Red Cedar Zen Community, 1021 N Forest, Bellingham Washington

December 2011 Minutes

Red Cedar Zen Board of Directors                         Meeting - December 7, 2011 

Board Minutes                                                                                   

PRESENT: Tim, Talus, Joan, Edie.  Jeff excused.

VISITORS: Kate, Marti


encouraging words

full value contract

We commit:

  • to maintaining physical, psychological, and emotional safety
  • to working together to foster both group and individual goals; giving the group what it needs and individuals what they need.
  • to speaking and listening fearlessly to one another and fully talking things through.

review agenda and set time limits

Our Guest's Business

1. Membership.  Kate reported the results of our November membership drive so far: 14 membership renewals, five new members, one new friend, one friend renewal.  Although November has been our focus for membership, renewals and new commitments usually continue through January, so we are advised not to be too concerned about the relatively small number of commitments so far.  Still, we are hoping our 2012 numbers of members and friends will exceed our 2011 total of 53 by 8 to 10.

The board discussed ways to acknowledge membership pledges (beyond the thank you letter they are sent).  Plans were also made for Kate to speak to individuals who participate in sangha activities but who have not yet become members to see what is needed for them to become members.

2. Practice roles.  Marti, who has been doing the Chiden role for quite some time now, requested that some other people be trained in the role so that more are available to do the function. (In fact, later that evening Tim trained five people in the Chiden duties.) 

Old Business

1. Building Entrance Help for Renters.  Joan presented the information she is preparing to post at our front door to help building renters who have trouble making the code work to open the door. It includes the first names and phone numbers of three members to call for help when a renter cannot open the door.  Joan will finalize the statement, have it laminated, and post it by the front door.           

2. Change of door code.  As has been planned for some time for security purposes, Talus will ask Don (now Building Maintenance Manager) to change the code for the two building entrances by the end of 2011.

New Business

1. Budgets for new programs.  a. Monthly Public Program.  The board decided that $300 should be enough to budget annually for this program, which includes a $50 honorarium for speakers coming from other areas.  b. Annual Gift Fund Raising outreach.  The board decided to allocate up to $450 for printing and mailing of the letter and enclosures to our broader mailing list. The project committee, which meets on 12/17, will flesh out the details of this plan and propose to the board a more specific budget. The letter is being prepared to go out in early April.  c. Red Cedar Zen Brochure.   One hundred copies of our updated brochure were recently printed with some color on nice paper at a cost of 60 cents per copy.  They are in the lobby and outside the front door.  The brochure will be revised again when new programs and activities are established.

2. Monthly Saturday Morning Work Party.  The first of the all sangha work periods (on the third Saturday of the month) is on December 17, 9 - 12, with potluck refreshments.  These work parties will focus on larger maintenance needs than can be taken care of through our short samu cleanings. On this first work party day, we will focus on the back garden.  We especially need a few strong people to help with the big rocks in the garden.  Tim is sending out an email to members requesting their help.

3. Monthly Public Talks.  Tim and Marti are developing this program, which will start in February, and occur on the first Saturday morning of the month. It will feature zazen instruction, zazen, and a dharma talk, sometimes by a visiting teacher.  More information to come as the program gets organized.

4. Annual Meeting.  Our sangha meeting is scheduled for Saturday, January 7, 10 am to 12.  The agenda will include reports on our financials, programs and practice, membership, volunteering, and our fund raising plan.  Time will be allotted for sangha discussion about what members would like to see happen in the coming year.  Tea and cookies will be served.

5. Financial Report.  Talus reported that our expenses were close to budget this past month. Although we are currently short on income, we are being frugal in our expenditures. Income and expense numbers are not yet available from the Rohatsu sesshin-though one point of interest is that the Seattle Soto Zen group, who co-sponsored the event, graciously refused any income from the retreat fees, given that we used our facility. The finance committee meets this month and will attempt to prepare the 2012 budget for review by the board prior to the Annual meeting.

The next Board Meeting is Wednesday, January 4, 5:15.  Everyone welcome to attend.


meeting reflection

on relationships, process, values and mission

of good value


upholding the contract

sangha on the horizon


Edie Norton, Board Secretary

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