Jubilee United Church

40 Underhill Drive | Toronto, Ontario, M3A 2J5 | 416.447.6846

Highlights From Council

Council Report May 24, 2019

Council has held three Council Meetings since my last report.  These Council meetings took place on Monday March 11, 2019, Monday April 9, 2019, and Monday May 13, 2019.
Please see Rev. Norm Seli’s report in Jubilation for the Ministers’ Report.  The highlight was our Easter Services.  Easter Sunday Service was well attended with nearly all seats filled and people sitting on the back ledges.  Norm’s morning and Sunday services were particularly moving. 
We have enjoyed having Jason Meyers at Jubilee as an intern and were sad to see the end of his internship.  We congratulate Jason for being ordained in May.  He will be moving on to be a co-minister at Metropolitan United Church downtown.
We welcomed back Rev. Anne Dionisio from maternity leave on May 16 with hand-written notes of appreciation.  Anne had a role in our May 26 service which also included a sermon by Cheryl Colford on God from a Jesus feminist perspective.  Cheryl is with us while she works towards becoming a lay minister.  Our involvement with interns and lay minister candidates meets our goal to spread Jubilee’s influence beyond our own community.
Council welcomed three new members in April 2019 including Heather Callbeck, Vice-Chair, Anne Howes, Social Committee Chair, and John Sharp, Finance Committee Chair.  We look forward to working with them over the next year. We said good-bye to Alan Bone, who stepped down from being Finance Committee Chair.  Alan was instrumental in our merger with St. John’s last year and has been a valuable member of Council.  Charlie Scott thanked him for his contributions to Jubilee.
Bob Nicholls wants to withdraw from his role as our Observer representative.  It is a lighter role and Bob will work with the new person.  Charlie Scott, Nominations Chair, will fill this position.
Pat Lansche, Administrative Secretary, is retiring on October 31, 2019.  The job description for her replacement was approved by Council during May’s meeting.  The search team comprised of Jeanette May, Jeanne Elgie-Watson, Fran Crabe and Val Winters will recruit a candidate to fill the position. Interviews are expected to take place in September with a decision before the end of that month. Pat will continue in her volunteer position as Secretary to Council for as long as she wants.
Rev. Norm Seli will be bringing a proposal back to Council to work with Bri-Anne Swan on her Diaconal ministry.  She will be putting together a team to create a new contemporary worship service perhaps on Sunday nights. The United Church may match our funding.  The Council approved the concept and will vote on Norm’s proposal when he brings it back to Council.
Jubilee faces risks ahead with lower interest rates on investments, an aging congregation, a changing neighbourhood and fewer volunteers available to run events. We are facing these challenges with:
  • Two talented ministers
  • Committed staff members
  • Dedicated group of volunteers
  • New people coming to our church
  • Good attendance at church services and events
  • Three strong yearly fundraisers
  • Excellent programs and
  • An increase in engagement with those who participate in our church
In the March meeting, Council approved the 2018 YTD Financial Reports and the 2019 Budget.  These reports were well received when presented at the Annual Meeting on March 24.  Council also approved the removal of names from the membership list for people who are no longer involved with Jubilee.  Please see the Annual Meeting minutes online for more information.
During the Annual Meeting, John Sharp, Chair of Finance, and Gary Norris, Treasurer, asked that we each donate $100 per month to Jubilee.  As we lose the older people in our congregation who contribute more to the church, we need to keep pace with new donations.  Our church building, ministers, and staff enable us to come together as a community.  To maintain our community and our programs, please step up your donations.  If you are not currently working on any committees, consider your gifts where you could volunteer your time.
We have three solid fundraisers with Bridge Days, ArtCraft, and the Garage Sale that each raise around $10,000 per year to support our church.  Liz Fletcher runs our Bridge Events with a dedicated group of volunteers. Although the last Bridge day fell short of expectations, this was due to regular attendees being away and a competing bridge event held on the same day.  The prior two Bridge Days have raised the expected amounts.  The Garage sale held in April raised over the expected amount of $10,000. One Bridge day falling short does not signal a significant problem.
We have the risk that sometime in the future our fundraising events could stop working as well for us.   To manage this risk, Heather Callbeck, Vice Chair, and Barb Secord, Facilities Manager, will work with Rev. Norm Seli on a small Fundraising committee. We do not want every event to be a fundraiser; however, it is time to review our fundraising and pricing policy.  It has been a few years since we last did this.  The committee may also have ideas for a new Spring Fundraiser.  Council is concerned that any new events be balanced with the other demands on our church facilities, staff and volunteer resources.  If you would like to help out on one of our current fundraisers or have an idea for a new one, please let us know.
In the Treasurer’s Reports for 2019, Gary Norris told us that he has continued to have significant problems with the ADP staff payroll and hopes to resolve these problems soon by working with ADP. Gary reported that PAR was on track.  Envelope revenue was down and then back up again. Salaries and wages are on budget.
Charlie Scott informed us that the Social Committee, led by Ann Howes as Chair and 15 committee members, ran a successful Saturday afternoon concert.  Although the attendance was less than expected, the musicians led by Benjamin Gabbay performed so well that they got a standing ovation.  Judy Olson is running bid euchre on Tuesday afternoons and it is well attended. The Social Committee will hold a trip to St. Jacobs on May 25,  2019, and now has almost a full bus.  There was enthusiasm for a murder mystery dinner expressed in the surveys done by the Social Committee earlier in the year.  As a result, a murder mystery dinner with perhaps a silent auction will be held on October 19, 2019.  The Social Committee is changing their name to the “Order of Good Cheer” but will have their own vision. 
Ruth Nicholls reported through 2019, her Pastoral Care Committee have been busy with telephone calls and cards for illnesses.  Easter flowers were delivered to those in need of Easter Cheer.
Barb Secord reported that the Sanctuary was repaired and painted in February.  Touch-up repairs have been done in the building and the sign direction on Lawrence Avenue has been corrected.  The LED lighting, gardening, work days, carpet cleaning, and window cleaning are upcoming.  The Green Team, started by our intern Jason Meyers, will continue.  The Green Team activities include the completion of the energy audit, green week, recycling coffee cups, bees on the roof and a garden on our lot.  We may be able to get some funding from the United Church of Canada (UCC). The plans will be prioritized and discussed again at our June Council Meeting.
Bob Chisholm (not part of Council) is preparing a report on Don Mills history that will have a page for each of our founding churches.  He is looking for ideas on how we can use it.  A few copies will be put in the library.  We may be able to include it as part of our 2020 celebrations which are coming up next year.
Barbara Rutherford mentioned that the Choristers Concert was successful with 150 in attendance and $800 raised by donation.
Thank you to all who prepared reports, participated or attended our Annual Meeting on Sunday March 24, 2019. Thank-you to all who volunteered at our Bridge Day and Garage Sale.
The next Council meeting is on Monday June 10, 2019 in the Garden Room at 7 pm. Please come out and visit us.
I hope to see everyone out on June 16, when we are having both Muffin Church and Picnic Church on the same Sunday! 
Come out and we will feed you while we soothe your soul!
Elizabeth Clarke