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2020 Yearbook

Eleventh Month 2019 Interim Meeting Attachments

Attachment I2019-40a: Contact Information for Kallen Benson

Kallan Benson can be contacted through the Baltimore Yearly Meeting office, 17100 Quaker Lane, Sandy Spring, Maryland, 20860, 301-774-7663.

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Attachment I2019-40b: Friends General Conference Report on 2020 Gathering

2020 Gathering Report to BYM lnterim Meeting
Saturday, November 2, 2019

The 2020 FGC Gathering, hosted by BYM, will be held at Radford University, in Radford, Virginia, June 28-July 4, 2020. Our theme is "Way Will Open."

A Gathering Committee of 53 members has been planning this event since spring, Their work will continue until the event happens next summer. Many of these committee members are from Baltimore Yearly Meeting. 34 committee members attended a Radford University Campus tour and Fall Committee Meeting October 11-12, 2OL9. At that meeting, the entire committee experienced gathered worship which has fostered a sense of deep connection with one another and with our mission. Prior to that meeting we met in-person two other times, once in the spring in Maryland and once at the 2019 FGC Gathering in lowa. Our next in-person meeting will be at the 2020 Gathering at Radford in June. In between these meetings, Zoom teleconferences enable subcommittees to continue working even when far apart.

In addition to support from BYM Friends on the Gathering Committee, we have received great support from individual Meetings in BYM - Gunpowder and Blacksburg hosted meetings of the entire committee in May and October, respectively. This current weekend, Adelphi is hosting a subcommittee meeting to discern which of the 70 workshop proposals will be offered next summer. A Richmond, Virginia area meeting will host a December meeting of subcommittee clerks.

A few highlights from the subcommittees:

  • A great line-up of plenary speakers will soon be announced.
  • A dynamic Bible-Half Hour presenter has been chosen.
  • Adult Young Friends are preparing their own concurrent programming.
  • A vibrant youth program for children and high Schoolers is taking shape.
  • Ambassadors from the Communications committee may visit your Meeting soon.
  • A variety of local fieldtrips are being planned.

Anti-Racism Work
    FGC has a query similar to the one approved at Annual Sessions: "How does this decision support FGC in its goal of transforming into an actively anti-racist faith community?" All of our subcommittees have been using and responding to this query in their work. We have also had experiential activities at both the Spring and Fall Meetings to raise awareness about institutional racism.

We are excited about the Gathering that is beginning to take shape and inspired by the time, talent, and energy that so many Friends have committed to this effort. You can learn more about 2020 Gathering details as they are announced by checking the FGC website at where you can also sign up for email updates. We hope "Way Will Open" for many Friends in Baltimore Yearly Meeting to attend.

Submitted by Tony and Patsy Arnold Martin, FGC 2020 Gathering Co-clerks

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Attachment I2019-41: Camp Program Manager's Annual Report

Camp Program Manager Report to BYM
Interim Meeting, November 2, 2019

We had an eventful summer at BYM Camps. We served 557 campers, had 121 work grant volunteers, and employed 121 seasonal staff. Our programs are going strong AND we are working on increasing camper enrollment at our camps. This coming year, we will be using a new referral program software package that will help make it easier for folks to refer our camps, and get fun gifts and camper fee reductions for participating. Everyone in the Yearly Meeting can help us spread the word about our camps. Ask people you know with camper aged children, aged 9-14 years old, if they send their kids to camp and if they have thought about sending their kids to a BYM Camp: Catoctin, Shiloh, or Opequon Quaker Camps. Encouraging people you know to send their kids to camp is good for the Yearly Meeting. It helps us keep our budget balanced, but more importantly, it is our Yearly Meeting’s biggest outreach tool. Our camps help Quaker kids connect with other Quakers, and to experience more deeply on a day to day basis what it is to be a Quaker. For families that are not Quaker, it helps them learn more about our values, and gives them an opportunity to connect more deeply with us. Sometimes, it creates Quakers!

Since 2010, when the Working Group on Diversity at Catoctin (the pre-cursor to STRIDE) began sending campers from Philadelphia to camp, BYM Camps has embraced the mission to increase diversity and inclusion at all of our camps by trying to create a safe, inclusive, welcoming place for all campers and staff to grow in the experience of being at camp together. In the current political climate in our country, this mission is especially important. We may be patting ourselves on the back and thinking, yup, we are so great. We are really diversifying our camps and providing this great place for everyone to be happy together and grow together. However, increasing the representation of campers and staff of color is only the beginning of doing the important work of making our camps a truly inclusive, welcoming, growthful, safe space.

This summer, we had some tough challenges and racial tensions at our camps. Our country is more divided than I have ever experienced in my lifetime. We have a president who has led a vocal minority to be as blatantly racist as they want to be. Perhaps because of this, one camp in particular struggled with episodes of aggressive racism. A man in a car on the road stopped a group of campers of color who were hiking back to camp, blocked their way, and aggressively questioned their right to be on the road. This, among other racist comments that were made to our campers and actions of white people toward our staff of color in public places, made it quite apparent that we need to continue to work on our own efforts at understanding what it is like to be under constant scrutiny and attack. How should staff respond to acts of racism, and how can we better support and care for our beloved community members when they are attacked for simply existing. The heightened tensions among our staff and campers did not just arise from verbal attacks by people outside of our community. There were also tensions within our community around issues of cultural appropriation by our camp community in songs that we sing, murals that do not reflect and honor all of our community members, and insensitive comments and microaggressions that occurred.

The Camping Program Committee and I discussed these issues at length and we are disheartened by the state of our Union. But we are meeting the challenges of more emboldened racists and acknowledgement of tensions in our camp community with a commitment to moving ahead with our efforts toward training and educating our staff to meet with acts of racism with skill and an eye toward de-escalation. We will continue to do Equity, Diversity and Inclusion trainings with our staff during skills week and pre-camp, with check ins throughout the summer. We welcome the new STRIDE Coordinator, Khalila Lomax, and look forward to her visits to our camp to help us train our staff, and review our practices with an eye toward improvement. We want to make sure that when racist acts do occur, that our community has an opportunity to meet in affinity groups and support each other. We would like our white community members to become better allies to people of color. And we know that racism is deeply embedded in our culture and in ourselves. It takes a lot of effort to combat racism. White people have the luxury to do nothing, but we white people know that we are the ones who need to recognize our privilege and make necessary changes so that we can be truly welcoming, safe, and radically inclusive in our Camp Community, in our greater Quaker Community, and in our greater community with our neighbors out in the wider world.

We will make mistakes. We have made mistakes. We need to recognize that we are imperfect, living in an imperfect world, and be willing to review our actions, listen when being given difficult feedback, learn from the feedback, and resolve to do better. This is hard work. It is necessary work for us to be true to our mission of creating a radically inclusive community informed by our Quaker values.

My hope is that over time, we will get better, and our community will heal from the hurt, anger, and tensions that have arisen based on our racist culture and privilege. I hope that we will grow to trust each other, give each other the benefit of the doubt, and listen deeply to each other, seeking the Light in every one.

