Category Archives: News

October 3, 2019 Board Minutes

FRLC Board Meeting Minutes

Thursday October 3, 2019

1:00 pm MDT/2:00 pm CDT/12:00 pm PDT/3:00 pm EDT

 

Present: Ed & Melanie at the beginning. Bohdan & Tom joined later.

 

The minutes and treasurer’s report were postponed to the next meeting.

 

Possible Next Event: One idea would be to explore having a joint cruise retreat with the RMEC. If we get a larger group we would be able to have better meeting rooms. Perhaps we could have a track for clergy in recovery and a track for laity/others. We could all worship together, hear a speaker and break into separate groups for discussion. Afternoons could be free and we could offer an additional opportunity for worship, a speaker and recovery meetings in the evening. Ed could be the event coordinator. He has gotten some preliminary information about possible cruises. Days “at sea” are more successful for meetings than days in port. Ed will send Melanie information about possible cruise schedules and she will come up with potential agendas based on them. Ed will bring the idea to the RMEC board.

 

FRLC Funds: Ed will write an appeal letter and get it out right away, including some of the great quotes from the Conference.

 

Addiction & Faith Conference: Many were inspired. A couple people expressed interest in being on the Addiction & Faith Ministry Board. Ed will be working on pulling the Board together. At the debrief we heard unmet needs from both groups. Perhaps the proposed cruise would address some of them. We want the new ministry to be sustainable and not depend on one or two people. Ed has great ideas on what to do but could use your wisdom and advice on how to get it done. This ministry is needed—it’s the right thing for the right reason.

 

The ELCA Professional Leaders Gathering in Phoenix next summer is an opportunity for some kind of FRLC event. We have been asked to have a table there, possibly lead a workshop and to lead 12 step meetings. FRLC members could help with all of those and we could find a time and place to meet. It is an opportunity to reach more people who need the Fellowship, although we need think carefully how to protect the anonymity of those who are attending. Melanie is willing to come and Tom might attend.

 

Timing: The RMEC retreats have typically in the fall. Do we want to shoot for something as soon as fall of 2020? It will depend on whether we have an Addiction & Faith Conference that year.

 

Chicago conference: one of the treatment centers who participated in the Conference wants to offer an Addiction & Faith Conference in Chicago. Ed might consult with them for a fee. They are proposing having it at Mundelein. While that was the site of the first two FRLC retreats, it is neither a neutral place nor near the airport which are two things we have tried to do. Ed doesn’t have the contacts or volunteers in the Chicago area he has in Minneapolis; however the treatment center says they have all the contacts that would be needed. If there is support for doing multiple conferences around the country maybe licensing the model would be the way to go. It would be interesting to see if the price difference would make a difference in attendance if we could put on a less expensive event.

 

Feedback on Zoom: Those on the call thought it was a positive experience. It is a little complicated to use the first time as it takes some time to set it up on your computer. It should be quicker and easier after that. We will continue to use it for the next meeting.

Melanie closed the meeting in prayer.

September 22, 2019 Annual Meeting

FRLC Annual Meeting

Sunday September 22, 2019

The meeting opened at 3:11 PM, following the Addiction & Faith Conference and the conference debriefing session. The meeting opened with prayer.

Present: Ten members were present for the meeting.

Minutes from the 2018 Annual Meeting were approved.

Treasurer Report through August 30 was presented. The balance at that time was $816.83, although the August payment to the coordinator has not cleared. The cost of the mailing in August was $411. We received $500 in donations to the FRLC following the mailing, which will be transferred into the FRLC account following the conference. We hope to be able to transfer $3100 to our treasury from the conference proceeds but that is dependent on the ending financial balance of the conference.

Conference Finances: There was an appeal at the final session of the conference for $11,000 to cover expenses of the conference.  These are the preliminary numbers, we won’t have final ones until after all the bills are in and paid.  Ed will follow up with the RMEC regarding their financial participation in the event.

