Clergy

Rev. Anna George Traynham
Senior Pastor

Anna George Traynham was called to be Shallowford’s sixth senior pastor in the fall of 2019. She is originally from the small town of Fountain Inn, South Carolina and studied music and religion at Presbyterian College in Clinton, S.C. After graduation, Anna moved to Richmond, Va., to attend Union Presbyterian Seminary, where she worked for Second Presbyterian Church in downtown Richmond and obtained a graduate certificate in counseling from Virginia Commonwealth University. In 2014, Anna was called to serve Central Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, first as a resident pastor and then as an associate pastor. During her time at Central, Anna also completed her Master’s in Business Administration from The Citadel Graduate College in Charleston. Anna is passionate about helping the church be a place where all people are invited into transformational community, with a particular eye for people on the margins. Anna, her husband Blake, and their daughter, Mary Evelyn, love calling Shallowford home.

Associate Pastor for Mission & Discipleship
Associate Pastor for Youth & Programs
Associate Pastor for Children

Church Staff

Interim Director of Music Ministries
Administrative Assistant for Education & Programs
Facilities Manager
Interim Director of Youth & Young Adults
Associate Director of Music & Organist
Administrative Assistant for Music
Finance Coordinator
Facilities Assistant
Director of Communications
Administrative Assistant
Director of Children’s Choirs
Church Administrator

School & Counseling Center Staff

Head of School
Assistant Head of School
Director
Director of Mindfulness Education

Session

The Shallowford Session is the governing board of each individual Presbyterian church. At Shallowford, the Session consists of 25 elders (or leaders) to govern the 12 active committees that make up the church (committees listed below). To become an elder, you commit to serve a three-year term on Shallowford’s Session. Elders come in all shapes, sizes, and ages. Session includes a balance of individuals whose ages range widely from 17 to 78, including a youth elder who serves a one-year term.

Meeting Highlights

Session Highlights – January 2023

Approved minutes as follows:

  • Called Session Meeting minutes for December 11, 2022 for the purpose of receiving new members
  • Stated Session Meeting minutes for December 14, 2022

Approved the December 2022 membership report included in the Session packet, totaling 967 active members.

Financial Report – The preliminary December 2022 financial results reflected operating income of $209,744, which was $29,298 over budget, and operating expense of $216,716, which was $57,865 over budget. Net loss for the month, including Special Offerings, was $8,720, which was $30,315 under budget. Available cash at the end of December was $304,546. Year to date results reflected operating income of $1,809,258, which was $9,258 over budget, and operating expense of $1,742,205, which was $57,795 under budget. Year to date net income, including Special Offerings, is $67,053.

Report on Zo American Presbyterian Church – Rev. Anna George Traynham provided an update on the Zo American Presbyterian Church. Anna reminded the group that Rev. Khai Samte is the pastor for the Zo American Presbyterian Church which meets Sunday afternoons in the Chapel of Shallowford Presbyterian Church. The first anniversary of forming this church is nearing, and we will celebrate this milestone with the Zo congregation in our 11am worship on January 22.

Ministry Spotlight – Communications Committee – Rebecca Porter (Director of Communications) provided an overview of the
Communications Committee for the group. She provided highlights of activities and accomplishments for 2022
centered around four main areas:

  • Livestream Worship
    • Goal: Invite and engage online worshippers on Sunday mornings; create a virtual sense of ‘belonging’
  • Welcome Center
    • Goal: increase engagement with visitors, optimize space in atrium and display information
  • Sacred Space Magazine
    • Goal: deliver church content to members at Shallowford AND the community
  • Sunday School Presentation
    • Goal: to inform Shallowford members about the various roles, accomplishments and future goals of the Communications department.

