Home Groups & Committees

Groups & Committees

Mission: Trusting the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the Church Council shall be generally responsible for exercising leadership in the care and oversight of the spiritual life and interests of the Pastoral Charge or Congregation. (Plan of Organization)
Council meets on the second Wednesday of every other month.

2024 Chair: Dianne Ball; secretary: Heather Mackie. To see the members of Council and Committee members, click here.

In the context of the United Church, a Trustee is an individual who, along with the other members of the Board of Trustees for a congregation, holds all of the property of that congregation for the use and benefit of the congregation as part of the United Church. The activities of the Trustees are restricted and governed variously by public statute, the United Church’s Trusts of Model Deed, and the lawful directions of the Church Council and of the other Courts of the United Church having jurisdiction.

In the case of Scarborough Bluffs, the Trustees hold in trust for the United Church of Canada all properties, including the cemetery. The Trustees oversee the investment funds of the congregation. The Trustees also administer the William John Memorial and the Kay Palmer Memorial funds. The Cemetery fund provides for the maintenance and continual care of the cemetery.

Congregational Elders
Scarborough Bluffs has one congregational elder, Chris Wright. The elder tries to have a “listening ear”, to latch onto things that may be going on in the lives of congregation members, and to make sure that all concerns are heard. Working with staff, receiving input from the congregation or during a one-on-one conversation, she attempts to keep in touch with those needing the congregation’s support and prayers. During special occasions like Christmas and Easter, she takes the initiative, on behalf of the congregation, to do something special for folks with concerns or who are shut in, or in nursing homes–e.g., cards, phone calls, poinsettias, Easter lilies.

United Church Women
For UCW information, including purpose, vision, mission statement, and a UCW prayer, please click here.
Scarborough Bluffs has two UCW units: Mes Amies (Caroline Brown, leader) and Serendipity (Jean Palmer, leader).
UCW Executive for 2024: Co-ordinator: Vacant; Vice-Co-ordinator: Vacant; Treasurer: Judi Goodwin; Secretary: Lynda Gilmour; Social Convenor: Jean Palmer; Assistant Social Convenor: Dorothy Walker; Rummage Sale Convenor: Beth Markle; Bazaar Convenor: Carolyn Brown, Pauline Welch; Spring Tea Convenor: Sylvia Barker.

The UCW supports the church in a number of ways, both financially and through hard work. Some fund-raising projects include Seville Marmalade making, a Spring Tea, Rummage Sales in April and September, and a Fall Bazaar.

Some of the agencies and organizations supported by the UCW include: Mission & Service, Scarborough Bluffs United Church, Angola Student Fund, Fred Victor Centre, Massey Centre, Ina Grafton Gage Home, Sleeping Children Around the World, Dr. Roz’s Healing Place, Water Ambassadors Canada, Street Health, Agincourt Community Services Association, Salvation Army Contingency Fund, and Juliette’s Place.

Ministry and Personnel
The United Church strives to model employment relationships that reflect an underlying assumption that “we are in Ministry together.”

The Ministry and Personnel Committee provides a consultative and supportive agency for the staff of the pastoral charge and for members and adherents of the congregation, and reviews and evaluates annually the effectiveness of the staff, as those persons and positions relate to the mission of the pastoral charge. The committee reviews working conditions and remuneration for the the staff, and makes appropriate recommendations to the Church Council.

Worship and Faith Formation
Worship and Faith Formation (see also Worship Experiences page)

This committee’s activities centre on what people often think is unique about church groups: Sunday worship and “Sunday school”.

When it comes to worship, we act as the minister’s auxiliary: we look after communion and the sanctuary; we are a sounding board for her ideas (and our own); we report ideas and concerns that we have heard from the congregation; we survey the congregation for their views from time to time; we help organize special services and replacement leadership when the minister is away. People on this committee enjoy the worship experience, and care about keeping it meaningful in our changing world.

“Faith formation” refers to helping people, old and young, develop and understand their faith. We see it as a life-long on-going process. The committee’s mandate is to initiate and support programs for children, on Sundays but also at other times; and plan and facilitate events for adults. Examples would be discussion groups on significant books or movies, series of discussions about faith—Christianity and others, and guest speakers, either during Sunday worship or afterward, on such things as other faiths in our community.

Congregational Life and Work
The Congregational Life and Work Committee has responsibilities in the areas of pastoral care, fellowship, and welcoming and new member ministries. In the area of pastoral care they create and administer a telephone network, maintaining contact with all members and adherents. They review and update annually the membership roll of the church and keep a current mailing list for the congregation. They arrange for pastoral visitation, oversee flowers to shut-ins and those who are ill, and ensure that transportation to Sunday worship and other events is provided as required.

In the area of fellowship, they arrange for refreshments after church services and plan congregational picnics, dinners and similar events. A sub-committee of the Life and Work group, called Hospitality, does most of the work in this area.

In the area of welcoming and new member ministries, they organize and train greeters and ushers and ensure that potential new members are provided with sufficient information about the congregation and about the United Church.

The committee also organizes a Wednesday evening session on the third Wednesday of the month from September to June which may include a pot luck dinner, speakers and information meetings, slides, films or musical events, or training sessions.

Outreach (see Outreach page)

The Property Committee ensures the regular maintenance, prompt repair and caretaking of the building and grounds, excepting the cemetery, in order to make them safe and welcoming. The committee develops short and long term capital improvement plans, including budgets, for approval by the congregation, and maintains an inventory of all equipment and furnishings. It is also responsible for supervising the caretaking staff and all contracted building services.

A dedicated volunteer group called the “Monday Morning Work Crew” does a lot of work around the building each week, for which the congregation is very grateful.

The Communications Committee keeps the congregation and community informed as to the work and needs of the church, produces newsletters, and oversees notice boards, signs, mailings and the Annual Report. The committee also develops and maintains a website for the church, promotes the use of the United Church Observer, and arranges for delivery of those newsletters that are not sent electronically.

The Stewardship Committee is responsible for the overall stewardship level of the pastoral charge, so that its full financial potential may be realized. The Stewardship Committee reports regularly to the Church Council and prepares an annual report for the pastoral charge. It insures that records are kept of all local account receipts and disbursements, keeps the Church Council aware of the cash flow situation, arranges insurance on all church property, jointly with the Trustees, and ensures that financial accounts of all church organizations are submitted for audit each year. The Treasurer is not the chair of this committee.

The Craft Group
Every Tuesday morning, the United Church Women and friends meet to make a quilt for the Church Bazaar and to turn milk bags into sleeping mats for the devastated people of Haiti.
The quilt will raise funds for supporting our charities–Massey Centre is an example. The sleeping mats are a win-win project: plastic is being recycled, shipping does not cost, as the mats are used to pack medical supplies and food, and they ease the discomfort for people who bed down on the ground and protect them from parasites. We have made something useful out of material that would otherwise have been discarded.

We enjoy great fellowship, learn new skills, and are engaged in a modern day quilting bee.

Badminton Clubs
We have one adult badminton club that meets on Thursday mornings at 10 a.m. We play for fun, fellowship and exercise. This club is open to all and we would welcome new members. Each member pays fifty cents to play each Wednesday. These dues have allowed us to make ongoing donations to the church. We recently contributed $500.00, that helped to cover the cost of a second computer to be used in the office for accounting functions.