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Attachment I2019-42: Camp Property Manager's Annual Report

Staff Report of the Camp Property Manager
to Baltimore Yearly Meeting
David Hunter
October 2019

I have the honor of working with the Baltimore Yearly Meeting Camp Property Management Committee, a host of volunteers, trades people and local resource people to provide homes for our BYM camping programs and yearly meeting. For about 9 ½ months of each year the camps are pretty quiet places. When I visit in the off-season the loudest thing is often the wind in the trees. In the fall we see turkey and deer. In the winter we see tracks of all kinds and the trees pop in the cold. When spring arrives song birds are everywhere, wild flowers appear and tender leaves begin to show. But during the month of June the properties undergo some amazing changes.

During the first weeks of June one can enjoy quiet misty mornings, woodland wildflowers, spring peepers and those vivid greens that are only found in spring. By the middle of the month directors and skills week trainers have begun to arrive and prepare for younger counselors to come to camp. Then skills week begins when 50 or 60 of the counselors arrive at one of the camps to learn some of the skills they will need to make camp happen. The following week the rest of the staff arrives and begin unpacking equipment and preparing the site for the arrival of the campers. By the last Saturday of the month the roads are clogged with cars, returning campers greet each other with squeals and broad smiles and new campers begin to nervously build relationships with their new best friends ever. There is lots of happy noise, young people in constant motion and magic is in the air.

Camp is community, caring people and experiencing life in a way that is simply not available anywhere else. People at camp often seem oblivious to their surroundings, sitting on the ground or hard benches, sleeping on hard beds in musty sleeping bags and eating off chipped plates with bent utensils. Oh yes, and happier than they have been all year. It is easy to begin to imagine that the facility and fixtures – the temporal surroundings - don’t matter. However, without a safe and beautiful place these caring and talented young counselors, staff, directors and volunteers would have no place to make this miracle happen. I know the facility is only a space, but it is the space that makes camp possible. To see these places come alive and be transformed into “camp” is a humbling and amazing experience. In these moments we see the importance of maintaining and preserving these remarkable places.

This has been a great year at the Baltimore Yearly Meeting camp properties! Much has been accomplished and more remains to be done.

In 2018 we found a section of the wall of the kitchen at Catoctin that had begun rotting. After much discussion we decided on a method of repair and began the work. At the same time we were able to replace the corner sink and countertop in the kitchen with a much more functional cabinet and sink. There were a few other minor repairs which were accomplished in other areas of the building and this summer the outside of the kitchen was stained and sealed. It looks great! This work was accomplished well under the budget amount of $20,000.

We were also able to replace the 9th of the 12 cabins at Catoctin. We hope to continue replacing one cabin a year until 2022 when we will have replaced all the cabins. This work has been required by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene which issues permits to operate youth camps in Maryland. We are extremely fortunate that Peter Bugler continues to help us in replacing these cabins. He builds beautiful timber frame structures that are sure to stand the test of time and are a testament to the beauty and simplicity of his work.

At Opequon we were finally able to address long standing concerns about the bathhouses. This was a challenging problem due to the fact that we do not own the property at Opequon and Friends were reticent to undertake large, expensive projects on a property that is not ours. After much deliberation we decided to purchase a trailer with showers built into it and install it on the property. We were also able to remove an interior wall and the showers from the existing bathhouses and renovate them so that there is room for partitions between the toilets, sinks on the opposite wall and one shower which complies with ADA requirements. The shower trailer was a significant investment, but it will hold a great deal of its value as time passes. We can move it if we ever leave the property and it can be sold if it is no longer needed.

At Shiloh we were able to replace the fifth camper cabin of the 10 cabins there. This involved rehabilitating the road that leads up the hillside to the upper cabin area. We are fortunate to have Mike Reed as caretaker at Shiloh since he is an accomplished equipment operator and was able to do much of the needed work on the road himself. The new cabin was finished in time for camp and was well received by all.

Natural springs have developed along one side of the new pond at Shiloh. This provides clean water for the pond but it has also made the access path to the pond very muddy. This spring and summer we were able to build a “boardwalk” around the edge of the pond. This was accomplished with volunteer labor at the spring Family Camp Weekend and continued over the course the summer. The new boardwalk is providing much easier access to the swimming area, will help keep sediment out of the pond and looks great! It will be completed by next summer. Thank you to all volunteers who helped bring this project.

Still to be accomplished
While fundraising has gone well for many programs of the Yearly Meeting, including the Camping Program and the STRIDE program, contributions to the camp properties and capital projects has fallen behind. Several projects need to be completed in 2019 but we lack funding to complete them.

The craft shelter roof at Catoctin is in dire need of being replaced. This project will cost $8,800.

We have been wanting to replace the floor tiles in the lodge and kitchen for several years now. The project cannot be postponed much longer. We estimate that the project will cost $8,240.

Mowing the rocky and hilly open spaces at Catoctin is challenging. It is made even more challenging with a tractor that is in constant need of repairs and tinkering. A new tractor for Catoctin will cost approximately - $10,000.

We have been mending and patching the roof on the dining hall and kitchen at Opequon for several years now. The time has come for it to be replaced. Reroofing the kitchen and dining hall at Opequon will cost - $18,000.

Each summer campers and counselors at Shiloh take quick showers, conserve water in the kitchen and work hard to make sure the well doesn’t run dry. Nevertheless, there are times when the well at Shiloh cannot keep up with the demand. The time for a second well to supplement Shiloh’s water needs has arrived. A new well at Shiloh and the plumbing to attach it to the existing water system will cost - $15,000.

We got a nice new used pickup truck for Catoctin this summer and it is serving us well. Unfortunately we lost a truck at Shiloh when the transmission went out. They were able to make do with the old truck from Catoctin for this summer but Shiloh is going to need a new truck. In addition one of the other pickup trucks is on its last leg. Two new pickup trucks for the camp properties at - $30,000.

BYM camps have been fortunate to have some great old buses over the last few years. Unfortunately, some of them are a little bit more “old” than they are “great” at this point. At least one of them needs to be replaced. A new (new to us) bus for the BYM camps - $12,000

We are also planning several exciting projects at the camp properties for 2020.

We are looking forward to replacing another cabin at Catoctin in 2020. This will be the 10th of 12 camper cabins to be replaced. The end is in sight! New cabin at Catoctin - $25,000.

The Lodge, kitchen and dining hall roofs will need to be replaced soon. New roof - $5,800.

At camp there is lots of equipment that gets used in the summertime and there’s a whole another set of equipment that gets used in the off-season. We need a place to store it all. Storage shed for Catoctin - $4,200.

No new major projects in 2020.

We look forward to replacing the 6th of the 10 cabins at Shiloh in 2020. The cost of a new cabin at Shiloh is - $17,250.

The art pavilion at Shiloh is a strange old building that is nearing the end of its useful life. We would like to build a new one and locate it so that it can have solar panels on its roof to supply all of the facilities electricity needs year round. This would reduce future energy costs and create many teaching opportunities. A new Art Pavilion with solar panels at Shiloh would cost $41,500.

We are fortunate to have such beautiful homes for our summer camps! We cannot do better than insuring that our young people have a place to gather, learn from one another and grow into the spectacular people they were made to be. Will you consider making a gift to secure the future of these special places?

