Plans are being developed to celebrate Durham Friends’ Meeting children and youth on our traditional Children’s Day on the first Sunday of June (June 7).
We will be inviting families to come to the horse shed sometime before June 7 and while observing physical distance (if others are present) complete activities and choose some gifts including a plant or flower to plant June 7. Meeting for Worship via Zoom on June 7 will include content directed at our younger participants. Stay tuned for more information!
The Poor Peopler’s Campaign will be hosting two facilitated discussions of We Cried Power, a documentary about the PPC. The first discussion will be Friday, May 29th at 7 and the second will be Wednesday, June 3rd at 7.The PPC is committed to the structural change of systemic racism, poverty, the war economy, ecological devastation, and the warped moral narrative that allows these problems to continue. If you are not familiar with the PPC, please visit https://www.poorpeoplescampaign.org/.
These showings/discussions will be a lead-in to a huge virtual event the PPC will be holding on June 20th and we are looking for the support of Maine people of faith. June 20th will be the largest digital gathering of poor, dispossessed and impacted people, faith leaders, and people of conscience.
More information about the Poor People’s Campaign follows:
What is the Poor People’s Campaign?
- The PPC is committed to the structural change of systemic racism, poverty, the war economy, ecological devastation, and the warped moral narrative that allows these problems to continue.
- Learn more about PPC principles and demands at: https://www.poorpeoplescampaign.org/about/our-principles/
Are you looking for a way to get involved in the Poor People’s Campaign?
- Register HERE for our nationwide June 20th, virtual mass meeting!
- Follow PPC Maine social media
- Like Poor People’s Campaign Maine on Facebook!
- Faith leaders are encouraged to join the “Maine PPC Faith Groups” Facebook group, where we will be posting more info on getting involved
- maineppcampaign on Instagram
- @MainePPCampaign on Twitter
- Like Poor People’s Campaign Maine on Facebook!
- Join the Selfie Campaign!
- Send a selfie video explaining why you signed up for June 20th to Hannah Smith-Erb, Maine PPC student fellow, at email@example.com. The video will be reposted on PPC social media.
- Post the video on your personal social media. Use #PoorPeoplesCampaign and #PPCMainers. See examples on our social media.
- Join us for a discussion of “We Cried Power”, a documentary about the PPC
- View on your own with discussion on Friday, May 29th at 7 and Wednesday, June 3rd at 7
- RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hannah will send you the link to the documentary and the zoom link for the discussion.
- To be added to our email list, please visit https://www.poorpeoplescampaign.org/ or email email@example.com
- Sign the petition
Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends convened via zoom for the conduct of business on Sunday, May 24, 2020, with 17 people present in their own homes. Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, co-clerk, opened the meeting with a quote from New England Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on corporate discernment.
1.The April minutes were approved.
2. Finance Committee: Sarah Sprogell reported that the attached budget has a highlighted column reflecting the reduced expenses that were approved at last month’s business meeting. Total income for the quarter was $16,338.07.
We received $2000 in “end of year giving” from 2019, which made up for a reduction in weekly giving in March and will help in future months. Our quarterly disbursement from NEYM pooled funds was received at its expected level of about $3500. Overall we have met 26% of our projected annual income as of March 31st.
Total expenses for the quarter were $9,881.49. Most areas were under-budget as we hoped, with the exception of fuel oil. Overall we have paid 16% of our projected annual expenses as of March 31st. This figure is in keeping with our 30% reduction in expenditures, based on the expected impact of Covid19 restrictions.
Treasurer, Katharine Hildebrandt, reported that expenses for April were $5035 and our income was $6200.
3. Peace and Social concerns Committee: Ingrid Chalufour reminded us to visit the meeting web site for information on upcoming events of the committee.
4. Charity Account ad-hoc Committee: Katharine Hildebrandt reported for the committee and presented proposed guidelines concerning the uses and criteria for the Charity Account:
“The Charity account is to be administered, after careful consideration in each unique situation, for both Charitable Requests and Supported Ministry (Leadings) purposes.
In terms of Supported Ministry (Leadings), coming from members and regular attenders, the request will be brought to a standing meeting committee first to prayerfully consider said request for funds. The meeting committee will then bring the request to monthly meeting, with the request added to an agenda that is distributed ahead of the monthly meeting.
In considering proposals to support a ministry, we recommend the following criteria:
- Alignment of the ministry with the faith and practice of Friends, including the testimonies.
- The character and integrity of the person or group seeking support.
- The likely effectiveness (not just good intentions) of the effort.
In other words, does this ministry help to deepen and promote the life, not only of the individual or group, but the life of the whole meeting as well?
In terms of Charitable Requests, the request will be brought to a standing meeting committee first to prayerfully consider said request for funds. The meeting committee will then bring the request to monthly meeting, with the request added to an agenda, distributed ahead of the monthly meeting.
In the case of emergencies, a request for financial assistance could be brought to the monthly meeting by a meeting committee, where it would be tended, weighed and prayerfully decided on by that monthly meeting. In this case the request would be communicated to the meeting community ahead of time.
The Charity Account, in general, would not be a source of funding for other Quaker organizations and causes such as FCNL, AFSC, QUNO, NEYM, Tedford Housing, or LACO, as these are included in the annual budget as contributions.
Requests for funds will generally be no greater than $1,000.00.”
A thoughtful discussion ensued with suggestions for revisions; the result was that final approval of these guidelines will be made at the June monthly meeting.
5. Trustees: Donna Hutchins sent a report which stated that they are looking into developing a green burial space at the Lund Road Cemetery. Tess Hartford is currently painting the meeting worship room. Katharine Hildebrandt reported that Andy Higgins has been hired to do some grounds maintanence.
