Friday, March 12, 2010

News of Friends Meetings and Churches

Wyoming Meeting approve the following proposed Minute to be sent to the Clerk of IMYM to be presented at Ghost Ranch in June 2010: Wyoming Friends Meeting requests continuation of the welcoming relationship with Intermountain Yearly Meeting that was initially established in 2007, with the same terms and conditions agreed upon at that year's session. Except, we wish to request this relationship be reviewed in five (5) years rather than the original three (3).

Gil and Louise George, former pastors at Boise Friends Church, have accepted a call to pastor the congregation at Woodland Friends (ID). They hope to begin immediately, arriving for Easter Sunday.

First Friends, Whittier (CA) will hold a celebration to introduce their new pastor, Becky Rees Memmelaar, on Sunday, March 14.

The youth of First Friends, Whittier (CA) led the worship service on Valentine’s Day.

First Friends, Whittier (CA) has added a hand-bell choir to its worship service. A group of five bell ringers performed Douglas Wagner’s “Prayer” for their first performance.

Walla Walla Preparative Meeting (WA) is offering Friends “A Short Course on Quakerism, a 4-part series which includes Quaker History, Quakers and Mysticism, Quakers & Social Action, and Friendly Structure.

Victoria Friends (BC) will hold an End of Life workshop on March 14th at the Fern Street Meeting House with a finger-food potluck lunch beforehand. The first hour will cover the range of issues to consider in arranging one‘s End of Life affairs, followed by an hour of information on wills and related concerns.

Vancouver Island Monthly Meeting (BC) will hold an Island Gathering, April 10th with the theme, “Weaving new and old threads into the fabric of our Friendly island community” at the Cowichan Lake Education Centre. Duncan Worship Group Friends will provide hospitality for those who need over-night accommodations.

The Public Sessions of Quaker Quest will be held in April and May at the Vancouver (BC) Meeting House. A Quaker Quest public session is a varied and lively program that includes short presentations from three Quakers, a time of listening to seekers in small groups, a question period, a 30-minute meeting for worship, and hospitality. The topics for the presentations are: Worship and the Inner Journey; Peace and Social Action; and Are Quakers Christian?

At University Meeting (Seattle, WA) Adult Religious Education will focus on the Peace Testimony with sessions on Conflict and The Peace Testimony, Conflict and Nonviolence at home, and Nonviolence actions. The final session will be a Group Response where Friends find norms for safety at UFM.

Tempe Meeting (AZ) investigated the requirements for accepting credit/debit card payments for donations, and determined that the costs outweigh the convenience. Friends are gathering information on the “bill pay” service offered by some banks to their checking-account holders, and will bring details to a forthcoming meeting for business.

Adult Religious Education Committee of Strawberry Creek Meeting (Berkeley, CA) recommends that the Meeting lay down the Committee and return its responsibilities to the Worship and Ministry Committee effective as of June when the new term of committee memberships begin. It also proposes that Worship & Ministry Committee be expanded to eight members and that special project s such as Quakerism 101 be undertaken by ad hoc committees under the care of Worship and Ministry. The proposal is seasoning.

The First Day School Committee of Strawberry Creek Meeting (Berkeley, CA) has decided that the best option for making the classrooms safe for the children is to continue to be vigilant in looking for broken glass or other dangers. Friends are asked to report anyone rummaging through the recycling bins as this may result in a hazard for the children.

Spring Valley Friends Community Church (CA) is studying. The Young Adult Group is reading Experiencing God by Henry & Richards Blackaby and Claude King. The Senior Adult Group is reading the pamphlet, “Growing Older and Wiser.” by Dale and Sandy Larsen. The Senior Group discussed how important it is to get advice from the most holy of people in one’s life.

The newly formed regional "Central Friends" group (5th-8th graders) of South Seattle Preparative Meeting (WA) is doing their first service project on Saturday, March 20. They will be involved with an Emergency Feeding Program - sorting and packaging food for the food bank.

Santa Fe Meeting (NM) meets for Soup, Bread, and Friends on the third Wednesday of the month during the cooler months of the year. The atmosphere is warm and the food is extraordinary. The main menu includes soup, bread and tea. Friends may contribute food, but contributions are not required.

