February was another month of spiritual enrichment, continued increases in church attendance (both in person and online), and intentional activity to prepare for the calling of a settled pastor. Thank you all for your prayers on behalf of FCC and being the heart, hands and voices of our very special Christian community.

February started with a robust, well-attended Congregational Meeting. The primary agenda item was discussion and approval of the 2024 budget. We also heard from the team updating the Bylaws, members planning and implementing the new Audio-Visual System, and the group planning the 135th Anniversary Celebration that will culminate in a big party on June 2, 2024.

The February church board meeting was primarily dedicated to a presentation on the proposed revisions of the FCC Bylaws. The Bylaws are being revised to better reflect the principle that governance is vested in the members of FCC. The Board was led through the proposed revisions by Laurie Swanson-Gribskov and Mary Brooner. A special Congregational Meeting will be held later this spring to approve the Bylaws revisions.

During the February board meeting we also reviewed a design concept for a Reflection Garden developed by Lee Kersh, Chris Cunningham and Evert Slijper. The proposed Reflection Garden honors our FCC members who have passed and is suggested to be located in a designated area off the lawn at the southwest corner of the sanctuary’s entry near the “garden of the cross.” The tentative plan includes a stone bench or sitting stone(s) with associated contemplative plantings. The plan is to utilize donated materials and labor. The Men’s Group will be the sponsor of the Reflection Garden and take charge of construction and maintenance. The plan is to begin construction later this year with completion by Easter of 2025.

The FCC Board has also created a small work group to organize volunteer recruitment and coordination at the church. We hope to increase the number of people involved in the ministries of the church, streamline the process for recruitment, and enhance the collaboration between FCC staff, lay leadership and congregants.

Blessings to you all and thank you for making FCC such a special community of people who choose love over hate, service over personal greed, and hope over despair.

Dan Close, FCC Board Moderator