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January 2010 Newsletter

Letter to Friends
Newsletter of the Santa Fe Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends

First Month 2010

Calendar of Events


Meeting for Worship at the Meetinghouse, 630 Canyon Road is held every Sunday at 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.  First Day School is during the 11:00 a.m. Meeting.  Singing is at 10:00 a.m. each Sunday.
The South Santa Fe Worship Group holds Meeting for Worship every Sunday at 10:30 a.m. on the top floor of 1730 Camino Carlos Rey.

Sunday, 01/03/10 - 9:15 a.m. Ministry and Oversight Committee; 12:30 p.m. Potluck
Sunday, 01/10/10 - 10:10 until 10:50 a.m. Discussion Group
Sunday, 01/17/10 - 12.30 p.m. Meeting for Worship for Business
Sunday, 01/24/10
Sunday, 01/31/10 - 10:10 a.m. Meeting for Muffins

The Monthly Query for the 1st month, 2010
“How does our Meeting promote equal social and economic opportunity for those who suffer discrimination for any reason?”

 

Announcements


Jan. 6 - (Wednesday) People for Peace meets the first Wednesday of the month, at 7 pm. Meetings are held at the Commons Co-Housing, 2300 W. Alameda St.

Jan. 10 - The 10:10 until 10:50 a.m. Discussion Group will continue with "Are We Christian?"  The reading material for our discussion is on the fireplace mantel in the library.  Feel free to contact Pamela Geyer (984 - 0377) or Howard Shulman (984 - 9908) if there are none left.

Jan. 15 - Friends in the Arts [FITA] meets on the 3rd Thursday of the month, at the Canyon Road Meeting House at 6:00pm.  Creative people welcome.

Jan. 20 - SOUP, BREAD AND FRIENDS - 5:30 PM at Quaker House. Our simple suppers are held on the third Wednesday of each month during the cooler part of the year. Everyone is welcome. Do bring your friends and family! We provide soup, bread and tea and there is no charge. Contributions to the menu with a favorite soup recipe or other foods are welcome, though not expected.

Winter clothing still needed.  Please gather your extra or outgrown clothing, including warm hats, gloves, socks, jackets, shoes and items for layers.  When you add them to the bin in the library, they'll be taken to those in need.  It's helpful when they're clean and in fairly good condition.  Any size is welcome.

Steve Spencer is missing two books that he thinks might have been borrowed at one of our Friends gatherings at his house. They are by E. Grey Dimond, MD, titled "Milepost 80" and "Milepost 85." They are autographed by the author, who is an old friend of Steve's. If anyone knows of their whereabouts, please contact Steve.

From Alan Rogers: I would be happy to host the next (3rd) Meeting on Marriage at my home. Jamie and I live just off Bishop's Lodge Road a bit south of Shidoni (5 miles from the Scottish Rite Temple).  Thursday evenings or weekend days or evenings work the best for me.  If Friends who are interested would let me know how they would like to proceed, let's see if we can find a time that accommodates all who are interested.

Ira Progoff's Intensive Journal Program of Self Development with Paul Ilecki, EdD will be hosted by Friends in the Arts Feb 12-17, 2010 at the South Santa Fe Quaker House.  Joseph Campbell said, "Progoff's Intensive Journal Process is one of th great inventions of our time."  This three part series helps one to: Gain a foundation and perspective to realize the continuity and direction of your life, building a solid basis for future decisions.  Connect more deeply with your personal relationships, career, interest and body.  Use dreams and imagery as a guide in your unfolding process.  One of the 65 most significant books on psychology and spirituality of the 20th century.  This workshop is held annually at Pendle Hill.  For more information or to register contact: Kathleen Burke, Resident Friend, 983 7241, or email kathyburke302@yahoo.com

The Library Committee sponsors Santa Fe Meeting's First Quaker Talent Show:  Saturday 27th February, 2010. Potluck at 6PM, show to follow.  Quaker House. Yes, we know Michael Simon can tell stories, Steve Spencer can sing, and Betsy Bartels can dance, but what about the other talents Friends hide under their bushels?  Do you sing, dance, write, play the ukelele, or impersonate Barack Obama? We do need at least ten Friends willing to shine the light on their talent.  Performances should be no more than five minutes to allow for variety and wide participation.  Those interested should e-mail Jonathan Ashworth: pelode@yahoo.com.

