Chapter Highlights, April Meeting

What is “Chapter” you ask? The Chapter is the governing body of St. Paul’s Cathedral and is responsible for the governance and care of the Cathedral’s building and grounds and finances. Meetings are held monthly and are generally open to all Cathedral members except for occasions when the Chapter must meet in executive session. The Chapter consists of 12 members of the Cathedral who are elected at the Annual Meeting to serve three year terms and the Dean, who is elected annually and serves as Chair. In addition to those elected by the Cathedral congregation, an additional member is appointed by the Bishop of San Diego and two more members are elected by the Diocese of San Diego at the Diocesan Convention. From the members of the Chapter, the Dean appoints a Dean’s Warden and the Chapter elects a People’s Warden.

You can see who’s currently on chapter here.

So what’s happening at Chapter? Here are some highlights from our April meeting: We opened with prayer, approved last month’s minutes, and checked in with our newest members to answer any questions they had after their first quarter with us and then proceeded to hear reports:

The Occasional Reports this month were Worship and Education.

  • Our total attendance count from Palm Sunday through Easter was 2,752!
  • Allisyn reported that Christine D’Amico, Associate for Children, Youth & Family Ministry, is updating our Godly Play program for the younger children as well as implementing new and exciting ideas for our youth.
  • The Hispanic congregation Sunday School is thriving.


  • Income from pledges and the offering plate on Sunday mornings was on budget as of the end of February. Thank you everyone!
  • In addition, wedding income has been strong this year thanks to the new prominence for weddings on our website. (moderator’s note: check it out here
  • Bottom-line: We’re in the black year-to-date. (Did you catch the Channel 5 news report a couple of weeks ago? They did a really nice story on St. Paul’s Cathedral, and why our finances are (so far) OK despite the recession, while other churches, such as certain large mega-churches, are struggling.)

Building and Grounds:

  • An anonymous donor donated new carpeting for the office – and we gratefully thanked them. The orange(ish) circa-1984 carpeting was showing its age to put it mildly. Our office gets a lot of foot traffic!
  • The committee also reported on the latest work that is scheduled as they continue to work their way down the Southern Cross Report. (The Southern Cross was a comprehensive survey of the buildings and grounds of the Cathedral completed in 2006, which the committee has been using as a guide for campus improvements and maintenance). In the coming months, we’ll be doing several small jobs including a new slurry coat for the parking lot. (People sometimes ask, “How does the Cathedral pay for expensive campus improvements?” It’s a good question. Here’s the answer in a nutshell: Although our operating budget is balanced, it is extremely tight with virtually no additional funds for capital improvements or costly deferred maintenance issues. As a result, we generally rely on a combination of sources, including special bequests and the occasional special gift from a generous parishioner (such as the carpet mentioned above and the new round tables you see at coffee hour!).
  • Chris Harris updated us briefly on the status of the organ restoration project which has been on the Chapter agenda for some time but on hold of late due to the recession. (The Cathedral’s Great Organ has been in need of a major restoration and the Chapter has authorized the committee to begin exploring the optimal time to revisit a possible capital campaign). The committee is currently exploring options for timing and financing. More to come on this issue!

Finally, we are happy to announce that Erin Sacco-Pineda will fill the Chapter vacancy left by Laurel Mathewson’s departure. For those that don’t know, Laurel Mathewson and her husband Colin with both be leaving us to attend Sewanee seminary in the fall. Erin has generously offered to fill out the reminder of Laurel’s term. Erin is an accountant with a great deal of expertise working with non-profits. Welcome aboard Erin!

Until next time,

Carol L. Walsh
People’s Warden

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