Annual Congregational Meeting to be on Sunday, Jan. 29 after worship

The Elders have set the Annual Meeting for Sunday, January 29, immediately after worship.

Annual Meetings are the regularly scheduled congregational meeting at which in our UCC way of organizing the church the whole congregation is involved in discerning what God means for us, our ministry and God’s church. A congregational meeting can be called whenever a significant decision necessitates the participation of the whole congregation. But they are scheduled regularly at the beginning of a calendar year to involve the whole church in the process of approving a budget for the new calendar year and electing leaders as needed. Other business that is announced beforehand can also be handled at such a meeting.

So, on the 29th, Old First will hold elections. Three elders’ 2-year positions and all the Directors’ 1-year positions are up for election this year. The Elders has appointed a Discernment Task Force (see other article) to encourage people to step up to leadership and to help with preparing a slate.

At the Annual Meeting, a proposed 2012 budget will be presented for approval by the congregation. The Administrative Standing Leadership Group, the Treasurer, and other leaders have been working on the new budget for some time. They have developed a new way of presenting our income and expenses– with further detail to help the congregation better understand the economies of our ministries — the actual incomes streams and real expenses of our various services. This is one step in many the Admin. SLG has taken this year to help Old First sophisticate its financial procedures. More information will become available in the coming weeks.

Each year, we also have a program activity as part of the Annual Meeting. The Elders have asked the Revitalization Task Force to lead us in some first-look evaluation of the Covenant Ministry and how Revitalization has made a difference at Old First. It will serve as an opening to further and deeper evaluation that the Elders and the Revitalization Task Force will be leading us through this spring as we come towards the end of our three year Covenant Ministry. Beth Davis, Jill Soubel and Marjorie Wilhite of the Revitalization Task Force are preparing this Annual Meeting activity for the congregation.

There will also be a slide show of some of the best moments from Old First’s ministry in 2011 and the collected reports of all our organizations and leaders as well as the financial report on our 2011 economic performance.

What can you do to help with the Annual Meeting?

First, mark it on your calendar and plan to give your church a few extra hours as together we look at how far we’ve come in faith and try to discern where God is leading us.

(The Annual Meeting is open to all who want to attend, but voting is restricted to people who are members of the church.)

If you are a leader with a report due for the Annual Meeting, please turn it in as soon as possible. The church office needs to make the whole set of reports available as soon as possible and have booklets prepared for the meeting. This year, taking advantage of our new On-line Social Hall, we will post reports as soon as the become available. The Community Life SLG’s report is already available.

Please keep an eye out for all the information and reports for the Annual Meeting so that you can be informed and ready.

You might even add our Annual Meeting, next to our leaders, on your prayer list.