June 12, 2016

Minneapolis Friends Meeting Monthly Meeting for Business


[Some names and information have been edited or removed for publication on the web – recording clerk]

10:00 Semi-programmed Meeting for Worship

11:00 Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business

Attendance: David Woolley – presiding clerk, Tom Ward – recording clerk

  1. Gathering Worship
  2. May Minutes were APPROVED
  3. Reports
    1. Director of Ministry ­ Pat Jones is out of town  
    2. Ministry and Counsel  – Carolyn VandenDolder  out of town
    3. Stewardship – brief update – Jared Nichols    In the first 10 weeks of the fiscal year we have taken in $13,800 in contributions, which is 61% of what was budgeted for contributions during that time period.  There is $33,594 in the checking account, and all the previous year’s expenses have been paid.  Discussion: Can we get this information out to the rest of the Meeting?  It could go out in the weekly email ….  Does our current rate of income match our current rate of expense? Roland B. – We are ok.  The big expenses come at the end of the year.  As we drew to the close of last fiscal year we had $60K in the checking account.  Now, after paying the end of year bills, we have $33K with all our debts paid – and that is ok.
    4. Property Committee annual report – Ed Souther   The committee continues to provide the maintenance and general up-keep of the Meeting House and grounds.  There have been no special issues or projects this past year.  A building “punch list” of needed repairs and projects was completed in 2015 and the committee recently prioritized these projects.  A number of smaller, yet important, projects can be completed by committee members, however there are two projects requiring more immediate attention.  First is the replacement of the timbers at the base of the large tree on the west side of the building. This can probably be done by a group of members from Meeting.  The second, and more important project, is an assessment / repair of the concrete sidewalk at the north entry and the mitigation of the flow of water and ice over the north entry sidewalk during winter months.  Project costs will be determined in the coming months. Discussion: Will these projects be paid out of capital funds?  Concrete work will be a capital expense, timber replacement will come out of property committee budget  ….  Has the ice problem been only on the north side?  The problem at the curb on the southwest corner of the lot is more a maintenance problem, then a structural issue.  On the south side of the building, paving stones have helped to capture moisture and reduce water / ice flow  ….  Tom W. and Rae C. attended a class on water gardens and believe there are a couple locations we could build rain gardens – one in the vicinity of the sign on the front lawn, which still needs to be replaced. This would potentially involve a number of committees – Welcoming, Garden and Property. The Trustees were suggested as needing to be part of the discussion, also  ….  Another Friend addressed the appearance of the meeting house and the need for additional painting.  The outside was painted, recently; but the committee’s list of repairs includes the flashing, the trellis, and the front and back door  ….  There was a question on the upkeep of the elevator.  The Trustees are working on a long-term replacement schedule for the elevator; but this is a big budget item that was addressed in a recent Trustees’ report to Meeting and needs to be considered within the already stretched building funds and the prospects of a fund raising effort   ….   Discussion switched to concerns about snow shoveling and safe access for worshipers in the winter – a problem that can reduce attendance.   Ed replied that the property committee has been addressing these concerns.  They recently met with Holly Kelly regarding water gardens and the possibility of redoing the back yard as a dry stream bed to catch the water before it flows over the sidewalk. They and the Trustees are very aware of the snow and ice issues and are exploring solutions for the ice at the curb-cut by the southwest entrance.  One idea is to cover the ice with a non-slip temporary covering on Sunday mornings.
    5. Adult Program Committee annual report – (no report)
  4. New Business
    1. Peace and Social Concerns (P&SC) – Ranae Hanson   P&SC is asking Meeting for approval of the direction they want to pursue this year – a topic around which to organize three events for the Meeting. They propose that the focus for this year would be to assist people in Meeting to discern, to follow and to share their leadings as to peace and social concerns issues and to find ways to move forward.  One way to do this would be to interview each other regarding their experiences with peace and justice – beginning with the committee meetings on the 3rd Wednesday of the month. What are individuals doing?  What are committees doing?  P&SC hopes this is more than just their committee’s exercise and would spread to the entire Meeting.  The committee can’t fix things on their own. Actions need to be grounded in the Spirit.  We need to support the actions of individuals. The committee wants to reach out to the Meeting for more general input. Elizabeth Showalter: we want to challenge individuals to move from talking to taking action and to move out of isolated thinking and action to network with others. We need focus and grounding.  Friend asked if sexism was included in this effort. Yes, some of us will make sure that is included. Another Friend cautioned that these issues are not done, referencing the recent murders in Orlando, Florida; and another raised concern about profit and greed associated with gun sales and asked if there are educational resources (videos?) that could be shown at Meeting or publicized in the weekly bulletin.  Friend likes the idea of the committee becoming a resource for the meeting – to be responsive to what people are doing and to provide support. Friends APPROVED the proposal by Peace and Social Concerns that the focus for this year would be to assist people in Meeting to discern, to follow and to share their leadings as to peace and social concerns issues and to find ways to move forward.
      1. Elizabeth Showalter – discussed a letter circulating among Friends – an open letter to Hillary Clinton written by the Palestine Israel Action Subcommittee of the Peace and Social Concerns subcommittee of Ann Arbor Friends Meeting.  They are asking for individual signers to the letter, not Meeting approval. They currently have 80 signers.  The letter supports the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS) that is working for justice for the Palestinians and is supporting economic boycotts, divestment of Israeli war bonds and governmental sanctions against the Israeli government.  The American Friends Service Committee was an early supporter of this movement. The letter recognizes there may not be wide acceptance or clearness on this position.  The letter was read and people were encouraged to sign it.   
    2. Northern Yearly Meeting (NYM) report – Elizabeth Showalter gave a brief update    NYM is still trying to publish the completed NYM Faith and Practice and they are looking for help accomplishing this.  The final chapter was written last year and it still has not been published.  They would appreciate help from anyone who has experience in publishing.  They have a new coordinator for middle schoolers and they hold two retreats for middle schoolers during the year.  A number of people from Minneapolis Friends attended Northern Yearly Meeting this year, although attendance was down some with Friends General Conference coming to Minnesota in July.  About 240 people attended the session, with about 70 being youth.  Elizabeth is the editor of the NYM newsletter and Bill H. is a representative from the LGBT community to NYM.  The newsletter is online.  Contact Elizabeth for the password.
    3. Welcoming Committee – Sandy Olson   There are lots of opportunities to serve refreshments during the summer.  A sign-up sheet is being circulated.        
    4. Memorial Minute for Adolph Burckhardt (see attachments) – Sandy Olson, Betsy and Ed Souther wrote the Minute.  The Minute was read out loud.  Friends gave their thanks to the writers and thought it was well done.  There was a question if the Minute will be sent to Rose, Barbara and Brian.  Yes, it will be sent to them. Friends APPROVED the Memorial Minute.
  5. Meeting Adjourned



