Minutes, Immanuel Church Annual Meeting, 17 April 2016 at 13.00

Present: about 180 members at the start of the meeting, about 122 at the end

Simultaneous interpreters: Johan Ahlberg, Mikael Hovemyr

§ 1 Introduction

Marco Helles, Chairman of the congregation, welcomed everyone and prayed for the meeting. He reminded the members that Immanuel church is a church in the middle of Stockholm for the people of Stockholm and asked what characteristics the members wished for the church to have. He mentioned that 2015 had been a challenging year for the church where it became evident how much we are needed in the society. Further, he stressed the three focus areas of the church: Fellowship between the worship groups; Children, young people and families; and Diaconal work. The Board also wants to put great emphasis on voluntary work and leadership.

Marco also mentioned that the church needs to save three million kronor during five years, or there needs to be a strong increase in gifts and offerings. The church needs well functioning companies where we need to ensure sustainability and therefore the church cannot increase required returns year after year. The 20 million kronor which are now the dividends from Probitas is a ceiling not to be exceeded.

Democracy shall be increased and the revised constitution contains a new element, namely that the Board will suggest a ministry plan for the Annual meeting to decide on from 2017. The communication also needs to improve.

Marco ended his introduction by calling up the whole staff and the CEOs of Hotel Birger Jarl and Probitas and giving a flower to each one as a token of the congregation’s warm thanks for their work. He then gave the word to Senior pastor Ulla Marie Gunner.

Ulla Marie emphasized the task of the church, based on the values and approach in the church’s vision (see p. 50 in the Annual report of 2015). She especially mentioned the welcoming attitude we all need to have towards each other, to new people and to others who are visiting. She also showed some statistics of the age distribution of the members and the number of members over a period of seventy years and was glad to notice that the member curve is so stable, which is unusual for congregations in Sweden today. But she also emphasized the challenge not to stagnate and be content but to reach more people and to grow as a church. She ended by informing about the new fundraiser “Heart Immanuel” and distributed reminder cards to have at hand.

Then Marco declared the Annual meeting open.

§ 2 Announcement of the meeting

It was confirmed that the meeting had been announced according to the statutes.

§ 3 Agenda

Regarding point 16, there was a proposal to first have a discussion around the Ministry assessment committee which is suggested to be appointed at this meeting, alternatively to decide not to elect such a committee this year.

To point 21, Any other business, was added information from the music investigation, information about addresses and newsletters and summer school for children who have not completed their courses of the current school year.

The Annual meeting decided to approve the agenda with these additions.

§ 4 Election of Chairman and Vice chairman of the Annual meeting

Anders Andersson was elected Chairman of the Annual meeting and Karin Sandström Vice chairman.

§ 5 Election of secretary, tellers and two reviewers, who will verify the minutes together with the Chairman and Vice chairman

The meeting decided to elect Cathrin Sjöström as secretary.

The meeting decided to elect the following persons to count the votes at the meeting: Kerstin Mjönes, convenor, Sofie Sahlstedt, Ulla Sjögren, Gunilla Herlitz, Bo Olsson, Jacques Lombard, Eva Widén, Young Soon Vikström, and Ingrid Jonsson.

The meeting decided to elect Göran Kollberg and Anita Isaksson to verify the minutes together with the Chairman and Vice chairman.

§ 6 Annual report, encl. 1

The Annual report has been sent out to the members of the congregation. An information meeting prior to the Annual meeting regarding finances and ministry was held on 13 April 2016.

With the help of picture illustrations Senior pastor Ulla Marie Gunner gave a short report on the ministry of the congregation in 2015 and referred to the Annual report of 2015, enclosure 1, pp 3–50, which she encouraged everyone to read.

She especially mentioned the church’s support to refugees in the autumn of 2015 and how through this we understood our task as church more clearly, that the confirmation classes in 2016 will be a joint event with all the language groups and also together with other churches in Stockholm, that Immanuel is in the world and the world in Immanuel through for instance the Panvel Run, the music, food and meetings. The four TV services which were broadcast in the autumn of 2015 were watched by more than one hundred thousand people.