Members are reminded to go to www.fcnl.org for current action information from the Friends Committee on National Legislation.

South Santa Fe Quaker Worship Group:  Quaker House, 1730 Camino Carlos Rey #209 Santa Fe NM 87507 (505) 471-2288. Meeting is held in a rust-red building on the short end of Camino Carlos Rey, northwest of Cerrillos Road.  Worship is every Sunday at 10:30 a.m. Welcome!

Send comments or suggestions for the monthly or weekly Quaker News to Marcy <marcypompei@comcast.net> or Bob <gaines@comcast.net>.

Minutes of Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business:

Santa Fe Monthly Meeting of Friends, 20th day of Twelfth Month 2009
 
Present:  Bob Gaines (Clerk), Marguerite Kearns (Recording Clerk), Lee Carter, David Henkel, Carolyn Stephenson, Steve Spencer, Philip Balcombe, Greg Cliburn, Alan Rogers, Marcy Pompei, Wyn Lewis, Rebecca Henderson, Elliott Skinner, Helen Corneli, Peggy Giltrow, Rebecca Allahyari, John A. Kretzmann, Martha L. Lewis, Mary Ray Cate, Jennie Crystal, David Giltrow, Pamela Geyer, Guthrie Miller, Kathleen Burke.
 
The Meeting started at 12:35 p.m. with silence in the meeting room at 630 Canyon Road. As is the usual practice, Clerk Bob Gaines read from Faith and Practice an Advice for business meetings, which was a reminder to be mindful of the decision-making process in the manner of Friends: "A deep and seeking silence can help reconcile seemingly opposing points of view. Be willing to wait upon God as long as may be necessary. By holding division and disruption in the Light, meetings may shift toward stronger and more creative solutions."

(1.) Incorporation: The issues carried over from the eleventh month concerned the relationship between the corporation and business meeting; the definition of attenders in relationship to members; and the appointment of officers of the corporation. Ken Winston Cain worked with Clerk Bob Gaines in the interim to take the previous concerns of Friends into consideration and draft revised language.

Two statements of purpose were proposed for consideration.  The first was intended to focus on the corporation's role in handling property for the Monthly Meeting, and the second was intended to provide a somewhat broader role for the corporation.  After attentive consideration and a through discussion, Friends approved the first of the two proposed definitions of purpose.  Friends also agreed that merely stating that the corporation exists solely to provide the umbrella of a legal entity was not sufficient, and that it was necessary to state specifically the purpose of the corporation in order to ensure clarity in relationship to "real world concerns," including liability; the appointment of individuals empowered to sign contracts such as the repair of the Meetinghouse Portal; and carrying out the bequest of Olive Rush as she intended.

Friends approved the following purpose: "The purpose of the Corporation is to serve the needs of the Monthly Meeting, including receiving, holding and disposing of property used by the Monthly Meeting for worship and related activities."

Friends agreed that attenders should be able to become members of the corporation and acknowledged the importance of more clearly defining the term "attenders" in the affairs of the corporation, as well as making sure that attenders would be covered in situations of potential liability and represented appropriately in the decision-making process.

Friends approved the following: "The Corporation shall have as members those who are recorded as members of the Monthly Meeting. Monthly Meeting attenders who register with the Corporation Secretary, up until the day before the annual Corporation Meeting, shall also be considered members of the Corporation. Decisions rest with the members of the Corporation."

Clerk Bob Gaines pointed out that New Mexico only requires nonprofit corporations to have two officers and that there was no need of a treasurer for the corporation.  Friends agreed to have only a president and secretary.  The Clerk also pointed out that the draft bylaws would allow the officers of the Monthly Meeting to serve as directors of the corporation if the Monthly Meeting desired that arrangement. The questions about the Meeting's current practice of appointing trustees to oversee the Olive Rush bequest and to hold title to the recent gift of land led to a serious and complex discussion of the ways in which this new structure would or would not be appropriate, functional, and sufficient to cover all needs.