It was agreed that the FRLC needs to see the conference financial reports. The treasurer will obtain a copy of them.

Coordinator’s report: We have 216 members in the database, which still needs updating. There are about 70 on the email list. The Thursday morning recovery conference calls are strong. They are one of the best things we are doing. He would like to improve communication with the membership. The website needs updating. He intended to do it last year when we had a graphic designer but it has not been accomplished. He stated that the FRLC needs some TLC. Once and awhile, we hear anecdotes about the difference we are making. He would like to review the recommendations regarding the potential development of the FRLC made by the consultants at the retreat at Mt Olivet before the first Addiction & Faith Conference. Both the FRLC and Conference have potential for further development. The representative from Rosecranse, a large treatment organization, reported that they are quite interested in being a part of the Conference as treatment centers have been unsuccessful at reaching the clergy and churches and we have those people on board. Another comment was made by a person related to an ELCA organization encouraging us to explore working with non-church partners.

Conference Next steps: A poll was taken of those present and most are in support of doing it next year. Suggestions were made to hold the Conference every other year, to consider having it at a different time of year (there are a lot of recovery related events in this community at this time) and to explore other venues, including other hotels or a non-hotel setting. There are many churches in the Minneapolis area; however Sunday morning sessions make it difficult to hold the conference in a church. It was also noted that it is difficult to put on an event this size on an annual basis without paid staff.

Does the Addiction & Faith Conference need its own board and 501C3 status? If so, it will take time to develop it.

It was moved and seconded that the Addiction and Faith Conference be held in winter of 2021. After further discussion, the motion was withdrawn. It was felt that if we a separate board is established, they should be making those decisions.

Dan suggested that we consider naming the new organization “ the Addiction and Faith Ministry” to be broader than just the conference.

It was moved and seconded that the FRLC authorize Ed to pursue formation of an Addiction and Faith Ministry Board. It passed unanimously. The timing and location of the next conference will be determined by that board.

It was noted that the Addiction and Faith Ministry needs to operate under the FRLC financial umbrella until it forms its own 501C3. It was moved and seconded (Beth, Arthur) that we allow the Addiction & Faith Ministry to operate under auspices of FRLC until they form their own 501c3 organization, encouraging them to do so at earliest possible date. The motion passed.

FRLC next steps: The consensus was that continuity is valuable during this transition. A suggestion was made to do a search process for the coordinator should Ed decides to step down at some point. We all need to think and pray about what we want and expect the FRLC to be.

Should consider Zoom meetings for the board? It was moved and seconded (Beth, Tom) that board meetings will be held over Zoom. The motion passed. Beth offered to set up the meeting and took steps to do so.

Should have an FRLC Retreat if there is no Addiction and Faith Conference next year? A motion was made and withdrawn.

Ed has been asked to have a FRLC table at the ELCA Rostered Leaders Gathering in Phoenix next summer. He has also applied to lead a workshop. There was discussion about building a retreat around that Gathering, but there was limited enthusiasm for that.

Further conversation was held regarding the possibility of alternating between FRLC retreats and the Addiction & Faith Conference.

Board Election: The bylaws state that we can have up to 7 people on the board, serving 3 year terms. We have not often followed the principal of rotation on the board. Joel and Rob are going off the board. Roger would like to continue. Bohdan will ask Roger if he’d be willing to be the newsletter editor. We will strive to complete an annual budget this year. Karen T. was nominated and agreed to be on the board. Melanie nominated David C., who offered to serve on the board although he is not at this meeting. Karen and David were elected. The officers remain the same.

For the newsletter: Everyone is asked to write a brief reflection on conference, even just a paragraph or two.

It was moved, seconded and passed that the meeting be adjourned. Bohdan closed the meeting with the sharing of “highs and lows” around the room and prayer.

April 4, 2019 FRLC Board minutes

            Check In & Prayer: Members present: Beth, Bohdan, Joel, Kirk, Arthur, Roger, Ed, Melanie

 

Minutes from the March Meeting Joel moved, it was seconded and passed to receive the minutes from the March meeting.