Santa Cruz Meeting (CA) is considering sharing peace and social order concerns after Meeting for Worship on Fourth Sundays.

Santa Cruz Friends (CA) will gather one Sunday evening a month for “Sharing Spiritual Journeys.” The evening’s storyteller will speak for an hour and then Friends will have follow-up time for questions, light refreshments and visiting with the speaker and each other.

Sandpoint Meeting (ID) approved the suggestion that Greg Mortensen, author of Stones into Schools (in Afghanistan and Pakistan) be nominated for the 2011 Peace Prize.

How can Sandpoint Meeting (ID) do something about Overpopulation as a Contributor to world problems such as global warming? Friends expressed concerns, will work on a minute, and will lead an Interest Group at NPYM.

The Caring Committee of San Jose Meeting (CA) has written a document entitled, “Suggestions for Couples Seeking a Quaker Wedding at San Jose Friends Meeting.” Copies of the document were distributed and included in the Meeting newsletter.

A large part of the Ministry and Oversight Committee meeting of San Francisco Meeting (CA) consisted of a worship-sharing time, “Listening to Meeting, Listening to Ourselves.” The committee concluded that it is listening to people’s concerns about its recent decision in a difficult situation with an individual. The committee is aware that there is not unity in the monthly meeting concerning the situation, and will continue to labor. The committee feels that it is important to set boundaries in difficult situations.

After extended conversation, San Francisco Meeting (CA) did not come to unity to begin the program of hosting a Food Bank. The Clerk asked if the Meeting had covered logistical concerns extensively enough, and if so, then as Friends continue their consideration, the Meeting needs to

discern more deeply if it is called to do this service.

The Annual Quaker Fundraising Extravaganza at Salt Lake Meeting (UT) will be Saturday March 13. It will feature musicians and poets from within the Quaker community and The Red Rock Hot Club, performing gypsy jazz. This year there will be a recession-friendly lowered admission in relation to previous years.

At the start of each season, the young players from the Rose Valley Friends Church (Kelso, WA) basketball program concentrate on more than dribbling and slam dunks. The hoopsters also take time to raise food for charity. This year’s recipient was FISH of Cowlitz County.

This year the focus of the children's offering at Rose Drive Friends Church (Yorba Linda, CA) will be on Haiti - specifically the needs of the Friends churches in Haiti after the devastating earthquake. During the three week emphasis, the children will hear from special guest speakers who will be share their experiences in being missionaries. The curriculum will be from the book "I Can Share Too."

Rose Drive Friends Church (Yorba Linda, CA) offers mid-week electives including

Alpha for ESOL (English Speakers of Other Languages). Topics covered are the same as Alpha Basics but in simple English, with potluck dinners with food from around the world.

The Easter Seals Society requested the Reno Friends Meeting (ID) donate used clothing to their thrift store periodically during the year. Friends recently delivered clothing .

Nominating Committee of Reno Meeting (NV) labored to come to unity around the requests of two Friends that they be "reinstated" onto the Reno Meeting's Oversight Committee for the year 2010. The Nominating Committee came to a strong sense of unity that it is important to demonstrate to Reno Meeting that when people are nominated and then approved by the Meeting to be on a committee, they are supported by the Meeting. As Reno Meeting currently has an approved Oversight Committee that is working well with an adequate number of members, the Nominating Committee agreed it was important to support them in their work. The Meeting reached a painful sense of unity to accept the Nominating Committee’s recommendation, and agreed to reach out personally to all the people in the meeting who have been hurt by recent divisions.

Friday, July 9th, Redwood Forest Meeting (Santa Rosa, CA) will celebrate 15 years at our Meetinghouse. July 9th, 1995, was the first Meeting for Worship and first Meeting for Business in the Meeting Room.

The Meaning of Membership workshop, addressing what it mean to be a member of Redwood Forest Meeting (Santa Rosa, CA), was attended by twelve people who engaged in a lively Quaker dialog that covered aspects of the meeting’s social and spiritual community including social action as well as financial implications of membership.

