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March 16, 2016   Bellingham Quaker E-News
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Sunday, March 20, 2016
Singing Sunday: (Quakerly Hymns) 9:30 ish
Silent Worship: 10 AM
Second Hour: Biannual Priority Setting for Friends Committee for National Legislation

Explorations Academy 1701 Ellis St Click here for a  Map

Friendly Tasks for Meeting 
Care of Meeting:  Aurora F 
Key / setup: Don G        
Setup Helper: Wendy G
Greeter: Judy H
Snack: Virginia H
Kitchen setup: Wendy C   
kitchen setup Help:
Rachel VB
Kitchen cleanup: Mark H 
Kitchen cleanup Help: 
vacantChildren's teacher: vacant

Upcoming Second Hours:


Mar. 27 – Easter & Celebration of Mary Ann P's Transfer of Membership
April 3 – Potluck
 and extended second hour + Meeting for Sharing with Iris Graville and Jerry Evergreen
April 10 – MfWfB

April 17 – Welcoming/getting-acquainted activity
(OWG)  
April 24 – Extended Social Hour 

(PNQM)
May 1 –   MfWfB 

May 8 – Potluck (Mother's Day)
May 15 – Spirit-filled choices about food (Lynn Lohr)
May 22 –  TBA 

 
Calendar for Bellingham Friends

Wed., March 16, 6:30 PM
Silence and Singing

Sharon T and Don R's home
45 min of Silent worship at 7, break and then 1 hr or so of hymn singing
Come for either or both.  1st and 3rd Thursdays 

Wed., March 23th, 7– 9 PM 
Midweek Worship
Mary Ann P.'s home
Silent worship and worship sharing - 2nd and 4th Wednesday's of the month


Thurs,. March 31st - 7 - 9 PM
Spirit Group
(Discussing Eastern Light: Awakening to Presence in Zen, Quakerism and Christianity by Steve Smith)


Monday, April 18 - 5:30 - 6:00
Prayer Vigil for Peace in the Middle East
We are hosting this at
Explorations Academy
Today's Second Hour:

Friends Committee on National Legislation biennial priorities-setting:  
Save the date! Please come help decide what issues our Quaker lobbying organization in Washington, D.C., should prioritize in the next two years. Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) has been lobbying for the Quaker values in FCNL’s Policy Statement, “The World We Seek,” for more than 70 years. Rooted in worshipful discernment, their goal is to work through Congress to bring about peace, social and economic justice, right sharing of world resources, and care for the environment. FCNL depends on monthly Meetings around the country to prioritize their work every two years. We will meet for Second Hour, March 20, and the results of our discernment will be included in deliberations of the FCNL Policy Committee and General Assembly to determine their legislative agenda for 2017-2019 Congressional sessions.

All you need to participate is a concern about national policies. For some background, check these links:
 This document was accepted for seasoning on March 13 and will be considered for final approval at the April Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business