6. Christian Education Committee and Youth Minister: Wendy Schlotterbeck reported that Storytimes are being held each Wednesday evening via Zoom. Books read so far are: The Wolf’s Chicken Stew, Malala’s Magic Pencil, Moon watchers, and The Tree House. A Plant Sale will be held June 5th through June 8. Children and Youth Sunday will be June 7th when meeting for worship via zoom will include content directed at our younger participants. The committee will sponsor the popular Faith Journey sharing on the second and fourth Sunday mornings, 9:30-10:15.
Fridays from 5-6pm Wendy is on zoom with New England Yearly Meeting Young Friends during their weekly affinity group check-ins.
Wendy will be clerking the Committee for this year.
7. Snap Re-Boot project: Although the Charity Fund guidelines are yet to be approved, we reconsidered the request for funds to support this project, which are still needed. The meeting discussed donating the amount of $1000, with appreciation for the two committees that have recommended support of the project.
8. We approved the amount of $1000 for the Snap Re-Boot project, with two members standing aside, noting their hesitation to approve the project at this time.
9. Carbon Footprint Ad Hoc Committee: Kim Bolshaw, Katharine Hildebrandt, and Ingrid Chalfour attended a web-based workshop focused on greening meetinghouses, sponsored by New England Yearly Meeting Finance Committee. John Reuthe from Vassalboro Meeting made the presentation. John suggested that we, as a meeting, discuss what we mean by greening our meetinghouse. In the absence of an opportunity to have this discussion, the committee is working on the assumption that our goal is to lower use of carbon fuel. John’s presentation has influenced our development of a three-phase plan for our meetinghouse regarding insulation, cold air from the basement, and window inserts for the winter.
10. Ministry and Counsel: Martha Hinshaw reported that at their next meeting they will look at how to safely return to gathering in the meetinghouse.
The meeting recently received the sad news that member Phyllis White Wetherell died on April 25, in Richmond, Indiana where she had retired at Friends Fellowship Retirement Home. Ministry and Counsel is preparing a draft memorial minute to be approved in June.
Martha Hinshaw closed the meeting with the admonition: Go in Peace!
Dorothy Hinshaw, Recording Clerk
The New York Times asks the question, and shows that Quakers can and do. Photographs and Text by Bianca Giaever. (May be subject to paywall.)
The subtitle: “Quakerism goes virtual, offering an intimate window into silent worship.” Durham Friends Meeting isn’t mentioned; the focus is on Meetings in Brooklyn, Middlebury (Vt.) and Portland (Maine).
Annual Plant Sale! Durham Friends Meeting will be holding a safe, self-serve (no contact) plant sale from Thursday June 4 through Monday, June 8 or until all plants are sold.
Please bring plants to the Meetinghouse horse shed by Wednesday June 4.
We ask that donations include a tag with as many details as possible (see list below). Extra pots and tags are available in the horse shed. Ask Wendy for any help with tags! There will be clear signs and a locked cash box for cash or check donations. Members of CE may be inside the Meetinghouse to oversee the sale from the window.
The proceeds will be used to support the Durham Young Friends Kakamega sponsee, Cornelius.,
- Name of plant
- Sun or shade requirements
- Annual or perennial
- Color of blooms
- Any special instructions
- Suggested donation amount
Phyllis Wetherell, long a member of this Meeting, passed from life on April 25, 2020 in Richmond, Indiana where she had been living at Friends Fellowship Community. With many friends in both communities, she had oscillated between Durham, Maine and Richmond, Indiana all her life.
She was born of solid Maine stock in Portland, Maine, the first child of John and Mary Curtis. She grew up in Durham Friends Meeting and remained a member here all her life– one of our many beloved members of the family Curtis.
After her first husband, Ira Donald White, and her daughter, Lisa, passed away, she married David Wetherell, the pastor of Durham Friends. They moved to Richmond, Indiana so that David could attend the Earlham School of Religion. After David graduated, they moved to Bar Harbor where Phyllis and David helped start Acadia Friends Meeting. About a decade later they moved back to Richmond, Indiana.
Phyllis became receptionist/secretary at the Earlham School of Religion, a position she held for fifteen years, from 1985 to 2000. Hers was the first face that prospective students, faculty, and staff encountered. She welcomed them and treated them graciously and with a kindness that came from her heart. David passed away in 1990.
After retirement from ESR she came again to live among us in Maine, and then returned to Friends Fellowship in Richmond, Indiana in 2013 for the last seven years of her life.
Phyllis is survived by her children Susan (Dale), Linda (Rick), and David John (Jennifer); her sister Charlotte, brother Johnny (Mildred), and stepdaughter Lynne. Her grandchildren that will carry on all she taught them: Hickory (Trisha), Ryder (Amanda), Rossy, Marjorie, Korey, Brandon (Jenna), Ashton (Wyatt), Nate and Genesee. As well as her great-grandchildren Jack, Mason, Max, Samuel, Lumen, and (due in July), Sawyer. Those already passed on include her parents John and Mary Curtis, brother David, daughter Lisa, and the two loves of her life, husbands Donny and David.
Celebrations of her life will be in Richmond, Indiana and Durham, Maine later in the year. If so moved, contributions can be made in her name to the Woman’s Society, Durham Friends Meeting.
A decade after she retired from ESR, Phyllis wrote this:
The Best Seat at ESR, by Phyllis Wetherell, 2010
The best seat at ESR was at the receptionist’s desk. The unending parade of students, faculty, staff, guests, who opened that front door of Barclay Center and walked to that receptionist’s desk was a bountiful source of opportunities and possibilities for me. Those delicious folk approached the receptionist’s desk where I sat for fifteen years–1985 to 2000. What an education to listen to people wrestling out loud about their beliefs or lack of beliefs, to see the profound impact a feisty professor has on someone who finally sees and feels the Light, to watch as a programmed Quaker meets head on an unprogrammed Quaker, when neither one knows anything of the other’s practices. Do you know how exciting it is to listen to folk trying to sort out their beliefs and try and figure out where those beliefs will lead them?
