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  • Writer's pictureNancy Rexford

Planning for Visitation & Member Dev. Meeting #27

Forward Chats, Winter 2019-20 (Meetings #24 through #32)

Apologies to everyone for not keeping up with these reports. Chairing the Central Board created a heavy workload, and the notes from Forward Chats tended to get moved to the back burner. Writing on May 10, 2020 (Mother’s Day), I am reporting on nine meetings held from November 2019 through March 2020. In most cases, the whiteboard notes were brief. In a few, there were none taken. I am reporting what information I can find.

Meeting #27 – December 8, 2019:

Planning for Visitation & Member Dev

This meeting focused on establishing two working teams: Visitation and Member Development [later more often referred to as “Community Building”].

Visitation was straightforward. Chaplain Wendy Linares has been taking the lead on visitation and will chair this team. We listed all the shut-ins who live within visiting distance and made sure someone would take responsibility for keeping in touch and visiting them. In several cases, these pairings are already in effect, but the Visitation Team will make sure that as people’s lives change no one is left out:

Shut-In To be Visited by

Phyllis Furbush Elaine Roy

Beverly Nichols Jeanne Earle

Anna Stadtmueller Charles Turner

Stephen Tuttle Ruth Moran

Roger and Mary Sue Wonson Patty and Dave Boynton

Karen Varga (intermittent) Ruth Moran keeps in touch

Member Development is more complex, involving several different initiatives:

Current Members: Kathy Taylor will take the lead, assisted by Ruth Moran and Glenn Morris. They will take attendance and follow up after two weeks of absence. We created attendance sheets.

Members who have gone missing fairly recently: Kathy and Andrea – will need to research this case by case and figure out the best way forward. An incomplete note says “Elsie keeping” suggesting that Elsie may have been keeping track of this in the past?

New Visitors: These need to be handled in stages.

· Warm welcome at the door

· Giving them information about the church (an old version of this exists as a flyer or booklet? Would need to update)

· Giving them a mug

· Inviting them to coffee hour, and making a point to speak to them and introduce them to people

· Asking them to participate in limited, non-threatening ways, like taking offering

· Arranging a visit by the minister

· Individual Dinner invitations


· Need to fortify the children’s program, even though we don’t have many to work with

· Form a children’s choir

· Develop a children’s message with a song – Patty has repertoire, it’s easy to start this

· Gail is experienced working with children and chimes

Attracting people who have not yet come

· Weekly Citizen Paper – list as “2nd” to put us at the top of the list

· Other public service listings

· Creative worship events that are easier to invite people to (like the advent workshop service – “designed for the whole family”


Concern that church members fail to attend or support church-sponsored events such as the Chapman Concert, Community Suppers and the Fair unless they are signed up to WORK at the event. You have to get them working on the event to get them to come at all.

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