Further the Senior pastor informed about the leadership group that has existed for almost a year, and that the congregation has elected Claes-Göran Ydrefors as Vice Senior pastor. A new person has been employed for personnel matters, Karin Enberg.

A staff survey has been carried out showing very good results with motivated staff who largely feel that they are respected by leaders and coworkers and who have also great trust in and from their immediate leader. Both the Work Environment Authority and the trade union Vision have visited us and noticed that the church is a well functioning workplace.

Ulla Marie ended by reading the names of the members who have died during the year and praying for them and their relatives.

The subject was opened to the floor.

There was a question if the workplace has a plan against bullying. Ulla Marie replied that a plan is in place and that the staff is working on quickly being aware if anything is wrong.

One person considered it disturbing that not all language groups have Bible study groups. Ulla Marie replied that she is always positive to Bible studies.

The Annual report was accepted and gratefully submitted.

§ 7 Administrative report and profit-and-loss balance sheet, encl. 1, 2

Administrative leader Anette Engkvist encouraged everyone to read the Annual report, which for the first time is available both in Swedish and English. She especially thanked all those who have contributed to the publications, and especially the translators. She also encouraged the members to take part of Probitas’ Annual report.

As thorough information about the finances had already been given at the meeting on 13 April 2016 Anette went through selected parts of the financial results of the Immanuel group in 2015 with emphasis on the church. The figures are presented in the printed Administrative report for 2015, enclosure 1, pp 52–81.

Anette Engkvist presented the result of the Company group before final accounts and taxes, where all the companies also last year have made profits and even “all time high”. The result of the church is plus 3.1 million kronor, mainly because of a legacy, the dividends from Probitas and income from the financial instruments.

The realignment of the promissory note means that the church no longer receives any revenues in the form of interest from the promissory note, which has been the single largest revenue of the church. The church now receives larger dividends from Probitas, which costs Probitas much more than the setup with the interest from the promissory note. The funds that are invested in various financial instruments have provided a good positive result, despite the tricky interest rates and surging stock market in 2015.

For Probitas, the realignment of the promissory note has meant an increased cost of four million kronor, which affects their finances as well as that of the group as a whole.

As the costs of the church increase more than the revenues, it is necessary that the gifts and offerings will increase at the same time as the work needs to be made more efficient if the church will be able to carry on with the same ministries as today. Anette also reminded the congregation of the budgeted deficit of 675,000 kronor for 2016, but lastly also of the great privilege that we as a church have access to such large resources and thus have a lot to be grateful for and continue to manage well, encl. 2.

The subject was opened to the floor.

There was a question why the church fee constitutes such a small entry and Anette replied that it is because not so many members have joined the church fee system. This is a simple way to give to the church and information about it is given every year at the beginning of the autumn.

It was clarified that the scale on pp 56–57 in the Annual report is correct. The sum refers to million kronor.

The Administrative report, the Profit and Loss account and the Balance sheet were accepted and gratefully submitted.

§ 8 Audit report, encl. 1

Jonas Grahn, certified accountant and permanent auditor of the Immanuel church, presented selections of the Audit report for the annual accounting, company accounting and bookkeeping of the church, as well as the Board’s management in Immanuel church for the ministry in 2015, see enclosure 1, page 82. Jonas stressed that the finances of the church are well managed, that there is good order and that there is good internal control.

The report was accepted and gratefully submitted.

§ 9 Profit and Loss Account for 2015 and Balance sheet for 2015 and Balance sheet as per 31 December 2015

The Annual meeting confirmed the Profit and Loss Account of the church and the company for 2015 and the Balance sheet of the church and the company as per 31 December 2015.

§ 10 Discharge from liability for the Board for 2015

The Annual meeting granted the Board discharge from liability for the financial year 2015 and thanked the Board for their work in 2015.