The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and Opequon Quaker Camp join forces
This summer, Opequon Quaker Camp was visited by naturalists and biologists from the Smithsonian Conservation Biological Institute’s Virginia Working Landscapes Program. They came to work with a workshop group that wanted to learn more about the environment at Opequon. The group toured the camp and learned about the rich diversity of natural life at the camp. Then the workshop looked at the environment at camp, how the people at camp interact with the environment and how we can be good stewards of the places we live. The workshop resulted in a short film that workshop participants created.

Off-season Rentals
Off season rentals at the camp properties continue to provide much needed revenue and offer Local Meetings, Friends Schools and other groups an opportunity to gather and deepen relationships. This year we worked to increase rental use at Shiloh and Opequon. Significant progress was made and there is still quite a bit of potential for increased use and additional revenue.

Can you imagine a better place for your next family reunion, wedding, retreat for work, or time away with your Meeting than the Baltimore Yearly Meeting camp properties? The camps are beautiful places to visit during any season. They are fully equipped and ready for your visit and the rental rates are very reasonable! You can learn more about renting a BYM camp property at

Family Camp Weekends
Family Camp Weekends continue to grow and thrive, offering camp experiences to Friends and members of the camp community of all ages a camp experience. This year Family Camp Weekends continued to serve families and Friends seeking fellowship, some extra time at Camp or an introduction to the camping program. Each spring and fall the Camping Program Committee and the Camp Property Management Committee combine forces to offer opportunities at each of the camps for families and individuals to come and enjoy a weekend together at some of the most beautiful places on earth. Sometimes Family Camps serve as a young person’s first introduction to camp and sometimes they offer those who have loved camp for years an opportunity to come back and enjoy time together.

Date for the 2020 Family Camp Weekends are below:
Spring 2020
Shiloh - April 24– 26, 2020
Catoctin - May 15 – 17, 2020
Opequon – May 29 – 31, 2020

Fall 2020
Shiloh – September 18 – 20, 2020
Opequon - October 9 – 11, 2020
Catoctin – October 23 – 25, 2020

More information is available at

Jesse Miller continues to serve as caretaker at Catoctin Quaker Camp in the offseason where he enjoys giving a warm greeting to visitors when they arrive, being a good steward to the land and hunkering down in the cozy caretaker’s cabin on cold winter nights. We are profoundly grateful for Harry (Scotty) Scott volunteering as Caretaker, bus driver and head cook and bottle washer each of the last several summers.

Mike Reed continues to spend loving hours caring for Shiloh. He loves being in the place that has become so familiar to him over his lifetime and you will always find the camp in good repair and well cared for when you visit.

Committee work
The committee continues to work hard to care for the camps and look towards the future. Meeting attendance is growing and members are finding more and more ways of getting involved. We are grateful to Nominating Committee for recommending such a great slate of new members in August.

Humbly and gratefully submitted,
David Hunter
Camp Property Manager

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Attachment I2019-43: Faith and Practice Committee Report

Faith and Practice Committee recommendation, 11/2/2019

Faith and Practice Committee recommends adding our 2011 vision statement (as revised in 2016, and including its quotation of the Elders at Balby) to Faith and Practice, replacing the current preface.

The introductory statement focuses on where we’ve been and where we are; the vision statement focuses on where we want to go. We can use both for completeness.

Addition of the vision statement was part of the Faith and Practice revision considered in 2013.

The vision statement mentions racial identities and acknowledges “that some of us have experienced oppression and marginalization in ways that others have not.” We believe that inclusion of the vision statement in Faith and Practice will give more prominence to this acknowledgment, a small positive step in our development as an anti-racist faith community.

For ease of reference, the vision statement appears below.

We ask Interim Meeting to forward this recommendation to our next Annual Session.



Approved at Annual Session, 2011; amended at Annual Session, 2016

Dearly beloved friends, these things we do not lay upon you as a rule or form to walk by, but that all, with the measure of light which is pure and holy may be guided; and so in the Light walking and abiding, these things may be fulfilled in the Spirit, not from the letter, for the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life. The [Quaker] Elders at Balby: 1656 (quoting 2 Corinthians 3:6)

Baltimore Yearly Meeting is a worshiping community, gathered in the presence of the Divine, affirming that of God in every person. The Yearly Meeting knits Friends from the Chesapeake to the Appalachians into the larger Religious Society of Friends. As Quakers, we seek to know and follow God’s will for us as a gathered people, to speak the truth that is revealed to us, and to listen to the truth that is revealed to others.

We aspire to listen deeply and inclusively to each other, to actively welcome all, and to attend in joy and faith to the Inward Teacher, whom some call Light, some call Spirit, and some call Christ.

We Friends are of many skin colors, ethnicities, socio-economic backgrounds, gender identities, sexual orientations, abilities, stages of life, and socially constructed racial identities. We are all seeking the Spirit’s presence in our lives, and in our life together. We recognize that some of us have experienced oppression and marginalization in ways that others have not. We aspire to live as members of the blessed community, which is one of liberation, equity, and great diversity across all differences.

We aspire to teach and nourish Quaker ways of worship and service for this and future generations, to uphold and promote Quaker values and to support Friends Meetings in our region.

We seek to expand opportunities for Friends to meet together and know each other in that which is eternal.

We seek to serve others in love, to share our gifts and resources, to reach out to those in need, both friends and strangers, and to witness in the world to our shared experience of the infinite love of God.

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Attachment I2019-44: Program Committee Report

Report to BYM Interim Meeting
From Program Committee
“Pay as Led” financing for Annual Sessions
November 2019

Many Friends are aware that the Program Committee has begun research into the experience of other yearly meetings who have begun using a “pay as led” (PAL) model for funding fees for Annual Sessions. In other yearly meetings, PAL financing has resulted in increased attendance overall, and notably, increased diversity in attendance. A longer report was provided at the June 2019 Interim Meeting (appended below); this brief report is an update.

During Annual Session in August, Program Committee held two interest groups, and had many conversations with Friends about this idea. At our September committee meeting, the committee agreed to establish a sub-committee to formally consider this idea (made up of some members of Program Committee, and several others not on the committee). The sub-committee is meeting for the first time at Interim Meeting. As noted in the June report, we expect the discerning work of the sub-committee to be wide ranging, and we look forward to involving Friends throughout BYM in this exploration.

As of now, Program Committee envisions this as a one year process. By the end of the 2020 Annual Sessions we hope BYM will be clear to either move forward with PAL for future sessions, or, to lay down the idea. In either event, this sub-committee will likely be laid down at the conclusion of the 2020 Annual Sessions.

Members of the sub-committee are: Arthur Boyd (Stony Run), David Etheridge (FMW), Peg Hansen (State College), Erik Hanson (Sandy Spring), Barbarie Hill (Charlottesville), Liz Hofmeister (Bethesda), Andrei Israel (Adelphi), Susan Kaul (Bethesda), Barb Platt (Sandy Spring), Scotty Scott (York), Betsy Tobin (Frederick), and Harry Tunis (Herndon).

