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2011 Continuing Committee Report

Notes from Continuing Committee
Prepared by Claire Leonard, Clerk of Yearly Meeting

 

1.  Representatives attended from all monthly meetings except El Paso and Moab.
2. Regarding the Fall Queries
a. There was no enthusiasm for expanding the dates of Yearly Meeting to begin on Tuesday evening instead of Wednesday.
b. Questions around creating adequate time for the faithful conduct of business garnered a variety of responses.  The only practical ones were to have interest groups in the evenings for Friends who did not wish to participate in the intergenerational activities.  An attempt will be made to have these be suitable for all ages.  Memorial minutes will be translated into Spanish in advance to obviate the need for simultaneous translation.  The clerk will address the need for preparation for the business of the meeting in an advance letter and at her opening remarks. 
c. Regarding a directory—Minute 1-2011  Continuing Committee requests a task force be formed with Ed Kearns as convenor, to make an advisory proposal to IMYM regarding a directory.  The directory should have individual opt-in provisions and be created at the Monthly Meeting level.  The directory would be created in electronic form.  The proposal would include information on how Friends General Conference would use the information.  This directory would be kept separate from the IMYM yearly gathering directory.  It would be made clear to all with whom it is shared that the directory is the property on IMYM.
3. How can IMYM strengthen its relationship with Monthly Meeting?  There were a number of good suggestions which the clerk will try to implement.  It may not be possible to do all of them in the first year, but we will try to have some sessions to mentor monthly meeting officers and committee clerks,  implement a visitation by the clerk and a young Friend, and investigate opportunities to create a video about the Yearly Meeting and tape the keynote address.
Minute 2-2011  The Presiding Clerk is to ask the Yearly Meeting Gathering Resource person/guest speaker to suggest a worshipful query on the topic for that year that can be considered by Monthly Meetings prior to the June session.  Ministry and Counsel will review the suggested query and perhaps add another and then pass the query(s) on to the Monthly Meetings before March 1.
Minute 3-2011  The convener of the service task group (this will be Ross Worley from Durango MM) should meet with those members who have been named and begin work on its charge.
Facilitating the conduct of business
    The Presiding Clerk will send out both the letter to first time attenders and a letter to all who register with advice on preparing for business.  The business agenda will be published in Documents in Advance (as it was last year).  There will be a “consent agenda” to include items that need Yearly Meeting approval but not discussion.  Friends are asked to come to the meetings prepared and in a worshipful frame of mind.  Members of the Ministry and Counsel Committee will again be holding the meeting in the Light throughout its deliberations.  They will be asked to come early to settle and model the expectation that Friends/friends will enter into worship as they enter the room.
Financial matters
Minute 4-2011  Registration fees for the annual gathering will be raised from $60 to $62. 
Note that there will not be an increase in room/meals rate this year.
Yearly Meeting will need to decide how to recover the reserve monies that will be spent this year for the FWCC World meeting.  There will be another one in 5 years and it is our practice to put aside a certain amount each year towards this large expense.
Minute 5-2011  The fiscal year will now be October 1, to September 2011, starting in October, 2011.
Minute 6-2011  Two organizations which had been funded as a result of changes in structure of the Committee on Migrant and Border Concerns, at the request of that group, will no longer be funded as there was no approval by the Yearly Meeting business meeting to continue sponsorship of these organizations indefinitely.  These organizations are AFSC Project Voice and Dougla-Prieta Works. 
The future of funding for these two activities was referred to the Service Task Group for future recommendation.
Minute 7-2011  Continuing Committee recommends that IMYM donations for affiliated organizations be made by the treasurer as budgeted in a timely manner.
This will assure that there is no omission of sending funds because no specific request comes from the organizations or our representatives to it.
Notes about Ghost Ranch—One of Friends’ requests was to have less meat on the menu.  This year a vegetarian meal will be served to all on Thursday evening.  There will also be a more complete list of ingredients in various offerings.
