Clerking a Committee

Notes presented by Janet Braker on 2/8/23 with attribution to Jacqueline Stillwell.

Committee meetings would be worship with attention to a specific aspect of meeting life. 

Committee Clerk Responsibilities Jacqueline Stillwell 

• Set a meeting schedule so you will convene the committee regularly. 

• Clerk the meetings (or arrange for someone else to do this). 

• Consult with Clerk if you have a question. S/he serves ex-officio on all committees. 

• Review your committee description annually and set goals that reflect your responsibilities and the needs of the meeting. Revise goals during year as necessary. 

• Prepare for your committee meeting: 

  • Develop the agenda before the meeting.
  • Review your timeline of tasks. Are you on track with goals? Have you done your homework? 
  • Remind members of meeting the week before; send minutes. 
  • If possible and needed, remind people of homework they accepted at last meeting. (It can be useful to highlight items that are action items and need work between meetings.) Send with agenda email. 

Clerking Committee Meetings: 

  • Begin promptly. 
  • Open the meeting with worship. Use this settling silence to relax your body of tensions, clear your mind of other concerns, calm your emotions, connect with why you have accepted this responsibility, and prepare to listen and focus well. 
  • Read the agenda and ask for approval. Review timeline of task/goals. 
  • Plan how to use time on agenda items, being careful not to leave large items to end. 
  • Be sure all present have had a chance to share their truth. Elicit opinions from all members, especially if they are quiet. 
  • End with a brief period of appreciation and worship. 

Preparing for Business Meeting: 

  • Consult with the clerk about what agenda items you have for business meeting. Alert the clerk to issues that require action. 
  • If you are coming with a recommendation, bring a pre-written ‘trial’ minute. 
  • Prepare your committee report (which will be attached to the official minutes). 
  • Give an overview of your work and your goals and what progress you have made toward those goals. 
  • Include research on items which require action. 
  • Include a written recommendation in the report. 
  • Send the report to the clerk/assistant clerk prior to the meeting, and to committee members to read before the business meeting. 


  • Consult the reporting schedule (found under Business of the Meeting) and calendar the month your committee will be reporting and all clerk’s meetings. 
  • Consult the Meal schedule (found under Business of the Meeting) and calendar the month your committee is hosting Friendly First meal. 
  • Be sure to send your meeting minutes to both the Clerk and Asst. Clerk each month. 
  • Check mail bins upstairs in Meetinghouse’s office for your committee. 
  • Be mindful of mentoring and succession planning for the next clerk of your committee 

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