Palo Alto Meeting (CA) is concerned about the symptoms of stress and burn-out that the Meeting members, attenders, and children have been exhibiting. The Nominating process is beginning and Friends need to discern and act on Spirit-led priorities rather than just move people to fill gaps one place, only to create new gaps elsewhere. At Business Meeting, Friends will explore how to get more of what they want from the Meeting. In preparation, Friends are to consider :

- What is the core of your positive experience of our Meeting?

- Which aspects of Meeting delight you, support your persistence in living Quaker values, and/or are priorities for you?

- What opportunities do you want to retain, make better, and/or expand?

Orange Grove Meeting (Pasadena, CA) reminds Friends that email and telephone scams targeting Quakers have been reported. The perpetrators urge victims to send money to Friends who are overseas or injured and without adequate financial means. Please check with the clerks or Pastoral Care if similar email messages or telephone calls are received.

Orange Grove Meeting (Pasadena, CA) notes that the courtyard renovation is underway. The bricks have been laid and the decomposed granite will be laid shortly. Actual costs are expected to be close to budgeted costs. Once the courtyard renovation is complete, the meetinghouse rug will be removed. No decisions will be made until the type of flooring underneath is evaluated.

Orange County Meeting (Santa Ana, CA) will begin meeting in Sky Park in Irvine, CA, located near John Wayne Airport, in April. Members approved the move at a Called Meeting on February 28. The new site is slightly smaller than the Meeting’s current location. OCFM has met at its current location for nearly 10 years.

As Friends discussed the 2010 budget in a joint meeting between the elders and stewards of Newberg Friends Church (OR), there was a strong sense in that meeting to completely eliminate the rest of the church debt in 2010—$33,000. Friends are being asked to consider this prayerfully as they plan their giving for 2010. The stewardship committee will create a designated fund in the budget this year titled “debt reduction.”

Friends from Newberg Friends Church (OR), who are in or near the realm of empty nests, aging parents, adult health issues, and grandparenting, are asked to consider joining “Time for ’Pause.” These Friends share together, pray for one another, and praise God as they see him working in their midst.

Multnomah Meeting (Portland, OR) Nominating Committee held a Volunteer Fair to present opportunities for meeting service. Each committee was invited to set up a table in order to present their committee’s work and job descriptions (and snacks!), and be available to answer questions. Friends were invited to take note of opportunities they might be interested in now or in the future.

Based on recommendations from the Conflict Resolution Committee regarding Financial Matters, a Called Meeting for Worship for Business will take place at Mountain View Meeting (Denver, CO) on April 11th to discuss adopting and following a spirit-led process for discerning ways to increase and use the Meeting financial assets. The called meeting will also begin a process to provide guidance to the Finance committee on the amount of reserves required to be kept and how quickly they should be replenished once spent.

Quaker Quest Training will be held at the Mountain View Meeting House (Denver, CO)

on Saturday, April 10, 2010.

Melba Friends (ID) has applied for a grant to build a community youth center. The Refinery Youth Center is a project that is sorely needed in all small town communities. Substance abuse and other high risk behaviors are temptations for youth in every town and city, small town youth have very few alternatives. The Refinery Youth Center will provide a place that is fun and safe for the youth of our community.

For several years Medford Friends Church (OR) had a Wednesday night program thatincludes a simple meal, followed by activities and studies for all ages. The evening was designed to encourage families to participate, while expanding opportunities for fellowship and study. However, over the last couple of years the dynamics of these Wednesday nights began to change as more and more youth from the neighborhood and community began to join Friends.

La Jolla Meeting (CA) will hold a Meeting “Garage Sale.” Friends are asked to “save their junk.” Proceeds will benefit the Pacific Yearly Meeting Youth Coordinator position.

Friends from Humboldt Meeting (Arcata, CA) participated in two workshops on The Gift of Anger.

When Honolulu Meeting (HI) receives a bequest of $5000 or more, without a specific condition on the use of the bequest, the Finance Committee puts the money in the General Invested Reserve. In the case of bequests of more than $1000 and less than $5000, the Finance Committee decides whether to put the money in the General Invested Reserve or to treat the money as current income to the General Fund. The same principles apply to the aggregate memorial gifts made in memory of a deceased person at the time of the person’s death.