Minute 8-2011  At the 2011 Annual Gathering an all week Quakers in the Arts program will made use of the art building and flexibility in room assignments will occur to make this possible.  The group will create its own activities, schedule, and provide needed materials.
This was proposed by a group of IMYM attenders under the leadership of Mary Beth Webster from the Cochise worship group.  They plan a variety of workshops and open studio time.
Minute 9-2011  Worship sharing start time will be moved to 8:45 am with a corresponding change in the end time.
Notes on the Nominating Process—Only 10 of 17 monthly meetings are represented on the Nominating Committee.  Each meeting is asked to appoint one member and not having someone from your meeting deprives you and the meeting of input and opportunities as well as limiting the pool for people to serve the yearly meeting in various capacities.  Other appointments would make the nominating process more successful.  The meetings are by conference call so there is no need to travel except to the Annual Gathering itself.
Regional meetings also have not appointed all the officers, coordinators, and representatives to which they are entitled (and who are needed to make the yearly meeting run well).  Regional meeting clerks have been notified of the appointments needed and are encouraged to do this at their spring gatherings.
There was a proposal to create an IMYM-FGC relations committee.  Andrew Banks will develop a formal proposal for consideration.
Reports from the Task Groups
The Stewardship Task Group (formerly the Finance Task Group) gave a progress report and will have recommendations in June.
The Structure Task Group, which is investigating how we might reorganize the yearly meeting committees to avoid redundancy, clarify roles, improve the planning of the yearly meeting, and involve more Friends in Yearly Meeting activities, distributed a detailed report.  This will be posted on the website as soon as some revisions are made.  Friends are asked to study this report and send comments and suggestions to Martha Roberts at martharoberts@comcast.net.
The Schedule for the Annual Gathering
Junior and Senior Young Friends prepared a draft schedule and presented this to the entire committee.  The schedule was prepared, incorporating some trial ideas to help assure that business is meaningful and has the needed attention, to give Friends more options for the evening time, to allow representatives from affiliated organizations and other groups to interact more closely with IMYM Friends in an informal setting, and to consider the concern raised by Las Vegas worship group about our spiritual response to the immigration crisis.  The clerks will finalize the schedule based on these considerations.  We will also try to institute some sharing sessions for committee members from the various monthly meetings.
Tasks for the Continuing Committee representatives
Each CC representative is asked to present a summary of the Continuing Committee meeting to their monthly meeting and to encourage attendance at the Annual Gathering.  Friends should stress that no one should be reluctant to ask for financial aid from the monthly meeting and the yearly meeting if they would find attendance a financial hardship.  Senior Young Friends can request support from the Tim Shaw fund by contacting their clerks and can also request monies directly from their monthly meeting/yearly meeting.
Please also direct members of your meeting to the website for the Task Group reports and urge that they be studied carefully. 
If there are items of business that your monthly meeting wishes to come to the floor of the yearly meeting, please try to prepare a minute, circulate it to other monthly meetings for seasoning, and notify the clerks of Continuing Committee and the clerk of the yearly meeting.  If the proposal involves a request for new funding, please also include the Finance Committee clerk in your communications.
Encourage your meeting to prepare and season their State of the Meeting report, send in the census and assessment, and forward memorial minutes to the clerk at coleonard@gilanet.com.
A discussion of the need for preparation for worship for the conduct of business would be very helpful to our deliberations.
Please send names of possible worship sharing leaders to Diana Hirschi at dianalee1@xmission.com.
Please ask your monthly meeting to be sure that they are represented on the Nominating Committee and be sure that if they have not appointed anyone to the Service Task Group, that this is intentional and does not represent an oversight.  The clerk of that group is Ross Worley at ross47@hispeed4u.com.  If your meeting appoints someone, please let both me and Ross know.
Thank you for serving your meeting and the yearly meeting.  I look forward to seeing you all at Ghost Ranch in June.

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