Report from June

These YMs have moved to this system:

New England YM              2014
Inter Mountain YM          2018
North Pacific YM               2018
New York YM                     2019

What is Pay as Led: An Experiment with Abundance
Pay as Led (PAL) has both spiritual and practical roots. It starts from a desire to make sessions more financially possible for more people, and thus more inclusive. It springs from a sense that by making sessions accessible financially to more people we can be a more welcoming community. It recognizes that needing to ask for financial assistance is actually a barrier to attending for some people. It acknowledges that while some Friends require assistance to attend, many others could pay more/give more than the rates that are set. It addresses and may simplify the sometimes complicated methods traditionally used for scholarship assistance (monthly meeting assistance, YM assistance, work grants etc.). There is a hope that PAL will lead to increased attendance, thus strengthening the YM.

Abundance is defined as “an amount or supply more than sufficient to meet one's needs.” (Merriam-Webster) Spiritually, PAL invites us to take a leap of faith that our financial needs can be met, or exceeded, when individual Friends prayerfully discern (with guidance) how much they can pay.

NYYM Pay as Led is a way of acknowledging that wealth is not distributed evenly among Quakers. It offers us a method of increasing the number of people who attend Sessions, as people who can afford to pay more can do so, enabling those who need to pay less to do so. We believe Pay as Led will enrich our community by allowing the inclusion of new gifts and perceptions, particularly from those who are financially challenged by geography, employment, or stage of life. This will strengthen NYYM.

NEYM …an opportunity to bear witness to our faith in God’s abundance, hoping to make our annual gathering more financially accessible to all Friends.

NPYM Abundant Financing is where we all contribute according to our ability, until the pot is full and there is an abundance to make everything happen. We seek to encourage all in our Yearly Meeting to attend Annual Session, so all can benefit from and appreciate our many spiritual gifts and Light. Cost of attendance should not be a barrier in our individual decisions to attend.

How does PAL work
Each YM has their own version of PAL. In most cases, being fully informed of the full costs, registrants are given several options for payment. For instance, NPYM indicates four choices, with suggested dollar amounts for the first three:

1. “traditional”: the base cost for room and board + program fees
2. “sustaining”: fee above and beyond the traditional
3. “limited income”: fee below the traditional
4. “pay as led”: to pay more or less than any of the above

Monthly Meetings often provide individuals with support to attend YM sessions. IMYM encouraged their MMs to donate directly to the YM those funds which in the past had supported individuals. All MM funds could then be pooled to support individuals (from any MM) to attend. NEYM previously used an “Equalization Fund” to which individuals and MMs contributed. This was then used for individual scholarships in a burdensome process matching individuals with MM contributions. Their PAL method includes space for (and relies upon) those same donations, but as with IMYM, the funds are pooled to be used by and for the whole.

In all these YMs, Friends were eager to try a new system. A level of comfort was provided because each YM had reserves they could draw on if insufficient funds were received.

NPYM reported that they had always covered costs for kids and JYM staff, and continued to do so.


NEYM    saw increase in numbers, more than covered costs for first time in many years. Income and attendance were not as high the second year, but still higher than in the years prior to PAL. Saw progress in welcoming more Friends who can now afford to attend.

IMYM    had budgeted for $5-10,000 deficit, came in very close to budget ($1,300 deficit); attendance up 10%. 11% increase in attenders; 51% more newcomers; 55% more YAFs.

NPYM   netted a surplus of $7,000.

All three YMs are continuing to use this funding model. Evaluations were extremely positive.

Concerns/Issues/Practical Matters
In all cases there was substantial seasoning of the leading to move to PAL (format of which varied from one YM to another). All mentioned the need for extensive education and communication about the change, both to individuals and to MMs who were being asked to contribute in a different way (to the pool of support funds, not to individuals as in the past). There was careful thought given to the descriptive language and how costs were described.

IMYM    Important to provide opportunities to study philosophy/theology of PAL, as well as brass tacks.

NPYM   …people need to be educated about it and also to approach it from a spirit-based place; it’s not “money in, money out,” it’s part of our faith, our integrity, our living simply, our community; need to approach this from a spirit-led place both as individuals and as monthly meetings.

There were various technical issues involving registration which needed to be ironed out.

Next Steps
In the coming year Program Committee looks forward to a wide exploration of this idea amongst BYM Friends. We will continue to gather information from other YMs. We will hold interest groups at Annual Sessions this August. We will consult with Stewardship and Finance, Development, and other committees. We expect to have a sub-committee made up of Program Committee members as well as other individuals we invite to help us further season this proposal. If you would like to talk with us about this idea, or perhaps serve on the exploratory sub-committee, please contact committee clerk, Barb Platt,

Friends Journal has published 2 articles about PAL, found here:

Re: New England YM, 11/2015
Re: Intermountain YM, 2/2019

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Attachment I2019-45: Friends United Meeting Report

Report to Interim Meeting, Baltimore Yearly Meeting
November 2, 2019
Georgia Fuller, Langley Hill
BYM Representative to Friends United Meeting

From July 12-18, 2020, Kisumu, Kenya will host the combined Triennials of Friends United Meeting (FUM), the United Society of Friends Women International (USFWI) and Quaker Men (QM). The website for registration is scheduled to open in early December. ( news/costs-for-attending-the-2020-triennial).

Opportunities to visit Quaker programs and projects throughout the region as well as opportunities for safaris will be available both before and after the Triennials. Plan to come! Quakers who are not official representatives are warmly invited to share in this international experience of Friendship. Registration, room and board cost at the Triennials for North Americans for a full-time (6-night) package are:

            Adult                                                                $450
            Child (0-5)                                                       no charge
            Child (6-12 sharing with parents)                         $100
            Youth (13-17 sharing with parents)                      $200

Fiscal Management
At the June and October meetings of the General Board we continued to struggle with financial matters. The problems we face have slowly grown over the last two decades. One reason is that it is difficult to maintain a clear picture of all the restricted gifts and endowments that FUM has accumulated since 1902. When FUM was well-funded, this difficulty was easily dismissed. In addition, a number of overseas projects have grown so that upkeep now outpaces current revenues. FUM’s revenues have declined because of demographic and economic changes in the mid-west, home of many of the FUM-only Meetings. In addition, recent dissension within three of the largest Yearly Meetings in FUM has further limited income. The General Board is in unity to bring order to our current and long-term financial picture. We will continue questioning former assumptions, analyzing various situations, and weighing proposed remedies.

Here is one example of our difficulties (as I am able to understand it). In the past, donors to FUM have wanted to put all of their money into projects on the ground and let the budget for overall administration fend for itself. As these projects have succeeded and grown, the necessity for better administration in Indiana and for cross-cultural administration has become imperative if we are to be good stewards of our gifts and potential. No longer is it sufficient to pay an auditor and lawyers in Indiana and rely on volunteers or quasi-volunteers in Palestine, Belize, and Kenya. Differences in labor law, labor expectations, employee credentials, mandated employee benefits, and property use now require us to hire auditors and legal teams in Palestine, Kenya, and Belize. Our testimony to Stewardship requires us to stop trying to administer our work on a shoestring.

I am available to visit Meetings for further discussion. Adrian Bishop and Rosalie Dance are also available to come to your Meeting. They have been working in Belize, a few months at a time, these last two years.

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Attachment I2019-48: Working Group on Racism Report

Written update on racial justice change group work for BYM Fall 2019 Interim Meeting (supplementing the oral report from Adelphi Friends Meeting).