ESR really is a microcosm of the world. It is not a place to escape from the world. One of the most positive aspects of this microcosm is the support and caring available. I have a give-away-my-feelings face. Generally, my smile is welcoming. When it’s not, you know it! At those difficult times for me there was always a receptive student, calming co-worker, supportive faculty member to help get through a rough time. Well, not all the time. One time a nasty rash had appeared on my face and I was not able to be at the desk. Needing to stop by the office, I encountered someone and asked if he would like to lay hands on my face and cure me. He raised his hands in horror and uttered, “Oooo-eeee-yuck” and backed away. So much for caring!
Name dropping: Madeleine L’Engle, Elton Trueblood, Wil and Emily Cooper, John Punshon, Phil Gulley, Douglas and Dorothy Steere, Noel Paul Stookey, Tom Mullen. Can you imagine the gems I picked up from these strong folk?
When told I would be Tom Mullen’s secretary, his then secretary, Sue Kern, told me his correspondence was as delightful as he was! I eagerly received my first assignment, which was to a contributor to ESR. The letter read, “Thank you. Thank you, thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
I’ve always been grateful to Stephanie Crumley-Effinger for her being unable to attend a small (eight people) dinner for Madeleine L’Engle when she was on campus. I was asked to be a last-minute substitute for Stephanie and what a treat. Madeleine was as thoughtful as her writings.
John Punshon gave the best long-lasting advice I ever received: “Those who try to help, seldom do!”
One of those terrific students with whom I take great pleasure in having a continuing friendship, took me into a cornfield one night to bay as a wolf at a full moon to help open up my spirit and senses. I don’t recall opening up as much as laughing my head off. But, I don’t think it hurt me any either!
Another advantage for me at the reception’s desk was that my husband, David, and daughter, Linda, were both students at ESR–another way for me to be even more involved with the ESR community. When David was a student in 1968-1972, those first years of being introduced to ESR were filled with challenging ways of looking at life. Living in “Brick City” there were delightful new folk to meet and who, over thirty years later, are steadfast friends. Classes were open to spouses and many of us were able to take advantage of those resources. I remember sitting in on a class on psychology taught by Bill Rogers. When asked why I chose to be there, I replied, “I feel like a sponge, just soaking up everything.” When returning to ESR in 1985 as a secretary/receptionist, I was still a sponge but got paid for sitting in the best seat in the house while sponging! Thank you ESR for gracing my life. Please continue for 150 years more! Phyllis Wetherell lives with family in Maine.
Beginning this Wednesday, April 28, at 6:45 pm, Durham Friends will be hosting a virtual story time especially for the children and youth in our Meeting community. Listen to the story and then linger if you wish for a few minutes of wondering and sharing. Feel free to log-in as early as 6:30 to greet others.
Wear pajamas if you want and bring your favorite stuffed animal to show off. This week, viewers will meet Wendy’s favorite stuffed rabbit from her childhood!
The zoom login is below- it is the same one used for Meeting for Worship and other meetings at our beloved Durham Friends community. To provide a secure experience, you can share the opportunity with trusted friends. However others more distant who want to join- please send them my e-mail Wendy.firstname.lastname@example.org for log in information.
Questions? Call Wendy at 777-1980 or text her cell phone at 513-9187. (My cell phone does not get good reception at my house for talking or voicemail but texts eventually come through!)
Durham Friends is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Durham Friends StorytimeTime: Apr 29, 2020 6:45 PM Eastern Time
Join Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2814426094
Meeting ID: 281 442 6094;
One tap mobile+19292056099,,2814426094#,,1#,1775# US (New York)
Memorial in Solitude — From Derek Parker, Pastor, First Friends Meeting, Richmond, Indiana — April 26, 2020
Saturday night Nancy Tyndall phoned me, to let me know that Phyllis Wetherell had died. Phyllis died in hospice care at Reid Hospital, from non-Covid causes.
As of the morning of Sunday, April 26 about 54,000 people in the United States have died from the coronavirus. Other people like Phyllis also die of non-Covid causes. If you are reading this you may only be one or two degrees removed from somebody who has died from coronavirus, or from other causes. With social distancing, funerals will likely be limited to small groups of 5-10 people, outdoors, and graveside. It can hurt to be apart when we need our family and friends; and when we need an opportunity to say goodbye.
Many of us say, “I will pray for you.” And I have no doubt that we do that. But most Protestants get little instruction about how to do this. It is easier to follow through on our prayers, when we have a plan.
So today I got out the prayer-books in my office to make a plan for how to pray for Phyllis, and for others whose memorials I may not be able to attend. I recommend finding a quiet place to make your plan, and then carry it out.
O Thou kind Lord! Thou hast created all humanity from the same stock. Thou hast decreed that all shall belong to the same household. In Thy Holy Presence they are all Thy servants, and all humankind are sheltered beneath Thy Tabernacle; all have gathered together at Thy Table of Bounty; and all are illuminated through the light of Thy Providence. – Amen
After that first prayer I’m going to take a silent moment to think about Phyllis. I’ve known her for a long time. She was finishing her employment at ESR when I was a prospective student over 20 years ago. As a student at ESR we had a picnic table dedicated in celebration of her years of service.
She was a member of West Richmond Friends Meeting, but I reconnected with Phyllis through the Thursday First Friends Book Group that met at Friends Fellowship. Her thinking about the books was sharp, and her humor was bright. I can still picture her sitting in her chair at Book Group. Her sudden departure from this world is a bit of a shock.
At some point I will need to end my silence. And close with another prayer.
O Lord, support us all the days of this life, until the shadows lengthen, the evening comes, the busy world is hushed, the fever of life is over, and our work is done. Then in Your mercy grant us a safe lodging, a holy rest, and peace at the last. AMEN
I plan to pray this way. I would even appreciate somebody else praying for me this way, after my life comes to an end. I suggest that you make a plan for how to pray in memory of others who have died. You don’t need to use the same prayers I used. You could substitute the Lord’s Prayer, or Psalm 23, or Psalm 24, or a more spontaneous prayer. In the face of terrible news in a time of solitude, respond with faith and prayer.
