Church Board Minutes 2022 03 03

                                                Church Board Minutes 2022 03 03

Bethel College Mennonite Church Board Minutes
Pending approval at April 2022 Board Meeting

Our faith in a God of love leads us, by the power of the Spirit, to follow Jesus in doing justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly with God.

Board Members Present:  Elizabeth Schmidt (moderator), Ada Schmidt-Tieszen (moderator elect), Judy Friesen, John Kliewer, Lois Preheim, Adam Robb, Bill Swartley, Margaret Toews
Board Members not present:  Glen Ediger, Cynthia Linscheid, Dale Schrag
Staff Present: Mike Claassen (Finance Manager), Nathan Koontz (pastor), Renee Reimer (pastor), Todd Schlosser (Interim Pastor)
Staff not present:  
Others attending: Heather Zerger

1. Welcome and Centering Prayer – Moderator Elizabeth Schmidt opened the meeting with a time of silence followed by a prayer.

2. Consensus Approval – Consent Agenda – Minutes of the February 3 board meeting, the February 15 board special meeting, on-line minutes of commissions and committees, and pastors’ reports were approved by consensus.

3. Action – Financial Report – February 2022 – Michael Claassen, Finance Manager, reported no changes from the written report and that February budget expenditures tracked as expected.  Income is less than expectations. Bill Swartley moved to approve the Financial Report and John Kliewer seconded. The motion carried.

4. Action – Facilities Committee proposal for exterior painting of church – The Facilities committee asked the Church Board to pass a motion to approve a recommendation to paint the exterior of the church during 2022.  The motion is as follows: That the Church Board approves the recommendation by the Facilities Committee to accept the bid submitted by Red Truck House Painting, 201 W. 27th Street, North Newton, KS, to paint the exterior of Bethel College Mennonite Church during the year of 2022 for the bid of $25,600.00. Ada Schmidt-Tieszen made the motion. Judy Friesen seconded. The motion carried.

5. Inclusion Task Group – John Kliewer presented a summary of four resolutions which will be voted on at an MC-USA Consultation held in Kansas City on May 27-30.  The resolutions on the agenda of the Consultation are 1) a Resolution to rescind MC-USA membership guidelines which specifically alienate the LGBTQ+ community; 2) a resolution on justice; 3) a resolution on accessibility, and 4) the Resolution on Repentance and Transformation. This last resolution includes a formal apology to the LGBTQ+ community for years of exclusion and discrimination and specifically provides for membership of individuals who identify as LGBTQ+ on various committees and boards. BCMC joined the Supportive Communities Network last year and representatives from BCMC will be attend the Consultation. Elizabeth read a statement prepared by John on behalf of the Inclusion Task Group that summarizes BCMC’s history leading to its current position on resolutions 1) and 4).  The statement received consensus approval from the board to share with the congregation in the next “Kaleidoscope” newsletter.  

6. Board handbook review to check for updates needed – Judy Friesen agreed to work on updating the Board handbook with the name change from Pony Express to bcmcXpress.  Judy will also work on updating the Board handbook to include the Peace Garden policy.  Adam Robb agreed to work on finding the relevant section of the handbook to add the Abuse Prevention and Response Policy.

7. Pastoral Transition – The board received a revised proposal from Credence & Company of Kitchener, Ontario. Bill Swartley moved to accept the revised proposal of $16,300 and Margaret Toews seconded. The motion carried. Elizabeth Schmidt will contact Western District to inquire about applying for financial assistance that is available for congregations.  Elizabeth will also communicate our approval to Credence so the consulting process can begin. Discussion continued around the need to engage the congregation in the consulting process. Points of discussion included:

– BCMC must be an active participant in developing our vision and in carrying it out.-

– The consulting process is a framework only.

– Congregants must do the work now and after the consultation is over to carry the visions forward.

A Kindom report will be made on March 13 share the board action of engaging a consulting firm. Adam will update the news item in the regular BCMC email which is sent out on Wednesdays.  Judy Friesen, Ada Schmidt-Tieszen and Margaret Toews are planning to attend the Center for Anabaptist Leadership & Learning event at Hesston College on March 25-26, Where have All the Pastors Gone? 

Elizabeth introduced the idea of a Prayer Team which has been beneficial for other churches during the pastoral transition process.  Specific prayer requests could be made throughout the transition process.  Discussion followed.   An early task of the consulting process is to establish a Reference Group.  Could the Prayer Team be a link between that group and the congregation?

8. SCRC Report on pastor evaluations – Heather Zerger joined the meeting to take any questions about the SCRC report on the pastoral evaluations of Nathan Koontz and Renee Reimer.  There were no questions from the board.  Those who completed the survey strongly affirmed the ministry of both Nathan Koontz and Renee Reimer.   Elizabeth Schmidt thanked Heather and the SCRC for their work and Pastor Nathan and Pastor Renee for their pastoral ministry.                   

9. Executive Session: Entered at 8:56 pm.  Closed at 9:28 pm.

10.Meeting adjourned at 9:30 pm. 

Submitted by Margaret Toews, Clerk

Draft – Church Board Minutes 2022 03 03.docx