Report from Peace and Social Concerns, March 17, 2019

By Brown Letham

Upcoming events:

April               Lenten Saturday vigils at Bath Iron Works

April 27          Vigil at BIW for the christening of a destroyer          

April 28          P&SC give message, and sponsor potluck and discussion at Durham Friends Meeting

May 10           Co-sponsoring a panel discussion of climate change action at the Brunswick  Unitarian Universalist (UU) Church

May 11           New England Yearly Meeting Permanent Board will meet at Durham Meetinghouse

May 11            Game Night to follow

May 17           Peter and Annie Blood concert at Portland UU church

Ingrid Chalufour reports that she will be attending meetings of the Brunswick Interfaith Council. Cush Anthony is involved with the Maine Council of Churches.

Planning of the Friday, May 10 climate change action panel discussion: Panelists will be Sen. Brownie Carson, Rev. Sylvia Stocker, and Ann D. Burt. There might also be a Bowdoin student.  The purpose of the panel and the activity below is not to describe climate change or debate its existence but to talk about actions that people can take on an individual, legislative , and most importantly, organizational level.

Sunday April 28 Worship, potluck and discussion: The P&SC committee is generating queries to prompt thinking and discussion about corporate witness as a Meeting. A short First Day message may spring out of the queries that will be brought into worship.  Finger food potluck followed by discussion.

Peace vigils at BIW: Brown mentioned that the next destroyer christening at BIW was planned tentatively for April, as well as the remaining Saturday Lenten vigils there. He brought a pamphlet about a call for a conversion to peacetime production at BIW and asked if Durham Friends would consider endorsing/sponsoring it.

The Minute reads: “Peace and Social Concerns Committee recommends to Monthly Meeting that Durham Friends be a co-sponsor of the vigil for conversion of Bath Iron Works to peacetime production at the upcoming warship christening.”

Sponsorship would entail permission to print our name in the flyer, display the banner at the vigil, but no financial obligation.

[Editor’s note: the destroyer’s christening has been scheduled for April 27 at BIW.]

Egg Decorating – Ukrainian Style

By Nancy Marstaller

Saturday, April 6, at the Meetinghouse from 2-5 PM

Please RSVP so I can set up appropriately: marstallern@gmail.com or 207 725-4294.

I’ll lead/teach egg decorating using the Ukrainian wax resist method. This process creates beautiful, colorful eggs AND takes patience and fine motor skills, so is for older children and adults. There will be other activities scheduled for younger children during this time.

I have dyes, tools, and directions for my own and traditional Ukrainian designs, or you can do your own thing. Bring a small donation for dyes if you wish.

I will bring extra eggs and candles, but if you can please bring a one or two eggs (raw, not blown out) and a candle in a holder. Take your eggs out of the refrigerator the night before. If eggs are store-bought, rinse with a solution of about 1 TBSP white vinegar in 1pint water, then rinse with clear water and gently pat dry to remove any commercial cleaner residue. If they are newly laid at your place or locally, just wash gently with water, and know that they may not take the dyes evenly until they are at least a few days old.

I hope you’ll join me!

2019 Lenten Vigil for Disarmament at Bath Iron Works

There will be a Lenten Vigil for Disarmament from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 6 and Saturdays March 9-April 20, at the Bath Iron Works Administration Building, 20 Washington Street. Please join us to hold the hope for resurrection, renewal, recovery as we say No! to endless war. For more information, contact Smilin’ Trees Disarmament Farm at 763-4062.

Event Date & Time: March 6, 2019 11:30 am until April 20, 2019 11:30 am

More information? Contact Brown Lethem: richardlethem3@gmail.com

Location: 20 Washington St Bath, Maine. Bath Iron Works Administration Building

Vassalboro Quarterly Meeting, February 2, 2019

All Friends are warmly invited to come together for Vassalboro Quarterly Meeting hosted by Midcoast Friends on February 2. The afternoon program will focus on climate change.

Schedule

8:30 am          Welcome with coffee, tea, and light snacks

9:00 – 10:00   Meeting for Worship

10:00 – 10:15 Break

10:15 – 11:45 Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business and Sharing Joys and Concerns of Our Meetings

12:00 – 1:15  Lunch: Bread and Soups will be provided, others are invited to bring salad or dessert to share.

1:30 – 3:30     ProgramHope made visible over climate change

1:30 pm: Jason Wentworth’s comic routine, Climate change is no laughing matter…or is it?”

2:00 pm: Anne D. Burt’s short solutions film, “Maine Roadtrip to the Future” released in January to all members of the Maine Legislature. (Find out more here: http://www.downtoearthstories.org/ )

2:30 pm: Guy Marsden: Tips and tricks for improving energy efficiency of your meeting and home.