 

Treasurer’s report We have a bookkeeper for the FRLC and Conference. The current balance in the Conference account is $4081.35 and the balance of the FRLC account is $1995.83.

 

            Coordinator’s report He has been lining up Synod Assembly presentations and displays. The Conference will be promoted at all Minnesota Assemblies, with either the Coordinator, an FRLC member or local planning team member present at all of them. He has also been presenting Minneapolis area conference meetings, where the information has been well received. We are working on getting sufficient cash on hand to pay for the promotional work and advertising through sponsorship and promoting direct registration.

He continues to be really encouraged with the partnership with the Episcopal church. Ed will be attending their board meetings and a representative from their board will attend ours. She could not make this meeting but will attend in the future. The Episcopal group will lead liturgical worship Friday night and we are responsible for the Sunday morning worship—we will start “high church” and finish “low church”. He is working on financial support and identifying potential sponsors with this group also.

Board members can support the Conference by:

1) register directly and paying by check. That will give us working capital as we will have immediate access to those funds.

2) Be proactive in promoting the Conference:

  1. a) Please bring your colleagues to the Conference.
  2. b) Take flyers for the Conference and the information sheet about how congregations can support this event to any meetings you attend. There are many levels of support available.
  3. c) Contact your Synod to get the Conference website and information in their communications.
  4. d) Let Ed know if you have ideas about potential sponsors—they will follow up.

                       

Old Business:

FRLC treasurer: We need to have a treasurer to work with and oversee the work of the bookkeeper, who will make sure we receive reports and keep track of what is happening. Beth agreed to take on the role. Joel nominated her, it was seconded, and unanimously passed. She will follow up with the bookkeeper.

FRLC Board members available to meet with Transfiguration members: Tom and Melanie will be in the area May 13-17 and Bohdan will be there June 22. They are willing to meet with either the Church Council or congregation as needed.

An important issue is clarifying the legal accountability and oversight process going forward. The FRLC is the non-profit organization that sponsors and is responsible for the Addiction and Faith Conference. This is reflected in the minutes of the September 30, 2018 minutes of the Annual Meeting of the FRLC. There was discussion recorded of the financial relationship between the FRLC and the Conference at that meeting, but a budget was not presented at that time. This will be remedied at a future FRLC Board meeting.

It was suggested that we develop a formal Memorandum of Agreement between the FRLC and Transfiguration Lutheran Church regarding the reimbursement of administrative expenses associated with the Conference. Joel moved to develop MOU with TLC regarding reimbursing TLC for administrative costs of $25,000 for the Addiction and Faith Conference. Roger Seconded. Individual votes were called for. The motion passed unanimously with Ed & Arthur abstaining. Ed will be seeking advice on what language needs to be included in the MOU. Melanie is willing to help.

 

New Business:

The website has been updated with 2019 Conference information. Please review the listing of Board members and send any corrections to Melanie. The new board members will be added. There is now a working PayPal button for donations on the home page.

The next meeting will be Thursday, May 2, 2019

 

 

 

 

 

Board Minutes January 10, 2019

Present: Ed, Melanie, Beth, Kirk

 

Check-in happened.

 

Minutes: December’s minutes were approved.

 

Treasurer’s Report: The account balances are as follows: FRLC $3525.83, Conference $2113.40. We have paid a $1000 deposit on the hotel out of the Conference funds and also a $1200 retainer for our fundraiser.

 

Coordinator’s Report: We have signed a contract with the hotel, booking the Grand Ballroom (large banquet hall). We are anticipating 100 more participants than last year. This gives us room to grow and the possibility of selling individual event tickets. We are expanding to ten breakout sessions with similar topics but more options. The speakers are all lined up. Friday evening George Valent will speak on happiness & 12 steps. Amy Klobachar will give a welcome/introduction either in person or in video at supper on Friday. After the speakers there will be opportunities for spiritual direction, massages, and different kinds of meetings including a clergy only 12 step meeting.