May God give us strength in times of sorrow, whenever those times come. And wherever we are, may we be inspired to pray with those who mourn.
Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends convened via Zoom (electronically) for the conduct of business on Sunday, April 19, 2020 with approximately 19 people present in their own homes, due to the pandemic coronavirus crisis. Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, co-clerk, opened the meeting reminding us that the meeting is located on Wabanaki land; and that people are the church, and not the building.
1. The February and March minutes were approved.
2. Ministry and Counsel: Martha Sheldon reported for the committee:
The State of Society Report (attached) was read with appreciation to Douglas Bennett who drafted the report.
Memorial Minutes for Clarabel Marstaller and Eileen Babcock were presented. All expressed gratitude for their long lives of service in the Society of Friends and Durham Friends Meeting. These minutes are attached.
Ministry and Counsel discussed end of life issues, political expressions in meeting, and pastoral care concerns. Please inform Ministry and Counsel of those in need.
The meeting learned with sadness that member Edith (Edie) Lamb Whitehead died April 18, 2020.
3. We approved the State of Society Report which will be reported to Falmouth Quarterly Meeting.
4. We approved Memorial Minutes for Clarabel Hadley Marstaller and Eileen Babcock.
5. Peace and Social Concerns: Ingrid Chalufour reported that the committee was asked to review and bring forward a recommendation made in February for funds to support the SNAP ReBoot project. It was sent to Peace and Social Concerns because requests for Charity Fund Account money is best to come from a standing committee. Peace and Social Concerns Committee researched additional information about this project and, being fully satisfied with Theresa Oleksiw’s answers and having received a letter of strong support from the Maine Equal Justice Project for the project, they recommend that the meeting support the project to the level of $3000. The full committee report is attached.
We then revisited the February 2020 monthly meeting decision to use the Charity Fund for this project. A lengthly discussion ensued, with a number of options how we might proceed. One option was to proceed with assistance to the project but at a level of $1000. We will revisit this option at the May monthly meeting to give the meeting time to season the decision. If anyone wishes to contribute to the Project at this time, they are encouraged to send donations to the Durham treasurer who will send them on directly to Theresa. Notice of this will appear in the Newsletter.
6. We approved the following persons to serve as an ad-hoc committee for reviewing guidelines for the Charity Account: Joyce Gibson, Tess Hartford, Katharine Hildebrandt and Brown Letham.
The Peace and Social Concerns Committee urges us to visit their posts on the Durham Friends Meeting web site.
7. Christian Education: Wendy Schlotterbeck reported for the committee. CE met on March 1 and discussed the the Annual Plant and Yard Sale, tentatively set for May 23, Children’s Day, usually the first Sunday in June (June 7), and the Annual Family Campout June 13-14 or June 20-21. The committee will re-evaluate whether/how these events might happen because of the stay at home order. Easter was none the less celebrated: Wendy ordered chocolate Easter bunnies and gummy carrots from a local candy shop and had them sent to 7 Durham families with children. In addition, Amy Kustra drew a coloring page of Durham Meeting house and “hid” Easter eggs in the picture for the kids to color. Wendy created blank stamped and addressed postcards for the kids to color and send to a Durham friend. The postcards and coloring pages were sent to the Durham children along with a letter from Wendy.
We have a need for substitute Sunday School teachers for the Godly Play and youth classes; if anyone would be willing to help out if a teacher is sick or unable to teach on a particular Sunday, please see Wendy Schlotterbeck.
Ashley Marstaller informed us that due to staffing changes at her work, she can no longer be the Childcare worker on Sunday mornings. We are looking for a replacement. In the meantime Amy Kustra volunteered to be present from 10:15-12:15 on 2nd, 4th and 5th Sundays to take care of children until we find a replacement.
Wendy has met 3 times with Durham youth over Zoom to check in during March/April, and checked in with families by phone, text and/or e-mail. She has met via zoom at the weekly NEYM leadership meetings, and will continue to join the calls,
and staffed the Young Friends virtual retreat held Friday-Saturday April 17-18. Twenty-three youth attended and seemed especially grateful for the chance to be together with other NEYM youth and adults.
8. Finance: Sarah Sprogell reported for the committee which outlined major sources of income which stand to decrease, and the committee recommended steps to reduce the meeting expenses. A full report with recommendations is attached.
9. We approved an adjusted budget, and accepted with gratitude the Finance Committee report.
10 Trustees: Katharine Hildebrandt and Donna Hutchins reported that C & Z Plumbing installed a new water heater and a new toilet at the Parsonage. Plumbers checked the building and no other issues were noted. The electrician installed a new breaker for the new hot water heater and the bathroom outlets. He inspected wiring and said there are no issues and the building is up to code. Dan Henton installed a new lock and door knob on front door. These repairs thus far have cost $ 2731.29.
Meetinghouse repairs::The electrician installed a new outside security LED light at the Meetinghouse, and put in a new pull switch over the piano. C & Z Plumbing installed new faucets and cleaned up and replaced old plumbing under the five sinks. A water test has been done and a system was recommended to address mineral issues. The water is safe to drink. A backwash filter system has been installed in the basement and all other existing, outdated and/or malfunctioning filter systems were removed. Trustees recommend that Tess Hartford continue her painting in the meetinghouse. These repairs thus far have cost $ 4150.00.
The cell phone tower has recently been approved by the town. The company, Northern Pride, is ready to install the tower.
The balance of the Capital Account is now $24,311.80 which includes the Efficiency Maine rebate for the new water heater in the parsonage. This is a corrected balance which was reported as $41,765 in the Newsletter. A complete report is attached.
Trustees would like to recommend that Craig Freshley be added to Trustees.