3:00 pm: Q&A and sharing of intentions.

3:30  pm: Join hands in gratitude for the day and adjourn to help clean up.

Hospitality is available at the Friends House in Bath. Contact Diane Dicranian at: dianedicranian@gmail.com Also, Guy Marsden has a guest room available. It’s listed on airbnb, but free to Friends. Call Guy at 207 443 8942 or guy@arttec.netRenewable Rural Retreat

Contact Guy Marsden: 207 443 -8942, clerk@midcoastfriendsmeeting.org

SAVE THE DATE – All-Maine Gathering, for Quakers from FQM, VQM (and beyond) To be hosted by Falmouth QM at Friends School of Portland on May 4, 2019 Falmouth Quarterly Meeting has begun planning for the All Maine Gathering this year on May 4. There will be time for Friends from around the State to meet together for worship, fellowship, and for a program focused on Native Maine Tribes. There will also be time for FQM and VQM to meet separately for business. Ann Dodd (Portland)-Collins and Christine Holden (Brunswick) are heading up the planning team. More information will follow. All are welcome!

Ongoing legacy of Native American Boarding Schools Friends may be interested in this opportunity to learn from Native American researchers about the history and ongoing impacts of the Indian boarding schools, through monthly webinar conversations. This website has info about these and other important resources: boardingschoolhealing.org  (Shared by Paula Palmer, Boulder Friends Meeting. Paula has done extensive research into Quaker Indian Boarding Schools.)
~Janet Hough, clerk VQM

Men’s Meeting, January 14, 7pm

By Scott Barksdale

There will be a gathering of men on Monday, January 14 at 7 p.m.  Location: 64 Birch Point Road, Freeport (Scott’s house).  Topic: justice.  We’ll have a reading or two beforehand that we’ll be discussing, so please email Scott (stbark7@gmail.com) to get a copy of it.

If there are slippery conditions, we’ll be meeting at the Meetinghouse instead (we’ll decide by meeting the day before).  Thanks!

 

Seeds of Peace, January 4, 7pm, Curtis Library (Brunswick)

Seeds of Peace Leadership Development

Friday, January 4th, 7:00pm – 9:00pm, Morrell Meeting Room, Curtis Memorial Library

The Durham Friends Meeting Peace and Social Concerns Committee will host an event about the Seeds of Peace Youth Leadership program. We expect to show a couple of short films from their website as well as inviting several alumni of the program to talk about their experiences with the Maine camp. We may also have a speaker from Palestine to talk about the efforts for peacebuilding there. We will have refreshments and a free-will donation can to support the Seeds of Peace camp.

ABOUT SEEDS OF PEACE:  “We inspire and cultivate new generations of global leaders in communities divided by conflict.  Our network now encompasses 7,021 alumni throughout the Middle East, South Asia, Europe, and the United States who are uniquely positioned to lead change.”

Discernment Around AFSC Program Focus

Peace & Social Concerns Requests Durham’s Discernment,

Hosting a Meeting January 6

By Bob Eaton

Monthly Meeting for Business has endorsed the Peace and Social Concerns Committee request for a special meeting to take place after regular meeting for worship on Sunday, January 6.  The meeting will be convened by Lesley Manning and Bob Eaton for a focused response to the American Friends Service Committee request for Friends’ discernment on what programs the AFSC should focus on in the next ten-year strategic plan for the organization.   Bob will prepare brief (but insightful!) background materials to be available before the meeting.

Here is a brief description of current AFSC Work that may be a useful reference.

Family Game Night, January 12, 3 p.m.

By Tess Hartford

We will have our next Family Game “Night” on Saturday, January 12 beginning at 3 p.m. Please join us. Durham Friends of all ages have enjoyed these nights.

As part of Durham Meeting’s efforts at outreach, we encourage all Durham Friends to invite neighbors and friends to our special family events as well as our regular weekly Meetings.

Diane Dicranian to speak on “Walls: Why We Build Them,” December 30

On Sunday, December 30, Diane Dicranian (Midcoast Friends Meeting) will bring the message.  She’ll speak about “Walls: Why we build them; what they are for.”

Diane Dicranian recently spent time at the militarized border between San Diego, California and Tijuana, Mexico in a protest organized by the American Friends Service Committee called “Love Knows No Borders – A moral call for migrant justice.” Thirty-two people were arrested in that protest.

There will be a pot-luck lunch directly following worship and a program in which Diane will share with us what she experienced and learned in her time at the U.S.-Mexico border.

