North Pacific Yearly Meeting

of the Religious Society of Friends (QUAKERS)

Coordinating Committee Minutes of October 26, 2019

North Pacific Yearly Meeting Coordinating Committee (CC)

Minutes of October 26, 2019

Multnomah Friends Meeting House, Portland, Oregon

Present:
Agate Passage-Leni Skarin rep; Bridge City-Rocky Garrison, CC Clerk; Janet Jump, Finance and Legal; Jane Snyder, Associate CC Clerk; Eastside-Paul Christiansen, Junior Friends; Debbie Townsend, Faith & Practice & Youth Committee; Eugene-David Zeiss, NPYM Clerk; John Etter, NPYM AS General Arrangements Clerk Emeritus; Eugene-Dina Wills rep; Multnomah-Lyn Gordon, Site Committee Clerk; Joe Snyder, Outreach and Visitation; Olympia-Nancy Erving, Finance & Legal Committee; Port Townsend-Caroline Wildflower rep; Pullman-Moscow-Mim Coleman, NPYM Youth Program Coordinator; John Gotts, Webkeeper & Registrar; Johanna MacNee, Site Committee; Salem-Martha Smith rep; South Mountain-Sylvie Weaver; rep; Tacoma-Kathryn Willard rep; University-Rick Ells IT; Lucy Fullerton, Ministry & Counsel Clerk; Barb Luetke, CC Recording Secretary; Nora Percival, NPYM Secretary; Donal Sullivan, NPYM Treasurer.

Not Represented:

Bellingham; Billings; Boise Valley; Corvallis; Lopez; Missoula; Sandpoint; South Seattle; Whidbey Island; Wyoming

 

Housekeeping announcements, Annis Bleeke.

Worship.

Introductions.

Opening Remarks (Rocky Garrison, Clerk).

    1. To decrease paper waste, it will be the practice of the Clerk to distribute most documents electronically as well as post them on the website. If this is a difficulty, please inform the Clerk.

    2. The charge for the Coordinating Committee was read from Faith and Practice. It was written thoughtfully and is valuable to review. We are an information sharing group not a decision-making body. We take information back to the groups we represent. Friends are encouraged to read this and other descriptions (e.g., Good Order of Friends – p. 128; Faith & Practice).

 

Junior Friends (Paul Christiansen). Upcoming events are being planned but are not yet scheduled. The group is going to New Orleans, partnered with Camp Restore, prior to Annual Session (AS). Fundraising will occur in local meetings/worship groups and electrotonically. A Winter Gathering, possibly in February, is planned and the JF typically go camping after AS. Junior Friends seek additional advisors and those willing to serve as Friendly Adult Presence for the three events. A Friend suggested that meeting reps ask adults in their meetings/worship groups to identify themselves to Junior Friends if they are willing to serve. Junior Friends were asked to be mindful of JF who will need to travel long distances to the events. The contact information for Adam Billen and Ezra Ford is:
Adam Billen:
adambillen@gmail.com (co-clerk through summer 2020)

Ezra Ford: ezra.ford44@gmail.cm (co-clerk through summer 2021)

 

 

NPYM Secretary.(Nora Percival). The job description was reviewed. An appeal was made that correct, current information, be sent to the Secretary in a timely manner in response to the questions she distributes. There are several important reasons other than financial ones, for the gathering of this information. The Secretary will be in Africa for the next month.

 

Executive Committee. (Clerk) Highlights from the meeting October 5, 2019 were provided. These were attached to the recent email to the CC. The Summary Report from 2019.03 meeting and the Summary Report from 2019.07 meeting are available for those interested on the website.

 

AS Site Committee Report (Lyn Gordon). The Committee has completed much good work in consideration of Western Oregon University (WOU) in Monmouth, OR (30 min. SW of Salem) as the 2020 location. A site visit to WOU was conducted on October 2, 2019 and the campus evaluated using a key selection criteria form. It was rated favorably for almost all items on the form. Lyn noted that dorm rooms are not air-conditioned, and the dorms don’t have elevators. Floor plans to show the number of rooms near bathrooms were detailed for the CC. It is believed that the campus would be inclusive of racial diversity and sexual orientation although it does have a discriminatory history. There is no guarantee that some Friends would not feel uncomfortable on campus and in the small town of Monmouth. However, Friends General Conference (FGC) has recently visited it and found it workable for a future Gathering. Lyn Gordon delineated some items that might affect cost. The Site Committee recommends that WOU be used for the 2020 AS. Dates are July 22– 26. The CC accepted the recommendation with appreciation and gratitude. The University of Montana in Missoula is already confirmed for the 2021 and 2020 ASs. Friends are encouraged to submit recommendations and concerns for a permanent AS site to the Site Committee.

