Here is a brief summary of the issues discussed and actions taken at the Congregation Council meeting on November 9:

  • Passed a motion that the “Congregation Treasurer shall disburse the amount of $15,000 from the Rose Diestler Estate Gift Fund to Iringa Hope, Iringa, Tanzania for the purpose of acquiring a second vehicle.”

Kent Olson explained that Iringa Hope needs the vehicle now to expand its efforts to make micro-financing loans for the growing season.  A request for $35,000 for this purpose was submitted in the initial round of proposals submitted to the Generosity Committee.  The request was reduced to $15,000 after other organizations agreed to contribute and now falls with the Council’s spending authority.  All remaining and future proposals for Diestler Gift funds will be subject to approval by the congregation.

Update: Since the council took this action, we have learned that our gift, combined with the other funds raised have allowed Iringa Hope to acquire three vehicles recently made available from USAID.

  • Treasurer Chris Thornton reported that giving has licked up. At the beginning of October, we were about $23,000 behind and that gap has been decreased by about $5,000.  Thornton has begun analysis of giving patterns, with a focus on how the passing of older members has impacted our financial position. He will continue his analysis and include it in future discussions of PoP’s long-term strategy.
  • Viewed a video introducing the St. Paul Area Synod’s upcoming capital campaign “Planting Hope” More information will be available in a few weeks, but the video and other information can be seen at
  • Liberating Structures – Reviewed conversations we have had about the words Relationships, Generosity, Caring, Faith, and Learning.  How well do these words describe PoP?  How important is it for us to define our values at this time? A group of Council members will attend the Liberating Structures project on Saturday, November 13, and focus on these questions in the next few weeks
  • The Roof Team has revised their bidding guidelines and will soon solicit proposals for beginning the project next spring. In the meantime, the existing roof has been patched and appears to be holding up.
  • Approved a motion to designate offerings received on Thanksgiving Eve towards refugee resettlement, to be split between Arrive Ministries and Lutheran Social Service.

Michael Stetzler, President