Bellingham Friends Meeting State of Society  Report 2015
(Second Draft, 3/13/2016)
    Amidst growth, deepening community, and spiritual seeking, Bellingham Friends experienced profound blessings and challenges in 2015. We explored our Quaker roots, tested our commitment to and understanding of Quaker process, added new members and attenders, and explored the complexities of purchasing a Meetinghouse. While the gift of finding a possible physical home for our worshiping community brought valuable lessons, it also tried our ability to fully live our commitment to simplicity, unity and community. The year's end found us still on the road to better understanding of the need to consistently and faithfully “mind the Light.” 
    In the first part of 2015, we concluded a team-taught series of workshops begun the year before, based on the Quakerism: Experience It! curriculum created by Elaine Crauderueff and adapted by Steve Smith. Several Bellingham Friends took turns as facilitators, many enriched the sessions by researching famous Friends and giving brief presentations, and the programs inspired rich discussion. 
    The Social and Environmental Concerns Committee supported Friends' leadings to work for peace and justice, which included: supporting the local Racial Justice Coalition; marching with our banner in the annual Pride Parade; hosting the AFSC exhibit, “39 Questions for White People,” participating in Alternatives to Violence Project trainings; lobbying with FCNL's Advocacy Team here.
    In July, we were blessed and challenged by the possibility of purchasing a former church, now known as the Bell Tower Studios building. Our Meeting agreed to make an offer with a four-month contingency contract that stipulated reaching unity on the purchase, as well as determining financial feasibility. Our ad hoc exploratory committee, with outstanding dedication and skill, researched many complex questions around practical considerations. Their many hours of work included initiating an ambitious capital campaign for the Meetinghouse, to which many pledged generously. Friends also continued regular giving which supports our general fund.
    The Meeting as a whole labored together regarding the Bell Tower Studios building, with concerns including whether we were Spirit-led to undertake Meetinghouse ownership, whether this was the right time and the right building, and if so, were we ready for the necessary landlord and other responsibilities. Throughout this sometimes tumultuous process, Friends reiterated confidence in our community to grow from the experience, and in our love and commitment to one another. However, the scope of the endeavor combined with the four-month time constraint (which ended in November) proved very trying, and some misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and frustration resulted. Nonetheless, by year's end, Ministry and Counsel had begun creating opportunities for us to continue corporate learning and healing through worship, with the help of trusted facilitators from other Meetings in the Quarter. Despite the difficulty of the process, many Friends remain hopeful that we will emerge stronger and more ready to address whatever opportunities unfold in the future.
    Friends also came together in many wonderful ways this year.  Our Outreach and Welcoming Group sponsored after-worship programs that fostered connection and participation, including poetry sharing and get-acquainted games. There has been increased fellowship at weekly and midweek worship. The Meeting has been enriched by two new members and a transfer of membership. Average weekly attendance increased by about one person, to 27.5. Our largest Meeting brought 46 Friends to worship in June. This increased participation sometimes stressed our Hospitality Committee, and we are seeking ways to share that work more equitably. Our first overnight retreat in several years explored lessons for adults in deepening our spirituality, and included a lively children's program.
    Also this year, Friends agreed to invest in our regular Children's Program by hiring a dedicated childcare provider. This creative, loving individual supports our families with children and is a welcome part of our community. We hope as we build the program, more children and teens will come.
    Bellingham Friends also celebrated the fruition of six wonderful years since the Lopez Island  Worship Group become a preparatory meeting under our care. We are delighted that our beloved Lopez Friends are now seeking Quarterly Meeting approval to become a monthly Meeting!
Announcements From Committees
Ministry and Counsel
 
Save the Date: April 3, noon to 2 p.m., we will have a second Meeting for Sharing about Meetinghouse Discernment facilitated by Iris Graville and Jerry Evergreen.  M&C members were heartened by Friends' willingness at the first session Jan. 31 to share deeply and honestly about their experiences around the Bell Tower Studios discernment. However, not everyone was able to speak in the time available, and there are still more avenues to explore. We are hopeful that Iris and Jerry's loving and steady facilitation will help us take the next step in this shared journey of learning and growing together.

Some queries to consider, in the context of our Meetinghouse discernment: What is it within me, that makes it difficult for me to hear? What would it look like, if I felt heard?

Honor our shared worship. Please remember to honor our shared worship by arriving a few minutes before 10:00 each Sunday morning. If you arrive after 10 a.m., you may choose to wait and enter with the greeter at 10:15. Before entering the worship room, please silence cell phones, remove coats, and organize belongings so that noise is minimized as we settle into worship.
~M&C Friends

 
"And so, dear friends, live in love and unity, and be kind, and courteous, and tender hearted one towards another."
~George Fox
Nominating Committee
Friends, Nominating Committee is working on the slate for next year and we invite you to share with us how you would like to participate in our Meeting community.  Please contact Lorina Hall and let's talk about how your talents could strengthen our shared experience. 
Outreach and Welcoming Group

Friends who shared poetry and other literary offering during the Second Hour are welcome to send that material to Betty McMahon (bettysmokey@hotmail.com, 734-0244) for publication in the March or April issue of Metamorphosis.  If possible, send your contribution electronically and include the author and year of publication.  If you cannot send it electronically, contact Betty for other options.
 