 

The Saturday morning speaker will be Karen Casey, a writer for Hazelden. In the afternoon Sam Simmons will speak on addiction and racism. Retired ELCA Bishop Penrose Hoover will tell his story during Saturday dinner and will also preach for the Sunday morning worship. Rev. Dr. Brian McLaren is confirmed as the Saturday evening key note speaker. We are hoping he will address how recovery can be part of the emerging church.

 

We have been talking with Portico & Thrivent about their involvement next year. Portico would like to be more involved in the next Conference and be a sponsor in 2020. The Episcopalian recovery group has also assigned three people to partner with us and work on the conference. They have been in contact with Ed and are enthusiastic about working on the Conference.

 

New business: none

 

Kirk closed the meeting with prayer.

 

Next regular Board meeting: Thursday, February 7, 2019.

 

September 2018 FRLC Board Minutes

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Seven members were present. Check-in and opening prayer were held.

 Minutes: The minutes from July and August were received.

 

Treasurer’s Report: We had the ordinary expenses and income. The current balance is $235.83, which is less than the $300 monthly stipend. There are a number of changes happening.  The account at Wells Fargo has been closed and the funds moved to the Star Credit Union. Brian would like to transition out of his role as treasurer. He has served in that capacity for ten years. He is willing to remain on the board. He is willing to be flexible so there can be a smooth transition. Bohdan expressed appreciation for his service and the board expressed thanks for his faithful work, including writing the annual appeal letters. The Board needs to discuss maintaining our general account and ways to manage it. There has been discussion of taking an offering for the FRLC general fund at the closing of the Conference. Brian will participate in the FRLC Annual Meeting in person or by phone. The meeting is scheduled for 1:00 pm Sunday, September 30, following the Conference. There will be opportunity to elect new treasurer at that point and have a smooth handoff.

 

Coordinator’s Report: The FRLC is doing what it normally does. We have more members attending the conference than we’ve had at a retreat in a long time. About twenty FRLC members are registered. Ed noted that we have been low on funds before and that people have responded when we share the need. We haven’t asked for funds for the Fellowship in a while as the focus has been on undergirding the Conference. The Conference is raising our profile in the church relative to where we’ve been before.

 

The Conference is snow-balling. It’s a lot of work and we have a lot of great people stepping up to it. Others are taking care of the details Ed would never have thought of. God is watching over us! Our registrations are nearly full–we have capacity for 200. There are only 5 or 6 spots left. The rooms reserved for the Conference are all taken. We have over 135 room nights booked and have more than fulfilled our hotel contract, which obligated us to pay for unsold rooms if we did not meet the minimum. The speakers have all been contacted and are all confirmed. It looks like we will break even and maybe even come out a little bit ahead financially. The FRLC retreat will begin Thursday, tentative plans for dinner at 5:30 pm. Roger and Melanie have developed a draft schedule for the retreat which will be sent out be email once it is finalized. They had some questions, which Ed will respond to soon.

 

There will be a work party at Transfiguration all day Thursday before the Conference preparing materials for the participants.  All are welcome—Ed offered to provide rides (or arrange for them) from the airport as needed. There is an online app called “Sched” for conference information, which can be downloaded now. An email went out to people who are registered for the Conference but it is easy to miss in the inbox. Ed is still working on it and will send it out a few more times before the Conference. It would be helpful for us to try it out and give Ed feedback.

 

He is developing a list of people who will be there to volunteer at the Conference. He will assign tasks to people who are attending, and then answer questions when we arrive. People can trade tasks at that time if necessary.

 

Prayers are requested for Ed in these final weeks of preparing for the Conference.

 

If anyone wants to go off the board, it would be helpful to know between now and the Conference so we could be prepared for elections at the Annual Meeting.

 

Tom closed the meeting with prayer.

