Council Happenings

November 2022

Gratitude is the hallmark for the month of November. Council appreciates the support you have shown us throughout 2022 as we have tried to help lead St. Mark’s forward with transparency and purpose. Thank you for your words of encouragement, as well as your questions and comments.

The next “Chat With Council” will take place on Sunday, November 20. Please stop by before service to ask questions, share ideas and learn the latest about the progress of our stewardship campaign, Coming Together in Joyful Giving. Council’s November meeting will follow service on the same day, and we routinely discuss the questions and suggestions that members raise in our chat sessions. With the current fiscal year drawing to a close and 2023 budget discussions set to begin, your questions and feedback are particularly important to Council’s work.

Council has met twice since Council news was last shared in the August/September Vineyard. Here are some highlights from our recent Council meetings.

Finance and Stewardship

In collaboration with the Coming Together in Joyful Giving stewardship campaign, Council conducted a 2023 “Pre-Budget” meeting following services on October 15 and 16. Members received up-to-date budget information for 2022 and got a glimpse of the preliminary 2023 budget. Council answered questions about revenue and expenses needed to support current operations, as well as costs associated with returning to a two-pastor leadership model. Copies of the pre-budget presentation are available at the Welcome Desk if you were not able to attend.

Council Visibility

Earlier this fall, Council began delivering pre-worship service announcements at both Saturday and Sunday services. Our goal is to better acquaint the Congregation with the names and faces of Council members to make us more accessible to the Congregation for questions and comments between formal “Chat with Council” sessions. Council members wear name tags during worship, and you are always welcome to approach us with a suggestion or a concern before or after service.

Beginning in October, Council took on the role of serving as Worship Assistants for Saturday evening worship. This is part of our overall effort to serve St. Mark’s through worship, ministry and outreach, and provides members with an additional opportunity to speak with a Council member after service.


Council has been trained in the fundamentals of the Shelby system, and Council members are available to take your questions about the ways Shelby can serve as our church directory and manage our many ministry groups. We encourage members to update their contact information in Shelby and participate in the Shelby roll-out process.

Committee News

  • Property:

The Property Team completed routine maintenance on the boilers and related equipment as the church moved from cooling to heating systems. Facility preparations for ESSE continue as furniture and equipment ESSE provides for its use are delivered to the church. Members who participated in the building tours on Sunday, October 16, were able to see the spaces ESSE will be using in the Education Wing.

  • Outreach:

Our tradition of Salvation Army Bell Ringing will return again this year. Look for promotional information on the outreach display wall, as well as an opportunity to sign up for a day, time, and location that work for you. This is a great opportunity to spread holiday cheer for an important cause. The Outreach Committee will continue to use the display wall to communicate the important outreach work being done, so please take a moment to look for new information.

In-Person Worship Study

At its October meeting, Council reviewed in-person worship data between 2017-2022. This information will be useful for planning and budget development as we move forward. Council also hopes to study remote worship data from 2020 to present as part of an effort to track the Congregation’s participation in worship over time.

Council’s Final Quarter of 2022

Council has identified its primary goals for the final three months of 2022 in alignment with the church’s larger milestone events.

  • Support the Coming Together in Joyful Giving stewardship campaign, including the goal of 100% of Council members pledging their support to St. Mark’s
  • Analyze data for planning and budget development for 2023
  • Provide support for the Shelby system rollout to the Congregation
  • Plan the agenda for the 2023 Annual Meeting and Budget Forum