11. We approved the addition of Craig Freshley to Trustees.
12. We approved that Tess Hartford perform painting tasks in the meetinghouse
13. Martha Sheldon reminded us that Falmouth Quarterly Meeting will be held this Saturday, April 25, via Zoom. Representatives are Martha Sheldon and Sarah Sprogell.
14. .Sarah Sprogell presented the 2019 Statistical Report which is attached. Sarah reported that we have 106 members, with 44 active. We had two new members and 2 deaths for 2019.
15. Sarah Sprogell, auditor, presented the 2016-2017 audit for Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends. This report was accepted with appreciation.
16. With regret, the United Society of Friends Women International and Friends United Meeting triennials have been canceled for this summer. Funds donated to our representatives for travel and participation will be refunded to the meeting.
Our monthly meeting lasted longer than usual with much discussion about various matters, so we departed without much ado; we bade each one farewell until the next time! Walk in the Light.
Dorothy Hinshaw, Recording Clerk
April 9, 2020
We’re so glad you are willing to participate in our Zoom Meeting for Worship. While less-than-ideal, we find this a helpful way to gather in spite of our need to keep our distance. We try to make our Zoom Meeting reverent and as similar as possible to the meetings in our Meetinghouse. Note: you will need a password and we’ve sent this out via e-mail. If you don’t have it, please ask another member of the meeting.
To join you will need the following information:
- Meeting Link https://zoom.us/j/2814426094
- Phone number 301-715-8592
- Meeting ID 281-442-6094
- Password Ask a Friend if you don’t have it or send e-mail to email@example.com
To Join by screen:
- Click on the meeting link
- Allow the page to open zoom.us.app
- Enter the Durham Friends Zoom Meeting password (ask a Friend if you don’t have it)
- You will be put on hold until you are admitted by the Host
If you have trouble trying to join by screen
- If you receive a prompt that says “This Meeting
is Authorized for Attendees only” it means you have a Zoom account but are not
logged into it. Click “Sign in to join”
- Enter your email address and the password associated with your Zoom account
- Enter the Durham Friends Zoom Meeting password (ask a Friend if you don’t have it)
- If you receive a prompt that says “When
prompted, select Open with and then OK,” click OK or Download here.
- Work through a series of prompts to install software. You may need to provide your computer username and password (the username and password used to access administrative features on your computer).
- After installing software automatically, if the Zoom Meeting doesn’t automatically launch, find where the software is installed on your computer and double click it to launch (On a Mac use Finder to find it in Downloads or in Applications. On a PC use Explorer to find it in Downloads or Programs)
To Join by Phone:
- Dial 301-715-8592
- When prompted enter the meeting ID 281-442-6094 followed by #
- When asked for the Participant ID, enter #
- Enter the Password when asked (ask a Friend if you don’t have it)
Join the Meeting anytime after 10:15am on any Sunday. Like entering our Meeting Room in Durham, this is quiet time unless absolutely necessary to speak up because you are having some sort of technical difficulty. The Meeting will formally begin around 10:30, opened by the Meeting Leader. The Meeting will typically end around 11:30 followed by informal and un-moderated fellowship time for catching up with each other.
Your name as it appears to others:
Please write your first and last name when joining. To change how your name appears after the meeting has started, open the Participant list by clicking the participant icon at the bottom of the scree, find yourself on the list and mouse over your name, click more, click rename.
All are muted upon entering the meeting. To unmute if participating by screen, press the space bar on your keyboard or unmute yourself by clicking the microphone icon in the bottom left of your screen. To unmute if participating by phone, press *6 to unmute or mute.
To Raise Your Hand:
By screen, raise your hand as usual. Make sure your Video is unmuted.
By phone, press *9.
There are times when raising a hand is not necessary to speak. Use your judgment. If people are waiting to be called on, it is the Meeting Leader who calls on people.
By clicking the Chat icon at the bottom of your screen you can send written messages to the whole meeting or to specific people. Phone participants don’t have access to these chat messages. If you want something to be conveyed to the whole meeting, raise your hand and say it out loud.
When it’s time for a hymn someone will play it on piano for all to hear. Words will be provided in advance or on the screen. You are encouraged to sing along but only if you are on mute. It doesn’t work well for anyone to be singing unmuted because it overrides the piano. If you are singing unmuted, the Host might mute you.
Meeting Leader (also know as Care of Worship)
- Opens and closes the meeting
- Says when we’re doing what
- Handles announcements and calling on people as needed
Host (also known as Zoom Support):
- Serves as Zoom Host
- Let’s people enter the Meeting
- Handles muting and unmuting people as needed
- Activates and de-activates break-out rooms as needed (such as children having a meeting in another “room”)
- Shares and un-shares words to hymns at appropriate times (someone needs to share a words-to-hymns document with the Host in advance).
Uneasy about Zoom?
Before joining our Zoom Meeting you can do a test Zoom Meeting here: https://tinyurl.com/y3p2v4db. Also at this website are answers to many questions about Zoom. If you have additional questions or troubles, please contact Craig@Freshley.com.
Meeting link: https://zoom.us/j/2814426094 Click here to join by video and audio
Phone number: +1 301 715 8592 Dial this to join by audio only
Meeting ID: 281 442 6094
You will also need a password that has been sent via e-mail. If you don’t have it, ask another member of the Meeting.
Together with every other organization and community across the globe, Durham Friends Meeting is faced with questions about what to do with the threat of possible Coronavirus infection in our midst. Some of the answers will have to be made together, and others are for each individual or family to answer on their own.
We are a worship community. Gathering together is what we do. We gather for worship, for prayer, for study, for support, for fellowship and for fun. In normal times, we gather strength from gathering together. But in the current situation, we may do each other harm.
The situation is likely to change. We’ll be learning more about the risks and best approaches. We expect that the current situation will last at least until the end of May. Members of Ministry and Counsel, together with the Clerk, will monitor the situation and make decisions. We’ll send out information on e-mail, and we’ll try to see that those who do not receive e-mail receive phone calls.
