By Bruce Linger, Board of Trustees President


I’m betting many of you don’t know that the Church publishes an annual report—I know I didn’t until I became involved with governance and the board a number of years ago. Our 2017 annual report is now available—and I encourage you to give it a read, as it’s full of highlights of last year and areas that your congregation and leadership are focusing on for 2018 and beyond.

While the annual report has more details, if I may take a moment, let me share with you some brief highlights.

  • First, as you know, 2017 was momentous year for the Kenilworth Union church as we celebrated our 125th year of serving our congregation and the greater community.
  • As you can read about, 2017 was a reasonable year for the Church financially, as we crawled across the finish line on our annual stewardship goal of $2 million and we maintain adequate reserves in our balance sheet
  • We are blessed with three strong ministers, each offering unique skills and contributions, which when taken together, provide us with excellent preaching, fellowship, education, and congregational care
  • We’ve started to give our building some attention—expect this to continue in the future as we’ve neglected some key areas in recent years
  • Our music and youth programs are strong and vibrant; Outreach programs are stronger than ever; our AJN Preschool is thriving; and we continue a strong offering in education, fellowship, and worship programs

As far as looking forward, your ministers, staff, and trustees are focusing on a number of key areas that we believe are critical to sustaining a strong and vibrant congregation.

  • People: Strong ministers and staff are critical—they drive the success of our congregation. Specifically, we will be investing in people and resources to update our children’s ministries programs. We wish to be the church of choice for those professionals who serve alongside us so well, so we need to be competitive as a place to work. And, of course, the congregation and its volunteers are critical to our success, so recruitment of members to engage in committees, programs, and the board is a key area of interest.  If you are not serving but are interested in working with us, please reach out to me or any of the ministers—we’d love to have you join us
  • Facilities: Long overdue, we are examining how we can update our building in a reasonable fashion that offers a compelling place for worship, fellowship, and education. This will be a thoughtful and careful process that will need to pull together many constituents and resources
  • Financial: Yes, we’ve hit our stewardship goal the last several years, but it’s not without challenges. We need our congregation to regularly support the Church’s annual operating budget, so the Church can offer the excellence we all expect and deserve.   Further, we are examining short and long-term capital needs and the means to achieve a greater degree of financial flexibility for our congregation

In closing, it’s a privilege for me to work alongside you to build and sustain our wonderful Kenilworth Union Church. We are truly blessed.  I look forward to seeing you this Sunday.