Update from the Board of Stewards

Dear Central Family,

Greetings to all of you! I pray this finds you all healthy and well. I have a number of important updates to bring to you today.

1. Financial Update:

We are grateful for your faithful contributions and support of the ministry at Central Baptist. We continue to receive offerings online, by mail, or in person drop off on Sunday mornings following the service.

We have received calls and emails from folks expressing urgent concern about our financial situation, and we understand your concern based on the income vs. budget numbers we typically report.

I wanted to provide you with a clearer picture of where we stand. As you may recall, we were unable to approve a new budget this Spring, and so we carried over our budget from Fiscal Year 19/20 into 20/21. In the past year there has been a payroll reduction of approximately $100,000 made to our budget. We are also operating under a COVID budget, which means no spending unless it is essential for ministry.

We ended the fiscal year 19/20 with income $11,255 under expenses. Our current fiscal year began July 1, 2020. As of July 31, our income is $33,621, and our total budgeted expenses were $38,528, which means we were $4,657 behind in giving for July 2020.

We will be changing our weekly budget reporting to better reflect our financial standing, and are thankful to you for your continued support. If you have any further questions or wish to discuss our financial situation in greater detail, please reach out to Steve Nuessle in the church office.

2. 1913 Building Proposal

Thanks to the many folks who have responded with encouragement and support of this project, as well as asking important questions and expressing concerns as we consider this significant decision. We have been working to compile answers and will provide that information to you as soon as possible.

We are also scheduling an in-person meeting for Saturday September 12, following the outdoor prayer gathering. All COVID safety protocols will be observed for this meeting. We understand that many of you are not comfortable with indoor gatherings, and so we will record this meeting and make it available to those who are unable to attend. Voting will be opened following the meeting; you may cast your ballot in person, via mail or email, or by dropping it off in the church office. Votes will be accepted for one week following the meeting. Watch for further details and instructions in the next week.

3. Welcome Intentional Interim Pastor Steve

Hopefully many of you have had a chance to either meet Steve and Linda Schoepf in person, or watch his video introduction. We are thrilled to have them here with us, and look forward to hearing Steve preach for the first time on Sunday September 6th. Steve was hired to work three days per week, and is packing those days as full as possible.

A reminder that “Intentional Interim ministry encompasses the total life of the church to ensure the ongoing congregational needs are met at the same time that the church positions itself for a stronger future”. The Board of Stewards and the Staff are working in partnership with Pastor Steve, and we ask for your prayers as we embark on important work and decision that will need to be made in the months ahead.

You may remember that the Schoepf’s moved here from Cedar Rapids, which was hit by an incredibly destructive storm on Monday August 10; their home there did sustain some damage. Please continue to pray for Steve and Linda as they work through insurance logistics, the pending sale of that home, and their continued transition to their new home here in the Twin Cities.

4. Celebrating Pastor Joel and the Lawrence Family

We are so grateful to Pastor Joel for his willingness to continue serving Central in a preaching role. Pastor Steve is working directly with Pastor Joel on the preaching schedule for Fall, as Joel transitions out of this temporary role while Steve is onboarding.

We will be celebrating the ministry of Joel and Myndi and the Lawrence family at an outdoor service on Saturday October 10. Please watch for details in the weeks to come.

5. Thank you Pastor Boyd

As you may recall, our fellow Board Member Rob Boyd graciously agreed to step in and serve as Interim Staff Coordinator. What was to have been a 4-6 week role ended up lasting 10 weeks. We are beyond grateful to Rob for his willingness to serve, his wise and prayerful leadership, generosity of spirit, and the incredible amount of time he gave to serve our church. Please join me in expressing our deepest thanks and gratitude!

It is hard to believe Fall is nearly upon us, and that we are entering the sixth month of life in the midst of a global pandemic. All of our lives, families, friendships, work, school, neighborhoods, and communities, including our own beloved church, have been upended in ways none of us could have possibly imagined nor predicted months ago. We’ve witnessed injustice, experienced deep racial unrest, and seen both peaceful protests and violent destructions across the country and right here in our own backyard. We’re in the middle of a Presidential Election in a deeply divided nation. And we all continue to make plans and move through our days, perhaps feeling more than ever a sense of uncertainty about what tomorrow will bring. As disciples of Jesus Christ, we are people of faith, people of hope, people of love, and people of prayer. Don’t grow weary of doing well friends, and remember we walk by faith, and not by sight.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” Hebrews 12:1-2 NIV

Yours in Christ,

Catherine Westby

Chair, Board of Stewards