As one of three trustees the Monthly Meeting had appointed to oversee the intent of Olive Rush's bequest of 630 Canyon Road, Elliott Skinner spoke of his deeply-felt concern about the ongoing need to clarify the role of the trustees if the Meeting decided to incorporate. He made reference to a letter he sent to the Ad Hoc Committee on Incorporation on October 26, 2009 reminding them of this charge. Also of concern to him was the draft Bylaw 13, which he felt was not in keeping with Olive's will. Because of his concerns, Friend Skinner questioned whether or not he should stand aside in the matter of bylaws for the corporation.

A variety of possible considerations emerged from the discussion, including reinforcing the understanding that the legal responsibility of decision making falls to the corporation but actual decisions will ultimately be made by the Monthly Meeting; that the current Olive Rush trustees could be replaced by a special committee established under Ministry and Oversight; the perspective that the approval of the bylaws does not affect the disposition of Olive Rush's bequest; and there still is a need to better define Friend Olive Rush's intentions about the disposition of 630 Canyon Road.

In order to address the matter of the relationship between the corporation and the Monthly Meeting relative to Friend Olive Rush's intent, the draft version of Bylaw 13 was read as a way to ground the discussion: "The net assets of the Corporation shall, upon dissolution, be conveyed as appropriate to the Monthly Meeting or to other Quaker organizations according to a plan presented by the Directors and approved by the Monthly Meeting. The dissolution shall follow the provisions of the New Mexico NonProfit Corporation Act (Section 53-8-1 to 53-8-99 NMSA 1978)."

The elimination of the words "other Quaker organizations" seemed to be a possible way to resolve the concern. However, the remaining questions associated with bringing all issues into alignment and the situation of a Friend possibly standing aside on such an important matter remained on the table. The commentary in Faith and Practice regarding someone standing aside was helpful, in that those present could understand and accept Friend Skinner's desire to step aside, but the ultimate goal was unity and a shared desire of those present to reach unity. With the obstacles to unity apparently addressed with the omission of the reference to "other Quaker organizations" and a path to resolution set out regarding the oversight of Olive Rush's bequest, Friends came to unity with the following Minute:

Friends agree to incorporate and to adopt the December 20, 2009 draft of the bylaws with the changes noted during the discussion regarding the purpose of the corporation, membership in the corporation, and the wording of Bylaw 13. The Meeting acknowledges the need to deal with the issues concerning Olive Rush's bequest identified during the discussion.

It is anticipated that the corporation directors and the registered agent will be appointed at the January 2010 business meeting.  Clerk Bob Gaines reported that the Nominating Committee had informed him that the committee believes it was not charged with nominating the corporation directors or agent and that the business meeting should take the lead in choosing them.  The Clerk proposed that the January business meeting consider appointing the current officers of the Meeting (Marguerite Kearns, Recording Clerk; Greg Cliburn, Treasurer; and Philip Balcombe, Clerk of M&O) as the initial corporation directors and Kathleen Burke as the Registered Agent (whose only function is to receive mail from the state and ensure it is delivered to the corporation).

(2.) Resident's Report: Resident Kathleen Burke gave an oral report for the eleventh month about the total of $620 in revenues from the guest apartment representing rentals on 15 out of 31 days.

Friends approved a request to cosponsor the Progoff Intensive Journal workshop with Friends in the Arts.

(3.) Good Works: (See Appendix for report) The committee charged with proposing the Good Works budget conducted a threshing session and provided several opportunities for input from members and attenders.  The proposed Good Works budget was submitted to the Finance Committee.  Making a decision about continuing deficit spending as compared to parity allocation is reflected in the proposed budget for 2010 which includes about a 10% funding cut for Quaker organizations and significant funding cuts to community programs. The Good Works Committee anticipates looking closely during 2010 at the organizations we donate to to evaluate their administrative overhead and other factors. One hundred per cent of what was budgeted for Good Works in 2009 has been paid out.

(4.) Finance Committee: (see Appendix for report) The Finance Committee has been considering the recommendations of the Good Works Committee to avoid deficit spending if at all possible. Based on a projected General Fund income of about $25,200 in 2010, the Finance Committee recommends a General Fund budget for 2010 of $25,710.  Of this, $15,555 is for Operating Expenses and $10,155 for Good Works (including the IMYM assessment of $4,230).  If projections are correct, the deficit would be about $500.

