News from Western Quaker Newsletters
May 1, 2009
At this time in early May, 2009, much of our attention is drawn to news about the swine flu. We don’t know how serious it is going to be. Some schools and other facilities have closed as a precautionary measure.
My fellow staff-person, Loida Fernandez, Executive Secretary of COAL, reports that two people have died in her area. And the Reunion General de Los Amigos en Mexico has been postponed until next Fall.
For now what we can do is to do what we have been told and follow common-sense advice. Wash your hands (lots). Cover your mouth when you cough. Stay home if you feel sick. And, I would add, pray for the well-being of all.
Not being sick, I am soon leaving for Willamette Quarterly Meeting at Sky Camp, a Kiwanis Camp in the Cascades Foothills, east of Eugene, Oregon. It’s a familiar site to many of us and will be new to others.
I find most of the information for this Newsletter Summary in church and meeting newsletters. Many are sent to me by postal mail; others by e-mail. Until fairly recently I had a PMB – Personal Mail Box – in Vancouver, WA because I used to live there I have now closed that PMB box. For a short while, mail will be forwarded.
If you are the person who sends your church or meeting Newsletter to me by postal mail, please check to be certain that it is being sent to my Portland, Oregon address.
Or send it to me as an e-mail attachment; that will be fine. nancym(at)fwccamericas.org
News of Friends Meetings and Churches
Albuquerque Meeting (NM) is planning a celebration of the sixtieth anniversary of Albuquerque Monthly Meeting. The celebration, which will take place in October 2009 will review the Meeting’s history and honor the Meeting’s elders.
Ministry and Oversight Committee of Berkeley Meeting (CA) will meet for a day-long retreat to plan for the future and deepen spiritual relationships.
Boise Friends Church (ID) created a space reserved especially for prayer—a quiet, comfortable room near the sanctuary where people go to pray on Sunday mornings before the worship service.
The theme for May for the First Day School of Boulder Meeting (CO) is living simply and affirming personal values. It was suggested that Friends talk to their children about what they value that does not have to be purchased.
Wes Daniels has been called by Camas Friends Church (WA). He comes to NWYM from studies at Fuller Theological Seminary.
At Meeting for Learning of the Lower Columbia Worship Group (Long Beach, WA) Friends focused on the origins of the Religious Society of Friends. The group is using Michael Birkel’s Silence and Witness as a springboard for discussion.
Babies were born to two families in Missoula Meeting (MT) in February. Congratulations!
Friends from Missoula Meeting (MT) have been involved in cutting and sewing parties to make cushions for benches in the Meeting House. Soup and bread were served as well.
Peace and Social Concerns Committee of Mountain View Meeting (Denver, CO) is sponsoring a series of Spiritual Dialogues on Race.
The Green the Meeting project of the Junior Young Friends of Mountain View Meeting (Denver, CO) has won an award in the Religious/Spiritual category from the Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education.
Multnomah Meeting (Portland, OR) is sponsoring an adult education panel titled, “Are We All Prophets?” Queries include “What is ‘prophetic ministry’ in our time and in our culture? Can it have a place in every life or is it only for a few? Where does the prophet stand – as an insider or as an outsider?”
Multnomah Meeting (Portland, OR) is holding a “simplify your life/beautify your garden” Rummage and Plant Sale, on Saturday, May 2nd.
On every Business Meeting/Potluck Sunday, Multnomah Meeting (Portland, OR) is striving to fill the Oregon Food Bank box located in the social hall. Friends hope this monthly observance will become a Multnomah Meeting tradition.
Newberg Friends Church (OR) is putting together a songbook to use along with the church’s hymnals. Friends are asked to let the church secretary know their favorite songs – which songs they like to sing again and again.
Family Story Time at Newberg Friends Church(OR) will be May 22nd . This month they will celebrate Jesus with the theme of communication. All ages are welcome and kids are invited to come in their jammies!
