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NLS Board Minutes: Teleconference

Feb. 15th, 2009

 Present: Tracy Schmidlin, Pr. Doug Givan, Dave Erdman, Katie Sistar, Bob Northrup, Diane Purcell, Judy Laabs-Foss, Nu Helgager

 Pastor Doug opened the NLS Board Teleconference with prayer at 7:30 p. m. on Sunday, February 15, 2009.

 V.P Outreach – Dave Erdman:  He gave us information concerning Michigan’s request to be an affiliated secretariat.  They have sent Dave a new revised constitution.  He is to meet with Jan Long and Steve Moy in March to go over more details.

Dave stated that the Fourth Day Conference in February went well.  It was suggested that the leaders hold a teleconference several times between the February meetings.  Some of the organizations are registering with the Better Business Bureau.  They are interested in people looking them up to see that they are using the money well.  This would be especially good idea for us when we are soliciting funds for the National Coordinator Position.

Another suggestion for Secretariats holding weekends was made.  Some are trying to have a weekend over a three day holiday weekend so people won’t have to take a Friday off of work.  Some holiday weekends could be Labor Day or Memorial Day.

Northwest Oregon has sent a request asking to see sample constitutions and wanting to know what needs to be done to affiliate.

 Old Business – President - Tracy Schmidlin:   Discussed the National Coordinator Position:  Tracy stated that the funding effort is still on hold due to the economy.

Nominating Committee: Paul Sabatier-Smith, Judy Mowery, and Penny Klein have agreed to serve on the nominating committee.

President – Tracy has agreed to run for a second term.  Secretary – Katie has agreed to run for a second term.  Vice President of Outreach position is open – Dave has served two terms. Names have been given to us and will be passed on to the committee for verification.

Secretary’s Report - Katie Sistar: The board received a copy of the 2009 Annual Survey and accompanying letter requesting data for the weekends for 2008. Katie has mailed or e-mailed most of the secretariats a copy of the Survey and letter.  Some e-mails need to be updated.  She has ten responses so far.

Treasurer’s Report – Bob Northrup:  The Wachovia account has $6,876.00, and the Thrivent account has $28,250.00. A secretariat sent in an extra $50.00 donation.  We want to be careful in the spending of our funds.  We discussed using funds to help struggling secretariats attend a National Meeting.

It was pointed out that there was an earlier error in the minutes of the amount that Arizona was committing to the funding of the National Coordinator Position.  The minutes should have stated they had committed to donate .05% of their net income toward the National Coordinator Position.  The board is grateful for this commitment.

Spiritual Director’s Report – Pr. Doug Givan:  He is in the process of making a Spiritual Directors’ data base for pastors to be able to communicate with each other better. The board discussed policy regarding the leadership of Spiritual Directors.  Basically it’s up to the secretariats to keep teaching the fundamentals and basics and challenge their Spiritual Directors to do this as well.  Our role is to educate.

There was discussion concerning a secretariat’s desire to limit the talks to twenty minutes.  The board agreed that speakers would not be able to get in all the points necessary for the table discussions, and that would limit the effectiveness of the weekend. The suggested times are needed. The more you change the more problems it causes in the dynamics of the weekend. 

At the annual meeting, he wants to make a video of the pastors to use as a marketing tool.  He would video the pastors explaining how Via de Cristo participation has been a positive influence in their congregations. Tracy asked Pr. Doug to write articles for the two Lutheran Magazines along this same line.

V.P. Administration – Nu Helgager:  The Florida Host Committee is doing well. Their IM people are in place. She wants to visit with the team possibly after Easter to finalize plans, go over the rooms needed for the schedule and hand over documents to them.  The registration forms are posted on the web and in the Conexiones. The e-mail audio postcards are a good advertising tool.

There are representatives from Minnesota for 2010.  Diane requested Tracy send a letter explaining the honor of being a Host Committee and how the money is handled.  Tracy read the Honor of Hosting letter at the Mid-Year meeting with Florida..

New Business:  Some NLS leaders are getting many weird e-mails from an unknown person.  We discussed how to handle this situation. The best choices seem to be to keep deleting them, putting them in their spam folder and setting up a block for those e-mails.

The board discussed the letter that Linda Kerler from Heart of Illinois Secretariat sent us asking permission to use the NLS logo in their contact letter in promotion of Via de Cristo.  It was suggested that they create a logo for their secretariat to use on future letters. Bob Northrup moved that the use of the NLS logo on the letter received from Heart of Illinois by the NLS Board dated January 27 be approved.  Nu Helgager seconded.  Motion carried.

After Nu goes to finalize plans with Florida for the Annual Meeting at Barry University in Miami Shores, we will aim for a Teleconference with Board members on April 19.

Pr. Doug read Psalm 40:1-3 and the meeting closed with prayer at 8:55 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,

Katie Sistar

NLS Secretary




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