She will talk about U.S. involvement in Central and South America over past decades and how that has created some of the desperate conditions that lead families to flee their homes and seek refuge in the U.S. She will also talk about the caravan of refugees that has been making its way through Mexico towards the U.S. border. Should they be greeted as we have been taught – to reach out and love the stranger, opening our doors and feeding these people?  Or should they be met (as they are) with teargas and machine guns? She’ll also challenge us to consider next steps in bringing this conversation to action.

See Kerry Kennedy (AFSC) on “Standing with Migrants,” Brunswick Times Record, December 28, 2018

December 2018 Family Events at Durham Meeting

By Wendy Schlotterbeck, Youth Minister

We will have our Annual Wreath Making Party on Sunday, December 2 after a potluck following worship. Materials will be provided, but live greens of any kind are welcomed!

On Saturday, December 15 we will gather for a Christmas Worship and Turkey Dinner. We have found that often the preparation is as rich as the actual event. So, come at 4:00 to help prepare the meal and set up. Worship, a sharing of poems, songs or personal stories, will be at 5:30 with dinner to follow.

As part of Durham Meeting’s efforts at outreach, we encourage all Durham Friends to invite neighbors and friends to our special family events as well as our regular weekly Meetings.

Kakamega Orphans Care Centre Pot Luck Dinner, November 5, 2018, 6:00p.m.

You are invited to a pot-luck dinner to join Pastor Ida, Administrator of the Kakamega Orphans Care Centre on Monday, November 5 at 6:00 p.m. at the meetinghouse.

After the meal, Ida will bring us up to date with changes happening with the Care Centre programs.  He will share personal reflections on his own work as it, and his thinking and understanding has evolved.  This will be more of a conversation with old friends, rather than a slide presentation.

Bring a favorite dish to share.  Questions: Sukie Rice, 318-8531.

Meeting Wide Discussion, October 28, Noon to 1:30 pm

After Meeting on Sunday, October 28, 2018, we will have a Meeting-Wide Discussion on Strengthening Durham Friends Meeting.

For nearly a year, Durham Friends Meeting has had an Ad Hoc Committee working on developing ideas for strengthening the Meeting.

After input and discussion from many Meeting members, we came to focus on three areas where we might try to strengthen ourselves: pastoral care, outreach and coordination.

In May, after the Ad Hoc Committee reported, Business Meeting asked that various Meeting committees discuss their current efforts and effectiveness and let the Ad Hoc Committee know how they are doing. More specifically, Ministry and Counsel was asked to consider pastoral care, Christian Education, Peace and Social Concerns, and the Newsletter Committee were asked to consider outreach, and the Clerks Group was asked to consider coordination.

On October 28 the Ad Hoc Committee will report what we have learned and invite Meeting members to consider how we want to proceed.

Questions? Contact Doug Bennett (dougb@earlham.edu or 207-721-9575).

“Dawnland,” October 4 at Curtis Memorial Library

By Linda Muller

Peace and Social Concerns Committee wants all of Meeting to know that “Dawnland” a new film from an excellent group – Maine Wabanaki-REACH – will be shown at Curtis Memorial Library in Brunswick on Thursday, October 4 in the Merrill Meeting Room from 6 to 8 p.m. for free though donations will be accepted.

The film was years in the making and shares the findings and recommendations of the Maine Wabanaki Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which was set up by Maine’s Legislature and funded for 2 years. The archives of this are stored at Bowdoin Library. Most of the findings focus on kidnapping and abusive treatment of native Maine children and the long-term consequences of that treatment.

The film also teaches history – 1300 to the current day – with “view from boat” and “view from the shore” perspectives. This proves to be very powerful and educational, refreshing change from the often misleading “history written by the winners” often taught in schools.

P&SC Committee highly recommends that all of us in Meeting take advantage of this free showing, leave a donation and enjoy the insightful discussion group directly after the film.

 

Adult Sunday School, Fall 2018

By Martha Sheldon

Adult Sunday School will be reading “In Fear and Trembling Be Bold in God’s Service” from The Freedom & Justice Crier, a periodic newsletter from the Committee on Racial, Social & Economic Justice of New England Yearly Meeting. It was published by NEYM this past summer.

All are welcome to join us at 9:30 each Sunday morning.

Woman’s Society Eat-Out, September 17, 6pm

The Annual Eat-Out of Durham’s Woman’s Society is this coming Monday, September 17 at 6 p.m.  We will be meeting at the Thai’s Cuisine Restaurant at 6 1st Street, Topsham.  It is located behind the Topsham Town Office; 1st Street turns off Monument Drive, near the Route 201/Main Street end.