Personnel Committee Report on Interim and Permanent Music Director – Mark Shaffer provided an update on the interim and permanent search for the Music Director position. Mark reminded the group that an Interim Music Director, Dr. Matthew Bumbach has been named. Matthew will join us on January 22 and is contracted with Shallowford as an interim director until July 8. Matthew can apply and be considered for the permanent position as well; he is aware that other candidates will be considered for the position if he chooses to apply. A permanent search committee has been identified for the Music Director position. The members will be Jim Crawford, David Fairchild, John Groover, Laura Pfister, Lisa Turney, Aimee Small, Julia McDonnell, Owen Dewitt.
The committee is schedule to meet for the first time on February 5 and will start with reviewing the job description and move to formal search activities shortly thereafter. The strength of Shallowford’s music program continues to be demonstrated during this transition period.

Executive Session: Personnel Committee Report – Rev. Anna George Traynham and Mark Shaffer reviewed the job descriptions that were provided in the Session packet and highlighted shifts in some responsibilities for the Associate Pastors.

  • Associate Pastor for Congregational Vitality – This position is currently filled by Rev. Bradley Kibler. The following ministries and responsibilities will align with this position: ministries of member and visitor outreach including the Welcoming Committee, ministry of Congregational Care, manage the pastoral care for the congregation, provide strategic leadership for the youth ministry and oversee the Youth Director position, oversee the internship program, serve as primary pastor for young adult ministry and older adult ministry. Maggie Johnson will continue to serve as the Youth Director. The Youth Director position is established as a part-time position currently 20 hours/week.
  • Associate Pastor for Mission and Adult Discipleship – This position is currently filled by Rev. Catherine Foster. The following ministries and responsibilities will align with this position: adult Christian Education; adult discipleship and fellowship groups including Shallowford Men, Shallowford Presbyterian Women, parent groups; mission ministry; relationships with mission partners; oversee mission funding. The responsibilities of this position are not materially changed.
  • Associate Pastor for Children’s and Program Ministries – This position is currently filled by Rev. Landon Dillard. The following ministries and responsibilities will align with this position: primary pastor for all children’s ministries, for intergenerational programs and retreats, serve as primary pastor for the Programs Committee, serve as a liaison to the Shallowford school by serving on the board.

Approved Session Action Forms

  • SAF 2023.01 – 2023 Communion Schedule
    Proposed Motion: That the Session approve Communion dates for 2023
  • SAF 2023.02 – Call Annual Congregational Meeting for April 23
    Proposed Motion: That the Session call a congregational meeting for April 23 at 12:00 pm, to be held in-person and/or on Zoom. The purpose of this meeting is to elect incoming elders and Representative Nominating Committee members.
  • SAF 2023.03 – Love Offering Angela Lamar’s Mid-Winter Recital
    Proposed Motion: That the Session approve a love offering at Angels Lamar’s Mid-Winter Recital to be held in the Shallowford Chapel at 4:00pm Saturday, February 25, 2023.
  • SAF 2023.04 – Rev. Landon Dillard – Renewal of Contract for 2023
    Proposed Motion: That the Session renew the contract for Rev. Landon Dillard to continue to serve as Contract Call Associate Pastor for Children’s Ministry, with the terms outlined by the personnel committee.

Session Highlights – December 2022

Approved minutes as follows:

  • Called Session Meeting minutes for November 9, 2022 to announce the resignation of Emily Floyd and discuss next steps for Music Ministry.
  • Stated Session Meeting minutes for November 16, 2022.

Approved the November 2022 membership report included in the Session packet, totaling 964 active members.

Stewardship Campaign Update – Thurston Cooke and Angela Wittenauer provided updates on the status of the Stewardship Campaign. Thurston indicated that work continues by the committee members. As of earlier this week, $1,680,000 has been received in pledges. 45% of pledges are increases; 30% remained the same; 11% decreased. Approximately 30 households are still being contacted for follow-up for a potential pledge. Thurston expressed gratitude to Stewardship Committee for the follow ups with households. The total pledge amount is below our goal, so the work for follow-up continues. Thurston also expressed gratitude for support of Session and for the pledges made by the group. Rev. Anna George Traynham expressed gratitude for Angela and Thurston for leading Stewardship campaign. As a result of the efforts of the committee and the pledges from the congregation, the proposed budget shows approximately 3% increase over last year.