It was suggested, and agreed by the Meeting Clerk of Honolulu Meeting (HI), that there be a specific bulletin board for the official business announcements of the meeting, at the moment to include the draft State of the Meeting Report, the Nominating Committee proposed slate, and the draft budget.

Florence Worship Group (OR) will meet in Florence and Coos Bay during the month of March.

A New Bike Parking Area is coming to the Eugene Meeting House (OR). It will be located at the back (west) wall of the Meetinghouse by the parking lot. There will be 16 spaces, steel loops and a higher roof. The existing bike area, tool shed, and compost area will be replaced to open up more space in the courtyard.

Meeting for In­quiry of Eugene Meeting (OR) will focus “On Speaking in Meeting for Worship” Who speaks? When? On what subject? These questions, put this way, cannot be answered by a people who have no dogma. What needs to be asked and must be answered is, “What is the nature of the Meeting?”

In keeping with the testimony of Mutual Care, the children of Eastside Meeting (Bellevue, WA) held a bake sale to benefit relief efforts in Haiti. The children brought treats and collected donations during fellowship time.

Quaker Quest workshop will be at Davis Meeting (CA) on March 13, led by Steve Chase. The FGC Quaker Quest travel team will help Friends develop "inreach and outreach".

Canyon Hills Friends Church (Yorba Linda, CA) held Church Serve Day on Saturday, February 27th. Friends cleaned up the parking lot, trimmed trees and cleaned/fixed items inside.

Camas Friends Church (WA) has invited Friends from Multnomah Meeting (Portland, OR) to a shared worship at the Camas Church on April 11. After the church service Friends will meet to discuss the experience and / or what our form of worship means to us - how it was or is experienced. This will be followed by soup and bread and informal conversations.

“Desiring to be of service to God and the community, we, Chico Friends Meeting (CA), commit ourselves to make our property available for use by community groups whose work is consistent with our testimonies. We ask Building and Grounds Committee to oversee such use.”

The Discussion Committee of Claremont Meeting (CA) will present the following topic for Friends to discuss: Quaker Traditions and Practices: What Binds Friends Together When We’re So Diverse? The world of Quakers contains an amazingly diversity. What binds us together? Evangelicals have creeds, Jews have observance, Catholics have the papacy. Eastern Orthodoxy have the liturgy. We will explore how Quaker traditions and practice help Friends to navigate differences and to discover deep unity in worship, testimony, and activism (ministry).

The Peace and Social Concerns Committee of Bridge City Meeting (Portland, OR) recommended that the Meeting follow the policy established in 2007 of contributing 10% of our annual budget, to be equally allocated to Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Friends Committee on National Legislation, Friends World Committee for Consultation, and the Oregon Food Bank. Friends approved.

Bridge City Meeting (Portland, OR) has been told that the building where they normally meet for worship will be unavailable on Sunday, March 28. Friends are encouraged to visit other Friends Churches and Meetings in the Portland, OR area on that day.

All members of the Meeting House Committee of Boise Valley Meeting (Boise, ID) are enthusiastic about the idea of having a Meeting House, but are mindful that others may have strong reservations. The committee came up with a set of queries for the rest of the Meeting having to do with values and vision for the Meeting in 5, 10 or 15 years. Would having a Meeting House help achieve that vision? Should Friends continue accepting contributions towards a Meeting House?

Berkeley Friends Meeting (CA) invites Friends to a Long Range Planning Committee presentation after meeting on March 28 . Friends will review the history of the building renovation project, what decisions have been made to date, where they are now, what work remains before construction can start, and how Friends can participate.

Berkeley Meeting Friends (CA) are invited to join in a celebration of the abundance of the local foodshed; Friends are asked to bring “Locavore” food gifts, to share on April 12th.

Berkeley Friends Church (CA) will hold its 2010 Quaker Heritage Day on Saturday April 10, 2010. Carol Spencer will speak on Holiness: The Soul of Quakerism. There will be three sessions:

“Early Quakerism: A Radical Holiness Movement” “19th Century Revivalism: Love It or Hate It?” “Holiness, Mysticism & Modernism: A 21st Century Synthesis”

At Friday Night at the Movies at Berkeley Friends Church (CA), Friends will watch “Real Women Have Curves,” which is a timely coming of age story about a first generation Latina who struggles to balance her family's culture with her own hopes and dreams.