A Friend found a recent adult religious education program at Alexandria Friends Meeting about the thin biological differences between whites and Blacks--sometimes only a couple of genes; the rest of our genetic material is identical--was eye opening and it pushed him to become more active about fighting racism.


At Bethesda Friends Meeting, a group has formed from the people who went to Amanda Kemp's workshops in Frederick earlier this year. We have scheduled an Adult Religious Education program on January 12 tentatively titled Holding Conversations about Race in the Light. Bethesda Meeting for Business still opens with queries on diversity. –Alex Bell


The Charlottesville Friends Meeting is active in the Charlottesville Clergy Collective, a group of clergy and interested lay persons who gather regularly to discuss and address the challenge of race relations in Charlottesville and Albemarle. The Collective mission is to establish, develop, and promote racial unity within the faith leadership of Charlottesville/ Albemarle. Our meeting contact for the Clergy Collective is Elizabeth Shillue who led part of the service “Navigating Troubled Waters” on August 12, 2019.


Floyd Friends Meeting’s last report covered our participation in (and encouragement of other white participation in) the Rainbow Tea at Mt. Zion Christian Church (one of two African American churches in Floyd County) as a positive way to protest a motorcycle ride by Confederate Nation from Bedford to Floyd, as well as the first Martin Luther King Day celebration in Floyd County.

These were the first events that we know of that consciously brought black and white residents together. We believe that the essential element in making this work was the early participation of white people who already had a relationship with the black community; in our case this was with churches. In other areas the NAACP, Black Lives Matter, or some predominantly black organization could also be the entry point to working with the black community as long as the white individuals making the overture are known to have a sincere interest and commonality.

The Rainbow Tea and the first Martin Luther King Day celebration led to two other activities in which members of Floyd Friends participated but were not the organizers. During the spring semester in 2018, Springhouse Community School, a local independent school, arranged for its students to participate in two discussion sessions at Mt. Zion Christian Church, and the general public was invited. The program was called “Courageous Conversations” and invited members of Mt. Zion and other black people in attendance to describe for the students what it is like to be black in Floyd County. In late summer, Mt. Zion, Floyd Presbyterian, and Springhouse jointly sponsored a day of fellowship called “Unity in the Community” which took place on a Saturday at Mt. Zion followed by a youth-led service Sunday morning at Floyd Presbyterian. Floyd Presbyterian has also hosted two other small events for the youth of both congregations.

We take these events as signs that the effort to build relationships across racial lines is taking on a life of its own.

In early summer of 2018 Little River Missionary and Floyd Friends organized a program called “Quit Quitting”. The theme was selected by the pastor of Little River Missionary, who wanted attenders to share stories of perseverance. The program was hosted by that church, and the church hall was packed.

The second Martin Luther King Day celebration was held in January 2019, and the organizers expected a larger attendance so the event was moved from the public library to the auditorium and cafeteria at Floyd High School. We were delighted that this year’s event drew three times the number of the 2018 event, about 150 compared to 50 last year, and again approximately 50-50 black and white attendees.

The Little River Missionary Baptist pastor picked the speaker, and members of the black churches had leadership roles in the event, as emcee, leader of the invocation, and song leader of the Black National Anthem. This made the black community more visible in leadership roles than is the norm in our area’s public spaces. We see this as a positive development.

The member of Floyd Friends who was the initiator of white involvement in the original event (the Rainbow Tea) and who has worked on many of the subsequent events began to feel drained by the effort and asked to be replaced. Another member of Floyd Friends agreed to take her place, and the other individual (a white attender at Little River Missionary) who has also helped organize many of the events agreed to continue in a leadership role now that she knows she will have help. She is the primary link to the black churches in Floyd County.

We want to continue to create the opportunity for members of both races, who rarely spend time in each other’s company outside of the public school, to get to know each other and build the kind of relationships that permit honest discussions about race. We also hope that the Martin Luther King Day celebration will become an annual event co-sponsored by all the stake holders of the previous bi-racial community events.


The Friends Meeting of Washington Change Team for Racial Equity has hosted three events at the Meetinghouse in recent months:

  1. Sheila Gaskins from Baltimore had attended the Change Team trainings led by Dr. Amanda Kemp and brought the Theater Action Group that she helped found to FMW for a session that combined drama and facilitation around anti-racism activities.
  2. FMW hosted an “inside-the-Beltway Change Groups” follow-up session to practice some of the techniques Dr. Kemp taught--holding space for transformation; holding oneself and others to account, and more.
  3. About 25 Friends attended a recent workshop by the Change Team after Meeting for Worship exploring white fragility and white supremacy culture.

CHANGE TEAM REPORT, HERNDON FRIENDS MEETING Lynn Nagle, Marguerite Miller, October 29, 2019

We organized and lead two book discussions on Friday evenings at our Meeting House, June 7 and 14, 2019. We encouraged Friends to “Join our Discussion, Shape our Meeting’s Growth”. Our goal was to initiate conversation, introduce new information, engender new thinking about implicit bias by reading “Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehisi Coates. A total of Seventeen Friends joined the discussions. Each discussion lasted close to two hours. We developed a list of “Actionable Ideas” from notes taken during the discussions. We posted the poster-size notes from the meetings in our Meeting House. “Actionable Ideas” were circulated among committee clerks. Herndon Friends adopted the Declaration by BYM as an “Anti-Racist Faith Community” at meeting for business, October 13. The need for discernment in all steps of committee decision making was adopted. Because the “difficulty of knowing what you do not already know “was noted at adoption of the Declaration, the change team will hold new book discussions in January 2020. Both “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo and “How to Be An Antiracist” by Ibram X. Kendi are offered for discussion. Lynn and Marguerite are in the process of attending committee meetings to perceive how convictions of the Declaration are being discussed, wrestled with and incorporated into decision making.


Homewood Friends continues to seek ways to make our meeting more welcoming to the entire Baltimore community, or which we are a part. We have formed a working group on "Welcome and Inclusion", under the care of Ministry & Counsel, whose mandate is to foster a warm, loving community, with special attention to welcoming people of color, young families, local college students, and people in the LGBTQ community. We have not found unity as a meeting for doing deep, sustained, focused antiracism work as yet, but we remain hopeful."

Jo Brown, Peace & Justice (clerk)


The Change Group at Hopewell/Centre Meeting offers this report:
Several anti-racist initiatives have been delivered, including:

  • A series of Meetings for Learning, focused on the book “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo
  • Three Second Hour/Religion Education talks (on White Supremacy Culture, Racism in Our Backyard, Reporting our Anti-Racist Culture Survey Results/Multicultural Organization Development)
  • Hosting a ½ day Change Group Retreat in July 2019
  • Anti-Racist culture assessment (included modifying an existing survey to ‘fit’ Quaker Meeting context, distributing the survey, analyzing results, and reporting results)

Many Friends have expressed new understandings about racism and unconscious bias that could be said to be catalyzed by the initiatives above. Please see the testimony below (in italics) by one of the Change Group members detailing the transformative changes we continue to experience.

