In my report for the June Connections, I was pleased to report a 5% increase in pledges compared to the previous year. This increase enabled the Board to set a budget that has increases for both salaries and for programs. The pledge increase now stands at 7%, which should enable us to add to our operating reserve. Chuck and Beth Hensel, the co-chairs of the Stewardship Committee, are to be congratulated for the successful Pledge Drive!
As I write this, in mid-June, it is too early to know whether the Fellowship will end up with a surplus or a deficit for the fiscal year ending June 30, but I think that it is likely to be a surplus. The Fellowship budget has many moving parts, and they tend to offset each other. Unpaid pledges were offset by new pledges; decreases in some income sources were offset by an increase in plate collections; an increase in ministerial expenses due to the new Senior Minister/Assistant Minister arrangement was more than offset by a reduction in the Communications Specialist’s hours after that position was vacated and reconfigured; unexpected expenses for prairie dog mitigation were offset by unusually low snow removal costs.
On June 30, I will complete my third year as Board Treasurer. I follow in the footsteps of Larry Sherwood, my immediate predecessor, who also served for three years, and whose example I have tried to follow. I consider it an honor to have been called to serve the Fellowship in this capacity. I would not go so far as to call it a privilege. However, I admit to sometimes enjoying a quiet feeling of satisfaction at seeing the business of the Fellowship operate smoothly due to my efforts.
I am very glad that Joan Mulcahy has agreed to serve as the next Treasurer. She is superbly qualified by her experience on the Stewardship Committee and on the Board and as a volunteer in the Office. We all owe her a debt of gratitude for taking on this challenge.
— Wayne Itano