Interim Tenth 11
Minutes of Baltimore Yearly Meeting
Tenth Month 22, 2011
Baltimore Monthly Meeting, Stony Run
I2011-46 Opening Worship. The meeting opened with worship.
I2011-47 Thoughts for Absent Friends. Friends shared the names of those who could not be with us today due to health and family circumstances. We hold these Friends in the Light.
I2011-48 Welcome from Stony Run Meeting. Meg Meyer (Stony Run) welcomed us to the meeting and invited us to join the meeting for a tour of Baltimore’s Mother Churches on November 5th, followed by high tea at the Meeting House.
I2011-49 Minute of appreciation. Melanie Gifford (Adelphi), co-clerk of Junior Yearly Meeting, presented the following minute of appreciation for June Confer and Susan Williams, who have stepped down from their long and faithful service leading the kindergarten and first-grade class at Annual Session.
We recognize and appreciate the gentle warmth that June Confer (Adelphi) and Susan Williams (Dunnings Creek) have brought to teaching the Kindergarten/First grade class at Annual Session over a combined total of almost 50 years. Their delight in the children—and their pleasure in each other’s company—has made the Kindergarten/First grade class a joyful place. The Yearly Meeting thanks June and Susan for making their classroom an oasis that has welcomed our children with books, crafts and puppets as they grow from the small world of the Nursery into the wider world of Junior Yearly Meeting.
Friends APPROVED this minute.
I2011-50 Yearly Meeting Presiding Clerk’s report. Elizabeth Meyer (Sandy Spring) gave the Presiding Clerk’s report. She shared that information about the Yearly Meeting’s apportionment process has been sent to each Monthly Meeting, and she hopes for good feedback from across the Yearly Meeting.
With the Interim Meeting Clerk, she has been discerning names of Friends to serve on an ad hoc committee focused on next steps from our visioning process.
She encouraged Friends to consider visiting other Monthly Meetings within Baltimore Yearly Meeting, and presented a “quiz” which challenges Friends to recognize Meeting Houses within BYM. If Friends do not know all of the answers to the quiz, perhaps visiting in the Yearly Meeting will help! The Presiding Clerk has a personal goal to visit each monthly meeting and worship group in the Yearly Meeting before Annual Session in 2012.
I2011-51 Treasurer’s Report. Marion Ballard (Bethesda) gave the Treasurer’s Report, presenting financial figures through September 30th. She encouraged Friends to consider what they can give in unrestricted gifts to Baltimore Yearly Meeting this year. Many Friends have already given to the Shiloh pond this year, and she hopes Friends will generously to the General Fund as well. Friends interested in budget and financial details may contact the Treasurer or the Comptroller for copies. Several Friends expressed a desire that financial information, including a balance sheet, be more widely available in advance of Interim Meeting sessions.
I2011-52 Development Director’s Report. Robinne Gray (Washington) gave the Development Director’s report (Attachment A).
I2011-53 Development Committee Report. Catherine McHugh (Bethesda) spoke about the future of the Development program. The program is still young, but it has begun the important work of tracking and planning around giving in the Yearly Meeting. BYM cannot operate solely on apportionment and program income, and we must recognize the importance of our individual gifts. The Development Committee hopes to help Friends develop habits of giving because they have learned that first gifts are often the hardest to make. BYM’s Development Director also offers workshops for Monthly Meetings on giving.
I2011-54 Stewardship and Finance Committee. Lettie Collins (Roanoke) spoke about the Yearly Meeting budget on behalf of Stewardship and Finance. As of September 30, BYM faces a deficit of $16,590. Unless we receive unrestricted contributions in the range of $50,000 to $70,000 by year’s end, it is likely we will finish the year with a deficit. She presented a recommendation that, should year-end contributions not match our budget, we charge any year-end deficit to the Yearly Meeting’s Unrestricted Reserves. Friends raised questions about the health of our reserves; a joint working group of the Stewardship and Finance Committee and Trustees is working on similar concerns at this time.
Friends APPROVED this course of action, if it proves necessary.
I2011-55 Nominating Committee. Rebecca Rawls (Langley Hill) presented a number of resignations:
Dominique Zeltzman (Homewood) from Camp Property Management
Laurie Wilner (Langley Hill) from Manual of Procedure
John Bakker (Baltimore, Stony Run) from Religious Education
Juliet Guroff (Goose Creek) from Unity with Nature
Ruth Fitz (York) from Youth Programs
Leada Dietz (York) as a representative to the 2012 Friends World Committee on Consultation World Conference in Kenya
Will Stratton (Maury River) as an alternate representative to the Friends United Meeting General Board.
Friends ACCEPTED these resignations.
She presented several names for approval:
Catherine McHugh (Adelphi) to Development
Devin Gillespie (Homewood) to Stewardship and Finance
Eli Fishpaw (Maury River) to Unity with Nature
Rosalie Dance (Adelphi) to the board of directors of the Miles White Beneficial Society of Baltimore City
William Miles (Baltimore, Stony Run) to the board of directors of the Miles White Beneficial Society of Baltimore City
Ann Riggs (Annapolis) as a representative to the 2012 FWCC World Conference in Kenya
All these Friends, with the exception of our 2012 FWCC representative, will serve terms ending at Annual Session in 2014.
