Durham Monthly Meeting of Friends met for the conduct of business on Sunday, January 15, 2023, with 9 people attending from the Meetinghouse and 6 by Zoom.
1. Meeting Opening
Clerk opened meeting with a moment of silent preparation
2. Review Agenda
Clerk reviewed the agenda.
3. Approval of Minutes of December 2023 — Ellen Bennett
4. Ministry and Counsel — Renee Cote, Tess Hartford
Meeting Care Coordinator (MCC)
The Meeting Care Coordinator position description was read. Pastoral Care, which had been an MCC responsibility in the job description written for the new MCC position 2+ years ago, was removed and will remain solely with M&C.
Clerk noted that members were supportive of the description, but not yet clear for approval. Review and approval of the MCC position will be taken up again at the next monthly meeting for business (February).
Members were asked to think about those who should be on the MCC supervisory committee.
Members approved the description of the Search Committee for the MCC. Clerks are asked to ask members of their committees to consider serving on the MCC search committee.
The MCC job description will be attached to the minutes for distribution.
Proposal for Technology for the Meetinghouse
Clerk asked committee Clerks to review the proposal submitted by Craig Freshley regarding tech support for the Meeting. Clerk noted especially the gratitude we all feel towards Craig for helping to set up the technology that allows us to attend meeting via Zoom. The proposal Craig submitted will be taken up at the February meeting for Business.
Request was made to hold M&C members in the light, with gratitude for all of the work they have taken on.
5. Trustees — Sarah Sprogell
Sarah Sprogell summarized the annual report submitted for this meeting. The report was submitted for information.
Clerk shared tremendous gratitude for the care given and attention paid by the Trustees for the meetinghouse and cemeteries, as well as stewarding the gifts that this Meeting has been given. Trustees have, in this way, supported the entire Durham Monthly Meeting community.
Doug Bennett reviewed a financial summary of the costs to maintain the Meetinghouse and grounds over time. He noted especially the difference between capital and operating costs, and offered ways to think about finding the funds for on-going capital expenses.
Concern was expressed for the number of members who read and understand reports like this — those distributed in advance of Monthly Meeting for Business. The reports are important. Clerk noted that 5th Sundays may be used for listening sessions around particular topics of concern and could address this concern.
The suggestion was made to take 10 minutes of a future Business Meeting to take a “tour” of the DFM website so that all may know where to find important material.
M&C is asked to take on the scheduling of 5th Sundays, including a session on our values and leadings and how those are reflected in the spending of funds.
The Meeting expressed it gratitude for the transparency that both the Finance Committee and Trustees have given with respect to the Meeting’s finances.
6. Peace and Social Concerns — Ingrid Chalufour
A verbal update was given. Items to note include a letter to go to Brunswick Town Council regarding re/naming of the 250th Anniversary Park. Wendy Schlotterbeck will be meeting with the committee regarding settlement of refugees in our community. The committee is also seeking advice from the Wabanaki about ways to support their sovereignty. The committee is delighted that teachers involved in the Social Justice Enrichment Project will be gathering in person in the Meetinghouse to discuss their work.
7. Proposed Minute from Falmouth Quarterly Meeting
Clerk is not necessarily asking for approval of this minute, which will be approved by Quarterly Meeting at the end of January. The minute did not arrive in enough time for deep consideration. Clerk read the minute, which is attached.
Members approved and unite with the minute.
Clerk noted that when federal legislation was submitted to allow Wabanaki tribes in Maine to qualify for future federal programs. it was opposed by our U.S.Senators, They wanted the matter to involve the State and the tribes directly. We continue to support these efforts.
8. Representatives to Falmouth Quarterly Meeting 1/28/23
Clerk asked for those interested in attending Falmouth Quarterly Meeting. Mey Hasbrook and Kim Bolshaw indicated their interest.
Members approved and Mey and Kim were appointed as our representatives to Falmouth Quarter on January 28.
9. Communications Update
The Committee Clerk noted that the committee is transitioning at the moment, and working to clarify different processes, including those for distributing the Newsletter and posting Friends’ Notes.
To aid in this work the Committee intends to establish a “new” email address that is particular to the Communications Committee, thus freeing personal email addresses of committee members.
The Committee will put together guidelines for Friends’ Notes, and other forms of communication, which will be included in the Meeting Handbook.
There was a question about the committee composition which was referred to the Nominating Committee for clarification.
10. Correspondence — Leslie Manning
In closing, Clerk read a letter of thanks from a new recipient of DFM funds: QUNO (Quaker United Nations Office) in NYC.
Respectfully submitted, Ellen Bennett, Recording Clerk