North Seattle Friends (WA) will enjoy Friday Night Movie on May 1st. They will watch Spellbound, a documentary about Spelling Bees which follows eight kids as they win regional bees and prepare for the national contest in Washington, D.C.
Orange County Friends (Santa Ana, CA) are involved in two Quaker Dialogue groups to deepen their experiences of Quaker faith and to develop closer ties with one another. In their current series, they are reading and responding to Pendle Hill pamphlets.
Programs at Paonia Friends Church (CO) include Celebrate Recovery, a program for women who have experienced divorce, death of a loved one, self esteem issues, or abuse. Instead of a traditional youth program, the church focuses on discipleship. At the request of the teens, guys and girls meet separately for Scripture study.
Pat and Mandy Schmidt will begin ministry as Plowshare Coffee House, Redmond (OR) with the formal approval of the Board of Local Outreach, Northwest Yearly Meeting.
Friends at Redwood Forest Meeting (Santa Rosa, CA) expressed concern that the procedure for approving transfers of membership has been nearly the same as approving new members. The emphasis to the transferring person and the visiting committee is that the visit is to find understanding and comfort in the new relationship and is not a clearness committee for membership. The Meeting will consider approval and recording of membership of a transfer applicant at the Meeting for Business in which their Visiting Committee report is presented.
Redwood Forest Meeting (Santa Rosa, CA) approved: Redwood Forest Friends Meeting will no longer escort transfers or prospective new members out of Business Meeting when their membership is being considered.
The Youth Missions Rummage Sale at Reedwood Friends Church (Portland, OR) will be Saturday, June 6.
Sacramento Meeting (CA) will hold an all-day workshop on June 6th, “Taste of Quaker Quest.” This workshop is primarily for members and attenders to get a sample of a Quaker Quest session and to understand how important it is to reach out to the community.
The Clerk of Worship and Ministry of Sacramento Meeting (CA) is the ex-officio Alternate Clerk.
Ministry and Counsel of Salt Lake Meeting (UT) is hosting a series of discussions on the “SPICE” testimonies: Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community and Equality. The most recent discussion was on Integrity.
Salt Lake Meeting (UT) noted that Intermountain Yearly Meeting assessments are currently a problem for the Meeting. The Meeting is considering asking for a reduction in assessments especially given the limited service IMYM provides and the remote location at which it meets.
San Francisco Meeting (CA) is wrestling with a proposal that a room in the Meeting House be used as a venue for meals for homeless people during inclement weather. Currently these meals are served on the sidewalk outside the building. Friends discussed the proposal and did not come to unity. The Clerk affirmed that certain goals were expressed: the desire to do direct service; to provide an opportunity for people to do such service together; and to build unity among San Francisco Friends.
No one from Santa Fe Meeting (NM) has come forward to edit the Meeting’s Newsletter. The Communications Committee proposes limiting the newsletter to announcements, a calendar of events, and business meeting minutes with the hope that with less work someone will come forward to take over the Newsletter.
Santa Fe Meeting (NM) has asked its current nominating committee to identify a proper list of standing committees and to recommend specific responsibilities to be discharged by Nominating Committee.
Silverton Friends Church (OR) offers a “Financial Peace” program to both church families and the local community. Program goals include encouraging families and individuals to have a balanced budget, an emergency fund, and credit card debt of zero.
Syd Wyncoop was recently hired at Talent Friends Church (OR). He and his wife Kathy come from Evangelical Friends Church Southwest.
The next gathering of Wyoming Friends Meeting will be in Jackson, Wyoming June 10-21. Friends meet from about 5 pm on Friday evening through the noon meal on Sunday with continuous potluck for the meals. Jackson Meeting provides hospitality. The weekend will include Meeting for Worship, Meeting for Business, two clearness committees for membership, worship-sharing, a “topic of interest,” recreation and good visiting.
Wyoming Friends Meeting has changed priorities in its 2009 budget. The Meeting has reduced support to other organizations and nearly tripled its travel budget to reflect its movement towards a more participative approach to larger Quaker organizations, Friends General Conference and Quaker Earthcare Witness.