September 2017 Meeting Summary

A précis of our meeting on Tuesday 12th September 2017

Adrian began the meeting with prayer and bible study on Mark 8.22-26.

We reviewed our strategy day in July, from which came the two working groups referred to later in this précis.

Under redevelopment/re-ordering we learned that the project is proceeding extremely well and is, wonderfully, on track, with costs being tightly and well controlled. The building will be handed over at the end of October, giving time for detailed preparations to be made for the re-opening service on November 9th.  We also confirmed the terms of our loan and loan repayment plan with the Blenheim estate.

Adrian spoke in some detail about the re-opening service and the days following, including Remembrance Sunday on November 12th, a grand Gala Concert on November 18th, and the Christmas Market on November 25th. He alluded to Advent and Christmas services, and to new plans for worship in 2018 (see below).

Aidan, as Chairman of the Finance Committee, informed the PCC that our giving has dropped significantly while the building has been closed. While partly anticipated, the drop is c. £20,000 short of our forecast – immensely disappointing.  The Finance Committee will bring proposals to the October PCC aiming to remedy this, including a major presentation to the congregation in late November. A new freewill offering officer is sought to replace Carol Holmes who has served us so well.

The Building in Mission Group is chaired by Ruth Sutherland. We heard of plans for cleaning the building, opening and locking, future usage and many other practical arrangements. The People in Mission Group is chaired by Chris Wallworth. We heard of a review of our ministry of welcome, an overhaul of rotas and teams, mission and ministries. Adrian is making plans for two new regular services in 2018, part of our outreach to children and young families, and teenagers and young adults.

We approved a new body for providing Safeguarding services, as requested by the diocese.

In other business, we noted with regret that Alison Mares, our Methodist Minister, had moved on from Woodstock, and held her in our prayers and best wishes. Adrian is working with the local Superintendent Minister and others on supporting our Methodist friends at this time.  Adrian reported on news from our schools, including good results from the Marlborough, and gave notice that he is seeking a new Foundation Governor for Woodstock primary school.