Perhaps most importantly, these initiatives put us in the position to better serve the needs of Black Opequon campers who experienced (as described by them) racist and threatening comments and behaviors by a staff member of a groundskeeping crew at Hopewell, and then by a random man driving on the country road, during a visit to the Hopewell/Centre property in July 2019. After learning of the events, two Change Group members went to the Camp to listen and witness; feedback from an Opequon staff member included this comment: “One of the girls said, ‘I never felt listened to before by White people like that.’” We are grateful to have had a positive impact in that instance, but it pains this writer to think that we were there to help with addressing only ONE of the uncountable experiences of racism and oppression that is in store for these young girls. They have years ahead of them of experiencing White Supremacy Culture and systemic racism. This reality tempers our feelings of ‘success’ in terms of addressing this experience of racism in our own backyard…and at the same time it catalyzes our passion for continuing to dismantle racism and White Supremacy Culture in all forms.

Specific to the transformative power of the initiatives on Friends, one Change Group member offers this powerful testimony:

I think Hopewell Centre meeting has made quantum leaps in viewing racism as systemic rather than individual. Two important tools have led to that insight: White Fragility by Robin D’Angelo and the monograph entitled “White Supremacy Culture” by Tema Okun (dedicated to Kenneth Johnson). The monograph, used as the single source in a meeting-wide RE, in particular listed the traits of perfectionism, sense of urgency, defensiveness, quantity over quality, worship of the written word, paternalism, either/or thinking, power hoarding, fear of open conflict, individualism, progress is bigger – more, objectivity, and right to comfort as the real culprits within institutions that promote systemic racism. Every white with whom I have shared this – well over 30 at this point – has experienced an ‘aha’ moment when reading about it. The fact that these traits were affirmed during an era of white supremacy (the late 19th and early 20th centuries) contributes to their nullifying nature in general society (in the 1960’s we referred to groups which showed these traits as “the establishment”). Seeing how these traits affirm racism has led whites I have discussed this with into candid conversations about their effect and to self-recognition about avoiding them. In a conversation with a Friend in Columbus, OH, he referred to a moment when a co-worker reached for something on his desk, and he playfully shot back, “Get your cotton-picking hands off that.” On hearing himself he was overcome with shame and sudden knowledge of what that image really was referring to. This Friend regretted his choice and has since dropped usage of the term.


Friends from Little Falls Friends Meeting have helped establish the Harford County Coming to the Table (CTTT) program. That program involves a commitment to embrace the vision of transforming the United States into a just and truthful society that acknowledges and seeks to heal from the racial wounds of the past — from slavery and the many forms of racism it spawned. The CTTT Approach to racial healing is grounded in theories and practices of trauma awareness, conflict transformation, restorative justice, human security, and spirituality; involving four inter-related practices: Uncovering History, Making Connections, Working Toward Healing, and Taking Action.


Richmond Friends Meeting is working on antiracism through the work of various committees, activities and programs. Peace & Social Concerns has most of the work under its care. They sponsor monthly fundraiser lunches with informational speakers. This past year we have supported several organizations including: Boys to Men, a group that mentors and supports at-risk middle school boys; Bridging the Gap, which addresses environmental racism by supporting people leaving the prison system; and Grace Inside, which supports incarcerated people. The Meeting also supports Circles RVA, which empowers people moving out of poverty and various organizations in the following categories: Prison, housing, poverty, healthcare, justice, child/family support, community building, environmental racism, and leadership.

We have working groups under the care of the meeting that relate to anti-racism work:

  1. Sanctuary Working Group: coordinates our involvement with the Central Virginia Sanctuary Network. We have many Friends volunteering to provide protection for a woman currently in Sanctuary in Richmond. Others provide rides to immigrants to immigration meetings and court dates, while others greet immigrants at bus stops to supply friendship, food, supplies (toiletries, items of clothing, diapers, etc).
  2. Environmental Working Group: Because environmental decisions often affect people of color, protesting the Atlantic Coast Pipeline’s plan to put a compressor station in a historic African American Community has been an important support to that community.

Individuals with leadings to work against racism bring information and opportunities to participate to the meeting community. Friends’ leadings have focused on mass incarceration, poverty, and immigration/Sanctuary.

This past year a Friend of color related a racist experience she suffered at the hands of a neighbor and by responding police. She asked if Friends would participate in a role play with her to share the experience and help her heal. Friends came to participate and support this Friend in the way she asked. It was a moving, powerful, and healing experience.

RFM has hosted annual meetings for the prison-advocacy group, CURE. This year one of the speakers was a member of our meeting.

We know there is much work yet to be done and Richmond Friends Meeting will be active in the work of anti-racism.


Roanoke Friends have taken some initial steps toward anti-racism work, largely through the initiative of two individuals in the meeting. One Friend, has become an active member of the local NAACP chapter, and has gotten other members of the meeting involved in their work. Our Meeting was a sponsor of a recent event of theirs. Another member of our meeting has signed up for FGC's E-Conference on "Weaving a Wider Meeting" and is excited to share with the meeting what she will learn there. There has been talk of having an ongoing book discussion out of which could emerge a change group.
Tony & Patsy Arnold Martin


Sandy Spring Friends Meeting read and discussed the book, White Fragility.


While there is not a Stony Run committee or working group dedicated to anti-racism, there is substantial interest within the community. We have had several discussion forums on first days and have an ongoing book discussion group.

A few months ago, an ad hoc committee recommended that Meeting restructure to 8 committees and hire an additional staff person to focus on outreach and inclusion. One of the proposed committees is named Inclusion and another is named Outreach. A new ad hoc committee is developing a detailed structural transition plan, so we don't yet know what committees will be established.

Also a few months ago, Coming To The Table (CTTT) established a Baltimore group that meets at Stony Run. For reasons I still do not understand, the CTTT meetings have not been mentioned in our weekly silent announcements or our newsletter. I plan to change that.

If you have any questions about this update, please let me know.

Peace, Blaine Keener

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Attachment I2019-51: Treasurer's Report


BYM Treasurer's Report

for Interim Meeting, 2 November 2019

Friends, I attach two documents: (A) the Statement of Activities or income statement through 30 September, compared to the full year budget and the Third Quarter 2018; and (B) the Balance Sheet for 30 September compared to the same nine months in 2018 and 2017. Both documents are unaudited; the audit process may turn up some misclassifications that shifted either income or expenditures from one account to another. That said, they follow the format required for our audited financials. Thus, the various sections track the 2018 financials as contained in the 2019 Yearbook starting at page 255.

