Fall 2018 Newsletter

Fall 2018 Newsletter of the Intermountain Yearly Meeting
of the Religious Society of Friends

October 18, 2018

Dear Friends,

Intermountain Yearly Meeting will hold its annual gathering at Ghost Ranch in the environs of Abiquiu, New Mexico for the last time this summer. We will gather from June 9 until June 16, 2019. After much footwork, many meetings, and careful discernment by the Representatives Committee, I can announce that we will move to Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado in 2020. In the next month or so, I will send you information about the program and speaker from the Program Working Group; our theme is “Faith, Fear and the Future.”

Included here you will find important dates, access to the proceedings of the 2017 annual gathering, and other information. Most importantly, you will find the Fall Queries for your consideration.  Representatives Committee asks Friends to provide them guidance as they consider the present and future of IMYM. If you don’t have a chance to be part of a monthly meeting’s discernment about these queries, please send your personal discernment to me by January 10, 2019, clerk@imym.org.

Peace and Joy,

Molly Wingate
Clerk of IMYM

Dates of Note:

Arrangements Committee (the folks who plan the annual gathering) will meet at Pima Meeting in Tucson January 18-20, 2019.

Representatives Committee (the folks who consider and season business for the annual gathering) will meet Denver at Mountain View Meeting House February 8-10, 2018.

New on imym.org:

The documents related to the 2018 Annual Gathering are available at http://imym.org/2018-annual-gathering/.

These include the business meetings minutes, epistles, committee reports, minutes of concern, state of the meeting reports, gathering evaluations and more. Please enjoy this rich resource to learn about our community or to pursue questions regarding the goings on at the Annual Gathering.

Please help us spread the news:

Share this newsletter with those in your monthly meeting who might be interested. Also send corrected addresses to: clerk@imym.org

Please send the names and contact information for your monthly and regional meetings’ Clerk and Representative to Representatives Committee to clerk@imym.org. Along with the web clerks and others, I continually update the mailing list.

And last but not least:

Fall Queries for Intermountain Yearly Meeting – 2018

After considering the annual gathering evaluations, the evaluation on the structure of IMYM, and the leadings of members, the Representatives Committee offers these queries for monthly meetings to consider. Responses to all the queries is ideal, but please feel free to use your resources as needed. Send responses to Molly Wingate at clerk@imym.org by January 10, 2019.  I will compile the responses and distribute them to representatives to consider as they prepare for Representatives Committee meeting on February 8th , 2019 in Denver.

1. About the schedule for our Annual Gathering

We envision the annual gathering as a time for worship and fellowship, when younger and older people exchange ideas of the ‘durable satisfactions’ of life and, under a sense of Divine Presence, explore ways to experience and share them – precious times of living and loving, praying and learning.”  (Paraphrasing Clarissa Cooper in her 1974 history of IMYM)

Some years ago, we expanded the annual gathering of Intermountain Meeting to be a full week by including “early days” into the schedule. Early days begin on Sunday afternoon run through Wednesday morning.  For three days, we offer multi-meeting workshops where we can dive deeply into topics. The early days also provide additional time for restorative hiking, bird watching, and socializing, and for our children to mingle in a Quaker community. But they add expense for those attending and taking a week away can be difficult.

“Regular days” begin with committee meetings on Wednesday afternoon and go through worship on Sunday morning. Regular days include plenary meetings for our welcome, our speaker(s), for the Senior Young Friends Listening Session, for meetings for worship for business and for meetings for worship. Worship sharing, interest groups, committee meetings, and evening activities fill our time together.

As we prepare to move to a new location and in response to concerns voiced in our evaluations, it is time to reevaluate the schedule of our annual gathering, particularly the Early Days.  Please tell us your thoughts about the role of Early Days in the yearly meeting. Possible questions to consider include the following, but please go wherever Spirit leads you. Please be sure to include all populations in your meeting, including Senior Young Friends.

a. Do we want to continue having the Early Days for four days?
b. Are we done with Early Days?
c. Would we like them to become part of the regular days of the annual gathering?2. About Pay as Led

We have discerned that we will continue using Pay as Led to finance our annual gathering for the foreseeable future. Using this method, Friends prayerfully consider how much they wish to pay for their room and board at the gathering. And then pay as they are led by Spirit – either more or less than the actual cost. This first year of using this method, we had 10% more attenders, 51% more young adult friends and came within 4% of covering all of our costs. As we plan for next year, your feedback will be very helpful.

a. How did your monthly meeting experience pay as led?

This year we created an equalization fund to cover our costs by asking monthly meetings to contribute the amount of money they normally spent to support those attending the annual gathering. Going forward, are there other ways your monthly meeting would like to pay for it?

b. Would your meeting rather add to your assessment payments than make a separate contribution to the equalization fund?
c. Would you like to encourage individuals in your meeting to support the annual gathering?
d. Do you have other ideas? 3. About relationship between IMYM and MM.  

Do you have any concerns about how your Monthly Meeting relates to the Yearly Meeting (not just the Annual Gathering) throughout the year? Are there programs or other things you wish the Yearly Meeting could offer or provide?