Financial Report – Katie Kilch provided an overview of the financial results for November 2022. Katie summarized the results for November and year to date. The charts below summarize the November and year to date results. Katie indicated that year to date results are strong. Current projection is to break even or possibly realize up to $50K positive net income. It is anticipated to end the year with a surplus, but all results are not in yet.

  • Budget Update – Katie reviewed the proposed 2023 Operating Budget and noted the following highlights:
    • 3% overall increase in total budget
    • Katie expressed gratitude for work from the group on the budget and revisions
    • Music reduction can be accommodated for two primary reasons 1) Chapel Choir tour is expected to be less expensive because it will be slightly shorter this year, and 2) there is a restricted fund of approximately $90K which was raised for the Scotland tour; these funds can be available for Chapel Choir tour if they are needed. It was noted that this decrease should not be viewed a deemphasis on the music ministry but a recognition that there are additional restricted funds that can be used to accommodate a portion of the required music budget.
    • Mission budget has increased due to the high priority the congregation places on Mission as was confirmed in the listening sessions conducted over the summer. The Mission Committee requested a 10% increase; with the budget constraints this year, the proposed increase is landing at 7%.

Approved Session Action Forms

  • SAF 2022.33 Year-end Budget Surplus
    Proposed Motion: That the Session approve to transfer any anticipated budget surplus from the operating account to the Capital Expenditure Fund.
  • SAF 2022.34 Approve Unbudgeted Facilities Expenditures
    Proposed Motion: That the Session approve 2021 Facilities Budget expense overage up to $5,000.00 by year end of 2022.
  • SAF 2022.35 2023 Operating Budget
    Proposed Motion: Approve operating budget for the calendar year 2023.

Session Highlights – November 2022

  • Approved minutes as follows:
    • Stated Session Meeting minutes for October 19, 2022
  • Approved the October 2022 membership report included in the Session packet, totaling 964 active members.
  • Financial Report – The October 2022 financial results reflected operating income of $244,209, which was $46,623 over budget, and operating expense of $160,829, which was $2,222 under budget. Net gain for the month, including Special Offerings, was $83,380, which was $48,845 over budget. Available cash at the end of August was $325,613. Year to date results reflected operating income of $1,463,964, which was $3,282 under budget, and operating expense of $1,379,678, which was $126,733 under budget. Year to date net income, including Special Offerings, is $85,587.
  • Stewardship Update – Thurston Cooke and Angela Wittenauer provided updates on the status of the Stewardship Campaign. Thurston expressed appreciation for Pigs on Fire and to all members who have already submitted pledges. Over $1.5 million in pledges have been received to date. 248 households have pledged; all Session members have pledged. We hope to get another ~$250k in pledges to reach our goal.
  • Personnel Committee Update –Mark Shaffer and Rev. Anna George Traynham provided an update on the Director of Music Ministries position. Anna recapped the departure of Emily and anticipated timing. An Interim Committee has been formed of Laura Bishop (chair), Keren Barr, Bruce Morris, Angela Maki, and John Groover. Lynn Rogers will conduct the Chancel and Chapel Choirs through the Christmas season, Richard Magner who is a retired band and choral teacher will support Lynn for orchestra conducting through Sounds of Christmas and Christmas Eve. Interim committee will now turn toward identifying 6-month interim.
    • Two primary reasons for a 6-month duration:
      • stable presence of the choir director through Chapel Choir tour which will occur in June
      • conduct a national search for the permanent position
  • Approved Session Action Forms
    • SAF 2022.31Call Congregational Meeting
      • Proposed motion: Call a congregational meeting for Sunday, February 26, 2023, at 12:00pm, in-person in the Shallowford sanctuary. The purpose of this meeting is to approve the installed pastors’ terms of call (Anna, Bradley, and Catherine).
    • SAF 2022.32 – Children’s Montreat Worship and Music Fundraiser
      • Proposed motion: That the Shallowford Session approve a fundraiser for the 3rd-5th grade children to go Montreat Worship and Music Conference.

