Minutes for August 6, 2020


Minutes for August 6, 2020

Opening Prayer – The regular monthly meeting was rescheduled from July 2nd to July 9, 2020 and started at 6:40 PM (online via Zoom) with an opening prayer by Rev. Jeffrey.

Board members Barbara Bauml, Rev. Jeffrey Fowler, Lisa Hagen, Michele Millsap, Ruth Rogers, and David Sandall-Hill were in attendance.

Check In – Board members checked in with one another.




With understanding for the impact of the pandemic, the board accepted Linda Guay’s resignation. We appreciate and thank her for her awesome leadership and service as board president. We wish her well in all her future endeavors and look forward to seeing her again.


As Vice-President, Ruth Dow Rogers, was elected to the position of board president. Ruth briefly shared her style of leadership and hopes for the board process.

A brief discussion ensued about filling the vacancy per our bylaws and the context of our current term, timing, and open positions.

MOTION:  Jeffrey moved that the board continue to operate with its current membership until the end of this term and fill the position at our next regular meeting. David seconded. Motion carried unanimously.




Counting Tithes Sign ups/Check Signing – David and Michele will be at the Spire and available to sign checks during the month in August.


Secretary Report – Approval of the July Minutes is pending.


Tithe Report – Barbara forwarded the Tithe Committee Report to the board for the month of July.  The USS July tithe is $1355 and the Unity of Yakima is in the rotation of local churches to which we tithe. The recommendation approved by the board online was finalized in the meeting.


Treasurer Report – Lisa shared an overview of USS finances with a focus on the tithe trends. We’re about $20,000 down from where we traditionally would have been at this point in the year. At the same time, we’re spending less. Our checking account balance is approximately where we were at the end of March when the payroll protection program made its way through the $17,500. Our financial and our investment balances have gone up substantially. Therefore, we are only $6000 behind. Lisa ran through the differences from YTD financials.

August is the first month that our rent increase (of $95 per month) took effect. The overall fundraising goal is to raise $25,000 auction in order to net $19,000 after expenses. Lisa is continuing to evaluate and the board will continue to monitor USS finances. She closed by sharing some historical context that Unity of South Sound has gone through more dire financial times.


Volunteer Committee Report – The VCT is meeting every other month so we will address this next month.


Minister Report – Rev. Jeffrey shared that he is enjoying his work. Teaching the Yoga of Jesus class, the discussions, and was great. He is looking forward to the fall Synergy Series and has made a decision about the book we will use. Congregation outreach, dialogue, and pastoral care have been great. He feels healthy and strong. Family is doing well. He also expressed appreciation for the board given the remarkable year.


Social Media Report – Jeffrey shared Jenny’s report online and responded to questions about the congregant activities.  The rates of opening and engaging the eBlast and online media were down in the month of July; it was attributed to pandemic fatigue and summer weather.  Jenny placed fewer ads this month and continues to try different attempts to raise the USS profile and contacts.





Online Auction

•     David shared that there are seven persons are on this committee and they have had 2 productive meetings.  Our theme this year is “All that Glitters is God: Shining the Light of Spirit.” The goal is to raise $19,500 after expenses.

•     The largest expense appears to be the online technology.  There will be a raffle and dessert auction. There will be three different promotional levels of auction items.

•     People will be invited to dress up in sequins, bright stuff, and or other fun attire and submit a picture for an online “Glitter Vote” for the most creative dress (or other categories).

•     They will be meeting every two weeks and David is excited about how the process will unfold.

•     Jeffrey shared a resource for online events.  David will follow up on the information, the costs, and what’s involved with the process.


Calling Tree – Jeffrey shared there’s been interest in facilitated outreach and congregation discussions during this pandemic and social isolation. Michele reported on the interest by Starr and some others to reach out to congregants at this time to invite participation in events. Possibilities for doing this and how it could be effectively accomplished were discussed. The accuracy of our contact list was questioned. Lisa suggested an eBlast note asking for an update to your contact information with an email or call to the office. The possibilities of who calls whom were discussed. Although some people don’t have email, it was decided to send an eBlast requesting current contact info since we aren’t seeing each other on a weekly now. Ruth suggested calling those who don’t have email contact information. Participation could depend on self-selection and caller/congregant pairs may remain constant or rotate. Jeffrey will bring the Calling Tree idea up with the VCT.