Friends APPROVED these nominations.
I2011-56 Camp Property Manager’s Report. David Hunter (Frederick) presented the Camp Property Manager’s report. (Attachment B) There is a Friends Service weekend at Opequon the weekend of October 29, and Friends should consider the good a weekend at camp may do them.
A new site plan for Catoctin has been submitted to Frederick County, and its approval will hopefully be celebrated with the construction of a new cabin in the spring of 2012. They have also made progress on a wind-to-energy program at Catoctin.
Construction on the Shiloh pond has begun, despite less-than-ideal weather conditions. The pond will cover 3/10 of an acre and be twelve feet deep at its deepest point. David Hunter expressed deep appreciation for the BYM Camp Property Committee, the BYM Development Director, the enthusiastic contractors at work on the pond, and all the donors in BYM and beyond who made the project possible.
He reminded Friends that the camps are available to rent for a variety of purposes in the off-season, and he encouraged Friends to consider if they wish to support the yearly meeting in this way.
Friends expressed enthusiastic appreciation for David Hunter’s work.
I2011-57 Camp Program Secretary Report. Jane Megginson (Frederick) presented the Camp Program Secretary’s report. (Attachment C) She expressed her gratitude for camp and BYM staff for their contributions to the BYM camping program. She expressed excitement about the Shiloh pond and the gifts that made it possible, including gifts from BYM campers themselves.
This year’s camp season saw 536 campers, 127 young camp staff, and 118 volunteers building wonderful Quaker community. This year has seen some major changes in the camping program, including the first year of Teen Adventure Bike under the direction of Tasha Walsh, Hope Swank’s first year as co-director at Shiloh, and the departure of Linda Garrettson as director of Catoctin after 16 years of Spirit-led service.
She shared quotations from camp parents and counselors about the growth – spiritual, mental, and physical – fostered by the BYM camping program. This year, the camps offered their largest number of scholarships ever, and a group of Catoctin alumni have been working on increasing diversity at camp, including preparing new campers from diverse backgrounds for the potential culture shock of the camp environment. All of this helps to make the exciting community of camp as widely accessible as possible. Jane encouraged Friends to talk with their monthly meetings about how they can support campers from their meetings and beyond. Every empty bunk is a missed opportunity to change a young person’s life, as well as a draw on BYM’s financial resources.
Friends expressed enthusiastic appreciation for Jane Megginson’s work and for the camping program.
I2011-58 Intervisitation Committee Report. Joan Liversidge (Sandy Spring) presented the report of the Intervisitation Committee. (Attachment D) The committee is now using Google tools to improve the ease of communication with potential travelers, and interested Friends can sign up for email updates from the committee.
Friends in the Intervisitation Program see that their work is not done and seek new light and specific direction. Interested Friends are invited to attend a time of discernment at Sandy Spring meeting on November 19th, including a chili lunch.
Joan shared the impact that visiting with Friends in other traditions has had on her life. She has found new insight and love among Friends from many backgrounds and experiences.
I2011-59 General Secretary’s Report. Riley Robinson presented the General Secretary’s report. At last, the new and beautiful BYM website is live, and Friends are deeply grateful for the continuing work of Wayne Finegar on this project. The website will not only be a rich resource of information, but an enjoyable online experience.
Riley expressed his gratitude to faithful work of the BYM staff. Margo Lehman has spent many hours sorting through receipts and scraps of paper to keep our camp financials in order, and Sheila Bach has taken on the task of entering decades of camp medical records – even wet, moldy ones – into the computer. Riley and Robinne Gray recently attended the Friends Fiduciary Fund Quaker Development Conference in Lancaster, PA, where they attended workshops and spoke with Friends from other organizations about Quaker development theory and practice.
Many Quaker organizations have experienced enormous changes in their leadership in the last few years, and Riley described his experiences at Friends gatherings across theological boundaries, including the Superintendents and Secretaries conference for heads of Quaker organizations, and his first FUM General Board Meeting. This year FUM is welcoming a new General Secretary, Colin Saxton, as well as creating new Development and Communication Committees, to help the organization continue and improve its work worldwide.
Riley spoke about the Interfaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington, which organizes conferences and events on interfaith concerns. Friends interested in attending IFC’s 32nd annual Interfaith Concert at the National Cathedral on November 15th should contact Riley about his extra tickets (donations to BYM encouraged).
I2011-60 Announcements. Friends shared announcements of upcoming events and opportunities.
Georgia Fuller will be teaching at Friends Theological College in Kenya again next spring, offering courses on Romans and Old Testament scripture and visiting her cow and her goat.
I2011-61 Minute of thanks to Stony Run Meeting. Friends expressed gratitude for the space provided by Stony Run, with its multitude of small rooms just the right size for committee work. We were treated to delicious chili and beautiful sunshine on a cool fall day, and the easy environment surely helped the work of the body.
I2011-62 Closing Worship. The meeting closed with worship. God willing, we will meet again on March 24 in Charlottesville at Tandem Friends School.