The Board continues to grapple with tough budgeting issues as discussed previously. We are thankful to those who stepped forward to be part of the budget work group as well as the hard work John Walter has put into the Stewardship campaign. We have made excellent progress through our pledge matching campaign! Thank you to our generous anonymous donors as well as those who made additional donations.

We have had significant unexpected expenses this year for the roof, water bill (rental), and facility repairs/updates for daycare. Due to this our operating account is depleted. The Board has been working on ways to try to trim the budget but it is difficult. It is expected that the daycare and rentals will actually add to the budget next year and that with Jim Butterfield’s continued oversight of our furnace and review of our heating bills that this will improve next year as well.

In the short term, however, we are in a situation of not knowing how to handle outstanding bills that need to be paid. In an effort toward reaching community consensus we are requesting a meeting of the whole congregation after coffee on Sunday, April 7th. We are asking for consideration of a proposal to be able to use some of our endowment if needed.   The last time our congregation approved using the endowment if needed, it did not need to be used. But it is helpful to have access to these funds as a backup if necessary. This is not something we take lightly or want to be a continued solution. This important meeting will require enough church members to be present to take a vote, so please put this on your calendar.

We have many interesting events coming up in April and May. On April 20th the Membership Committee is having our annual dinner “Shining the Light on UU”. This is a time to enjoy a great meal and appreciate the numerous contributions of our members. It is a fun, light hearted event with a lot of laughter. On May 5th there will be a new member recognition during the service and as a church we will celebrate May Day. This is still in the planning phase so anyone interested in participating please let us know.   The week-end of May 10th – May 12th we will again gather at Ferry Beach, an ocean retreat in Maine. Speak to Carol McIntyre Peale if you are interested as there may still be room. The plant sale is going to be separate from May Day this year and will be held at the church on Saturday, May 18th. If you are interested in participating in this please see Melinda Hildreth Honkala, Carole Mills, or Gwyn Powers.

 There is a lot to celebrate as a church as well as hurdles to overcome. Please remember to join the conversation after coffee on Sunday, April 7th.    

-Carol White