Parish Leadership


St. Paul’s Church in Brookline

Minutes of the Vestry Meeting

February 15, 2011


Present: The Rev. Jeffrey W. Mello, Rector; Georgia Smith, Senior Warden; Roger House, Junior Warden; Beverly Estes-Smargiassi, Treasurer; Benjamin Norton, Clerk; Jeff Brown,Lizbeth DeSelm, Edward Jacobson, Jim Margolis, Jean Moses, Fred Muehter, Linda Sanches, Madeleine Taylor, and Ginny Willcox


Agenda was moved and approved.


Scripture Study and Reflection

The theme of this evening’s discussion was ways to recognize or draw out each parishioner’s gift or talent, combining the needs of the community with the desires of the individual, bringing ideas to fruition.



The minutes were tabled for review in the March Vestry meeting.


Rector’s Report

Jeff Mello expressed gratitude to the Vestry for the time off on short notice and generous support over the past few weeks. In Jeff’s absence, Reverend Gordon Shultz lead services, the wardens managed all administrative oversight and Bishop Tom Shaw provided Jeff with Pastoral Care. Jeff brought the Vestry up to date on his family’s health and situation.


Planning Calendar

The importance of a strong Vestry presence at events and services was reiterated. The calendar was distributed well in advance to reduce risk of schedule conflicts.


Vestry Retreat

The 2011 Vestry Retreat will be held in the library of Christ Church Cambridge on March 5 from 9:00am - 1:00pm. The focus will be ensuring that our actions are driven by mission not simply maintenance. Discussion points will include brainstorming ways to empower committees enabling greater mission, and alternate Vestry meeting formats drawing from Beyond Business as Usual: Vestry Leadership Development by Neal Michell.


Warden’s Report

Georgia Smith briefly explained Vestry protocol and the use of Robert’s Rules. Volunteers are needed to serve as Clinton Path Liaison and Vestry Shepherd Coodinator. Jeff and Liz will work on updating our tap into social media networks.


Treasurer’s Report

Bev introduced the computer software that is now being used. She gave explanations of various line item adjustments. She noted that the valuable assistance of Lydia Snover and Lucy Sewall has enabled her to concentrate on bigger structural changes and improvements to our bookkeeping system vis a vis bogged down writing checks and entering information. Lucy’s ability to cut checks also enables a more timely response.


The rectory Rental Unit Income is considered part of the endowment for bookkeeping because funds were drawn from the endowment to finance the renovation/conversion.


The amount for the required health insurance for the rector was questioned. The provider is dictated by the diocese.

New Business

Auction Update

A team of volunteers is being developed to support Andrea Brue in the planning and hosting of the St. Paul’s Auction. Ways to increase attendance, and a possible schedule change were discussed. Liz volunteered to develop an online survey to collect Vestry input on various ideas regarding the event.



The Annual Meeting was a success.


The meeting closed with a prayer at 9:30

The next vestry meeting will be on Tuesday, March 15, at 7:30 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,

Ben Norton, Clerk

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