There will be a second reading of the proposed 2010 budget in January.

Friends agreed that the Treasurer be authorized to accept restricted donations to only the Meeting's named funds, and not to individual organizations. 

The Good Works Committee expects to meet in May and September of 2010 in order to consider the relationship between donations and expenditures and make adjustments if necessary.  One suggestion involved asking the Library Committee to make a report on its work and the use of the library by members and attenders.

(5.) Garden Committee: There was a suggestion to fund future garden expenses from the Maintenance Fund (which is primarily income from the guest apartment and meetinghouse use) in light of the stipulation in Olive Rush's will that the garden be maintained appropriately.  The Garden Committee will pursue this with the Building Committee, which is responsible for the Maintenance Fund budget.

(6.) Treasurer's Report: (see Appendix for complete report) Friends accepted the Treasurer's report for the twelfth month.

(7.) Ministry and Oversight: (See Appendix for report) Friends accepted the M&O report for the eleventh month.

The query for the first month of 2010 is: "How does our Meeting promote equal social and economic opportunity for those who suffer discrimination for any reason?"

Friends agreed to terminate the memberships of Lana Lenore and Virginia Black, with whom we have had no communication for many years and no way of contacting them.

Roxanne Seagraves and Eliza Kretzmann have resigned from Ministry and Oversight. Replacements are being sought. Ministry and Oversight will sponsor a retreat in March to help deepen the spiritual life of the Meeting.

(8.) Greeter: Steve Spencer asked to be relieved of the job of greeter, with the suggestion that this responsibility be reevaluated. The matter will be held over to the January business meeting.

(9.) Building Committee: (See Appendix for report) Friends accepted the Building Committee report.

A proposed 2010 Maintenance Fund budget was presented to business meeting that included continuing maintenance and minor projects, possible emergency issues, anticipated major expenses, and building and garden interactions. The budget will be considered at the January business meeting. Anyone with questions about the proposed 2010 budget should contact David Giltrow.

(10.) NM Regional Meeting: Santa Fe Monthly Meeting invites Friends to attend New Mexico Regional Meeting the weekend of April 17, 2009. Details are forthcoming.

Friends approved the request that Santa Fe Monthly Meeting host the gathering in Santa Fe.

(11.) Announcements: There will be a continuing discussion of "Are we Christians?" on the second First Day in June from 10 to 10:50 a.m. at the Meeting House. A spiritually-focused retreat will be held in March.

The meeting ended with silence at 3:20 p.m.

The minutes of Business Meeting for the Twelfth Month are respectfully submitted by Marguerite Kearns, Recording Clerk.

            *            *            *

APPENDIX TO MINUTES OF BUSINESS MEETING: Twelfth Month, 2009

(1.) Good Works Committee Report: The Good Works Committee Recommendation to Finance Committee and Business Meeting of 20 December 2009

Torn between prudence and the desire to be charitable during these distressed times, the Good Works Committee is compelled to advise that Meeting maintain a balanced budget in 2010. (We intend to meet our previously budgeted Good Works obligations for 2009 although this will almost certainly mean we will dip into savings by end of 2009). At a Threshing Session after Meeting for Worship on 1 November 2009, we heard Members and Attenders give voice to the desire to live within our means and to care for our Meetinghouse and our obligations without dipping into savings. We also heard voices - often the same ones - speak of the importance of putting our faith in collective action by giving to those in need in our community and the wider world. In the words of one at the Threshing Session, "Our giving together is a song that others can hear."

Budget Recommendations
Our Own Community: We recommend that Scholarships be reduced only by $300 to $1200, as this money provides for a significant  number of  our Members and Attenders, especially to IMYM. We recommend that Emergencies and Sufferings each be budgeted at $100. (The Sufferings fund has approximately $1400 in reserve.) In regard to Emergencies, is our sense that were a Member or Attender to incur an emergency that an appeal to the Meeting for assistance would be effective.  Our Own Community total for 2010 as recommended is $1400.

