2018 President's Report


January 28, 2018
St. Herman’s Orthodox Church
5355 38th Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55417

Members of St. Herman’s Orthodox Church,

To quote the late US Senator from New York, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.” and the fact is that 2017 was a very significant year for St. Herman’s.  In the paragraphs that follow, I would like to highlight for you some of the salient projects we tackled this past year as well as a few that may have slipped beneath the radar.

First and foremost, the renovation project that we started in 2017 is impossible to miss and more importantly not to appreciate.  The repairs and improvements needed have been known for quite some time.  Thanks to the dedication, generosity and hard work of our entire community, the replacement and restoration work required is approximately 50% complete and will be finished when the weather warms up in the spring of 2018.  The 3-year Capital Campaign project that was started to finance this work has been very successful as you will see when you review the 2017 Treasurer’s Report.  Despite undertaking this large and expensive project, our community not only met, but exceeded the everyday needs required to keep our church open and welcoming to all who wanted to worship under the guidance of Fr. Paul. Evidence of our continued growth can be seen not only in the increase in number of services provided throughout the year, but in the longer Holy Communion lines during Divine Liturgy and the demand for additional worship books (don’t worry, they are coming) needed for all in attendance.

Some areas may not be as noticeable to everyone but are clear signs of our continued growth and generosity as a community. One of these signs is the philanthropic works we did in 2017.  Thanks to the steady and selfless leadership of Nicole and Brent Heffron, St. Herman’s continues to be an integral part of the great work being done by FOCUS.  For those who have been part of St. Herman’s for more than 5 years or so, you can remember when it was a challenge and stretch to just meet our own, internal financial needs.  In 2017, thanks to our entire community we not only met our budgetary needs but donated approximately $7,500.00 to organizations and people who were in need.  To put that in perspective, during the entire lifetime of Caleb Axvig, we have gone from zero to $7,500.00 a year!  If included in our budget, this would have accounted for 8.3%of our total expenses.

The culture at St. Herman’s has been and continues to be one that encourages and one could even say demands, participation.  Do not forget that virtually everything required to preserve, beautify and enhance our church is donated (cheerfully I think!) by all of us.  Thanks to everyone who helps in keeping the church clean, prepared for services, for managing and operating the wonderful bookstore we have downstairs, for the donation of candles, wine, oil, flowers, beverages, paper products, music books, etc.  Thanks to those who shovel the snow, cut the grass, teach our children and donate hours of their time throughout the year to make our parish the special and unique community that we have become.

As we step cautiously (for those over the age of 50) and boldly (for those not over 50) into 2018, there are a number of projects or activities that we will be focused on addressing.  Throughout the year you will hear the familiar call for volunteers to assist renovating certain parts of our building (i.e. north side classroom and music closet), putting together a maintenance manual for the upkeep of our building, creating appropriate and effective fundraising activities, updating our website, helping out in the next phase of the Capital Campaign and generally working to keep our parish vibrant and growing.  Please help these causes by pitching in when and how you are able.

I apologize for the many people and projects that I have not directly mentioned within this report.  I thank you for your kindness and consideration in reading it.

Our community has been and continues to be blessed in many, many ways.  Thanks to all of you for making St. Herman’s a very special community.


Joseph F. Slater
Parish Council President