July 10, 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

11:10 Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business

David Woolley – presiding clerk, Stephen Snyder – recording clerk, Pat Jones—Director of Ministry

  1.  Gathering Worship
  2.  June Minutes were APPROVED
  3.  Reports
    1.  Director of Ministry ­ Pat Jones 

Many Friends from the Minneapolis Meeting attended the Friends General Conference Gathering this past week—perhaps as many as 40. It felt good to see many children and youth present.  Pat invited Friends who attended the gathering to share experiences that touched their hearts.   Discussion:  A Friend, who clerked the local arrangements committee for the gathering, expressed appreciation for the members of meeting who volunteered during the week.   He noted that although FGC Quakers are mostly white, there was a retreat for People of Color before the gathering.  They experienced some misunderstandings and incidents in the local community and that opened up a discussion of white supremacy and white privilege within FGC.  Nekima Levy-Pounds, one of the plenary speakers, challenged us to address the shadow of white supremacy.  The shootings later in the week took us even deeper into these issues.  There was much sharing around these emotional and difficult issues facing both Quakers and the larger society.  Perhaps this is a point of breaking FGC and all of us more open to these issues.   Another Friend pointed out that there was full page article on the Friends General Conference Gathering in the Saturday-Sunday Edition (July 9) of the Minneapolis Star and Tribune.

B.  Ministry and Counsel  Committee- Ministry and Counsel Committee has not yet met this month so there was no report. Discussion:  One Friend raised a concern about our ongoing exploration of “eldering” in the Meeting.  Diane B. expressed gratitude for Meeting’s support of her travels to Ireland and the United Kingdom.  She was able to spend a few days at the Woodbrooke Quaker Study Center in England and visit Swarthmoor Hall, home of Margaret Fell and the center of the early Quaker movement led by George Fox.  She participated in the five day 1652 pilgrimage, “In Fox’s Footsteps,” organized by Friends at Swarthmoor Hall, attended meeting for worship in Swarthmoor Hall where early Friends worshiped and climbed Pendle Hill where Fox had his vision of a gathered people.  The turmoil from the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom and this past week of violence here in the U.S. remind us that early Friends brought their message of Light into the world to help heal the world.  Another Friend, who was also at Swarthmoor Hall,  said he was very moved, too, and saw that early friends also perceived the world in crisis and found a place of peace, quiet and grace that allowed them to persevere and find hope.

C.   Stewardship Committee report—Roland Barrett  Roland presented the first quarterly report of fiscal year covering the period from April 1-June 30.  Budgeted income for this fiscal year is $118,347.  Donations during the first quarter were $20,884 or about 18% of total budgeted.  Total expenses for the quarter were $22,208.  The checking account balance is $39,946.

D.   Religious Education Committee Annual Report—  Bill Hendricks expressed appreciation for the opportunity to co-coordinate the religious education program with Sue Tuggle.   He also expressed heartfelt thanks to the many members of meeting who worked with the children during the year and to their parents who helped chaperon the sleepovers, a bike trip, and other events.  Two of these events, the bake sale and breakfast, raised approximately $800 for three charitable organizations—Feed My Starving Children, the Heifer Project and Feline Rescue.  There were 36 First Day School sessions over the year with attendance ranging between 7-10 children.  Two of the children are maturing and we hope to have two programs next year, one for teens and another for younger children.  Details have yet to be worked out.  Summer plans include a trip to the U of M’s Raptor Center and a picnic.  Bill was able to attend FGC’s Religious Education Networking Interest Group and will be sharing his experiences with Sue Tuggle soon. Discussion: Friends expressed their thanks to Bill and Sue and to all the Friends working in our First Day Program.

E.   Report of Semi-programed Worship Committee—no report available.

 

  1. New Business
    1.   Bicycle Hitching Post Project—Jeff Nayler presented a proposal to install a bicycle hitching post on the boulevard outside the meetinghouse.  The idea came from the Peace and Social Concerns Committee’s concern for sustainability and has been seasoned by the Property Committee.  The City of Minneapolis sponsors a program to place these hitching posts around the city to encourage use of bicycles and pays for 50% of the cost.  Why a bicycle hitching post?  The hitch design is much better for securing bikes than our current bike rack.  Since it must be installed on the boulevard between the street and sidewalk, it would be visible to community and might be a witness to sustainability in the community.  The post, which must be installed on a paved area, would be located near the far corner of building at York and 44th.  Cost to meeting would be about $80.  Money can come from the Peace & Social Concern’s line item in the budget.  There is a choice of colors including neon ones.  Discussion:  There was discussion of legalities and fundraising and expressions of support for the project.   Friends APPROVED the proposed bicycle hitching post project.
    2. Trustees Committee Report—Jim Haefemeyer  Jim reported that the Trustees and the Stewardship Committee are discussing the idea of a special fundraising campaign as a memorial to Adolph Burckhardt who was so involved with the meetinghouse remodeling and upkeep.   This would be a significant effort with the goal of raising a large amount of money to secure the future of the building as it ages.  Jim reported that the signage issue is frustrating.  Responsibility for the sign is diffuse so nothing happens.  We could simply replace the sign with a new panel that is brighter and more informative. A rain garden and wheel chair ramp have also been proposed for the north side of the meetinghouse.  Jim has explored the feasibility of a ramp and found that there is adequate space, and it could be combined with repair of the rotten wood on the porch.  Discussion: Joseph F. said the Property Committee has prioritized building needs and sees the sign as a lower priority than other repairs.   He noted that building a ramp would likely cost at least $2,000-3,000 and porch repairs another $2,000 or more.  There might also be other costs in meeting the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, preventing cold air intrusion, maintenance, etc.  Joseph also expressed doubt about the aesthetics of a ramp in the Linden Hills neighborhood. Rae Beth C. indicated that the only suitable location for a rain garden would be on the side along 44th where the peace pole is located.  One Friend felt a ramp seemed like a simpler arrangement that a lift, but others pointed out that it won’t get people to the basement.  The ramp would be in addition to the lift and would give us an option if lift is out of service.  While a ramp is feasible it may not be a priority given we already have the lift to serve its purpose.  The Clerk indicated that we will leave issue for now and come back to it in the future.
    3. Communications: Terry Hokenson wrote to thank the Peace and Social Concerns Committee for the $150 to support his workshop at FGC. The money was shared with the other co-facilitators of the workshop.   Meeting also received a thank you letter from Feed My Starving Children for the contribution from the children of meeting.  The money was raised at the breakfast organized by the children in the First Day School program.
  2. Meeting Adjourned

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