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Wednesday, July 28 2021

JUNIOR WARDEN’S REPORT

July 2021

This informational report provides updates on the renovation, other building projects, and one recently-identified building security issue.

RENOVATION UPDATES

Updated FORMA Bid

Today we received the corrected breakout of FORMA’s $1.835 million bid.

2020 Estimate  2021 Bid          $ Change       % Change     
Roof & Electrical   $649,000 $1,464,500 $815,500 +126%
Seismic $356,000 $370,000 $14,500 +4%
Total $1,005,000 $1,835,000 $830,000 +83%

Figures exclude sales tax.

The seismic bid is only 4% higher than estimated, but the roof and electrical bid combined is 126% higher, making the total bid 83% higher than estimated. While we could accept the seismic bid now – a plan that received broad support at the June 24 parish budget meeting – it seems prudent to wait for commodity prices to fall further from recent peaks before asking FORMA to rebid the roof and electrical. Keep in mind, however, that commodity prices may remain elevated for some time as the resurgent COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt the global economy. We may not see a return to pre-COVID “normal” any time soon, if ever. (Remember when gas cost $2 a gallon? Yeah, me neither.)

Diocesan Guidance & Loan Approval

The Executive Committee met with Marc Malone, our diocesan “mentor” for the loan request process, on July 14 to review project information and parish financials. The Board of Directors heard Marc’s initial presentation on July 15 and asked him several questions, to which we are now drafting a response. Vicki Setzer, a Board member, will be in Olympia for a tour of our building next Monday, July 26, and to meet with us about parish finances on Tuesday or Wednesday. We expect to provide Marc and the Board with a completed loan request application by early August, in time for the Board’s August 19 meeting, contingent on Vestry approval of a resolution to do so.

Property Appraisal

No action on this yet, as we remain in dialogue with the diocesan Board of Directors for guidance and approval of a loan request so we can accept the seismic bid from FORMA.

Other Renovation Actions

While we remain in a holding pattern on the main renovation work, we are advancing a few smaller projects that are prerequisite to the renovation. These projects can be done independently using contractors, or where appropriate, volunteer labor. Completion of these projects will help clear the way for the seismic upgrades to begin.

  • Tree Removal
    The Building & Grounds Committee, chaired by Ray Willard, is planning one or two work parties this summer to tidy up the church grounds, including removal of the two Alaskan yellow cedar trees at the north end of the Sanctuary. We may hire a certified arborist to perform this work; cost estimate pending.
     
  • Moeller Organ Removal
    Removal of the organ must precede both seismic upgrades and replacement of the east chancel roof. Bond Organ of Portland will perform much of this work, assisted by a few parish volunteers. A demolition contractor will be on site next week to estimate the cost to remove the wood-paneled ledge and large architectural screens that conceal the pipes; this work will allow for removal of all the larger pipes and components. Pending receipt of all price quotes, the estimate for this work is $15,000 - $20,000.

OTHER BUILDING PROJECTS

Parish Hall Cooling

While not part of the Sanctuary renovation, Tim Tayne is contacting vendors for a cost-effective method to provide cooling to the office spaces and Parish Hall, which become unbearably hot for our staff and volunteers during the summer months. Possibilities include adding AC to the existing forced-air heating system, or mounting ductless cooling units on the interior walls of these rooms. While we may not be able to proceed with this work for a while – money’s tight! – we hope to find a way to make these spaces more comfortable for folks to work in.

Solar Panel Array

The Solar Working Group – Tom Loranger, Dennis Cooper, George and Karen Bray, Bill Van Hook, Anne Hall – received one quote from South Sound Solar for a solar panel array on the new Sanctuary roof. The system would cost $103,637 to install, provide a guaranteed 52% energy offset (producing 42,000 kWh of our 80,000- kWh annual consumption), and save $275,000 over 40 years. Further action is on hold pending a new timeline for replacing the roof. More information on this, or other solar proposals received, will be shared in a future report.

BUILDING SECURITY ISSUE

Sexton Dan Kapsner reported a recurring problem with garbage, used syringes, and worse accumulating in the exterior stairwell leading from the handicapped parking area by the Parish Hall doors down to the basement boiler room. This area, which we use for ladder storage, is unlit and out of sight, making it an attractive place for dumping or certain activities that we don’t really want happening on church property.