On April 13, Berkeley Friends Church (CA) will host Dr. Alexia Nibona, director of the Friends Women’s Association in Burundi. Dr. Nibona will reflect on growing up in Kamenge, Burundi---one of Burundi’s deadliest warzones—and her decision to pursue her medical degree so that she could return to work with women, HIV+people, and trauma survivors in her community. She will talk about how she helps people to heal from devastating violence and trauma, moving Burundi to a more peaceful future.

Apple Seed Meeting (Sebastopol, CA) is changing its meeting location to the West County Community Services Building at the corner of Walker and Petaluma Ave. in Sebastopol.

At Albuquerque Meeting (NM), concerns have been expressed regarding compliance with health and safety guidelines for food service. Thus a Third Sunday Social after meeting for worship will replace the potluck. The Meeting will provide snacks, coffee, tea, and juice.

Because the regularly scheduled Meeting for Worship for Business at Albuquerque Meeting (NM) falls on Easter, the April business meeting will be a called meeting on March 28 to finalize the State of the Meeting Report, with the next Meeting for Business to be held on May 2nd.

Friends from Agate Passage Meeting (Poulsbo, OR) show interest but hesitation regarding possible Bible Study sessions. It seems that Bible Study might commence, but not immediately. Names of potential participants are being gathered.

Beyond the Monthly Meeting/Churches

Youth of Alaska Friends Conference are invited to gather at Nancy Lake State Park, July 28-30, paddling and hiking to Cabin #1. Each day is filled with spirit-led activities, games and arts and crafts. The menu is simple, cooked family style over a campfire. Each night Friends enjoy s’mores and good singing around the fire. Friends leave July 30 to join the Yearly Gathering of the Alaska Friends Conference. No age limit, kids from age 1 to 90 are welcome!

Portland area Friends will meet at the Multnomah Meeting House with the American Friends Service Committee staff and Executive Committee members to hear about current programs and dialogue about new developments at AFSC on Friday, March 12, 7:00 p.m.

Arizona Half-Yearly Meeting will hold its Spring gathering March 27, 2010 at the Phoenix Meeting House with the theme, “Strengthening and Deepening the Work of our Committees.” Responding to input from individuals and Monthly Meetings, Friends changed the format of the spring AHYM session. There will not be a guest speaker or the usual small-group worship/sharing . The afternoon sessions will focus on the needs and workings of Peace and Social Concerns committees, and Ministry and Oversight/Adult Education/Pastoral Care committees. On Saturday night, the Phoenix Meeting House will be transformed into a coffee house for acoustic folk music.

Barclay Press will celebrate 50 years of publishing ministry among Evangelical Friends in May.

The quarterly meeting of the Christian Friends Conference will take place on Saturday, March 20 from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM at Berkeley Friends Church. Lunch is brown bag. Beverages and bagels will be provided in the morning.

College Park Quarterly Meeting will gather May 15-16 at Ben Lomond Quaker Center.

College Park Quarterly Meeting Youth, 5th – 9th grades, are invited to a weekend retreat, March 19-21, in Palo Alto, CA.

Ministry and Oversight of College Park Quarterly Meeting is eager to learn about persistent problems and best corrective practices from Meetings dealing with emotionally or mentally disturbed participants in worship and other Meeting events.

Colorado Regional Meeting (CRM) of Friends Spring Gathering is an opportunity for shared spiritual growth, Quaker fellowship, and fun! Friends will meet on April 18, 2010 at the Fort Collins Meeting House for “The Lighter Side of the Light.” and explore how lightening up can deepen our spirituality.

Good News Associates is presenting a 3-day “Leadership Institute for Group Discernment” May 17-20 at George Fox University, Newberg, OR. The Leadership Institute is a four-day intensive experience to empower church leaders in group discernment. It will integrate theological, spiritual and practical organizational processes. Each participant is invited to bring both expertise to share and problems to be solved. Insitute Leadership includes Paul Anderson, Bruce Bishop, Chuck Conniry, Lon Fendall, and Jan Wood.

