Meeting Summary for January 15, 2020

An Opening Reflection was offered by R.L. Smith.

The Parish Committee Voted to approve funds from the Capital Budget to repair the Roof and to make necessary repairs on the doors in the Parish House to create windows and locks that improve the safety of those offices and brings them better into compliance with safety codes. The roof repairs will be considerably less expensive than expected. The PC deferred any action on installing central air conditioning or making window repair at this time.

The Finance Committee presented a preliminary report on a Ten-Year Financial Model for First Parish. Following some discussion, the committee is planning to bring their findings to a discussion with the Parish along with the Treasurer’s Report in March.

The Governance Task Force made a penultimate report of their findings. The committee will take a major piece of time at the next meeting to discuss their thoughts in greater detail.

The incident involving the removal of Rev. Mishra-Marzetti’s portrait in the Parish House was discussed. While this was viewed as an inappropriate action of one or a few persons, the PC felt that it deserved mention in two ways. First, to underscore the respect that the community expects to be shown to those who have served the congregation, especially the ministers. Second, to consider if the resonance that followed this incident among some might suggest some need for further working through of feelings related to Manish’s tenure. Rev. Rankin agreed to facilitate a general discussion for any members who might be interested on Sunday March 15 at 4PM.

The PC will met with Rev. Vander hart to discuss the UCC guidelines on establishing the Search Committee for the Settled Minister. Last month, the PC had a lengthy presentation from Toby Smith Ropeik who is a UUA Regional Transitions Coach. The next steps will be to ask the Parish to select 4 members from the congregation to serve on this committee. The PC will take those four and appoint another three members to shape a Search Committee with as much balance as possible. There are important tasks to accomplish in: describing the Parish; articulating our Mission; and explaining how FPL partners and serves the community. The discussions and survey conducted by the Transition Team will provide the substance for the written profile. The PC aims to have the selection process completed before May.

A subcommittee is researching what must be done to be in full-compliance with a description of FPL as a ‘Welcoming Community.’ The Personnel Committee is completing its process of staff reviews.

Nick Covino, for the Parish Committee