On Thursday, September 23rd, we had another finance council meeting. Here are some highlights:
- We ran through the normal parish finance reports: the income and expense report, the balance sheet, and accounts payable.
- The mini-fest, after expenses, brought in about $12,823. We stated before that the money would go towards our support of our students who are now attending Catholic schools (Tiffin and Fremont). We committed to $10k per year to those schools. We had a follow-up meeting of mini-fest leaders last week, to talk about how to improve things for next year. Overall, everybody agreed the mini-fest was a great success. Thanks again to everybody who made it happen!
- The carpet cleaning was completed, costing $4,642. The carpets throughout the church and offices look so much better! We plan to clean them once each year, in order to make them last.
- We talked more about the future of the parish rectory, given that we will have to replace the roof on the rectory in the next few years ($50K or so) and that we should dig trenches on the north and south sides of the rectory to provide drainage and avoid water problems in the basement ($50K or so). Last summer a family generously donated money for a new patio (with drainage) behind the rectory, which was necessary to stop water build-up outside and inside the rectory. Other than that patio work, this past year the rectory cost the parish less than $10,000 (taxes, a couple new water pumps, and utilities included). I suggest doing the necessary maintenance on the rectory (rather than tearing it down and building something newer and smaller). Then we need a maintenance and storage building, which I suggest should be placed on the far southeast corner behind the rectory, where the two trailers of festival supplies now sit. Having now experienced the mini-fest, we are starting to get a better feel for what should be stored for future festivals. I think we can start to plan a maintenance building. One idea was to include on the end of the maintenance/storage building a porch with an awning, in order to host social events (future festival activities/bands, youth activities, parish picnics, animal blessing on the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, etc.). I think that area will become a useful outdoors center for our parish life, with our finely refurbished pavilion nearby!
- There are only a handful of bulbs still working in the elevator. We considered three options for repair, the most reasonable option being a drop ceiling with a simple LED lighting system. Cost is $10,368. We cannot go without lighting in the elevator. And the lighting is part of the yearly inspection, The current lighting is incandescent bulbs with a rubber coating.
- A legal firm is helping us get out of our timeshare contract, now that we don't have the school, for which the timeshare helped us raise money.
- At our last meeting, upgrading the lighting of the church was put on hold, until we can get some more figures on money-saving that would result from the upgrade. We still have $85,000 collected from the lighting fund drive that was done some years ago. More information will be forthcoming.
- The windows for classroom doors on the third floor of the offices, and for the new deacons' office have been ordered.
- I received word that a new truck will be donated to the parish near the end of October. I will reveal details of this gift as I am able. The current truck (which we use especially for winter snow-plowing) now needs more repair than it is worth.
- We discussed a large bequest that is coming to the parish… how best to use it? Put it into savings for projects on the horizon, or put it into our Endowment Trust account with the Diocese to earn significant interest?
- We discussed the condition of our parking lots. Some areas can simply be resealed; some need a tack coat with sealing; some need all new asphalt. We will research this more, and probably take one parking lot at a time.
- As many of you know, in this past few weeks the parish phones have not been working correctly. We were told that the company directly over our service company made some changes in the system, and this resulted in our not being able to make outgoing calls from the office. We've been using our cell phones for outgoing calls. We are purchasing some new hardware from PC Net Techs, costing perhaps $1,500 (installed). We will begin with a new VOIP company, Wiretap Telecom. The monthly phone rate will lower from $270 to a $50 base charge, plus a charge per minute, which we estimate will be a significant savings overall. It's most efficient at this time also to add an off campus cloud-based back up system, so that we don't permanently lose any data, should something happen to our on-campus back-up system. We also decided to replace some routers around the campus, because all of us in the offices have been experiencing internet problems. We started with five routers, costing $150 each. We'll see if that fixes the problems.
- As of the writing of this letter, we have reached 86.73% ($41,223.25) of our parish goal ($47,528) for the Bishop's Annual Catholic Appeal. This money goes towards the pastoral initiatives of the Diocese. Thanks so much to everybody who has given so far! Please consider a gift, if you have not been able to do so yet.
So there are the highlights! Have a blessed week!
In cordibus Iesu, Mariae et Iosephus,