Durham Monthly Meeting Minutes, January 17, 2021

            Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends met virtually via Zoom for the conduct of business on Sunday, January 17, 2021 with 12 people present.  Clerk Martha Sheldon opened the meeting with the query: How do you seek leadings of the Light in meeting for business as you do in meeting for worship?

1. The December minutes were approved as printed in the Newsletter.

2. Peace and Social Concerns Committee: Ingrid Chalufour reported for the committee:

            Both branches of the committee are actively working on projects that they have described previously. The committee is educating themselves on the Indigenous history of Maine, preparing a couple of events for the Meeting, and also preparing legislative information for those who want to do some lobbying. 

            The subcommittee focusing on books for children is in the process of selecting the books for the New Mainers. They have decided to use the generous budget they have been given as seed money. Once they purchase the books they will put a price on the books going to each of the 20 families and ask for sponsors for each family. They will do something similar when they start to purchase books for classrooms. They ask permission from the Monthly Meeting to put plates in the books for New Mainers saying “Welcome to Maine! Durham Friends Meeting”.

3. We approved the request to add book plates with the statement, “Welcome to Maine! Durham Friends Meeting.”

4. Youth Minister: Wendy Schlotterbeck reported that she will be staffing the NEYM Young Friends virtual retreat as a Resource Person, January 29-31.

5. Christian Education Committee: The committee acknowledges the tremendous wisdom and love from Dorothy Curtis, Amy Kustra and Jeanne Baker-Stinson who will be stepping off the committee.  The committee now includes Kim Bolshaw, Scott Barksdale, Tess Hartford and Wendy Schlotterbeck.

6. Ministry and Counsel: Renee Cote reported that Ministry & Counsel continues to explore the possibilities for involving young people in an educational program that will document the witness of members of Durham Meeting, particularly with the technology aspects.  We discussed sources for IT and video-editing.

            A hybrid worship proposal will be forthcoming. One of the aims of hybrid worship would be to engage those members and attenders who do not participate via Zoom. The hybrid strategy could be for a transition period before pandemic is under control, or for a long-term period. The committee discussed the usefulness of a survey, which could be conducted online or by phone.

7. Trustees: Donna Hutchins sent a report.  The hardwood floor is down in the back hall.  The ¼ round finish molding will be installed shortly.  The molding in the front hall was installed. They are looking into an alternative to the furnace used for the worship room.  The furnace blower had to be replaced.  They are receiving quotes for a new heating system.

8. Finance Committee: Sarah Sprogell reported that Friends were very generous and the expenses were lower than expected due in part to the fact that we didn’t use the building for meetings.  The year ended with a surplus, and $25,000 was transferred to the capital account for much needed work on the meetinghouse.  The end of year finance report is attached.  We expressed our gratitude for their work.

9. Nominating Committee: Kristna Evans reported that a final report will be presented in February. Many committees need additional members.

            The meeting concluded with quiet reflection and prayer for the meeting, larger community, and future national events. Clerk Martha Sheldon read a quote from Martin Luther King Jr.: “I have decided to stick with love; hate is too great a burden to bear.”

Dorothy Hinshaw, Recording Clerk