 

Finance and Legal (Janet Jump)

  1. Cost of the visitor exchange to the AS in the region. The committee recommended that NPYM cover the costs of sending a visitor to NWYM and SCYM every year and offer financial assistance as requested by visitors from the other meetings (Requests should be made through the PMYM Clerk). Discussion occurred and the recommendation was accepted.

  1. Creation of a Friends of Color Account was recommended with a beginning balance from NPYM of $15,000. Oher donations to this fund would be gladly accepted. The fund would allow NPYM Friends of Color opportunities to attend conferences and/or retreats. F&L further recommended the Executive Committee (EC) appoint an Ad hoc committee to set up the parameters of the fund including policies and procedures and outreach about its existence. This committee might have a minimum of two Friends of color and one person from F&L. The committee would report back to EC for approval and establishment of the Ad hoc committee.

  2. Investment decisions. The PAX account has been closed and an account with Friends Fiduciary (FF) will be opened soon. FF is experienced with the manner of Friends. The initial investment with FF will be $100,000. Signers on the FF investment account will be the Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer and CC clerk. A checking and savings account at On Point Credit union will continue and the signers on these accounts will remain the same: Donal Sullivan and Janet Jump.

  3.  

  4. In addition, it was announced that Corinne Whitemore will serve as Assistant Treasurer, as approved by Nominating Committee. Rocky Garrison asked Friends to send comments or concerns regarding any of the items in the F & L report to the EC. The members of the this committee are Rocky Garrison, David Zeiss, Jane Snyder, Donal Sullivan, and Lucy Fullerton. Input can also be given through the NPYM website. Recommendations will season until the March CC meeting.

 

Previous CC Minutes. Approved.

 

Reports from Monthly Meetings/Worship Groups. Reports were given from the MM and groups present. Themes was low attendance in some meetings, the challenges of disruptive members, and much good peace and social justice work—in particular around the Racism Minute passed this past summer at AS.

Pullman-Moscow, a meeting that is “small in numbers and big in Spirt,” is in in charge of the fall, 2020 Quarterly Meeting.

Tacoma Friends Meeting asked, “How do we invite those new to Friends to serve on committees without discouraging them?”

The sad passing in the Salem Meeting of Rose Lewis, a champion for racial equality (e.g., started Salem Speaks Up).

Missoula Friends are exploring how to make Meeting more inviting to newcomers and individual members have outreach to the immigrant community.

UFM has had a spike in attendance at MFWWATB. They have been doing a lot of internal work that have resulted in clear discussions. They are now using a small portable sound system, and it greatly helps people with hearing loss to feel they are included. UFM is finding that Quaker tools are useful to discussions about Climate Crises in the greater society. A reading group has been formed around racism. A sign that quoted William Penn, who owned slaves, has being discussed. A Friend who was recently read out of Meeting.

Eugene has been dealing with several difficult topics and requested to be held in the Light.

Port Townsend has found that having a Meeting House has resulted in a growing membership. They have taken a Social Camp for Youth under their care and are working with a Native Americans Action Group (including a walking/biking/driving trail of historical Jamestown Tribe activities). There has been a FCNL efficacy group training.

Agate Passage asked for parameters for advocacy work (e.g., Quaker Voice) with regard to 503.c.3 status and for a round robin-like email with advice for dealing with difficult members. Because of assessments, they call everyone an “attender.”

 

The Clerk summarize three overriding issues from the MM and WG reports.

  1. Activities that might cause Meetings to lose 503.c.3 status? The Clerk asked Finance and Legal to research this issue and report back to the CC.

  1. Difficult members. Some members need care (e.g., a person who was disruptive at YM may have prevented AS from being able to return to a campus for the second year; members of MM/WG, etc.).

A Friend asked if Multnomah Meeting distributed a pamphlet on this topic?

  1. Challenges, barriers, and implications of Attenders become Members. Discussion occurred. Friends were reminded by the Secretary that MM/WG make their own decisions about who is in their count and the YM budget is based on this number. The number also influences how many people we send to national Quaker groups (e.g., AFSC, FGC, etc.). Reluctance to become members is a worthwhile discussion to have with long time attenders. Information on the topic was read from Faith and Practice. The Clerk suggested the decision making process be discussed in MM/WGs and it will be discussed again in the future. Lucy Fullerton will send out some queries that meetings/worship sharing groups can use.