Statement of Activities. Page 1 of the SOA reflects our unrestricted Operating revenues and expenses. I prefer to compare the Third Quarter 2019 results in Column D with the Third Quarter 2018 results in Column B. The "bottom line", actually numbered line 39, shows a $66,000 deficit in 2019 vs. a $59,000 surplus in 2018. Scanning the entries above on Page 1, several inputs contributing to this $125,000 difference caught my attention:

Line 7, Unrestricted Contributions, are up about $2,000, though still less than 25% of the 2019 full-year Budget.
Line 11, Attendance Fees, are down $30,000 this year so far. This reflects reduced enrollment at the Camps, increased attendance at Annual Session, and the Camps' setting aside in a designated fund $22,000 more this year to pay down the principal of the Friendly Loans that funded in part the new Catoctin Bathhouse.
Line 21, Money released from restricted funds to the Operating Fund are down $17,000 vs. 2018. Some part of this is the exhaustion of the grant from the Shoemaker Fund of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, but there were also typical variations in transfers from the Sue Thomas Turner Quaker Education Fund and the Diversity Fund.
Line 26, Total Operating Revenues, are down $10,000 vs. 2018.
Line 29, Administrative Expenses, mostly salaries and benefits, are $70,000 higher, reflecting decisions made by the Yearly Meeting at recent Interim Meetings or Annual Session.
Line 30, Annual Session expenses, are up $19,000 this year, but an increase in attendance and fees led to a nice surplus for this event.
Line 33, Committee expenses, are up $12,000 on a small base, mostly reflecting extra Diversity-and-Inclusion expenses by two committees.
Line 37, Total Operating Expenses, are up $114,000 vs. Third Quarter 2018.
Line 39, Net Operating Activity, reflects a deficit through nine months of -$66,000, a $125,000 decline since last year.

Page 2 of the SOA shows unrestricted Property & Equipment and Restricted Transactions:

Line 44, Net Change in P&E, shows a $38,000 improvement vs. 2018, so
Line 46, Total Unrestricted, which combines Lines 39 and 44, shows a $90,000 decline compared to 2018.
            Restricted Funds
            Starting at Line 48, we show transfers into or out of Donor-Restricted Funds.
Line 49, Restricted Contributions, are down $37,000 vs. Third Quarter 2018.
Lines 52 & 53, Unrealized and Realized Gain on Investments, are up a combined $81,000. Our accrual accounting requires us to reflect the drop in market value of the investments we still hold, but that was offset by the larger gain we made on sales so far this year.
Line 60, All BYM Income Compared to Expenses, shows a $45,000 surplus for 2019 so far, down $64,000 vs. Third Quarter 2018. This is the "bottom line" for the Yearly Meeting as a whole. Roughly the same as for the Third Quarter of 2018 but with a lot of work still to do in the Fourth Quarter.

Balance Sheet. The one-page Comparative Balance Sheet is a snapshot of BYM's assets and liabilities at the last three 30th days of September. I read it as showing a relatively-stable financial base. Among the Asset entries at 30 September, Line 6, Cash, is down $103,000; various receivables in Lines 7‑9 are down; but Line 15, Long-Term Assets, are up $76,000. Line 28, Total Liabilities, are down $49,000.

The Net Assets analysis starting at Line 30 shows what a CPA would think BYM looked like in its 30 September snapshot. Line 33 shows Operating net assets up $68,000; Line 34 shows Fixed Net Assets up $40,000; Line 35 shows Designated (meaning set aside but not donor restricted) Net Assets up $58,000, but Line 36 shows Temporarily-Restricted Net Assets down $155,000 so far this year. This last entry reflects that while 2019 donor-restricted contributions are down, BYM has spent down pre‑2019 contributions in current facility construction, equipment purchases, or program expenses. Thus, Line 42, Total Net Assets, shows a decline of $14,000 or three-tenths of one percent (0.3%), vs. 2018.

I have previously warned Friends that part-year balance sheets do not reliably reflect what the 31 December audit will show. Nonetheless, I read this Balance Sheet as reflecting a stable Baltimore Yearly Meeting but one that needs to close out the year with strong contributions to several funds to meet our budget and move our ministries into 2020.

Respectfully submitted,

Thomas C. Hill, BYM Treasurer
Charlottesville Monthly Meeting

24 October 2019

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Attachment I2019-52: Development Report

INTERIM MEETING: Development Report                                                           2 November 2019

One might expect at the close of the third quarter, that revenue goals would likewise be three-quarters of the way satisfied. However, at BYM, most of our support typically comes in at the end of the year. So now is the time for all of us to make our contributions to fund the operating budget that we, the membership, approved at Annual Session in 2018.

In FY2019, our overall fundraising goal is $632,000. Through the third quarter, we have raised 29 percent of our goal for the General Fund ($160,000). We have done a little better advancing toward our goal for the camping program ($165,000 for general camper aid and the diversity fund), achieving 47 percent of our goal so far. However, currently, we have fallen far short of our goals for camp capital expenses, raising only 11 of our $250,000 goal. We are hoping our October camp appeals will help to close these gaps.

Our fundraising goals reflect the many diverse needs and priorities of our Yearly Meeting, including youth programs, camper aid, growing diversity and inclusion, the STRIDE program, maintaining our camp facilities, and the work of our many committees and working groups that advance Friends’ testimonies, faith, and practice. BYM is our faith in action together. Please contribute now and ask members of your local Meeting to contribute, as well. Together, with your support, we can advance BYM’s vision.

At Annual Session this year, we highlighted the essential, foundational role of local Meeting apportionments in supporting the work of the Yearly Meeting. Our personal contributions help to advance our Spirit-led work together even further. In essence, philanthropic support to the Yearly Meeting ensures that we enlarge upon our investment in youth, extend our spiritual growth, and further our commitment to a cohesive community.

We face the immediate challenge of closing this fiscal year in good stead, and at the same time we are also called to consider our future. Poised on the cusp of celebrating our 350th anniversary in 2020, we have the opportunity to celebrate our rich history by investing in a vital future for Friends. Both present and legacy gifts are within our grasp.

To encourage year-end gifts, the Development Committee is delighted to announce a matching gift challenge. We are grateful to the group of donors who present this challenge match to you. Please watch for more details!

Jan 2019 Thru Sept 2019
Jan 2018 Thru Sept 2018
Jan 2017 Thru Sept 2017
% of Budget
Annual Session
Barry Morley Scholarship
Camp Property Capital
Camp Property Operating
Camping Program
Educational Grant Fund
General Fund
Gifts in Kind
Spiritual Formation
Women's Retreat
Youth Programs

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Attachment I2019-53: Proposal for ad hoc 350th Anniversary Committee

Baltimore Yearly Meeting’s 350th Anniversary

In 2022, Baltimore Yearly Meeting will mark the 350 years since its establishment in the Mid- Atlantic region. At its monthly meeting in September, the Development Committee became aware of this upcoming anniversary year.

In considering what might be done to best celebrate this milestone year, Development agreed that an ad hoc committee be established to plan for how this anniversary year might be marked and to serve as conduit among monthly meetings and the Yearly Meeting. The committee is asking Interim Meeting Clerk Marcy Seitel to endorse an ad hoc committee, whose members are yet to be identified.

Immediate needs:
Names of Friends willing to server on the ad hoc planning committee.

Volunteers to serve in the initial planning of an event in 2022 marking the anniversary.

Names/credentials of a speaker/historian to speak at an event (possibly Annual Session) in 2022.

Idea of what might be done by local meetings to celebrate the 350th anniversary year.
Friends attending the Nov. 2 Fall Interim Meeting also are asked to inform their Monthly Meetings that BYM expects to hold one or more celebratory events in 2022 in conjunction with the 350th anniversary year.

We are asking Month Meetings and BYM committees to refer possible members to this ad hoc committee which would work through the end of 2022. The ad hoc committee would serve largely as a planning, coordinating, and publicizing group.

