Durham Monthly Meeting Minutes, March 18, 2018

Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends convened in worship for the conduct of business on Sunday, March 18, 2018 with 18 people present. Clerk, Sukie Rice, opened the meeting with a reading from the 1985 New England Faith and Practice section on The Meeting for Business.

  1. The February minutes were approved.
  2. Martha Hinshaw Sheldon sent a report from Ministry and Counsel.
  3. Speakers are scheduled until mid-April. If you are interested in bringing a message, contact Kristna Evans or James Douglas.
  4. They continued to discuss specific and general issues for pastoral care, and are thankful for those who have helped with pastoral care concerns in the past months. Please contact anyone on Ministry and Counsel about pastoral care concerns you, or someone you know, may have.
  5. “Tending the Flock; a Weekend to Encourage Friends Called to Pastoral Ministry” is the title of a retreat which will be held at Powell House Retreat and Conference Center in Old Chatham, NY April 27-29, to which at least two of our Ministry and Counsel members will attend. Others interested should contact Martha Sheldon or Sukie Rice.
  6. They discussed developing a prayer group and Sukie Rice and Joyce Gibson volunteered to take a lead in this concern. Interested people should speak with one of them about participation.
  7. Ministry and Counsel began a discussion on the flow of worship and giving adequate time for waiting worship. They agreed that the call to worship with prayers of joy and concern would begin very shortly after the second hymn followed by the children’s message if there is one.

We expressed our gratitude for the work of Ministry and Counsel.

  1. We further discussed plans for an ongoing prayer group; suggestions were made and Ministry and Counsel will bring proposals to monthly meeting in April.
  2. Friends World Committee for Consultation would like to send a representative to visit our meeting and we welcome a visit.
  3. Wendy Schlotterbeck gave the Youth Minister and Christian Education Committee report. They plan several spring and summer events: Leslie Manning will host a Passover Seder dinner on March 29; Easter breakfast at 8:30 on April 1 with activities for children; Game Night, April 7; a New England Yearly Meeting Living Faith Gathering will occur April 14 in Portland; Children’s Day June 3; Campout in Georgetown June 16-17; plant and yard sale June 21. See detailed information about these event in the Newsletter. They hope to have a one-day Peace School in July (Bible School format).
  4. We approved that a silent auction conducted by the Woman’s Society be held on April 8 and 15.
  5. Leslie Manning reported for the Trustees. They recommend replacing the heavy wooden tables with lighter plastic ones, 4 this year and 4 more next year. The Finance Committee will be consulted concerning this purchase and Trustees will bring a recommendation. They hope to paint the meeting room this summer.
  6. Ingrid Chalufour reported for Peace and Social Concerns Committee. “The Mother’s Dream Quilt” is a project of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. A quilting bee is being planned and they request that it be held at our meeting in June.
  7. We approved the use of our meeting for the quilt project.
  8. The Finance Committee requested that the meeting up-date the signatures for our Norway Savings Bank accounts.
  9. We approved the following persons to be signatories for the checking account and any other accounts that require a signature: Nancy Marstallar, Sarah Sprogell, and Katherine (Kitsie) Hildebrandt. Barbara (Bobbie) Jordan and Phyllis Wetherall are coming off the signatories list.
  10. The meeting has begun to receive requests for scholarships for Friends Camp this summer. Announcements will be made in meeting and the Newsletter that interested youth need to apply and that camp funds are available in our budget for scholarships.
  11. We approved the suggestion that Friends can make donations to the Camp Fund in order to increase the budgeted $500 so that more financial assistance will be made available to campers.
  12. Clerks Meeting: a meeting of committee clerks met March 14. They meet every 6-8 weeks.
  13. An extended discussion ensued regarding outreach. Doug Bennett as a member of the Next Steps on Strengthening Durham Friends Meeting Working Group led the discussion using colored cards recording our views on the meaning of the word, “outreach”, and our ideas for outreach. A worksheet listing ideas was presented and we added more ideas. This topic was sent back to this “ad hoc” committee for further discernment on how to proceed with the positive ideas presented.
  14. After much discussion about the meeting room clock, it was concluded that we would continue another two weeks with the present quiet clock, and then not have any clock in the room for two weeks. The issue will be brought to Ministry and Counsel for further discernment, and then to April monthly meeting.

The business meeting closed with a circle of quiet prayer.

Dorothy Hinshaw, Recording Clerk