior and exterior spaces to present to the congregation, zoning and historic preservation officials. 

2. Conduct a zoning code analysis.

3. Engage a broker to seek a coffee house operator.

4. Detail cost estimate of upgrades for the coffee house space.

5. Describe potential coffee house programming to share with the congregation and potential operators. 

6. Extend Whitney Kinsey’s contract as Project Manager.


The board asked Paul to provide estimated costs for each of the items listed.


Strategic Communications Ministry Team Report

The Strategic Communications Ministry Team report included website objectives, features to be added, and requirements for content, design and management. The team emphasized the need for a digital content manager on staff — someone whose first priority is reviewing, updating, and maintaining the website every day, as well as coordinating social media and print communications.


The majority of board members agreed that a communications director is needed and would be helpful but questioned the availability of funding for additional staff. Matt Hansen asked for the team to put dollar figures next to each proposed need and supplement it with data, as well as provide data on Foundry’s digital components and goals for the future. 


Louise Franklin urged the team to develop a strategy, particularly one that can be “phased in,” in the meantime. She said the board will discuss the proposal as part of next year’s budget discussions in September/October. Ginger said she will keep working with the board to determine how to strategically and faithfully move on it.


Treasurer’s Report

Foundry’s 2017 General Fund Budget of $2,257,686 in expenses and $2,044,784 in revenue includes a deficit of $212,901. Questions about the negative $23,561 in the Building Support account stems from costs for air handlers, which were due to be replaced, and fire alarm repairs, for which the church may be reimbursed. As of May 22, year-to-date operating income of $718,692 fell short of year-to-date expenses of $736,242, resulting in a deficit of $17,550.


A draft 2018 budget will be presented to the Finance Committee at its Sept. 19 meeting. A public budget workshop is planned for Oct. 3.


Advocacy Team Statement 

The board unanimously approved by voice vote the following statement of reconciliation, which was approved by the LGBTQ Advocacy Team on May 16 and will be publicized during this year’s Pride celebration: 


Foundry United Methodist Church strives to be an inclusive congregation committed to the reconciliation of all people to God and to one another through Jesus Christ. We believe the Holy Spirit dwells in all, and we invite all people to share our faith, our community life and our ministries. We celebrate diversity; whether you identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, straight, queer or any other identity, we affirm you and we believe God does the same. To all, regardless of age, race, color, ethnicity, immigration status, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, economic condition, or physical or mental ability, we proclaim: God loves you, and we love you. We welcome you, and we invite you to join us on our shared journey.


Submitted by the Strategic Communications Ministry Team