Our plan is to install a chain link fence gate across the top of this stairwell. While not impregnable, it should make stairwell access difficult enough to serve as an effective deterrent. Estimated cost of materials and labor will not exceed $500, which we’ll fund from somewhere in the budget.

Kudos to Dan for seeing this need and pursuing a cost-effective solution. He also just completed building repairs caused by the failure of the old water heater that serves the kitchen, and installed a new water heater that passed inspection with flying colors. Dan is an absolute blessing to have on staff!

Please let me know if you have any questions about this information. As always, thank you for your patience, support, and sound leadership!

Respectfully submitted,

Lou MacMillan, Junior Warden

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Wednesday, July 28 2021

St. John’s Episcopal Church

Treasurer’s Report to the Vestry

July 22, 2021

 

Finance Committee

The regular monthly meeting of the Finance Committee was held on July 20th. Joining me were members Andrew Bird, Fawn Hacker, R.C. Laird, and Lou McMillan. Also, Bob LeRoy joined the meeting as a guest. We reviewed our current financial condition and plans to address our operating deficit and generate additional revenue. The Budget Report and Statement of Financial Position for June 2021 accompany this report.

 

Cash Balance at the Beginning of June

The total cash balance in the checking and savings account at the beginning of June 2021 was $323,823.48 of which only $82,936.19 is in the operating fund.

Income

June’s individual contributions were below budget year-to-date by $3,580.29 (-2.9%), including income from pledges being under budget by -$9,709 (48.6%) and loose plate offerings below budget by -$152.67 (-13.1%). Total income for June was -$9,798 (46.9%) of the budget at  $11,085.40. This brings the year-to-date total income to $128,911.34.

Expenses

June’s expenses were -$14,877.40 below the Budget of $37,853.22 due to various causes. One of the main causes is a billing error with the Church Pension Group which was resolved in July.

 

Net Other Income

The  PPP Round 2 conversion from loan to income posted in June in the amount of $63,367.50.

Cash Balance at the End of June

The total cash balance in the checking and saving accounts at the end of June 2021 was $309,934.08 of which only $38,496.79 is in the operating fund.

  

Respectfully submitted,

Troy L. Atwell, MBA, Treasurer

 

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Wednesday, July 28 2021

Greetings, St. John’s | San Juan Family!  Happy Summer!

The Vestry had a great meeting on Thursday, July 22, and others from that meeting will be reporting on what’s happening with the renovation and finances.  I cannot add to their reports, other to say that everyone is doing a great job.  I do want to report, however, on the happenings with the July Jumble!

We began our work on Monday, July 24, by accepting donations from those who have been waiting for this opportunity to move possessions along for over a year – I’m sure being quarantined spurred folks to go through their “stuff!”  Thank You! to everyone who saved and donated items to the Jumble!  There were so very many donations – truck after car after van, they just kept coming!  Someone commented on Monday that more donations were made on this Monday than were made on any previous Monday of Jumble week.  Certainly a preview of what the week was going to be like, and we weren’t disappointed!

Once items were received, we unpacked and sorted through them to decide onto which table these treasures needed to be displayed.  There were many tables!  As many as the Parish Hall could hold!  There were at least five tables filled with only books, more tables with kitchen & dining wares, housewares, toys and games and children’s items, all kinds of craft items, and things for our pets.  Finally, we had tables full of items more suitable for men, like sporting goods and car things.  Since the Jumble was usually held in June, there was always a table for Father’s Day items, and we continued the tradition albeit too late for Father’s Day 2021.

Our work continued throughout the week as new volunteers came and went depending on when they were available to help.  I decided early on that I would just work every day, all day, and so I did.  Wow, did I get my steps in every day without even trying!  I was tired and sore each evening since I am not used to standing all day, but I was also very invigorated by getting to know other women (mostly) from St. John’s | San Juan, and that feeling of camaraderie while working together just can’t be beat.  Looking back, it hardly seemed like work at all, because we felt useful and helpful and enjoyed just being together and focused on a goal!

Adele Roberts (a Vestry member) and Lin Hampton (Busy Bees chair), who jointly directed this Jumble, are the most amazing women!  They’re dedication to our community and their willingness to do this, is evidence of their love of St. John’s | San Juan.  They had decided that only those items that seemed truly special would be priced, while all other merchandise could be purchased by donation – the buyer would decide what they wanted to pay.  The plan worked brilliantly!  