The Joy of Clerking is a one-day workshop for clerks or people considering being clerks, to provide training and support to help you fulfill this task with an eye on how God is stirring and moving your community. The workshop will be offered at George Fox University on Tuesday, May 18 and led by Lon Fendall and Jan Wood of the Good News Association.

This workshop is part of the larger “Leadership Institute for Group Discernment.”

Full details for the institute are available at

The Friends Committee on Legislation of California Education Fund invites Friends to a very special event on Friday, March 26, 2010, in Sacramento to benefit the FCL Education Fund and Death Penalty Focus. The FCL third Capitol Awards Banquet will honor three outstanding activists for criminal justice reform and the abolition of the death penalty. Information:

On Monday, February 15, Quaker Lobby Day, Friends descended on Olympia. With the help of Friends Committee on Washington Public Policy, Washington State Friends learned some of the latest developments in legislation about criminal justice reform. At noon they joined a rally of 6,500 people on the Capitol steps to call for education, health care and other human needs, not budget cuts and then visited with representatives and senators’ staff and had good discussions.

Intermountain Yearly Meeting (IMYM) will be held June 9-13, 2010, at Ghost Ranch, Abiquiu, NM, with early program days on June 6-9 The theme will be "Quaker Service in the 21st Century." The registration material for Intermountain Yearly Meeting (IMYM)Annual Gathering is posted at Registrations are due by April 20. Registrations post-marked after April 20 may be accepted at the discretion of the Registrars, but
housing may not be available and IMYM will request a $25 late fee.

Continuing Committee of Intermountain Yearly Meeting decided to remove the $24,000 budget item for the Joint Service Project and reduce the assessment to $35 per member. Continuing Committee could not come to unity on whether to include any support for service in the 2010 or 2011 budgets. It decided to propose that the Annual Gathering in June form a committee to investigate future Yearly Meeting service possibilities.

The New Mexico Quaker Women’s Spring Retreat will be held April 3 to 5th at the
Norbertine Retreat Center in southwest Albuquerque. The theme will be “What do we bring to our communities and what do we get? How do we create and maintain this community?”

Northwest Yearly Meeting will gather at George Fox University for worship, business, and visioning on July 25-29. The keynote address by Superintendent Colin Saxton will be on Sunday and the Outreach Rally will occur on Monday.

Northwest Yearly Meeting has a Facebook page. It features daily postings from local church sites, as well as updates about NWYM ministries. Friends are invited to leave comments or join in the dialogue.

February was the first annual Peace Month in Northwest Yearly Meeting. The subcommittee that put together resources for Peace Month is asking Churches about their experiences or lack thereof. The subcommittee wants to know what Friends did and did not find useful and what they can do better next year.

Northwest Yearly Meeting of Friends Church Junior High Jamboree, a retreat at Twin Rocks Friends Camp over Presidents’ Day weekend, had a record 58 attenders! Planned and directed by a group of high schoolers from the Portland and Newberg Areas, it also helps develop the leadership and ministry skills of our youth.

The 8th Pacific Northwest Quaker Women’s Theology Conference will take place June 16-20, 2010, at Seabeck Conference Center in Seabeck, Washington. The theme is Walk With Me: Mentors, Elders, and Friends.

Pacific NW Quarterly Meeting Spring Gathering is scheduled for April 23-25, 2010, at Lazy F Ranch near Ellensburg with the theme “Compassionate Listening: Finding God in the Midst of Fear.” For more information, see

Pacific Yearly Meeting Representative Committee (RepComm) will meet on Saturday, March 5th at Orange Grove Meeting.

Southern California Quarterly Meeting will gather at Orange Grove Meeting in Pasadena, CA on Saturday, April 24th.

Friends are invited to mark their calendars for a delightful, family-friendly gathering at Twin Rocks Friends Camp, “Party by the Parkway” on Saturday, May 22, 2010.

Western Half Yearly Meeting (WHYM) will meet Friday May 21-Monday May 24th at Sorrento Centre. Friends are invited to arrive at the Sorrento Centre on Thursday evening so they can join in the WHYM Retreat Day on Friday.

Willamette Quarterly Meeting Spring Gathering will be April 23-25 at Sky Camp, east of Eugene, Oregon. The theme is “Living in Harmony: Body and Soul.”