§ 11 Information about Immanuel Senior

Rachel Norborg Jerkeby, Chairperson of Immanuel Senior, reported that Immanuel Senior now has about 300 members and that more than 100 persons attend every Tuesday meeting. Besides the Tuesday meetings walks, excursions and journeys are organized. Immanuel Senior offers positive and wideranging activities for older people.

§ 12 Information about an Equmenia organization in Immanuel church, encl. 3

Tobias Olsson and Julia Karlsson presented a short information to the Annual meeting why they are trying to awaken the dormant SMU organization and turn it into an Equmenia organization. In May there will be an invitation to an open meeting where these possibilities will be discussed, with the goal that the organization can get going in the autumn. They asked for prayer for the organization and for all the children and young people of Immanuel church.

§ 13 Decision about a new revised constitution, encl 4a, 4b

The Annual meeting decided to confirm the unanimous decision taken at the congregational meeting on 13 March 2016 and approved the revised Constitution. The decision was unanimous.

§ 14 Election of Chairman of the congregation for a period of 1 year

Marco Helles was reelected as Chairman for the congregation and the Board for a period of one year.

§ 15 Election of Board members, encl. 5

Stefan Nilszén, Chairman of the Nominating committee, presented the list of proposed Board candidates and explained that the committee is free to do different from year to year in terms of straight or surplus list and that this year they have chosen to present a straight list.

The subject was opened to the floor.

More young people were called for to the Board. Maybe a future Equmenia organization could be a good forum and hotbed for young people to grow into Board members. The need to think wider and diversity was emphasized, not only diversity over the language groups, but also in other ways. The straight list was questioned from a democratic perspective, but the members of the Nominating committee explained how difficult and time consuming it had been even to find the six candidates to this year’s Board, and the congregation was asked to already now begin to think of suitable candidates for nomination to next year’s Annual meeting.

The candidates proposed by the Nominating committee presented themselves and no further candidates were proposed. The Annual meeting elected the following persons as Board members for 2016/2017:

Board members two years:

Malin Emmoth, re-election

Mats Bernö, new election

Gunilla Hjelmåker, new election

Hans-Olof Hagén, new election

Rachel Norborg Jerkeby, new election

Margoth Sonnebo, new election

Until the Annual meeting 2017 the following persons remain as Board members: Kristina Gustafsson, Patrick Amofah, Lina Mattebo, Peter Dobers, Vida Afua Attah and Stephen James

The Chairman prayed for the new Board.

Marco Helles warmly thanked the five Board members who are leaving for their work and gave them flowers.

§ 16 Election of 2 permanent auditors and 2 auditor substitutes, and a Ministry assessment committee

The meeting decided to divide this point and to a) elect auditors and b) discuss and decide on a Ministry assessment committee.

a) Jonas Grahn and Christina Gotting were elected permanent auditors for one year and Susanne Westman and Tobias Andersson were elected auditor substitutes for one year.

b) Marco Helles reported that the work to develop a ministry plan, which is a new tool, will start in the autumn of 2016. From this perspective it is understandable that members have suggested to wait with the decision about a Ministry assessment committee until the Annual meeting 2017.

The members were asked whether the decision regarding a Ministry assessment committee should be made now or be postponed to the Annual meeting 2017.

The meeting decided to postpone the question to the next Annual meeting, when the ministry plan is in place and can be assessed.

§ 17 Election of members for other functions, encl. 6, 7

Concerning election of members for other functions, the Annual meeting decided according to the proposals of the Nominating committee, including the changes that the chairman of the committee had mentioned earlier in the meeting.

§ 18 Election group for Nominating committee for next Annual meeting, 2017

The Board’s proposal was presented. There were comments that there are too few members in the group. The former group had five members, now only three have been suggested.

The meeting decided to elect Mi-Hye Kim, Lois Hemgren and Inga Johansson as an Election group with the task to suggest a Nominating committee for 2016/2017, and to ask the Board to appoint a representative from Immanuel 153.