Saturday arrived, and the doors officially opened at 9:00 a.m.  Except for the first group through the door, there was never a line of folks waiting to get inside.  Most who entered were very willing to wear a mask – there were only a handful of folks who chose not to be masked.  Buyers were very generous with their donations.  We earned over $2,000 in this Jumble and still had an amazing amount of stuff to “get rid of.”

On Sunday, after those who attended church in person “shopped,” the Jumble crew started packing up and organizing for the next place all our “extras” were to go.  We only worked for a little while on Sunday, but were back at it again on Monday morning!  Adele was in contact with City Gates, an organization that helps people move into a first place after being homeless.  They took all the basic home items – dishes, cutlery, pots and pans, glasses, sheets, blankets, pillows, and since St. John’s | San Juan wasn’t doing clothing, anything we received, Adele took for them.  The books that remained were packed up and put into a parishioner’s garage to await their final delivery to a used book store in Tacoma that will purchase them!  The bulk of the remaining rummage was packed up and delivered to Value Village – we did two van-loads and two SUV-loads.  Since it was a Monday, Value Village was hopping!  Thank you very much to the men who packed my van (Michael Clifthorne and George Knotts), they certainly knew what they were doing!  My “Lady Garnet” was loaded to the gunwales and I could only see out my side mirrors.  These guys made sure that when I stopped or started, nothing moved, since everything was packed so tightly!!

As we were packing up, we kept looking for boxes to fill.  When everything was finally done and we were gathering together all that remained, there were more boxes.  Kathy mentioned that like the story of the loaves and fishes in the feeding of the 5,000, we also had leftovers.  The Lord had provided for everything and there were still extra boxes to use!

I even learned something I didn’t know before about the Parish Hall!  Did you know that outside the Children’s Library there is an old “dumb waiter” that currently stores card tables?   I didn’t know that!  I also discovered that the kitchen and the storage room across the hall are full of “stuff” that needs to be evaluated about whether or not they will ever be used again so choices can be made about their fate.  So many extra decisions since the arrival of Covid!  During the slack times between donations, Adele was trying to organize the kitchen cabinets – a massive undertaking!  If anyone has a desire to help clean up the kitchen, please let Adele know.

Today, Tuesday, Adele and Lin are hosting a thank you lunch for everyone who worked at the July Jumble.  We will talk and laugh and reminisce about what a wonderful time we all had!  Being a community is so important, especially in these crazy times.  Thank you to everyone who helped make this July Jumble a success, and especially to Adele and Lin and Mark and Nancy and Mary Jane and Nicki and Dan and Meredith and Kathy and Lucy and Mary and Sandy and Mary and Michael and Terri and Sue and Jenny and Jessica and Sherry and George and many more whose names have fallen out of my brain.

I am so glad to have been able to help with this event and to get to know each of you just a little bit better.  Please, if you are in need of anything, let me know.  I can be reached by email at fawn@stjohnsoly.org or by cell phone (360) 259-5933.  Thanks for reading!  Have a wonderful August!

Blessings,

Fawn Hacker

Senior Warden

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Wednesday, July 28 2021

Dear Friends:

It’s been a very full month at St. John’s | San Juan. July saw our 2021 Jumble, which was pushed to July to give us time to organize and prepare for a garage sale in a pandemic. The event was a terrific success, with over $2,000 being raised, to be split between the Busy Bees, a longtime organization of St. John’s which supports education and advocacy for women and girls, and the building fund at St. John’s, as we prepare for the seismic retrofitting that will precede replacing our roof. 

The Executive Committee has worked tirelessly this month meeting with folks from the Board of Directors of the Diocese of Olympia (the governing body which oversees the Diocesan Building Fund), and members of the Standing Committee (who are canonically charged with signing off whenever a parish takes out a loan). This is leading toward our application being reviewed first by the Joint Finance Panel (JFP), who make recommendations to the Board of Directors, with whom we will meet on August 19. After that meeting, we’ll know a lot more about the timeline for our project, and what to expect going forward.