Session Highlights – October 2022

  • Approved minutes as follows:
    • Stated Session Meeting minutes for August 17, 2022
    • Stated Session Meeting minutes for September 17, 2022
    • Called Session Meeting to receive new members on September 25, 2022
  • Approved the August 2022 membership report included in the Session packet, totaling 963 active members.
  • Approved the September 2022 membership report included in the Session packet, totaling 964 active members.
  • Financial Report – The September 2022 financial results reflected operating income of $114,462, which was $32,984 under budget, and operating expense of $150,703, which was $764 under budget. Net loss for the month, including Special Offerings, was $36,242, which was $32,221 over budget. Available cash at the end of August was $242,233.  Year to date results reflected operating income of $1,219,755, which was $49,906 under budget, and operating expense of $1,218,849, which was $124,510 under budget. Year to date net income, including Special Offerings, is $2,206.
  • Stewardship Update –Thurston Cooke provided an update on the Stewardship Campaign. Thurston indicated that this year’s campaign was kicked off at the churchwide luncheon. Dedication Sunday is October 30th, and will be celebrated with the return of Pigs on Fire. The church is proposing a 7% increase in the budget for 2023 and encourages all Session members to make a pledge and to consider their part in helping the church reach its goal.
  • Ministry Spotlight Children’s Ministry – Rev. Landon Dillard provided an overview of the Children’s Ministry for Session. Landon reported that the Children’ ministries are going well with lots of joy and energy. They are working to develop foundational faith through Sunday School and the Wednesday evening BLAST program (Bible/Bells, Learning and Singing Together). Future events include Trunk or Treat, Children’s Sunday, Advent and Lent take-home boxes, a Sunday School Christmas Party, the Easter Egg Hunt, SPS Chapel, and assorted Fellowship Gatherings such as Parents/Kids Night Out and Children’s Mission Engagement. Next summer’s activities will include VBS, the Montreat Worship and Music Conference and rock climbing
  • Approved Session Action Forms
    • SAF 2022 – 2022.21.01 SPS School Board By-laws Update (Correction)
      • Proposed motion: Correct language in the bylaws related to board composition
    • SAF 2022 – 2022.28 Designate Organ Fund Special Offering
      • Proposed motion: That the Session approve the designation of the offering on Sunday, November 6, 2022 to be used to support the organ maintenance fund.
    • SAF 2022 – 2022.29Approve Offering at Sounds of Christmas Concert
      • Proposed motion: That the Session approve receiving an offering to support the Sounds of Christmas Concert at the concert to be held Sunday, December 11, 2022.
    • SAF 2022.30 Establishing a Green Team
      • Proposed motion: To establish a Green Team as a committee of Shallowford under the umbrella of Administration Committee and approve the Green Team exploring a partnership with Georgia Interfaith Power and Light.

