April 15, 2020 Meeting Update

At our April 15th Zoom meeting, Council opened and closed our agenda with reflections on how Easter Sunday 2020 was a unique experience. While opportunities for isolated worship are appreciated, our practices of group worship are missed. We appreciate our staff and lay leaders who are continuing to experiment with technology.

We confirmed that all of our staff continue on our payroll, following guidance from the United Church of Canada and the federal government. Finance Committee is monitoring updates about the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy program as well as other programs, and providing guidance to Council. Council will explore what process might be feasible if/when we require congregational approval for any financial decisions. At this time, I note that Brian Magee is now Chair of Finance Committee, and Kent Hoeg continues on Council until our 2020 budget process is completed.

Following concerns about the security of Zoom videoconferencing, we discussed whether that is the appropriate platform for Harcourt to use. Council confirmed that Zoom will continue to be our choice at this time. Our Tech Team is preparing guidelines on how to configure Zoom to address security concerns, as well as what level of licence best meets Harcourt’s needs.

National Volunteer Week is April 19-25. Once again, I say “thank you” to all in Harcourt who offer your gifts of time, energy, and creativity. This Sunday, we salute you. We continue to show and see our faith in action.

Continued blessings,
Lorraine Holding, Council Chair