We rejoice in the launching of some new initiatives during the past year. The adult education program, which began after long deliberation, has served well with discussions of important social concerns and accounts of spiritual journeys. This program has called for an increase in child care at the Meeting.
We have been blessed with the generous service of staff and volunteers for added nursery time and a new school-‘age program. The re-activation of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee has focused our attention on important public policy issues and service opportunities. As a result, the Meeting has joined the Joint Religious Legislative Coalition (JRLC). The Youth Committee has become a standing committee and has sponsored monthly activities with good participation. The Meeting has also established a website at
Ongoing programs enrich Meeting life. These include Fall Friends Camp, Thursday Community Night, involvement in the Loaves and Fishes program, participation in the work of Friends for a NonViolent World through hosting its annual craft fair and producing a masterpiece quilt for auction, and continued cooperation with Oakland Methodist Church. We have continued a warm and mutually invigorating relationship with Winona Preparative Meeting, which is in our care. We have welcomed their new members and enjoyed visits to and from Winona Friends.
We have had a steady flow of visitors at meetings for worship. We strive to make them feel welcome and included in the ministry and life of the Meeting, remembering the seeker in our own hearts. We have welcomed several new members, four directly into our own meeting and five into Winona meeting. One family moved to Albany, New York; another family to Winona, and one member moved to Ely, Minnesota. The deaths of several Friends associated with the Meeting and of family members and friends have affected us directly or indirectly. Births and marriages were celebrated, as were the 80″‘ birthdays of five of us, Friends who have sustained and guided our Meeting for over fifty years.
Much thought and prayer have gone into planning the first-ever sabbatical leave for the Director of Ministry, who has labored in this Quaker vineyard for going on twenty-two years. Her leave, which is anticipated for next year, will require an upshift of active ministry from all of us. The readiness to respond, however, has been shown in the truly springlike manner in which Friends rallied to special pastoral needs of the past year.
Members have continued their commitments to wider Quaker efforts such as Friends Journal, AFSC, FWCC, FNVW, Northern Yearly Meeting.
We are humbly grateful for the abundant fruits of the Spirit in our midst. We contrast the blessings and challenges of our Meeting life with the world around us, in its violence, poverty, pollution, cruelty, racism and other outrages, and we remember that we are called to take heart. For the kingdom is nigh, and this is the kingdom, that a person shall give up their only begotten self and put down their fear, and follow the Light.