Minutes · January 24, 2023

Meeting January 2023

Executive Committee and Appointed Committee Chairpersons Meeting
Minutes of January 24, 2023 Meeting

Present:  John Aclin, Steve Barnett, Karen Weires, Jane Winge, Carolyn Witham, Brian Schwarz, Amanda Hunter, Dave Leverenz, Marcia Poisel, and Randy Poisel

Absent:  Pastor G. Karl Gaston, Sue Bathe, Jeanne Gaston, and Eric Needle

Call to Order and Opening Prayer:  John called the meeting of executive committee and appointed committee chairpersons of the National Lutheran Secretariat (NLS) to order and opened the meeting with prayer.

Old Business

Minutes from the December 10, 2022 meeting were accepted by acclamation.

Appointed Committee Reports

Communications – Amanda:  The Communications team continues to post Pastor G. Karl’s prayers to Facebook and has sent out emails through Constant Contact as requested. Amanda has begun working on the NLS annual gathering (NLSAG) website (not the NLSAG part of the NLS website). Amanda asked about establishing a process to handle individual and weekend prayer requests submitted to our Facebook page. It was agreed that the Facebook Administrator will post the prayer request, ideally including the community that the request came from. John will talk to Eric to see if weekends posted on the NLS website can be displayed on our Facebook page so that weekends will also be systematically listed in Facebook. Amanda also offered to help with minor updates to the NLS website (e.g., add or change an image or text).

Spiritual Director (SD) Support – Jeanne:  Pastor G. Karl hosted a Spiritual Director (SD) roundtable and 13 SDs attended. Quarterly roundtables are planned.

Archivist – Dave:  Dave is seeking to digitize paper files and get archives on a new server. He will be moving to Lexington, KY in April 2023. John thanked Dave for his diligence in working to make sure that nothing is lost in the move from the Go Daddy server.

Database Coordinators – Marcia/Randy:  The registration form is up, running, and working fine now. The registration form is available on the annual gathering website but is not available on the NLS website yet. Randy and Marcia will look into Wild Apricot as a potential alternative for Constant Contact.

New Business

Annual gathering speakers and advertising:  Jane shared that the keynote and forum speakers are all confirmed. We discussed marketing the NLSAG. Jane and Amanda will coordinate advertising details.

March meeting date: John asked about meeting March 21 instead of March 28. All present were fine with this.

Annual report/dues notification: The annual activity report survey was reviewed and discussed. The online survey is intended to facilitate timely responses and minimize follow-up efforts. Steve will contact treasurers individually

Website update committee goals: John requested feedback of the draft of the committee goals he had shared in advance of the meeting. No feedback was provided, so he will proceed with contacting potential committee members.

Old Business

Nominating committee names:  Jane shared a set of names of individuals not currently serving on a committee or as a Lay Director that have attended the last two annual gatherings as potential nominating committee members. John will use the names suggested and begin contacting potential participants.

Executive Committee Member Reports

VP of Administration – Jane:  Jane has been preparing for the 2023 NLSAG with co-host chair Brian Schwartz. She’s begun gathering speaker bios and pictures for the website and been fine tuning the schedule. A working registration link has been sent to the NLS executive committee and for use in the next Conexiones. After discussion, it was agreed that the NLSAG worship services and business meeting will be streamed live. She is in conversation with Light in the Desert and Rose Briggs (region 5) who have expressed interest in hosting the NLSAG in 2024 and 2025 respectively.

Spiritual Director:  Pastor G. Karl responded to questions from the Indian River SDs regarding the Obstacles to Grace talk with John. He also had a good conversation with an Indian River SD regarding qualifications for leadership on a weekend.

Treasurer – Steve:  Steve will contact treasurers individually about 2023 dues.

Secretary – Carolyn:  Carolyn created a draft annual activity survey. Having reviewed it tonight, she will send it out to affiliated secretariats for their response.

Outreach – Karen:  As more secretariats are getting back to holding weekends, Karen is fielding requests to list weekends. Several secretariats are struggling and have not responded to our attempts to reach out. Karen met with the region 1 coordinator and Oregon lay director about ways to infuse life back into that movement. She hopes to have some information about the health of communities for the next meeting. Karen will be traveling to Florida this weekend for the gathering of national 4th day community leaders.

Executive Director – Brian:  Brian reported on host committee efforts. Fundraising has been going well and the team is doing well with volunteers. Brian shared that John had asked him about setting up a PayPal button for donations on the national website. There is already a PayPal account for this purpose but, with the NLSEC’s permission, Brian had contacted all regular givers about having donations support the 2023 NLSAG and all had agreed. He suggested leaving this off the NLS website until after the NLSAG. After the NLSAG is done, he will share the link and account details with Eric and Steve so that the donation option can be restored on the NLS site. There was a consensus on the recommendation.

President – John:  After speaking with Eric, John drafted and distributed goals for the website update committee. He plans to reach out the Living Stones lay director about possibly hosting the 2025 NLSAG with other secretariats in region 5. Pastor G. Karl and John responded to questions from Indian River regarding the Obstacles to Grace talk. Since he is in Florida for the fourth day leaders’ conference in DeBary, he took the opportunity to meet in person with five leaders of the Indian River secretariat. He listened as the leaders shared concerns about proposed qualifications for leadership on a weekend. He provided the secretariat leaders affirmation.

Closing Prayer –John closed the meeting with prayer.

Next Regular Meeting – February 28, 2023 at 8:00pm EST for NLS Executive Committee members

Summary of Action Items

  1. Brian to create a rectangular NLSAG logo and send it to Amanda to be posted on our Facebook page.
  2. John to create a video to kick-off the NLSAG advertising and send it to Jane and Amanda.
  3. Amanda to look at Punchbowl evite formats and select a few for the Host Committee’s consideration.
  4. Carolyn to send a list of treasurers and their contact information to Steve.
  5. All to send names to John for consideration for the nominating committee.
  6. Carolyn to connect with Utah community regarding their April 22nd 25th anniversary celebration.
  7. Carolyn to send previous Florida host committee chair contact information to Jane.

Respectfully submitted,
Carolyn Witham

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