Annual Meeting 2016

Dear Faithful of St John of the Ladder,

St John of the Ladder will hold its annual meeting this coming Sunday (February 7) following coffee hour (at approximately 12:15 PM) in the nave of the church. The purpose of the meeting is as follows: to elect new members for the Parish Council, delegates for the upcoming DOS Assembly, and parish auditors; to discuss and approve a budget for 2016; and to discuss the status of our building project.

We need to elect five new members to the Parish Council. A recommendation will be made that we adopt a "staggered" term system for Parish Council (as allowed in the DOS Uniform Parish Bylaws).  Nominees should be active members of the parish, committed to their faith and eager to serve the needs of our parish community.

In addition to those who will simply be willing to serve on the parish council, we especially need someone with the skills and acumen to consider taking on the role of treasurer. Brent Kaseman has served admirably in this position for several years (and is willing to serve one more year if elected), but would at minimum like to start familiarizing someone with the position with an eye toward a transition sometime in the coming year.

Please find linked the following documents:

  1. Agenda
  2. 2015 Minutes
  3. Treasurer's Report
  4. Capital Campaign Update
  5. Proposed Budget (see notes below)
  6. Clergy Compensation (see notes below)

We will try to conduct the meeting as efficiently as possible, while still giving substantive time to the agenda items. Our reported membership this year is 95 adults. We will need a quorum of at least 48 in attendance to hold the annual meeting.

In Christ,

Fr Marcus

Notes on the 2016 Proposed Budget and Clergy Compensation

4. Proposed 2016 Budget

For the proposed budget, we have simply followed our usual budgeting format, with one small "twist". Since we had a very good year in terms of general fund income (the second in a row), we have put our projected income for 2016 at $200k (an amount that we consider difficult to consistently maintain in our present location). Having done that, we have not significantly changed any of the expense categories except for the Bldg Fund/Mortgage Payment, which we have increased to our benchmark of 25% of Income (in this case, $50k). All other categories were adjusted to reflect any expected changes based on the 2015 actual budget, but the differences over 2015 are negligible. Salaries were "frozen". In effect, this puts all extra funds into the building program. It also leaves us with a projected >$17k surplus for 2016. Paradoxically, we consider this "surplus" budget to reflect that fact that we are really not able to grow much more in our present location. We therefore continue to take a cautious approach to budgeting.

DOS Budgeting Benchmarks for Missions and Parishes (as a % of Total Income)

Clergy and Administrative Compensation: 50%

DOS Tithe: 10%

Mortgage/Building Fund (or Debt Reductions): 25%

All Other Categories: 15%

5. 2016 Clergy Compensation

Clergy Compensation remains essentially the same as last year, save for reflecting the status of our new assistant. Note that we are showing all of Fr David's compensation coming DOS funds. This actually leads to an $8,800 surplus in the Clergy/Administration subsection of the proposed budget. We prefer to allocate it this way because it clearly shows that having an assistant at this point is more dependent Fr Marcus' position as chancellor than the actual capacity of the parish. It also gives some leeway for the compensating of a church secretary or administrator at either more hours than already budgeted or a higher hourly wage. 

[Also, for those interested in more detail the full Year End financial report is linked here.]