Broader Quaker Concerns: In acknowledgement that these significant Quaker organizations - excluding FCNL - receive no  assistance from IMYM except for transportation of representatives to meetings, we do not recommend severe cutbacks in our gifts to these organizations. We do, however, recommend that the AFSC gift be designated for $400 to go to AFSC NM for their important local work, with the remaining $350 unrestricted. We recommend that Friends Peace Teams - a dynamic, postcolonial nonviolent model of social change - be reduced only to $300, and no further. We recommend also that RSWR be reduced to $100.  Broader Quaker Concerns total for 2010 as recommended is $2250.

Local Community Needs: We recommend that rather than eliminate organizations, cutbacks of approximately 60% be applied to all Local Community Needs in 2010. Nonprofits are rewarded for broad-based community support, and it is not our intent to withdraw all financial and symbolic support from valued organizations at this difficult time. We do recommend that As Needs Arise be left in the budget  -- but with no monies  -- as a placeholder for future concerns, and we note that NM Repeal the Death Penalty can be struck from the budget. We note too that the Interfaith Leadership Alliance can not be reduced as the $125 is an assessment, not a contribution per se.  Local Community Needs total for 2010 as recommended is $2275.

IMYM Assessment: $4230.

Recommendation for Ongoing Work of the Good Works Committee

The Good Works Committee is moved to continue our work into 2010. We recommend that the Committee meet in May and September of 2010 to review the donations to Meeting received at that date. This would allow us to share with the Meeting how we are faring financially. We propose that at that time we also assess how to best  make our contributions. We are asking that the Meeting treasurer not pay any Good Works (excluding our assessment to IMYM and perhaps some scholarships) until after we have met in May and made a recommendation to the Finance Committee.

The Good Works Committee intends to do due diligence on administrative overhead on organizations both of Broader Quaker Concerns and those of Local Community Needs. We will invite further feedback about these organizations from Members and Attenders of Meeting. Our May and September meetings will allow us an opportunity to assess our donations, to consider what we have learned about particular organizations, and to make adjustments in our recommendation for the 2010 Good Works budget if necessary. These are volatile and uncertain times, and the proposed May and September meetings provide a safeguard as we strive for fiscal prudence.

Lest this all seem solely about money, budgets, and prudence, we hope to share stories of attenders' generous donations of time, materials, and funds to organizations in our community. We want to acknowledge the participation of many amongst us in Good Works. We hope to liaison with the First Day School as they have already been doing Good Works, and we hope to collaborate in future endeavors. We hope too that consideration of IMYM's fall queries concerning a future service project may spark passion for further Good Works. In conclusion, we hope to inspire further generosity in sharing stories, acknowledging ongoing Good Works, and undertaking  new commitments.

Respectfully submitted,
The Good Works Committee
Rebecca Allahyari
Peggy Giltrow
Wyn Lewis
Alan Rogers

(2.) Finance Committee

The Finance Committee (Jesse Bertron, Lee Carter, Jennie Crystle and Peggy Giltrow) met on November 21, 2010 to continue developing a draft General Fund budget for 2010.  After coming together in silence, we considered and accepted the recommendations of the Good Works Committee, with gratitude for all the work and care reflected in them.

As pointed out by the Good Works Committee, Meeting is concerned that we give to those in need, meet our own expenses, and not keep operating at a deficit.  The major components of the General Fund budget are operating expenses and Good Works.  Based on a projected General Fund income of about $25,200 in 2010, the Finance Committee recommends a General Fund budget for 2010 of $25,710.  Of this, $15,555 is for Operating Expenses and $10,155 for Good Works (including the $IMYM assessment of $4,230).  If projections are correct, the deficit would be about $500, and we hope that Friends may be able to cover that in the coming year. Details may be seen in the two-page draft Operating budget presented separately.

The Good Works Committee's offer to meet in May and September of 2010, and their suggestion to delay payment of Good Works donations (beyond the IMYM assessment and possibly some scholarships) is welcomed as a way to see how well Meeting is meeting its budget commitments and if necessary further adjusting the Good Works budget to reflect reality. 

The Finance Committee also discussed ideas for developing Meeting contributions during 2010. How can we increase our community involvement as a Religious Society of Friends, with time or with money? Over time, will Meeting want to get back to the idea of parity between expenses and good works? Could we hold a discussion of these ideas, and of membership and giving, based on the new Faith and Practice? What is the responsibility of Members to Meeting of commitment of time and money? How do we give of ourselves to the Meeting?