One thing we do know at this point is that we will have to move the Möller organ out of the organ loft before the seismic work can begin. The Möller, which was the first organ installed in our church, will have to be removed pipe by pipe, first through the hatch in the Sacristy ceiling, and then once we get to the bigger items, down scaffolding that will have to be erected in the chancel. We haven’t been able to find a taker for the organ (though we’ve offered it to just about everyone we can think of, and free of charge at that), so we’re looking at what other options there are for a new life for it. Möller was prolific; they built over 12,000 instruments in over a century of building. Most of these instruments, like ours, need considerable work to be refurbished every few generations. Even if we gave our organ to another congregation, it would still require more than $50,000 of work to be restored and fully usable again. Sadly, there isn’t any demand for an organ like ours, so we’re looking at creative options for its use going forward.

We were sad to say good-bye to Tieran Sweeny-Bender this month, as he prepares to finish his undergraduate degree in the fall. We sent him back to school with the gift of Accordance, the premier Bible study software suite, so he can focus on his thesis, which will be on the Revelation to John. And we have welcomed Alessandra Portaro as our new administrator, who is quickly learning the ropes and getting settled in, including editing this month’s edition of The Chronicle. 

I had hoped that we would be able to start sharing the common cup at Communion again in August, but unfortunately the newest guidelines from the CDC, which were sent out on Tuesday, will likely slow us down in doing so. It’s hard to see how we can both keep our masks on, and also stand right in front of someone to drink from a cup that they hand to us. It is my fondest hope that the transmission rates in Thurston County decline, and we will be able to return to using the common cup again soon. 

In the meantime, blessings to you and yours, and I look forward to seeing you at church!

Faithfully,

R.C.

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Wednesday, July 28 2021

St. John’s | San Juan Episcopal Church

Stewardship Report for The Chronicle

July 2021

As the first step in developing a comprehensive program for stewardship and community and financial development for St. John’s | San Juan, the initial meeting of our new Stewardship Committee was held on July 8, 2021. Members of the Committee include Judy Bartels, Caitlin Bird, Sarah Clifthorne, Anne Hall, Bob Le Roy, Pat Le Roy, and Andre Unicume. The Committee discussed and began planning for the following activities:

  1. Capital Campaign Fulfillment Phase
    In this phase, we will reach out to everyone who made a gift or pledge to the Sing to the Lord a New Song campaign to thank them and ask them to confirm their commitments. Anne will also complete a master record of all gifts and pledges so we can project cash flow from pledges we will receive during the balance of 2021, 2022, and 2023 and for our use, when necessary, in reminding contributors when their pledge payments are due.

     
  2. Social Engagement
    Caitlin and Andrew will take the lead in organizing an event, perhaps a block party or street fair, to celebrate our return to being with each other. R.C. anticipates three events during the first half of the upcoming program year: “return to church” in September, “blessing of the animals” in October, and “Feast of All Saints” in November.
     
  3. Legacy Society
    We will begin the process of creating a Legacy Society to promote, solicit, and celebrate planned and deferred gifts designated to St. John’s | San Juan. We will recruit a Chair for the Society and a team of planning professionals (attorney, accountant, financial planner, life insurance agent) from within the congregation, if possible, to serve as resources for articles and presentations focused on estate and financial planning.
     
  4. Project Resource
    The Diocese of Olympia is offering us an opportunity to participate in Project Resource (Project Resource | The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia (ecww.org)), a comprehensive, 5-part, series about stewardship formation. This program, from the Office of Bishops, “has proven success in being an effective and enduring set of practices for changing the culture of giving in congregations”. R.C. and I will be participating and encourage members of the Stewardship Committee, Vestry, and congregation to join us. If you are interested, please let me know.
     
  5. 2022 Annual Campaign
    We anticipate the annual campaign for 2022 will be held during a six-week period in October and November 2021 and will be structured much like the capital campaign, with lead volunteers reaching out to members of the congregation personally to cultivate and solicit gifts and pledges. It was suggested the launch of the annual campaign occur on the same day as the ministry fair to illustrate some of the many ways campaign gifts support our mission and ministries. 
     
  6. Stewardship Retreat
    We would like to schedule and host a “Stewardship Retreat” for members of the Stewardship Committee, Ministry Leads, and other interested members of the congregation to share our experiences during the pandemic and build consensus around priorities for stewardship and community and financial development at St. John’s | San Juan in post-COVID times. We will create a small planning team for the retreat and invite members of the Vestry and congregation to join us. If you would like to be part of the planning team, please let me know.

Respectfully submitted,

Bob Le Roy, Stewardship Chair

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