OWG will sponsor another welcome/getting-acquainted game, with a special invitation to new attenders, on Sunday, April 17th  This time we invite Friends to bring finger-food snacks for an extended social hour either following or during the game (to be determined).  Wendy Goldstein will facilitate the game, which we expect will be a fun and spirited way for us to become better acquainted.

 
OWG meets next on March 19, 2016.  Contact OWG Clerk Don Goldstein, dnx6309@gmail.com, for details.
Social and Environmental Concerns Committee
Concern of the Month for March

Familias Unidas por Justicia
- an independent Washington State farmworkers union is working to gain labor protections for farmworkers.  They are now boycotting Sakuma Farms and Driscoll Berries in an effort to gain a union contract for workers in the coming berry season.  

In March, they will be collaborating with a sister union in California and will embark on a month- long tour through Oregon and California to promote the boycott

Funds are need to enable farmworkers from our county to participate in the march.

For more information visit their facebook page
Or 

To donate directly to the tour click here

A little background: 
Farm worker jobs are some of the most dangerous and poorly compensated in the country .  Yet, under United States law, farmworkers are specifically excluded from critical labor protections such as workers’ compensation, health insurance and disability insurance. They also lack protection for joining unions and engaging in collective bargaining. 
 

Announcements From Bellingham Friends


_________________From Rachael Weasley___________________
 

I'm singing half an hour of music this Wednesday (TODAY) at noon, at First Congregational Church.  Free of charge. 

The idea is to offer people a space in the middle of the week to just sit and be present, and they've invited a musician each Wednesday. This time it's my turn! I'll be singing from a variety of genres-- classical, gospel, folk (from Puccini to Bob Dylan), and some of my original meditation songs.  I'm singing a cappella and accompanying myself on guitar, banjo, piano, and drum.  

 

___________________  From Western Friend via Mary Ann P____________________

Cultivate the Quaker Experience with Western Friend on-line

Monthly online conversations about topics important to Quaker Meetings

  • April 13, 2016 – Re-Organizing the Meeting to Help It Do Its Work (Committees, etc.)
  • May 11, 2016 – Benefits and Dangers of Electronic Communications
Here's what you need to know to join the conversation:
  • 6:30 - 8:00 PM Pacific  -  Please arrive on time.  
  • Western Friend Connect   - go to Workshop Room 
  • Allow 3-10 min for set up if this is your first time
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Announcements of Events in the Wider Community

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Four Points by Sheraton
714 Lakeway Drive, Bellingham
(formerly Best Western Lakeway Inn)

Whatcom County’s friendliest auction fundraiser features fellowship, inspiration and hope. Join us for this always-sold-out evening. Invite a table of friends for a plated dinner after you’ve bid on a wide variety of items and experiences during the big silent auction. Learn about the work of Interfaith in our community, as we share a story of hope and new beginnings. . Then, sit back for a lively night of bidding on several exciting items during the live auction. These include one-of-a-kind experiences and treasures, near and far weekend getaways, gourmet themed dinners, professional services, and so much more, all donated by a generous community to benefit Interfaith Coalition.

We receive about one-third of our annual operating income at the Hope Auction. We are funded by you, our friends in this community. Please join us as we continue in our work of transforming struggling lives.

TICKETS $50 individual; $100 gold level sponsor
Click here to purchase


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Love in a Time of Fear: Muslims, Christians, and All Faiths as
Good Neighbors      

Free Forum - everyone welcome!



Monday, April 11th from 7 - 8:30pm,

Bellingham High School Auditorium, 2020 Cornwall Avenue 

 
In late November two people sat down to tea. One was a Muslim and the other a Christian. In addition to sadness about the terrorist attacks in Paris, Lebanon, and Mali they shared their feelings about the response of political leaders and community members in the US  in response to these horrific events. They decided to see if others wanted to join them in encouraging all people to remember that love of neighbor is the core teachings of Islam, Christianity, and all great faith traditions. And that to love your neighbor as yourself means to work for their well-being.  The Interfaith Coalition invites you to join us and our special guest speakers where, as people of many faiths, respecting our differences and celebrating our commonalities, we encourage:
 
1. All people to seek out neighborly relationships with Muslims.

2. All people to stand against extreme and exclusive forms of religious or political ideologies that  lead to dehumanization of and violence toward others.