For the present, here is how we will proceed.
- We will have 1st Day Worship each Sunday as regularly scheduled. Please attend via Zoom. As always, someone from Ministry and Counsel will be responsible for Care of Worship. There will be a prepared message most Sundays. And someone will provide tech support for our use of Zoom.
Various committees of the Meeting are gathering using Zoom, but all other events have been cancelled.
We need to care for one another. Please stay in touch by phone, e-mail and other means. By all means ask questions of M&C if you have them, and we will try to answer them or point you to someone who can.
With God’s love and strength, and with support from one another, we will get through this.
Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, Co-Clerk of the Meeting
Sukie Rice, Co-Clerk of the Meeting
Doug Bennett Tess Hartford
Renee Cote Joyce Gibson
Brown Lethem Wendy Schlotterbeck
cancelled because of Coronavirus threat
From Peace and Social Concerns Committee:
War and militarism are destroying the planet. But if we de-fund the Pentagon, we can save it.
Excerpts taken from a piece written by Medea Benjamin for Foreign Policy in Focus. For the full text go here.
- The U.S. military protects Big Oil and other extractive industries. For example, the 1991 Gulf War against Iraq was a blatant example of war for oil. Today, U.S. military support for Saudi Arabia is connected to the fossil fuel industry’s determination to control access to the world’s oil.
- The Pentagon is the single largest institutional consumer of fossil fuels in the world. If the Pentagon were a country, its fuel use alone would make it the 47th largest greenhouse gas emitter in the world, greater than entire nations such as Sweden, Norway, or Finland. U.S.
military emissions come mainly from fueling weapons and equipment, as well as lighting, heating, and cooling more than 560,000 buildings around the world.
- The Pentagon monopolizes the funding we need to seriously address the climate crisis. We are now spending over half of the federal government’s annual discretionary budget on the military when the biggest threat to U.S. national security is not Iran or China, but the climate crisis. We could cut the Pentagon’s current budget in half and still be left with a bigger military budget than China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea combined.
- Military operations leave a toxic legacy in their wake. U.S. military bases despoil the landscape, pollute the soil, and contaminate the drinking water. According to a 2017 government report, the Pentagon has already spent $11.5 billion on environmental cleanup of
closed bases and estimates $3.4 billion more will be needed.
- Wars ravage fragile ecosystems that are crucial to sustaining human health and climate resiliency. Direct warfare inherently involves the destruction of the environment, through bombings and boots-on-the-ground invasions that destroy the land and infrastructure.
- Climate change is a “threat multiplier” that makes already dangerous social and political situations even worse. In Syria, the worst drought in 500 years led to crop failures that pushed farmers into cities, exacerbating the unemployment and political unrest that contributed to the uprising in 2011. Similar climate crises have triggered conflicts in other countries across the Middle East, from Yemen to Libya.
On February 17, 2020 five women met in the home of Theresa Oleksiw. Cards of friendship and well wishes were signed and a prayer request for Getry Agigh was made. Getry works in the Alternative for Violence program in Kenya and braves many dangerous situations. Meals for the Tedford Shelter were organized.
Margaret Wentworth read from the 2019/2020 Blueprints, Finding the Way by Margaret Musalia, who lives in Kenya, is “retired but not tired,” and practices pastoral ministry. She offered a lot of sage advice, including “Don’t give up, God has plans for you,” “Be willing to do God’s will,” and “Never compare your blessings, you are unique.” We were reminded that comparison is the thief of joy.
Nancy Marstaller, treasurer, reported that we now have savings of $1,519.93, with $690 set aside for two of our members (Dorothy Curtis and Martha Hinshaw Sheldon) who will be going to the USFWI Triennial in Kenya this summer. It was noted that $1,470 has been donated to Woman’s Society in memory of Clarabel Marstaller. It was also agreed that we would ask Durham Monthly Meeting to give $600 for both Martha and Dorothy’s registration and related costs.
Refreshments were enjoyed by all, including Gene Boyington, who joined in the rollicking conversation. It was noted, with due seriousness, that duct tape is always useful — “if you can’t duct it, chuck it.”
Respectfully submitted by Theresa Oleksiw
cancelled because of Coronavirus threat
Session 2 of Peace and Social Concerns “Educate and Advocate Series” will be Sunday March 22 at 12:15. The focus will be understanding the Green New Deal and providing information about some important bills in the federal and state legislatures.
We hope you can all come.
We have a large collection of Pendle Hill Pamphlets, which a
short and always relevant on a myriad of subjects. Please note that
we just received a very helpful index of the pamphlets, 1934-2018,
listed by number, author, title, and subject! The latest one is titled:
“On Vocal Ministry.”
Anonymous gifts include A Permeable Life, Poems and Essays, by Carrie Newcomer (Quaker songwriter); Our Endangered Values, by Jimmy Carter; and a highly recommended book, A Dangerous New World, Maine Voices on the Climate Crisis.
Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends convened for the conduct of business on Sunday, February 16, 2020, with 14 people present. Co-Clerk, Susan (Sukie) Rice, opened the meeting with quiet waiting.
1.The January minutes were approved.
2. Sarah Sprogell reported that the balance in the Charity Account is $16.321.63; this report was requested due to projects which might use this account.
3. Katherine Hildebrandt reported that the Woman’s Society requests funds from the Charity Account to support Durham Meeting representatives to the United Society of Friends Women International triennial conference which meets in Kenya in July. The amount requested is $600 each to cover registration, food and lodging.
4. We approved the amount of $1200 from the Charity Account ($600 each) for Martha Sheldon and Dorothy Curtis who are attending the USFWI conference. The clerk will prepare traveling minutes for Martha and Dorothy and will plan a “prayer sendoff” late in June.