§ 19 Motion from members, encl. 8a, 8b.

The Annual meeting had received a motion from a group of members regarding the mural in the café. Birgitta Lorentzi, as representative of the group, took the floor and gave their argument why the mural should be restored and motivated changes in the statements given in the motion, as the conditions have changed since the motion was written. Of the five statements only two remain, according to the following somewhat revised wording:

• that the Annual meeting shall decide that the mural be restored to its former place or to another clearly visible place after the renovation of the church square.

• that information about the mission mural shall be produced and placed together with it.

Karin Pettersson, representative of the Board, gave the Board’s motivation why the Board regards the motion as answered and why the mural will not be put up again. It was also noted that the Board has been granted discharge from liability two years in a row by the congregation, according to the recommendation by the auditors.

The subject was opened to the floor, for short comments.

Several members gave their views and there was a strong and committed discussion about the mural’s existence or non-existence in the future, and about the Board’s management of the matter.

The Annual meeting voted regarding the proposal order in the matter and Bo Olsson’s proposal to put the motion against the Board’s answer was put against the proposal to only vote whether the meeting agrees to the Board’s answer to the motion. The meeting decided to only vote on the Board’s response, after which a vote was requested. Voting took place with voting cards and the presidium’s proposal won by a large majority.

After this the Chairman asked whether the meeting approves the Board’s response and that the motion thus is answered.

The meeting decided by a large majority to approve the Board’s response.

The motion group expressed their reservations against the decision and will send in a written reservation which is added to these minutes, encl. 9a, 9b

§ 20 Ministry development 2016–2017

Ulla Marie Gunner brought up some of the main features which are planned for the ministry in the coming year. She especially mentioned that the Swedish and International language groups are working together in the confirmation classes and that there is an exciting plan to develop the confirmation into a three year program. This would also enable more young people to grow into leadership. Staff and volunteers also need to grow and develop.

The financial system will be changed in 2016 so that it will become clearer and easier to follow and see the results and consequences. All members of the congregation will be able to contribute to developing the ministry plan.

§ 21 Any other business

a) The music investigation

Ulla Marie Gunner presented some points instead of Kristina Gustafsson, chairperson of the music investigation.

The group also consists of Kerstin Mjönes, Jacob Molander, Ben Tatlow, Kristina Åkesson, Veronica Arvidsson, Peter Eriksson and Jeong-Mi Jensen.

The group has met several times and has had creative and fruitful discussions. They have found that music is a language of its own for worship services as well as evangelization and fellowship. The group has worked in three areas: music in worship, concerts and music in its own right.

On 12 March the group arranged an open meeting, a Music forum, with about 40 participants. The forum gave many valuable ideas, comments and requests to bring into the ongoing evaluation.

Some examples of questions that will be treated are: What is needed in the respective worship groups in order to create the right conditions for the music? What should be the priority basis in the review of the other rich musical life that exists today? How will some kind of music committee look in the future in order to create transparency and participation?

The music investigation group hopes to be able to present a report to the Board in the autumn

b) Information about addresses and e-letters

Håkan Sjögren reported that the church’s register is nowadays connected to that of the Tax authorities so that the church receives automatic address updates. This is done through the members’ personal code numbers and updates are being done once a month.

Håkan also encouraged all members to sign up for the digital e-letter which is a considerably

faster, more environmentally friendly and cheaper way for the church to communicate.

c) Summer school

The Annual meeting asked the Board to investigate the possibilities to arrange a summer school for children who have not completed their courses of the current school year.

§ 22 Conclusion

The Chairman thanked everyone for their patience and engagement in the meeting. Ulla Marie prayed that Jesus will be our focus and our source of power. Then the Chairman declared the Annual meeting 2016 closed.

Secretary Cathrin Sjöström

Minutes approved by: Anders Andersson, Chairman; Karin Sandström, Vice chairman; Anita Isaksson, reviewer; Göran Kollberg, reviewer