Session Highlights – August 2022

  • Approved minutes as follows:
    • Stated Session Meeting minutes for June 15, 2022
    • Approved June 2022 membership report totaling 964 active members and July 2022 membership report totaling 963 active members.
  • Financial Report – Katie Kilch summarized the results for June 2022, July 2022, and year-to-date. The July 2022 financial results reflected operating income of $150,307, $42,921 over budget, and operating expense of $117,087, $52,295 under budget. Net gain for the month, including Special Offerings, was $33,321, $95,217 over budget. Available cash at the end of July was $303,417. Year-to-date results reflected operating income of $1,001,100, $1,435 over budget, and operating expense of $935,394, $120,892 under budget. Year-to-date net income, including Special Offerings, is $66,806.
  • Ministry Spotlight Welcoming – Rev. Bradley Kibler and Brian DeBragga provided an overview of the Welcoming Committee for the Session. The Core Mission of the committee is to exemplify and embody the SPC mission statement of inviting all people to a faithful way of life in Christ and Community.
    • Goals:
      • Establish tailored connections with every visitor or member at Shallowford
      • Embrace and educate new visitors with the best that Shallowford has to offer
      • Continuously seek to connect members to ministries and programs aligned with their faith needs
      • Celebrate God and our faith community through special church-wide events that welcome all
    • Committee Structure
      • Invite – Invite new visitors into the SPC community with open arms, foster congregational connections and thoughtfully steward the visitors toward the path of becoming engaged members
      • Greet – serve as the “face of Shallowford” for all individuals that enter our church doors with enthusiasm and warm, personalized greeting and an appreciation for each individual’s presence
      • Connect – create and expand current member engagement through proactive outreach and promotion of SPC’s programs to meet members’ individualized faith needs
      • Welcome/Hospitality – Host and promote church-wide activities and events that encourage our family of faith to congregate outside of Sunday worship and forge new relationships
  • Approved Session Action Forms
    • SAF 2022.21 – SPS School Board By-laws Update
      • Hugh Stoddard was present to help address potential questions; there were no questions from the group. Motion passed.
    • SAF 2022.22 – Sale of 26-Passenger Bus
      • Sarah Wikle provided context on the SAF for the group. Sarah indicated that the bus is not used frequently and has experienced multiple thefts of the catalytic converter, which is expensive to replace. CDL license is required to drive it. Insurance and maintenance are also costly items
        for the bus. Motion passed.

Session Highlights – June 2022

  • Approved minutes as follows:
    • Stated Session Meeting minutes for May 18, 2022
    • Called Session Meeting to receive new members on June 5, 2022
    • Approve May 2022 membership report totaling 962 active members.
  • Financial Report – The May 2022 financial results reflected operating income of $97,642, which was $29,666 under budget, and operating expense of $142,278, which was $8,547 over budget. Net loss for the month, including Special Offerings, was $42,921, which was $36,498 over budget. Available cash at the end of April was $328,527. Year to date results reflected operating income of $743,378, which was $41,456 under budget, and operating expense of $654,317, which was $75,028 under budget. Year to date net income, including Special Offerings, is $91,625.
  • Ministry Spotlight – Support & Endowment – B.J. McMillan provided an overview of the Support and Endowment Committee responsibilities and the funds that the committee oversees.
    • There are approximately $2.5m in investment funds governed by Shallowford Presbyterian Church Support and Endowment Plan. The objective of the Plan is to “encourage devises, bequests and gifts to Shallowford Presbyterian Church and to provide a mechanism and policy for the use of such gifts to further the mission of the Church and the work of Jesus Christ.”
    • Bequests and gifts are main source of contributions to the endowment funds. In 2021 and 2022, there have been approximately $697k in undesignated gifts to endowment and approximately $103k in designated gifts. Designated meaning the gift was specific to one or more of the individual funds; undesignated indicating it was up to the church’s discretion on distributing the gift across various funds. The church and school often contribute to the Capital Expenditures Fund as budgets allow at the end of the year.
  • Approved Session Action Forms
    • SAF 2022.19 – Proposed Changes to Personnel Policy: FTE and PTE Benefits
      • Proposed motion: That the Session approve two proposed changes to the personnel manual: Page 3: Defines full-time employee as one who works 40 hours/week, increased from 35. Page 7: Makes Major Medical and Dental Insurance available for part-time employees regularly scheduled to work a minimum of 30 hours per week, increased from 20.
    • SAF 2022.20 – Zo American Presbyterian Church Partnership
      • Proposed motion: That the Session bless a partnership with the Zo American Presbyterian Church worshipping community, with the following implications: The Zo congregation may worship in our chapel on Sundays without paying a rental fee (either at 9:30- 11am or Sunday afternoon). Zo children, youth, and adults will be invited and encouraged to participate in the ministries of Shallowford.

Resources