5. Finance Committee: Sarah Sprogell handed out the 4th quarter finance report which includes income and operating expenses for 2019. She also circulated a list of Designated Accounts,
Saving Accounts, and investments and CD figures. These reports will be attached to the minutes.
Sarah gave a 2019 yearend report: We received a bequest of $32,352 in the early part of 2019, and approved tithing 10% ($3,235) for our Charity Account, and put the balance into our Capital Account ($29,117), based on the long-standing history of the giver’s family having encouraged and supported good stewardship and care of our buildings and property.
In addition to tithing $3,235 to the Charity Account, the meeting also approved moving the balance of the Bailey and Cox Funds, totally about $11,000 to this account, increasing its balance to $19,000. This increased our ability to support worthy causes brought before the meeting through committees. Through this process we made contributions of close to $3000 in 2019.
After the above actions were taken, we ended the year with a surplus of $20,590.15
The primary reasons for this surplus are described below:
- An unexpected increase of approximately $3000 in our interest income from the NEYM invested funds, due to a new formula in the distribution policy.
- A savings of about $2000 in committee expenses.
- A savings of about $700 in meeting expenses for advertising, copier expenses, and similar costs.
- A savings of about $1300 in youth ministry expensesfor conferences and youth activities.
- A savings of $10,000 in expenses which had been set aside for the possibility of hiring someone into a new ministerial type position.
- An insurance reimbursement of approximately $3000 for our expenses to repair damages to the parsonage from the freeze in December 2018.
Some actions have already been taken in response to this surplus.
- Most significantly, we have committed to hiring a Meeting Care Coordinator for an annual stipend of $10,000, and a search committee is already working on this.
- We also committed to increasing our giving to several national Quaker organizations by about $1000 annually.
- With the addition of a Meeting Care Coordinator, we may find that committees and our youth minister are able to find ways to spend more of their budgets. I think we can agree that this would be a happy occurrence!
- It should also be noted that some of these savings may not be repeated in coming years, in particular the $3000 insurance reimbursement.
It is with a deep sense of gratitude for the many people who give of themselves so generously to the care of the meeting, that we find ourselves in a strong position to steward our meeting community spiritually, to provide responsible care for our buildings and property, and to engage with the broader community as advocates for “an earth restored.”
We received these reports with gratitude.
6. Peace and Social Concerns: Ingrid Chalufour reported that the committee held a forum on January 26th to discuss the U.S. Military carbon footprint and to write letters to our legislators. The meeting was well attended and they were encouraged to continue to conduct activities that address our outsized military and their contribution to the climate crisis, and to voice our thoughts widely. There were several suggestions which will guide the committee’s planning for the future.
The ad-hoc Carbon Footprint Committee brought two contractors into the meetinghouse to assess our insulation needs and gave estimates for work they recommend to lower our fuel use. We have vermiculite insulation in the attic to be tested for asbestos; one contractor recommend its removal; the other to keep it in place. The committee will bring a proposal to monthly meeting for the best way forward regarding our carbon footprint.
7. Margaret Wentworth reported that an ad-hoc support committee (Margaret Wentworth, Margaret Leitch Copeland, and Sukie Rice) has been formed to support Theresa Oleksiw who has felt drawn to work on issues of poverty and food insecurity in Maine and to raise the realities of this issue to law-makers with hopes of increasing the funding for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). Theresa met with a clearness committee from Portland Friends Meeting to develop a clear picture of how to proceed, and they developed plans for the SNAP ReBoot Project that personalizes and addresses food insecurity. She has received grants from Portland Meeting, New England Yearly Meeting, and the Lyman Foundation to fund the project through April. She is applying for further grants to complete this project. Because of a two-month funding gap between grants, the support committee recommends that Durham Meeting grant her $3000 for these two months, May and June. A full report of this project is attached.
8. The meeting approved the grant of $3000 from the Charity Fund for the SNAP ReBoot Project. We look forward to a report from Theresa regarding this project, and a financial report of expenses.
9. Christian Education and Youth Minister: Wendy Schlotterbeck is staffing the Young Friends Retreat at Woolman Hill this weekend and thus sent a report. Sunday School classes are going well. The preschool
Elementary age class taught by Tess Hartford averages 3-5 children and is continuing to use Faith and Play and Godly Play stories. Feedback from parents indicate that this curriculum is much appreciated. The middle/high school class taught by Wendy Schlottebeck averages 2-3 youth, and uses the Quaker Affirmations curriculum from the religious Education Collaborative. The Adult class continues to meet every Sunday at 9:30. It is facilitated by Martha Hinshaw Sheldon and they are currently reading “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo. Martha reported having incredible, intense, and lively discussions. “Waking Up White” by Debby Irving was the previous book the class read and discussed. This class averages 3-5 participants.
Upcoming events: family game night March 14; Easter breakfast April 12; and Faith and Play/
Godly Play training on May 8-10.
10: Nancy Marstaller brought a concern regarding the organ in the meeting room which unfortunately has not been used for some time; it was approved that it be sold or given away to another church.
We closed in gratitude for the present and the past.
Dorothy Hinshaw, Recording Clerk
In December, the Durham Meeting Woman’s Society organized an Advent “food drive” for the Lisbon Area Food Pantry. During this month we asked people to bring in foods that LACO has on its “wish list” for their families, after which Kim Bolshaw drove a truckload of goods to the food pantry.
Dorothy Curtis once again worked her cooking magic this past autumn, making about 80 jars of raspberry, grape, and peach jams from fruits grown in the Meeting garden. These absolutely delicious jams were then happily purchased by members and attenders, raising a little over $400, which was donated to LACO. Thanks to all who brought in food for the pantry. Thanks to Dorothy for making all that jam! Thanks to those who helped in the garden to grow and harvest the fruits. And thanks to everyone who purchased the jams (and some garlics), making this a very successful Meeting outreach.
There are nine Durham area churches that make up Lisbon Area Christian Outreach. Questions about LACO can be brought to Margaret Wentworth, Margaret Copeland, and David Dexter, who have been our representatives on the LACO board.
Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends convened for the conduct of business on Sunday, January 19, 2020 with 11 people in attendance.
1. Nominating Committee: Margaret Wentworth reported for Nominating Committee. They recommend that appointments remain the same as 2019, with the following changes:
Presiding Clerk: Add Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, so she and Susan (Sukie) Rice will be Co-Clerks.
Trustees: Remains the same, keeping Paul Wood on the committee.
Ministry and Counsel: Add Renee Cote.
Finance: No changes.
Christian Education: Katherine (Qat) Langelier is going off the committee.
Communications: Change Newsletter Editor from Qat Langelier to Sukie Rice.
P & SC: Linda Muller is going off. New members are very much needed.
Next month the full list will be attached to the Newsletter.
2. The Nominating Committee report was approved. Martha Sheldon continued to preside over the Meeting for Business as a duly approved co-clerk.
3. The minutes of December 15, 2019 were approved as printed in the Newsletter.
4. Ministry and Counsel: Martha Sheldon reported that Doug
Bennett will draft the State of
Society Report. Upcoming speakers will be Ingrid Chalufour, Joyce Gibson, Tess Hartford, Heather Augustine, Peter Crysdale, Fritz Weiss, Doug Bennett, and Leslie Manning.
5. Christian Education: Wendy Schlotterbeck submitted the report.
Dorothy Curtis will be the CE representative for the search
committee for the Meeting Care Coordinator position.
(b) The committee decided to nurture relationships and connections with the Maine Native American community as their theme for the year, including learning more about Native American history. They hope to collaborate with Heather Augustine’s youth group and will encourage Durham Friends to attend Healing Turtle Island in July.
(c) They will continue family game nights and aim for the next one to be on March 14.
(d) Faith and Play/Godly Play training has been confirmed for May 8-10 at Durham Friends. Portland Friends and possibly several other NEYM Friends will join us. Melinda Wenner Bradley from Philadelphia Yearly Meeting will bring the training.
(e) They discussed naming a clerk for the committee, but decided at this time to rotate the role among members. Wendy has agreed to bring the CE/youth minister report to Monthly Meeting.
Youth Minister Report:
(a) Wendy Schlotterbeck has begun visiting Durham Friends families with children to get a sense of their needs.
(b) Wendy is participating in “Noticing Patterns of Oppression and Faithfulness,” an online training sponsored by NEYM and facilitated by Lisa Graustein, on January 16 and March 12. This training focuses on informing our work with youth.
(c) Wendy attended an all-day reflection and planning session for the Young Friends program of NEYM on January 18 and will continue to help staff with upcoming Young Friends and Junior High Young Friends retreats. The report was accepted gratefully.
6. Communications Committee: It was reported that Sukie Rice will be the CC representative for the search committee for the Meeting Care Coordinator position.
7. Martha Sheldon reported that the first meeting of the search committee for the Meeting Care Coordinator will occur this coming week. The search committee will now be under the care of Monthly Meeting rather than Ministry and Counsel. It was suggested that there be a deadline for applications. Dorothy Curtis, Ingrid Chalufour, Sukie Rice, and Martha Sheldon will be on that committee. Notice of the job advertisement will be sent out as a Friends Note and include the deadline.
8. Finance Committee: Sarah Sprogell brought the report, which included the 2020 budget. There was discussion about our giving to Quaker organizations, specifically to increase the amounts we give to them in 2020. From this discussion, we raised the original $100 budgeted for each of them to the following: AFSC: $250; Velasco Friends: $250; FCNL: $300; QUNO: $200.
9. The Budget 2020 was approved to include the aforementioned changes, with appreciation to the Finance Committee. Our projected income for 2020 is $60,826 and expenses are $60,690.
10. Meeting Auditor: Sarah Sprogell, the Meeting Auditor, brought her report for the years 2014 and 2015. The Auditor states that the books for both years are in very good order, and noted that we have a gem in our Treasurer, Kitsie Hildebrandt, in her navigation of the funds of the Meeting. These reports are attached.
11. Monthly Meeting accepted the Auditor’s reports with appreciation for the work Sarah has done. It was noted how Sarah and Kitsie’s work on these reports has assisted the Finance Committee in a number of ways to better oversee the finances of the Meeting.
12. Brunswick Friends Meeting continues their process of finding a future place for Meeting for Worship. Martha Sheldon will reach out to them regarding the possible use of the Meeting house.
The meeting ended with a moment of quiet reflection in gratitude for the Spirit being present with us.
Sukie Rice, temporary Recording Clerk
The business portion of the gathering began with our monthly card ministry to those who are home bound, ill, or in need of encouragement, and to those engaged in world ministries who are celebrating their birthday. We then discussed our support of two members who will be attending the Friends United Meeting and United Society of Friends Women Triennial this summer in Kenya. Then we reviewed the Meeting refreshments volunteer list and the Tedford meals.
Jo-an Jacobus presented a program and discussion generated by USFW’s Blueprints on “Finding a Way to Peace” by Jan Dough. As she shared stories and reflections, we were encouraged to listen, pray, and act: listen for what is behind an act, pray without ceasing, act where we can. We reflected on the following queries: What are your tools to find peace and solve conflicts? Do you listen to and rely on God’s will to find answers? Do you complain about the injustices of the world, or do you act to make the world better for those around you? As Quakers, what are our peacemaking responsibilities?
Nancy Marstaller gave the annual treasurer’s report. The final total for the silent auction was $329. Memorial donations in honor of Clarabel Marstaller came to $1,375. Donations have been made to United Society of Friends Women International Children and Youth Projects, Warm Thy Neighbor, Wayfinder Schools, and Sexual Assault Support Services of Mid Coast Maine. Appreciation was expressed for Nancy’s work on this annual report.
We ended our meeting with the sharing of prayer requests and learning of updates from past requests.
In peace, Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, recorder.