3. All people in this time of anxiety to  resist the urge to stereotype and scapegoat minorities, including Muslims.

4. All people, corporations and governmental agencies to respect the human and civil rights of all people, including Muslims.


Sponsored by the Interfaith Coalition, Lutheran Campus Ministry at Western Washington University, the Catacomb  Churches, and American Muslims of Puget Sound

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"White Supremacy Isn't Going To End Itself"
A three part workshop series 
aimed at anti-racist whites who are interested in:
  • Building relationships with other anti-racist whites
  • Fostering a community and culture around active participation in decolonization, resistance, and revolutionary work
  • Acting in solidarity with the struggles led by people of color locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally 
Part 2: "Why Protest? A Whites Guide to Direct Action" (March) (date TBA)
Goal: Using the framework from Part 1, teach whites how to strategize & carry out tactics against white supremacy in the spaces they already occupy and participate in POC-led direct action without co-optation. "Don't take up more space in anti-racist movements, take the space you are given in society and make it anti-racist."

Part 3: "White Supremacy In Your Backyard" (April) (date TBA)
Goal:  Bringing together what has been learned in parts 1 & 2, the final installment of this series will focus on the specific institutions in our community and how their leaders, policies, and interests are vehicles of white supremacy, and will bring in those in our community who are already doing the work of taking on these institutions.

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Prayer Vigil for Peace in the Middle East
Friday, March 18 from 5:30pm-6pm

First Christian Church
495 E. Bakerview Rd., Bellingham
734-6820


Monday, April 18, 5:30 p.m.
Explorations Academy - Quaker Worship

  
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On-line Quaker Meetings for Worship

Ben Lomond - Morning Worship
Every Morning
7:30 - 8:00 AM
Click here


Western Friend Lunch-hour Worship

Thursdays  
11:30 AM -12:30 PM
Click here and enter "Family Room"

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Looking Ahead to Wider Quaker Gatherings


Spring 2016 session- Pacific Northwest Quarterly Meeting
Theme: Deepening our Relationship with All Creation
Dates: April 22-24, 2016
Where: Lazy F Camp and Retreat Center near Ellensburg WA
Hosted by: Olympia Friends Meeting and Agate Passage Friends Meeting
For more information and/or to register, click here (online registration opened as of 2/26/16) 

Friends General Conference Annual Gathering of Friends for 2016
July 3 - 9

College of St. Benedict
St. Joseph, Minnesota
Evening speakers will include Rex Ambler from Woodbrooke Quaker Study Center in England.
Details are available here  and online registration begins on April 1st

North Pacific Annual Session
July 13 - 17

Whitworth University
Spokane, WA
Friend in Residence will be Diane Randall, FCNL

Pacific Northwest Quaker Women's Theology Conference
June 15-19, 2016 (date is June and not July as previously posted)
Canby Grove Christian Center
Canby Grove, Oregon
Theme: Naming the Gifts of the Living Presence
For more information, click here

 

Pine Ridge Workcamp
July 20 - August 3: 
This Workcamp carries on the long-standing William Penn commitment to fair and just relations with native people, as well as the personal ministry of the amazing Mike Gray. For two weeks we live in community and service with people on this Lakota reservation, exploring the history - including Wounded Knee - while honoring sacred traditions and building to the future.

Mary Ann Percy is happy to answer any questions you may have about the experience.

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Friday Peace Vigil
When:  Every Fri, 3:45pm – 4:45pm
Where:  104 W Magnolia St, Bellingham, WA 98225, USA (map)
Description:  The Nation's oldest weekly Peace Vigil. Paricipants gather weekly at 4:00 pm with signs in front of the Federal Building on the Corner of Magnolia and Cornwall Streets.
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On Our Website:
Click to visit website
 Metamorphosis 
(our monthly newsletter - with feature articles and poetry and much more!)
Back issues of the E-News
(soon to include this one!)
And much more!
Forward to a F/friend
Copyright © 2016 Bellingham Friends Meeting, All rights reserved.


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