Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, January 2014 Interim Meeting
Report to Third Haven Friends Meeting
Friends are reminded that all items discussed are available on the PYM website under Interim Meeting. Comments may be forwarded to the appropriate clerks as indicated on the documents there that apply to each topic.
The General Secretary's Report covered youth activities of Middle School Friends, Young Friends (high school) and Young Adult Friends, all of whom show great interest in meaningful participation in the community of Friends. The Search Committee for a new General Secretary to take the role in July 2014 reported on their progress and time line and received approval for an amended job description.
The clerk reported continuing to work with interested parties to resolve LGBT issues that occurred last Summer involving Caln quarter and the Education Standing Committee.
PYM Long Range Planning Group reported their progress in developing proposed strategic directions to meet the following goals:
- Assist local meetings in fostering dynamic, Spirit-led faith communities that:
- nurture spiritual disciplines and practice
- welcome seekers and encourage diversity
To that end changes in structure and processes at PYM are proposed for both administration and Quaker life. This detailed presentation took 2 hours. Proposals for an Administrative Council, a Quaker Life Council and Continuing Sessions (annual and interim) as well as Nominating Committee and Granting Committee changes included goals gathered during listening sessions over the past 6 months. Proposed changes meet those goals. The entire presentation will be posted on the website and Friends are asked to view it, consider the ideas thoughtfully and respond as indicated at that time.
The Nominating Committee presented a minute requesting a Naming Committee be appointed to help find a new clerk for this committee whose clerk is resigning.
The Worship and Care Standing Committee presented its annual report on six working groups under its care: Friends Counseling Service, Meeting Enrichment Services, Meeting on Worship and Ministry, Ministry for Racial Justice and Equality, Spiritual Formation, and the School of the Spirit and Granting Groups: Aging Granting Group, Family Planning Granting Group, Greenleaf Granting Group, and Jeanes Granting Group.
The Eco Justice Working Group reported on the Growth Dilemma Project and is changing their name to the Friends Economic Integrity Project. They are championing fossil free investing. Another Friend commented on the complexities of different fuel sources pros and cons. Friend Fiduciary is in the process of forming a Green Fund for investing.
The Financial Oversight Working Group gave its annual report on invested PYM funds and the uses of their income. Funds are categorized as unrestricted available reserves, of which there are $1,046,608; Unrestricted with the principal spendable: $7,103,654; Restricted principal not spendable: $38,894,126; Future period investment:$551,639. These funds are held by PYM as trustee, Friends Fiduciary as trustee or third party banks as trustees. A detailed breakdown of each grant is included in the report.
Jennie Sheeks, Director of Development reported on member giving to the PYM Annual fund to date for fiscal year 2014. (7% of Third Haven members have contributed. ) She is available to meet with Finance Committees of monthly meetings to help them develop giving for their meeting. Online donations to PYM and Third Haven may be done at PYM.org.
One monthly meeting reported a vital and growing activity that drew young adult Friends back to their home meeting by asking them to read and lead activities at the Christmas Eve Meeting followed by fellowship. It has become a much anticipated opportunity for Friends to reconnect with old friends/Friends.
Respectfully submitted, Dee Rein, Lorraine B. Claggett