In conjunction, with the anniversary observance local Friends meetings also are encouraged to consider what their own meeting could do to mark this milestone year. This might include an event to which other Monthly Meetings or other area congregations would be invited.

Although no BYM Monthly Meeting houses date back to the time when BYM was established in 1672, some Meetings care for historic 18th century structures. These local Meetings with historic buildings could be used as focal points for presentations on the roles that Friends played in their local communities or the larger country. The ad hoc committee would be expected to share information with the larger BYM community about any such event being offered by a local meeting.

The ad hoc committee also would work with the Annual Session Program Committee to identify a speaker/historian for Annual Session whose presentation would focus on the role that Quakers played in settling the region that now is covered by BYM. Such an Annual Session presentation would be an opportunity for Friends who do not regularly attend AS or who are not otherwise involved with BYM committees to learn more about BYM.

The ad hoc committee might also plan and publicize a separate public event that BYM would offer sometime in 2022.

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Attachment I2019-54: General Secretary's Report

General Secretary’s Report to Interim Meeting

This report covers the work of the Yearly Meeting carried out by BYM’s dedicated staff during the time period from Annual Session in late July to the present. These are just some of the highlights.

All staff had a hand to play in helping produce a successful Annual Session – from Associate General Secretary Wayne Finegar, who provided the lead staff support for the production, to Bookkeeping Assistant Harriet Dugan who kept business operations moving back at the office. Development Director Mary Braun organized her first Development luncheon, which went wonderfully. Youth Programs Manager Jossie Dowling facilitated the Young Friends gathering. Other staff played critical supporting roles throughout, perhaps the most important of which is meeting and welcoming new Friends. Attendance was up significantly. We had more children and families. And we generated a small surplus.

The week after Annual Session, the BYM office is closed so that staff can rest and recuperate from the intensity of Annual Session. However, not everyone gets to take the week off. Camping Program Manager Jane Megginson was still engaged and on call. BYM camps were still in session for another week, and then there was the week of post-camp. Post-camp is when our five Camp Directors (Jesse Miller (Catoctin), Rosie Eck and Jesse Austel (Teen Adventure), Hope Swank (Shiloh), and Sean Hickey (Opequon)) meet with their staffs (120+ staff total) to evaluate the summer. It is also when all camp staff help clean up camps and close them down for the season.

Other projects in work in August included producing the fall Interchange (Wayne), Supervisory Committee retreat (Ned), organizing and conducting the search for the new STRIDE Coordinator (Ned), a visit to Hopewell Centre Meeting (Ned and Mary), compiling all of the new information on committee assignments, minutes, and reports from Annual Session for publication in the Yearbook (Wayne), completing the bookkeeping from our camps (Comptroller Margo Lehman and Harriet), and getting away for some much needed and well-deserved annual leave.

The pace picks back up in September.

Jane gathers the 200+ camp evaluations from campers, families and staff, conducts annual reviews with the Directors, and reviews the evaluations with the Camping Program Committee. Camp Property Manager David Hunter begins organizing the Family Camp Weekends at Catoctin, Shiloh and Opequon. There are work projects to organize at each of the camps, volunteers to coordinate, and activities for the kids to prepare. More than 150 people participated this year. Jane, Mary, Jesse Miller, and David prepare articles for the annual Firecircle. Administrative Assistant Laura Butler updates the database with new names from the camping program so that the Firecircle will arrive in their mailboxes in good order. Mary prepared three fund appeals to the camping community, focusing especially on raising funds for camp capital projects. We are only a little more than ten percent toward our $250,000 end-of-year goal for camp capital projects so far. Jossie organized and supported a Young Friends Nuts and Bolts committee meeting and a Young Friends conference and accelerated the search for a Junior Young Friends Program Assistant. In her role as part-time, interim STRIDE Coordinator, she liaised with local STRIDE groups to find out how the summer camping season went for local STRIDE campers and operations.

The STRIDE Coordinator search committee and staff interviewed three finalists for the STRIDE Coordinator position. I offered the position to Khalila Lomax to begin October 1.

Harriet is rapidly learning BYM’s bookkeeping system with Margo’s careful guidance and direction. Sorting through receipts and bookkeeping records from the camps is always a daunting task—but especially when it is your first time. They are on track for Margo to shift to half-time at the beginning of next year and for Harriet to be able to carry most of the day-to-day bookkeeping load.

I organized and attended the annual gathering of Quaker superintendents and secretaries at Quaker Ridge Camp, Woodland Park, Colorado. Fourteen Quaker superintendents and general secretaries were able to attend the gathering at this evangelical Friends camp. It was a theologically and organizationally diverse group that included leaders from FCNL, AFSC, Rocky Mountain YM, Northwest YM, Philadelphia YM, Illinois YM, FWCC, Indiana YM, New York YM, and New England YM. It was a very rich and rewarding opportunity to share our spiritual gifts and organizational experience and to hold one another in the Light.

Other September projects included: reviewing BYM’s insurance coverages with BYM’s insurance agent (Wayne and Ned); reviewing and updating the provisions of BYM’s 403(b) employee retirement plan with Lincoln Financial Group (Ned); attending Chesapeake Quarterly Meeting (Mary and Ned); and working with Trustees (Ned), Stewardship and Finance Committee (Margo and Ned), Development Committee (Mary and Ned), and Supervisory Committee (Ned).

Khalila started work October 1. She brings strong personal experience, an academic background in diversity and inclusion studies, plus professional experience. However, she is new to BYM camps, new to Quakers, and new to the many aspects and functions of the STRIDE program. As such, we are doing what we can to help her climb a steep learning curve and create the conditions for her success. Jossie agreed to extend her 0.25 FTE appointment as interim STRIDE Coordinator through 10/31 to assist in the orientation process. Khalila is already jumping in. She has begun working with the local STRIDE groups, visited a Family Camp Weekend at Catoctin, and begun learning about Quakers. She asks lots of great questions. I have asked GDL/STRIDE to begin developing a long-range plan, priorities and goals for the program to help guide her.

October is a big month for many on staff. David had two Family Camp Weekends to host, and, as the weather cools, needs to begin shutting down camps for the winter (with the help of Catoctin Camp Caretaker Jesse Miller and Shiloh Camp Caretaker Mike Reed). He also needs to get year-end repair and replacement projects underway for both vehicles and buildings. Jane is seeking a new director for Opequon, following Sean’s decision not to continue next year. This is also the time of year when camper recruitment efforts need to ramp up. Margo and Harriet need to finish the third quarter financials so that we can better manage our budget into the final quarter and start preparing the next year’s budget (2021). (They did it in record time this year!) Mary needs to accelerate the end-of-year fundraising campaigns to meet our ambitious fundraising goals. This, while visiting local meetings at Bethesda, Langley Hill, and Homewood. And, Wayne needs to get the finished Yearbook in everyone’s hands. (Done!)

This year, BYM staff had a kind of Octoberfest celebration: we took a day from our other work and cleaned out the office and garage and spruced up the grounds. Mary and Khalila even got most of the windows washed! (How long has that been?!) Thanks to Supervisory Committee members Ramona Buck, Peirce Hammond, and Marcy Seitel for joining in the fun and helping out. We got a LOT done. We capped the day’s activity with a cookout and fire circle, where we were joined by a number of Friends and family.

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