The restaurant’s website is https://thaismaine.com/ and they can be reached by phone at 721-0103.

This is a great opportunity to come out for a nice meal, talk with people from Meeting, and find out more about Woman’s Society.  The restaurant sets no minimum on orders, so you could have a full meal, something less, or just sit and chat.

Please join us, all are invited.    

Vassalboro Quarter Fall Gathering Weekend

Vassalboro Quarter Fall Gathering Weekend

Friday through Sunday, September 7-9, 2018

 The Vassalboro Quarter Fall Gathering weekend at Friends Camp will be a wonderful opportunity to have time with Friends from around Maine to share our actions, what inspires us and where we are stuck!

60 minute breakouts: Here are a few samples:

  • The Power of Enough: a continuation of discussion from Living Faith Spring retreat
  • Poor People’s Campaign/White privilege discussion, [check out Rev. Dr. William J Barber’s Address to the 2018 Friends General Conference (FGC) Gathering – America Must Have a Moral Revival: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7u6BTyLqy8 ]
  • Global Day of Action for Climate Justice: review of a workshop offered at NEYM Sessions. Learn to use a Carbon Calculator to gauge your individual or Monthly Meeting carbon footprint (bring your computer so you can do it at Fall Gathering!)
  • Universal Health Care and Active Hope
  • Art as a form of spiritual expression

There will be 60 minute gatherings Friday evening and Saturday morning, with more spontaneous sharing/break outs welcomed for Saturday morning and afternoon. The preliminary schedule is below. If anyone would like to offer a 45-60 min workshop, they can contact the Fall Gathering committee below or sign up on Friday night.

Pre-registration by August 31st is appreciated to allow for meal planning and any child programing that is needed. To sign up, please go to this link: (copy and paste it in your search).

Pre-register at: https://goo.gl/forms/ec5KQVfXsTrLpoMe2

Spread the word in your meeting’s newsletters or correspondence by forwarding this or copying. Be sure everyone has the link.

Walk-ins are always welcome! Register when you arrive or at the next meal. Come for one day or stay for the full weekend.

If someone doesn’t have internet access to pre-register, or is having any problems with pre-registering, they can call the registrar, Stephen Assante, at 207-649-0619 and leave a message or email at sassante314@gmail.com.

Youth of all ages are welcome and there is no fee for children or for parents/guardians bringing children. The VQM subsidizes all children under 18 yo.

Young Adult Friends are also meeting with us for the second year.
Their programing and Vassalboro Quarterly Friends program will be overlapping as-led! We will be gathering together Friday starting with supper. YAF should use the same link to pre-register.

Housing: There are cabins with bunkbeds, tenting areas and a few handicapped accessible cabins with a bathroom. The latter are limited and usually reserved for those who indicate at pre-registration that they need one. If you would like hospitality off campus with a local Friend, please contact Joann Austin: austinlaw@fairpoint.net

Meals: All vegetarian: please let us know at pre registration about any special dietary needs.

Cost of the weekend:

Due to the generous support of Friends in the Vassalboro Quarter, this gathering is pay-as-led for participants – and children are free, as are. Please do not let cost get in the way your attendance but feel free to donate as led and able. Payment is due at registration when you arrive at Friends Camp. 0-17years: free.18-35 years: $0-$50. All parents and adults bringing children: $0-$50. All adults over 35: $0 – $100. Please indicate your total amount that you are able to contribute.

Common questions about costs: Friends Camp charges VQM based on the number of adults and children who eat each meal, stay over each night (regardless of whether they camp, use a cabin or trailer), or attend for just part of a day. Those who attend may make a contribution based on what their charges would be or what they think they can afford. This is called Pay-as-Led.

Here are costs to VQM: Meals are around $10, day rate is $7, and day with an overnight is $14. So one adult staying for the entire weekend including overnight would be 6 meals and 2 overnights or $88.

Hope to see you there!

Vassalboro Quarter Fall Gathering Weekend &
YAF Retreat

Link to the Pre-registration: https://goo.gl/forms/ec5KQVfXsTrLpoMe2

Draft Schedule

Friday (PM)

4:30–6        (VQM) Ministry & Counsel Meeting

5:00–7        Registration

6:00–8        Dinner

7:00–8        VQM and YAF: Gathering of Friends in Gratitude

8:00-9         Separate VQM and *YAF activity

 

Saturday (AM)

7:30–8:30    Breakfast—Grace at end of meal

8–8:30        Registration

8:45–9:30    *Program—Introduction—Centering Worship Sharing

9:45–10:45 *Small Group Session

11–12         *Small Group Session

12–1:15       Lunch

Saturday (PM)

12–12:30     Registration

1:30–3        VQM *Business Meeting

3:15–4:30    *Small Group Session

4:30–6        Free Time

6:15–7:15    Dinner

7:30–8:30    *VQM and YAFs Sharing with music, singing and dance.
YAFs and others may plan to continue longer.

