Hope Lutheran Church Council

Hope Council Minutes ~ Aug. 15, 2014

Future Directions Task force Report; Committee members present:  Peggy, Glen, Curt   Gary

Report from Future Directions task force, all committee members were present.

Discussion:  Plan to have committee’s report presented to the congregation.

Request for written progress report from committee listing: What has been done?  Future  considerations given in report.

Question asked by committee:  Is council willing and ready to commit to task force before they continue.


Council requests the Future Directions Committee continue investigating the feasibility of supporting Bethlehem Retreat Center, which may include relocating to Bethlehem Retreat Center

M/S/C      Noted that the eight council members present all voted in favor of this motion

Cover letter will be written by Chair to accompany posted minutes. 

Discussion followed re motion by council

2:30 Guests leave

Plan of presentation worked out:

1.    Notice on the 24 of August of schedule

2.    Sept. 7 information meeting after church service

3.    Sept. 14 planned visit and service at Bethlehem Retreat Center (task force will arrange for church service there)

4.    Oct. 5 Congregational meeting

Motion:  August 24 announcement of the following three events:

Sept. 7 information meeting

Sept. 14 or 21 hold worship at Bethlehem Retreat Centre

Oct. 5 Congregational meeting    M/S/C

Hope Lutheran Church Congregational Announcement

Regarding results of the Future Directions Task force

24 August 2014


The Future Directions Task Force was asked to follow up on a motion at the Annual General Meeting  regarding the possibility of constructing a housing project on the property of Hope Lutheran Church.


The Task Force pursued that investigation and concluded from the data that such a project was neither economically viable nor municipally allowed on the congregation’s property.


However, in the middle of the Task Force’s mandate, a new issue arose. The Benedictine Sisters who operate Bethlehem Retreat Centre announced that they can no longer continue their ministry and wish to sell the property.


The issue came to the attention of the Congregational Council because an informal consortium of devoted participants was interested in retaining the retreat centre for its original purposes. The consortium was originated by a group of Catholic supporters of the centre who invited other Christian communities to look into the possibility of saving the property from being sold to a developer.


The Council asked the Task Force to look into the matter and report back. Several interim reports have been received by Council, none of which point to a specific response at this time. However, the Benedictine Sisters are open to the proposals being made by the informal consortium. These proposals include sponsorship of costs for continuing the operation of the centre and/or co-ownership of the operation including the option of relocating onto the site. The following motion was adopted unanimously on Friday, August 15:

Council requests the Future Directions Committee to continue investigating the feasibility of supporting Bethlehem Retreat Center, which may include relocating to Bethlehem Retreat Center

Since considerable reassignments of mission priorities and allocation of funds would be involved, the Council can no longer remain a participant in these conversations without congregational consent. In order to lay out the future directions that such a venture may entail, Council proposes that the following process take place:


1.    That there be an information meeting following the 10:00 am worship service on September 7 to hear the report of the Task Force and discuss informally the possibilities contained in the project.

2.    That the worship services for Sunday, September 14 be held at Bethlehem Retreat Centre, followed by a tour of the property.

3.    That a Special Congregational Meeting be held on Sunday, October 5, to determine whether Hope Lutheran Church wishes to continue exploring this venture as an expression of its future mission.


There are many more things I might say, but this is intended to be an announcement only.

The time for conversation will come on September 7. September 14 will give us an opportunity to see, first-hand, what is being proposed. The Congregational, as a whole, has the final say,

therefore the meeting being called for October 5 will determine whether we will proceed further

in this consideration.


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