Visionary Board Update
The Lakeview Visionary Board continues to meet monthly.
I wish to report on topics of interest to the congregation and to provide some guidance on where we see ourselves in the next few months. In reading what follows, the common thread will be obvious: we don’t really know what is going to happen, but we are going to do our best to make a good plan and to adjust as necessary.
Lakeview Sunday Services
Our services via Zoom have been well attended — this is encouraging! There are still a number of individuals who we have not “seen” over the last few weeks. If you know someone who has not attended, maybe consider giving them a ring or an email to remind them what is required to log in and participate (or not) according to what they may feel comfortable with. We also maintain an archive of past services and musical performances which can be accessed through our website.
We continue to receive the support of the congregation in a variety of formats (mail, e-transfer, and preauthorized remittances). Thank you for this. While we have experienced a notable decline in revenue (in particular due to our temporary loss of long and short term tenant rentals) we have been able to access some of the Government of Canada salary support for our employees. This has offset our income shortfall to some extent. We remain in a reasonably good position financially and should be able to sustain what happens in the near future without difficulty. In saying that, we have addressed non-essential expenditures and continue to pay attention to our stewardship role at Lakeview. The Operations Team continues to manage the operations very carefully and with success.
Annual General Meeting
We propose to hold the AGM at the end of service on June 14, 2020, via Zoom. The conduct of an electronic AGM was recently approved by the National Church Office. The specifics of what our meeting format will actually look like remain to be determined. Expect the Annual Report to be filed on the church website, and the committees and organizations that report to us, to be referred to as filed rather than reported at the meeting. The Treasurer will give a brief summary of 2019 and a description of the 2020 budget. While the meeting itself will be a pretty compressed version of an in-person congregational meeting, we did want to present this information in a meaningful way and without further delay.
We are on again for the shared church services with Wesley and Sunset this summer. The last Lakeview-only Sunday will be June 14, with the Tri-Church starting on June 21. Lakeview will present our four-week term starting on July 19, through to August 9. Expect particulars of how to attend by reference to our Lakeview website.
Return to Near Normal
We are governed by Public Health directives as to when and how we might worship together as a congregation. But once this is permitted we will always be guided by what will work best for the members of the congregation. This is not a race.
We will continue to provide services remotely until June 14, after which date the Tri-Church Experience will take us through to September 6. Accordingly, the earliest we could be back at Lakeview as a congregation would be September 13, which is the first Sunday after the conclusion of the Tri-Church Experience.
It is hard to know if September 13 is a reasonable expectation. It is possible that we will initiate a graduated return to the church in some form or fashion. Perhaps the service format will be altered to accommodate social distancing before, during, and after services. Maybe we will continue with our online presence for a period of time along with our in-person church service (this may be helpful for some of our members who feel uncomfortable regardless of what we are permitted to do). We want to look at how other churches and organizations are conducting themselves, and learn and use best practices. We think we can figure this out and make it work for Lakeview. Expect a more detailed description of all aspects of how we go about being a church ss we get closer to our return to near normal date.
It is a work in progress. But unlike my home improvement projects, we actually need to figure out and finish each on a timely basis. And we will do this.
I continue to be optimistic about Lakeview's congregation. We have many smart and hardworking staff and volunteers who will make Lakeview successful as we come out of a remarkable moment in history. Well done and thanks to all.