 

Sunday (AM)

7:30–8:30    Breakfast

8:45–9:45    *Worship Sharing/Reflections on our weekend

10–11         *Meeting for Worship

12–12:45     Lunch

12:45 PM    Camp Clean-up and goodbyes!

*held in the Aviary at the top of the hill or in multiple other locations

Ramallah Friends School Potluck & Presentation, June 25

On Monday, June 25, Durham Friends Meeting will be hosting a potluck and presentation about the Ramallah Friends Schools in Ramallah, Palestine.  We will be hosting Adrian Moody, the new head of Ramallah Friends Schools, and Eden Grace, the Global Ministries Director of Friends United Meeting.

Potluck will begin at 6 pm, program at 7 pm.

Adrian Moody, Director, Ramallah Friends School.  Adrian Moody comes to the Friends School with an extensive background in international education, having served in school leadership positions in Australia, New Zealand, Tanzania, Thailand, Kazakhstan, Vietnam and India. His depth of experience with the International Baccalaureate and his masters-level specialization in teacher assessment will allow him to shepherd the implementation of the RFS Board’s new strategic plan which focuses on strengthening the academic programs. His professional expertise in the management of large multi-campus schools will facilitate a thorough analysis of long-term financial and physical needs and the development of strategies for sustainability.

A committed Roman Catholic with a master’s degree in theology, Adrian feels deeply called to the particular witness of a Friends School under occupation. As he shared with the school when he visited: “I am drawn to RFS for so many reasons. It has a long history of shared communities. It has a strong academic program and is able to offer its students wonderful opportunities. But RFS is not just a school – it is much more than that. I look at RFS and I see that the grace of God is working within your community. I see God carrying us all on a journey, together through moments of success and challenges which strengthens our lives and our bonds with each other and God.”

Adrian, an Australian national, and his wife Gillian, a New Zealander, will took up residence in Ramallah at the beginning of August while their teenage daughter continues in boarding school in New Zealand.

Eden Grace, Global Ministries Director.  Eden Grace has served as FUM’s Global Ministries Director since July, 2013. From 2004 through mid-2013, Eden served as the Field Officer for FUM in the Africa Ministries Office in Kisumu, Kenya. Eden is responsible for shepherding FUM’s programmatic work in 11 countries on 4 continents. She has a passion for the holistic and transformational witness of Friends that arises from deep worship in the gathered body. She thinks of her role specifically, and that of FUM in general, as a ligament in the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:15-16 and Colossians 2:19).

Eden holds a Masters of Divinity degree from Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a Certificate in International Mission and Ecumenism from the Boston Theological Institute. Her undergraduate degree is from Brown University in Providence Rhode Island, where she studied drama literature and semiotics.  In addition to Eden’s extensive involvement with Friends’ organizations, she has also served in leadership roles in the World Council of Churches and the Massachusetts Council of Churches, and carries a deep concern for Christian unity.

Eden Grace is a member of Beacon Hill Friends Meeting (Boston, Massachusetts, USA) in New England Yearly Meeting. She and her husband Jim have two young adult sons, are the host family for a Kenyan college student, and have taken in a Richmond teen. Eden loves to travel, sing, read fiction and make quilts using African fabrics.

Durham Friends Meeting Campout, June 16-17

You are invited!

Please come to part or all of the 24 hours (or more) we will be “camping” on the ocean   at Betsy Muench’s family paradise- 710 Bay Point Road in Georgetown

Noon Saturday,  June 16 to Afternoonish Sunday, June 17

What to bring?

1. Bathing suit, towel and sunscreen

2. Change of clothes, jacket for evenings and bug spray

3. Sleeping bag, optional-tent (there are several beds and floor spaces inside)

4. Board games/ outdoor games

5. Friends! We welcome your friends.

6. Water- Please bring a jug of drinking water- they are having a few issues with their plumbing.  Some water will be available through a hose. FYI- we may be using Wendy’s lovely sawdust composting toilets

  1. Food:

Saturday lunch- bring you own

Saturday supper- something to grill and a dish to share

Saturday campfire time- Snacks, drinks to share

Sunday breakfast- Wendy will bring eggs and pancake mix, we need fruit, milk, and other breakfast yummies as desired

Sunday lunch- POTLUCK bring something to share (Wendy will bring ice cream and cones)