Given our appreciation for the consensus process of the Meeting, we would like to recommend that the Treasurer be authorized to accept restricted donations only the Meeting's named funds, and not to individual organizations. 

Respectfully submitted,
Peggy Giltrow, convener of Finance Committee

(3.) Treasurer's Report:

For January 1 to December 18, 2009
Prepared December 19, 2009

                    18 Dec 2009    15 Dec 2008
General Fund donations to date        23,606    19,293
Percentage of budgeted donations received    76%    72%
General Fund expenses to date    28,207    24,245
Percentage of budgeted expenses paid    90%    90%
       
Maintenance Fund donations to date    11,047    11,889
Percentage of budgeted donations received    110%    119%
Maintenance Fund expenses to date        5,064    5,622
Percentage of budgeted expenses paid    80%    80%
       
Total cash in bank    21,629    23,483
    Checking    6,158    3,073
    Money market    3,912    2,960
    CDs (3 and 6 month)    11,458    17,349
    Share    101    100
       
General Fund    4,233    7,999
Maintenance Fund    14,153    9,619
Olmstead Fund    162    162
Sufferings Fund    1,400    1,300
Turkle Fund    583    778
Adult Education Fund        600    502
Young Fund    120    120
New Meetinghouse Fund    377    3,012

(4.) Ministry and Oversight:

Note: these minutes, and the report to Business Meeting that will be based on them, cover the regular Meeting of the M&O committee.  A supplementary Meeting of M&O is scheduled for just before Business Meeting in 12th month, at which, of necessity, a verbal report of that Meeting will be made to Business Meeting, with minutes and a confirmatory written report to follow as soon as possible.

M&O met in the 1st day schoolroom on the first first day, twelfth month, 2009, at 9.15 am.  Present were Michael Simon, Martha Davis, Joan Spencer, and Bob Gaines, ex officio.  Bob Gaines clerked the Meeting.

The Query for 1st month will be:

"How does our Meeting promote equal social and economic opportunity for those who suffer discrimination for any reason?"

Matters of Concern

Michael will break eleven o'clock Meeting on second and fourth first days in twelfth month, Martha on first and third.  First month of 2010 and the months following await coverage.

M&O is dealing with concerns brought by several individuals in four clearness committees.

Insufficient time to address all items on our agenda during scheduled M&O Meetings this year resulted in discussion and a decision to meet again at 9.15 a.m. on third first day this month.  Discussion of several items was postponed until then.

Philip will ask Nominating Committee to fill vacant places on M&O.

Discussion of dividing M&O into two committees resulted in unity that we should remain as one.

Organization of a Meeting retreat to be held in the spring was discussed and approved.  Martha Davis will liaise with Wyn Lewis as she plans the retreat.

A memorial minute for Gerry Greene will be prepared, and a letter of condolence sent to Frankie Greene.

We agreed to recommend to business meeting that the memberships of Lana Lenore and Virginia Black -- whom we have had no communication with for many years and no way of contacting -- be terminated.  Martha reported that Eliza Packard said she wants to end her membership; Martha will ask Eliza to send a letter making that request.  Bob will arrange with Philip for letters to Barri and Roger Sanders asking them how they understand their membership.  Bob will arrange with Philip for a letter to Miguel DeLuca inviting him to the Christmas Eve worship and asking how he understands his membership

Respectfully submitted,
Philip Balcombe, Clerk of M&O.

(5.) Building Committee:

The maintenance fund begins 2010 with an approximate net balance of $7,000. This reflects that the portal beam repair will cost about $7,000, which is considered an expenditure in 2009. That is, while the payment will be made in 2010, the expenditure is encumbered in 2009.

Building Committee Summary Budget for 2010 Maintenance Fund
            Maintenance:                                   $1,500
            Emergency (if needed):                         $5,000
            Specific projects:                             $5,800
            Garden comm. draw down from maintenance fund:  $1,200
Total expenditures (including emergency set aside)        $13,500

Balance brought forward from 2009:                         $7,000
Projected Income based on 50% occupancy of GA, misc:       $9,000
Total carry over and income by end 2010:                  $16,000

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