Third Haven Monthly Meeting 2016 Annual State of the Meeting Report:
Molly Burgoyne Brian
Third Haven Friends Meeting continues to flourish. Our membership continues to grow (3 new members this year, 152 total members), our weekly attendance is stable (about 40-65/week), and all of our committees are active. On many First Days, we have enjoyed the company of new attenders and visitors.
This committee continues their excellent work reaching out to members in need, conducting clearance committees, welcoming new members, organizing New Member and Attenders luncheon. They have helped families with memorial services and looked into issues of aging and end of life.
Worship & Ministry
This committee is responsible for upholding the spiritual life of the Meeting and deepening our worship service. They have continued sessions on spiritual journeys, devotional readings, Course on Miracles, book cluband Inward Bound days. This year they are conducting sessions on the newly revised Faith and Practice and planning a Spiritual Formation course for 2017.
Testimonies and Concerns
This group remains active in local, national and worldwide concerns. Theycontinue to work with the Hunger Coalition, Talbot Interfaith Shelter and the Talbot County Detention Center locally. They remain involved with The Maryland Alliance for Justice Reform, White Privilege Conference and the Syrian refugee crisis. They workwith the Meeting's Charitable Contributions Committee on right spending of Meeting's resources. They are considering construction of a Peace Pole as a visual reminder of the Peace testimony. They help maintain an active booklist. They manage the John Shoffner Education Fund and keep in touch with students we sponsor in Bolivia. They continue programs on issues of social justice, right sharing of resources and protection of the environment.
Property and GroundsThis committee has had a very active year. In addition to regular attention to replacing worn out items, they supervised the building of the lovely handicap access ramp to the Old Meeting house. They also renovated the bathrooms in the Common Room so they are gender-neutral and wheelchair accessible. They have cleared the overgrown brush on our east border and have done much work on this part of the grounds improving it substantially. They are planning to work with Overseers on maintenance and improvement of the burial grounds. Good environmental practices have been the foundation of their focus and efforts.
First Day School
Although our numbers in FDS remain small, the core group is active and a joy to the rest of us. We continue to explore ways to attract families and children of all ages.Our Scholarship Committeedoes an excellent job of communicating with grant recipients, reaching out to our College age members and encouraging younger members to attend Quaker schools.
The Scholarship Committee is currently giving grants to ten college students and hears from them regularly. Special incentive is available for students attending Friends schools (secondary or college).
Last year was a very busy year for this group with the George Fox Forums. This venture both attracted many people and at the same time gave us great insight into the limitations of our Common Room when hosting larger groups. We will be reforming our Common Room Committee in 2017 to look into this with a focus on improving the multi-use of this space.
Budget and Finance, Library, Communications and Hospitality committees
These groups are vital to the day to day functioning and life of the Meeting. Communications makes telephone and e-mail contact with inquiries, e-mails current announcements twice weekly, e-mails and mails the monthly newsletter, prepares a printed directory and maintains an up-to-date website. Their work is reflected in their annual reports and is active and impressive.
updated our fee structure this year to reflect current practices.
Representatives of other organizations
We are fortunate to have several members dedicated to groups outside of Third Haven such as Talbot Association of Clergy & Laity, NAACP, FCNL, PYM and several others. Their communications to us appear in our meetings for business, announcements and newsletters.
After several All Clerks Meetings, we have written Operating Guidelines that have been approved by Meeting. We hope these guidelines will give us a template to use as we move forward into the next 5-7 years and help new Friends understand the work of Meeting more clearly.
Third Haven Friends Meeting is an active, lively and engaged Quaker community of seekers blending together, respecting our differences and moving into the future with love for one another and attention to Quaker Faith and Practice.
Molly Brian and Candace Shattuck, Co-clerks