 

We will discuss our next meeting date at the Annual Meeting. It will likely be in November.

 

 

FRLC Board Meeting Minutes Thursday, July 5, 2018

Check In & Prayer: Brian, Bohdan, Melanie, Tom, Ed called in later. Melanie opened with prayer.

 

Minutes from the May Meeting were approved as submitted.

 

Treasurer’s report: Account totals and detail will be coming by email. Our checking account balance today is $1,192.12. No extraordinary income or expenses. He caught up on the stipend for Coordinator with double payment this month.

He received a letter from Wells Fargo requesting additional documentation of non-profit status, needed within 30 days. Some of the requests are of documents we are not familiar with. Brian and Ed recommend closing this account and opening an account at the credit union we are using for the Conference. Brian is considering resigning as treasurer and has agreed to serve through the Annual Meeting this fall. Brian will pursue this with Ed with the support of the Executive Committee (officers).

 

Addiction and Faith Conference: Melanie shared some information from the minutes of the Addiction and Faith Conference planning meeting and Ed called in midstream. The current anticipated financial shortfall is about $10,000 but we have a grant application with the Minneapolis Synod which may cover it plus a new connection with a professional fundraiser (who is in recovery) who had ideas on monetizing the event and anticipate being able to cover that. Any money over expenses will be used for future events. We have over 100 registrations at present and 13 more on the way, have an ad in the latest Living Lutheran and are adjusting plans to prepare for up to 200 people attending the event.  We’ve been asked about having tickets for individual sessions of the conference, such as Nadia’s talk. We have been declining those requests as we need the funding from full ticket “sales” to pay for expenses. If we don’t sell out, we may consider opening it up to take registrations for individual sessions. We are also considering selling access to view sessions by streaming. Ed is looking into what would be needed to videotape the talks to develop a resource for addiction ministry in the ELCA. God is looking out for us –we have a great planning team and various resource people are appearing as needed.

 

FRLC meeting schedule at the Conference: The FRLC specific events begin with dinner Thursday, followed by a Conference update and 12 step meeting Thursday evening. Friday morning would have details on the Conference and training for volunteering at Conference.  There may be a couple hours of free time until registration starts, then we would be involved in the Conference. The Conference concludes with worship at noon Sunday, the Fellowship will meet to debrief, vision the future and hold the Annual Meeting Sunday afternoon and evening. We may meet Monday morning but will be done by noon for sure. Melanie mentioned that Luther Seminary will be holding a workshop on “The Craft of Preaching” through Working Preacher which begins at 1:00 pm Monday and runs through Wednesday. This would be an opportunity for a second continuing education event on the same plane ticket. Melanie will write up an article and Ed will send it out by enews.

 

Visioning: Ed has requested the board think about the future of the FRLC and the Conference.  There are conversations about doing another Conference next year and also about working to be a resource for Recovery Ministry for the ELCA. Ed will be asking the fundraiser about the possibility of raising additional funding to support a person to be paid do this work, either in conjunction with Ed’s present ministry if the congregation decides to realign their staffing or to seek another call that would allow him to do it. Ed will bring a specific proposal on this as it develops. Those on the call are supportive of these ideas.

 

Tom closed the meeting in prayer.

 

Next meeting date: Thursday August 9, 12:00 pm MDT/1:00 pm CDT/11:00 pm PDT/2:00 pm EDT. This is the second Thursday of the month and was changed to allow our Coordinator to participate.

 

 

 

 

 

Revised Retreat Plans

As we were unable to meet the minimum number of participants to meet the retreat center’s requirements we have cancelled our plans to meet at Highlands Presbyterian Camp and Retreat Center. Instead, we are staying at a motel in Denver and meeting at a nearby church on the same dates, April 25-28. We plan to discuss the 12 steps and attend a local meeting. There is still time to join the group: contact Bohdan at pastorvadis@sbcglobal.net or Melanie at mmartindent@yahoo.com.