Ministry and Counsel (Lucy Fullerton). Concerns can be sent to ministryandcounsel@npym.org. The next consultation call will be on Sunday Nov. 24; 6:30 PM on the topic of Meetings Dealing with Sex Offenders. The YM conference call system is used and is explained on the YM website. Announcement of topics are offered twice a year and are advertised through M & C MM/WG contacts.. A future topic could be dealing with difficult people. Past topics are available on the YM website. If people are unsure as to whether their Meetings M & O person gets these announcements, use the email to send current contact information.

 

Outreach and Visitation Committee (Joe Snyder).

  1. Paul Christian was the recent “Getting Us Together” Traveling Friend who visited the Tri Cities area and Portland meetings. Another Friend is now needed to travel. The area to be visited is south Oregon. A call was dissemination to MM/WGs. There is also a need for an elder to accompany the traveling Friend. Committee members are also needed, especially from Montana.

  1. The committee can also visit MM/WGs to discuss outreach. A resource is a FB group called Quaker Communications and Outreach.

  2. All the information about the O & V Committee is on the website and are easy to find.\

 

Faith and Practice (Debbie Townsend). An overview of the work was given. Members of the committee are listening for issues that are alive in MM/WGs. An audio book of Faith and Practice as an e-book is being discussed with Mary Klein (Western Friend). An agreement would be needed. The Faith and Practice Committee is asking for permission to discuss this option. The PDF version on the NPYM website would remain. The technology was explained for making a version for people with visually-impairment. The proposal is for NPYM is to enter into an agreement with Western Friend to make an e-book of Faith and Practice. The agreement would be reviewed by the Finance and Legal Committee and the EC.

 

Nominating Committee (Ted Etter). For the first time, the committee has a full slate of six members. Nominations were approved for Helen Park to the Ministry and Council and Paul Christianson as Junior Friends Advisor. There are still several unfilled positions Friends were asked to think of possible candidates. The current grid is available on the web site. A position of Audio-Visual Person to serve at AS was proposed. The committee can write the job description. In addition, some job descriptions need minor changes when there is a paid AS event planner and registrar. It is recommended that there be four Junior Friend Advisors. Suggestions were made to recruit more Junior Friends and JF Advisors.

 

Personnel Committee (Jane Snyder). Descriptions have been written for the two paid AS positions and were sent out to MM/WG contacts. Interviews are planned for the near future. After CC members raised concerns about not receiving the job descriptions it was decided they would be resent. For each paid position there will be an evaluation cycle. The time of these evaluations were discussed, and it was decided they should be after AS.

 

Youth Committee (Debbie Townsend). They have a full committee. A task and timeline calendar is being used. Among other tasks, the committee will be publicizing the Youth Opportunity Fund. Members are open to hearing ideas as to how they can better serve MM/WGs. The committee description and that of Youth Program Coordinator have been cleaned up.

 

Treasurer’s Report (Donal Sullivan). A financial report was sent out to all members. The report was reviewed. The YM is in solid financial shape. As mentioned above some funds are being turned over to Friends Fiduciary and they will track them. Others will be tracked by the Treasurer. A Friend asked about money raised by Junior Friends and how/where it will be deposited. Donal Sullivan will talk to Rich Ellis and explain these procedures.

 

NPYM Clerk. (David Zeiss). Friends were reminded that the work faced in the YM is in the way of the Spirit. David asked Friends to remind him when he strays from the Light. David will sign Nora Percival’s traveling minute. It is planned that the 2020 AS Friend in Residence will be Kenya Casanova (Cuba) if she can obtain a visa. It was suggested that Pablo Sanchez could translate the required letter of invitation for the visa. An alternative speaker has been contacted should Kenya Casanova be unable to come to the U.S. Compensate for Kenya Casanova for lost earnings, Internet usage, and travel was recommended. A 2021 Friend-in-Residence has also been arranged. A job description has been written for the Friend-in-Residence so that role expectations are clearly communicated. Rocky Garrison offered the phrase, “the courage to be imperfect” and suggested we accept imperfection in ourselves and others.

 

Announcements:

        1. Annis Bleeke was thanked for her dedication to wonderful hospitality.

        2. Nora Percival is led to return to Kenya for the third time to teach and asked Friends to hold her in the Light. Checks to support her ministry can be sent to UFM with a note to “Kenya Ministry.”

        3. Updates to the website should be sent to the webkeeper.

        4. The next CC meeting will be on March 21 at Olympia and will be posted on the website.

Meeting closed with a period of grateful worship. It ended at 3:30.

 

Respectfully submitted, Barb Luetke, CC Recording Clerk