Proposed Pancake Breakfast on September 13th organized by our Kids and Youth Ed – Jeffrey posed the question should we do it given current safety concerns? Lisa shared that normally the kids do this event to make money for camp. Since this isn’t currently a need, the kids are longing to be involved and want to raise money for our church’s overall activities.

 The board considered the thoughtful proposal.

     Questions that were addressed were: 1) Will there be a cost? 2) How’s it being supported? 3) What about electricity use and possible blown fuses? 4) What kind of support would the event have?

 Jennifer Richardson has generously offered to donate kitchen time at the Red Elm Café; with the help from sponsors the cost of hosting this event will be minimal to USS.  Also, kitchen use will be negligible; tents and propane grills will be onsite and Lorie and Chuck Manning will be volunteering grills with Lisa and Josh.  Although electricity use will be minimal, Ruth will ask Rick if there are spare fuses available and Lisa will follow up on their availability if needed. 

 This event is envisioned as a drive-by-and-pick-up service in the parking lot.

 Michele suggested that Jenny create this as an outside Facebook event to share the event outside Unity, increase awareness within our community and it creates helpful reminders.  Promoting Unity with flyers for those who don’t know us was also discussed.

 The vote to support this event passed unanimously.


Board Members on Fb Live Rotation – Jenny is interested in sharing who the people of Unity of South Sound are online — beyond Jeffrey and Simon on Tuesday. The idea is to talk for 3-5 minutes on Facebook Live. The technical aspects were new to some, so how it can be done was addressed. The option of recording a video was discussed. Structuring the share as an interview with a family member was another possibility. The timeframe envisioned is weekly so individual board members would participate once-a-month with an 8-10 a.m. Saturday broadcast time. The board considered the learning curve and benefits and everyone is open to doing this.  It’s seen as a way of connecting the community and sharing what’s happening in our church and the message of Unity overall. The board supported this initiative.

Jeffrey will follow-up with Jenny. 





Fund Raising: Masks – Michele’s friend is still making high-quality, handmade masks.  Pricing was reviewed for basic, single layer, and double layered masks with possible custom logos were discussed. They would have the bendable noseband and a slot for inserting a filter. Lisa mentioned that Jennifer Richardson knows another mask-maker who the Youth Ed team considered for a Youth Ed fundraising project. Possible coordination was considered, the mask possibilities were considered, and the board preferred using Michele’s provider. Options for sales, promotion, order forms/online and payments were discussed. The possibility of synergy with Youth Fundraisers was considered, but was left open to the general timing and unfolding events. Michele will speak with Cindy to initiate this fundraising project.


Fund Raising: Dessert Dash – Lisa envisions asking folks to volunteer to cook the desserts, a photo promotion, and delivery to the winning bidder. More details are to come.


Divine DiningThe board talked about how people are learning to stay safe, live with the limitations of COVID-19, and meet their social needs. The isolation of people is a concern. If we can find ways to do this within people’s social bubbles, it may work as a limited fundraiser.


Fund Raising: Cookbook – Barbara envisions a cookbook made from USS congregants’ favorite recipes. The board sees this as a straightforward, memorable project that invites folks to contribute and feel a part of our effort. Possible themes were offered. Pricing, production, and timing was discussed. Making them available by the end of October is desirable. Barbara will refine the timeline, check on binding costs, and follow up with Jeffrey by email.





Upcoming Vacation:  Lisa announced that she will be on vacation when our September board meeting is scheduled; she will submit a written Treasurer’s Report for the meeting.


Inspirational Reading: Lisa asked about doing a distinct Zoom Inspirational Reading. Jeffrey voiced some concerns about the workload that may create for Amy. After discussing possible support, the matter was deferred for consideration later.


Card for Linda – The board opted for sending a card. Jeffery will buy a card; board members will sign at the office. Ruth volunteered to locate a plant


Who will replace Linda on the bank account? Ruth volunteered and will work out the details with Jeffrey. 

Closing Prayer – Rev. Jeffrey closed the meeting with a prayer at 9:02 p.m.

Upcoming events (see eBlast for more information)

Coffee with Rev. Jeffrey Wednesdays at 11 a.m. to Noon on Zoom

After Service Zoom Hospitality – Sundays 11:15 a.m. to noon

Course of Love – 7p.m. Sundays on Zoom

September 3rd – Next Regular Board Meeting

September 10th – Unity World Day of Prayer

September 13th – Youth Service Project

Starting September 13th – Fall Synergy Series (7 weeks)


Respectfully submitted by Barbara Bauml, Secretary

August 30, 2020