Memorial Minute for Adolph Burckhardt

Following a major stroke, Adolph George Burckhardt, Jr., 87, died peacefully on January 15, 2016, in San Antonio, TX. Adolph was born on November 25, 1928, in Minneapolis, MN, the second child and only son of Adolph G. Burckhardt, Sr., and Signe Johnson Burckhardt. Adolph’s father died in 1936 when Adolph was eight years old. As a teenager Adolph worked in a drug store and later as a bus boy at the Curtis Hotel. Adolph attended public schools and graduated from Central High School. At Central High he excelled in drafting classes. He was employed as a draftsman and electrical designer in the private sector and subsequently was employed by the City of Minneapolis Public Works Department for more than 20 years.

As a child Adolph attended Sunday School at Lake Harriet Lutheran Church at 4401 York Avenue South. The building, which had been Lake Harriet Lutheran Church, was purchased by Minneapolis Friends Meeting in 1950. Adolph’s journey from his family’s Lutheran faith toward Quakerism included consulting Richard Newby, a Minneapolis Friends Meeting pastor, about the possibility of becoming a Conscientious Objector during the Korean War. He was granted CO status and served two years of alternative service as a nurse’s aide at Anoka State Hospital.

Adolph, his first wife Ann and their daughter Barbara began to attend Minneapolis Friends Meeting in the 1950’s. Following a divorce, Adolph continued to attend Meeting and became a member in 1980.  Adolph and Rose Burckhardt were married under the care of the Meeting. Rose’s son Brian, who was adopted by Adolph, was raised within the Meeting.

When she reflected about Adolph’s life, Rose noted “the most outstanding quality that marked the entirety of Adolph’s life was his selfless giving to others.” He assisted blind bowlers, facilitated support groups for people experiencing separation and divorce, served as both a Stephen Minister and a Befriender, packed meals for Feed my Starving Children and served meals for Loaves and Fishes. He helped construct and maintain buildings for two church camps.

Adolph played a crucial role at MFM when our meetinghouse was renovated during the early 90’s. He helped move pews and select new chairs as a member of the Property Committee. As owner’s representative during the remodeling, he stopped by before he went to work to discuss the tasks of the day with the contractors. After work he stopped by again to be sure the contractors’ tasks had been completed successfully. He made sure door jams were added, kitchen counters were level, and windows opened smoothly. Adolph also served on the committee purchasing a new piano. He facilitated the formation of the men’s support group, and served on both Ministry and Counsel and the Marriage Oversight Committee. He visited homebound members and drove several people to Meeting. He was often the first person to arrive at the meetinghouse on First Day morning. Adolph was a pillar of this meeting, a beloved elder, and a humble servant of the Light.

In 2015 Adolph and Rose moved to Comfort Texas to be closer to their son Brian and his family. Adolph was preceded in death by his parents and his sister Dorothy Monacelli.  He is survived by his wife Rose, daughter Barbara, son Brian and daughter-in-law Shauna, and grandchildren Azalee and Brock.

Respectfully submitted by Sandy Olson, Betsy Souther and Ed Souther

Comments are closed.