From The Pastor At St. Paul's UCC, Freeburg, IL

2009 Annual Meeting

At our Annual Meeting January 25, St. Paul’s will be voting on a proposal that has developed out of the work of our Planning Committee. It’s an ambitious proposal that involves sanctuary renovation, building renovation, the addition of a second church nurse, and the addition of a full time ordained associate pastor.  Wow!

A copy of the proposal can be gotten from the church office, or picked up on Sunday. A rough draft of the proposal – without all committee reports but with the actual proposal to be voted on – follows at the bottom of this post.

This coming Sunday, January 18, there will be Q&A sessions, in the sanctuary, following both worship services. If you have questions, or items you’d like to discuss, these sessions are the place to bring them!

It’s an ambitious proposal that will take time, and concentration, and sacrifice to make happen. I’ll ask you to please keep St. Paul’s in your prayers that we Press On toward God’s will for us in 2009.

2009 Annual Meeting Proposal

The following is a proposal brought by the church Council and Planning Committee, to be voted on at the January 25, 2009 Annual Meeting, along with supporting information. Please give this your prayer and thoughtful consideration. If you have any questions or would like to discuss this proposal before the Annual Meeting, please feel free to contact any Council Member, Planning Committee member, or Pastor Earl.


At the January 27, 2008 Annual Meeting, the congregation unanimously approved the Planning Committee report and proposals, which included these goals:

1. Appoint a committee by March 1 to assess St. Paul’s building and facilities needs, particularly relating to youth and outreach needs. Such committee would also be directed to develop a plan to meet these needs, utilizing all current building and property resources. Such plan would be presented to Council by September 1 for approval by the congregation.

2. Appoint a committee by June 1 to assess the need and cost for handicap accessible transportation for our church and/or for the community.

3. Direct the Health Cabinet to assess the need and cost to expand the Church Nurse program, such assessment to be completed by July 1.

4. Direct the Christian Education committee to assess the spiritual and other needs of our youth, and to present a plan to meet those needs for Council approval by July 1.

5. Appoint a committee by February 1, to develop a plan to renovate our sanctuary in order to make it more accessible to music groups, drama groups, etc. By May 1 such committee will present their plan to Council for approval by the congregation. Such plan should include repairing the water damage and peeling paint in the balcony and chancel areas.

As a result of congregational approval of these goals, the following actions were taken:

1. In March 2008, Council appointed a Building Use Committee (Wayne Lickenbrock chair, Dean Huston, Craig Niebruegge, Mark Schanuel, Nolan Shook, Chad Lindauer, Mike Walton) to pursue goal 1 above. Their report follows.

2. Council referred goal 2 to the Health Cabinet in view of its work with the elderly and handicapped. This project is still under study at this time.

3. The Health Cabinet studied goal 3; their report follows.

4. The C.E. Committee pursued goal 4; their report follows.

5. In March 2008 Council appointed a Sanctuary Renovation Committee (Dean Huston chair, Shirley Baumgarte, Andy Channer, David Ekstrand, Pam Kramer, Cathleen Lindauer, Mike Walton) to pursue goal 5. Their report follows.


1. Building Use Committee report to Council inserted here, with sketch of floorplan

2. Health Cabinet report to Council inserted here

3. The Christian Education Committee discussed the needs of our youth. In light of our past experience with various part-time youth workers, consistency and continuity in youth work are crucial for trust and spiritual growth to develop. The C.E. Committee recommends hiring a full-time, ordained associate pastor with a concentration in youth and Christian Education.

4. Sanctuary Renovation Committee report to Council inserted here, with picture of renovated sanctuary

Proposal – The Press On Project

But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Phil 3:13-14 (ESV)

Council proposes that we proceed with all five goals as follows:

1. That sanctuary renovations commence as soon as funds are raised. Costs to be paid with Memorial Funds matching contributions, not to exceed $45,000 from the Memorial Fund;

2. That the Health Cabinet, working with Personnel & Policy Committee, search for and recommend to Council a second church nurse, to be employed part-time at an annual salary of $12,000. The 2009 budget will be increased by $12,000 plus $750 for parish nurse mileage

3. That Building & Grounds Committee and Council:

a. Develop a detailed plan for C.E. Building renovations; if necessary, an architect may be hired to help develop the plan, with fees up to $10,000 payable from the Memorial Fund

b. Establishing timeline for project

c. Secure bids for the job at appropriate time

Costs are to be paid from available Endowment Funds, designated gifts, fundraising, Memorial Funds up to $35,000, and loans. Congregational approval of final plans will be needed when final costs and sources of funding are determined;

4. That an Associate Pastor committee be appointed by Council; such committee will:

a. Determine the job description for the associate pastor, to be approved by Council

b. Determine timeline for search and hire

c. Work with Illinois South Conference on beginning the process of finding candidates

Costs are to be borne by Current Fund contributions, which at this time are insufficient. Illinois South Conference Guidelines suggest $55,000 including salary, housing, health & pension benefits, mileage, continuing education. Costs for the search process are to be paid by funds raised. When Current Fund contributions are sufficient, the Associate Pastor Committee is to proceed with the search. Congregational approval will be necessary before hiring.

5. That the Health Cabinet determine the actual costs for handicap accessible transportation and report to Council for final approval. Cost is to be paid from designated gifts.

6. That a separate Fundraising Committee be established to plan and execute fundraisers for all projects above. A separate fund (the “Press On Fund”) is to be established to receive proceeds from fundraisers and pay costs for the goals above.

7. That the Stewardship & Budget Committee monitor and encourage Current Fund giving to reach a level sufficient for hiring an Associate Pastor

8. That all groups mentioned above (Council, Health Cabinet, Building & Grounds Committee, Associate Pastor Committee, Fundraising Committee, Stewardship & Budget Committee) report regularly to the congregation regarding their work and progress toward their goals.


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