Yearly Meeting #33 of Southern Appalachian Yearly Meeting and Association

Warren Wilson College, Swannanoa, North Carolina



June 6, 2003 - Sixth Day (Friday) 9:30 am


1.         Opening

After a period of worship, John Geary, assistant clerk, welcomed Friends. He explained that Clerk Sharon Annis was recovering from surgery and asked that Friends hold her in the light.


2.         Introduction of Visitors

The clerk introduced the following visitors and asked that Friends welcome them:


            Nils Pearson and Barbara Hirschkowitz, Friends General Conference

            Rosa Packard, Friends Peace Teams

            Chuck Fager, Quaker House

            Amanda Thompson, Friends World Committee on Consultation

            Ruth Seely, American Friends Service Committee

            Errol Hess, William Penn House

            Rebekah Rojcewicz, Junior Yearly Meeting Head Teacher


3.         Roll Call and Census Report

Administrative Assistant Mary Calhoun read the roll of meetings and worship groups. The following were represented at the beginning of this session: Asheville, Athens, Atlanta, Berea, Boone, Brevard, Celo, Chattanooga, Cookeville, Crossville, Foxfire, Greenville, Huntsville, Memphis, Nashville, New Moon, Oxford, Royal, Swannanoa Valley, West Knoxville.


A list of yearly meeting attenders is included as Appendix A. Separate lists are not included for particular yearly meeting sessions. State of the Meeting reports are included as Appendix B.


Mary Calhoun presented a report from the 2002 census. The census report is attached in Appendix C.


4.         Epistle Committee

The clerk asked for volunteers for the epistle committee. Barbara Esther, Peter Buck and Edie Patrick volunteered.


5.         Nominating Committee

Penelope Wright, clerk of the Nominating Committee, presented the committee's preliminary report. She began by expressing gratitude to those whose terms of office are completed and who are stepping down.


She brought forward the following names of Friends who have agreed to serve in the positions listed through the year listed:

            Clerk, Sharon Annis, 2004

            Assistant Clerk and Personnel Committee Clerk, Kristi Estes, 2005

            Ecological Concerns Network Co-Clerk, Susan Carlyle, 2005

            Ecological Concerns Network Co-Clerk, Kathy Johnson, 2004

            Faith and Practice Revision Committee Member, Nancy Beecher, Indefinite

            Finance Committee Clerk, Chris Berg, 2005

            Finance Committee Member, Dick Houghton, 2005

            Nominating Committee Clerk, Penelope Wright, 2004

            Nominating Committee Member, Perry Treadwell, 2004

            Nominating Committee Member, Jane Goldthwait, 2004

            SAYF Steering Committee Member, Chris Duke, 2005

            Local Arrangements, Bob Welch, 2004

            AFSC Corporation Representative, Sallie Prugh, 2005

            AFSC Corporation Representative, Carol Lamm, 2005

            AFSC-SERO, Debra Johnson, 2005


A complete list of positions of responsibility, the individuals serving in them and their terms as of the end of Yearly Meeting 2003 is included in Appendix C.


Penelope Wright reviewed the question of the position of web manager. Kendall Ivie originally volunteered to set up the web site and carried the responsibility for some time but is unable to continue. Tim Lamm has stepped forward to maintain the site for the coming year. Over the longer term, the question is whether the web manager might need to be a paid position. If it is a paid position, the position would come under the purview of the personnel committee; if it is a gift-filled position, it will come under the nominating committee. A Friend raised the issue of whether the web site is actually needed. Other Friends spoke to the importance of the site, but that it is only as useful as it is up-to-date and accurate. Barbara Esther presented a draft description of the position developed by the handbook committee, which initially raised the issue of the need for a web manager position.


Friends approved Tim Lamm to serve as the web manager through 2004, with Ceal Wutka and Kendall Ivie (if available) as an ad hoc oversight committee with Chris Berg of the finance committee as an advisor if needed. The ad hoc oversight committee will come forward with a recommendation about the continuation of this position.


Penelope Wright reported that the nominating committee has been unable to find Friends to take leadership of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee established by Yearly Meeting 2002. In the light of this difficulty, the Nominating Committee presented a proposal that the Peace and Social Concerns Committee be comprised of SAYMA's representatives to American Friends Service Committee, Friends Committee on National Legislation, Friends Committee on Unity with Nature, Friends Peace Teams, Right Sharing of World Resources and Quaker House. This proposal will be considered further at the Saturday business meeting session.


The Nominating Committee asked that the yearly meeting reconsider the issue of the location of yearly meeting. For many years SAYMA has had a goal of alternating the location of yearly meeting east and west of the mountains. The Nominating Committee has had the responsibility of identifying a site selection committee to find sites west of the Smoky Mountains . However, after years of work, no site west of the mountains has been found, and it is difficult to find Friends to carry out what appears to be a fruitless task. Perhaps the yearly meeting is ready to agree to meet at Warren Wilson College indefinitely and make the effort to hold representative meetings in varied locations that relieve the burden of travel from peripheral meetings. The site selection committee would be laid aside until it is no longer feasible to meet at Warren Wilson. Friends agreed to take up this matter again later in the yearly meeting session.


Penelope Wright reviewed the positions still to be filled and asked Friends to bring to the nominating committee the names of possible candidates.

6.         Logo Committee

Carol Lamm reported for the ad hoc logo committee. The committee hopes to bring forward a recommended design for consideration at September representative meeting. Friends who wish to help with the development of the logo were invited to participate in a Saturday evening meeting with the committee.


7.         Ecological Concerns Network

Susan Carlyle presented the report of the Ecological Concerns Network. The report is attached in Appendix C.


In response to a question about the rationale for a second representative to Friends Committee on Unity with Nature, several points were made. This yearly meeting has a strong ecological witness and could share this strength with FCUN. Having a second representative would allow more continuity through staggered terms. The appointment of a second representative would amplify SAYMA's strong concerns on these critical issues. The Ecological Concerns Network has identified a Friend who is willing to serve as a second FCUN member.


Chris Berg, clerk of the finance committee, reported that the yearly meeting has somewhat, though not greatly, overspent this year's budget for wider Quaker organization representatives. A concern was raised about adding a new position when we are having difficulty filling positions to which we are already committed. Other Friends spoke to the non-interchangeability of positions, that is, that a vacancy in one position cannot necessarily be filled by a Friend with gifts for another position. Several Friends spoke to the importance of funding any position to which we appoint a representative.


Friends did not reach unity on the appointment of a second representative to FCUN at this time. The matter will be considered at a later time.


A Friend spoke to the importance of Friends traveling on ecological concerns receiving the kind of support traditionally given to Friends traveling in the ministry, such as prayerful oversight.


8.         Handbook Committee

Barbara Esther presented the following report for the ad hoc handbook committee:


The committee has only met, in its entirety, once this past year. (I was brand new to it in December of 2002.) As a first step, we undertook to get suggestions for changes in job descriptions from various Friends who had recent experience in SAYMA. Perhaps half of these Friends have responded to date. Our thanks go to all who did so. Our goal was to put a more recently updated version of the job descriptions in the hands of every officer and committee member or representative this weekend, to make clear information regarding the yearly meeting's expectations of those who undertake the real work of SAYMA, both for use while serving and as a tool for recruitment.


Our April meeting was not fully attended. That combined with the incomplete responses to the job description revision requests has caused a delay in our work. As we are able, we will send various officers and representatives descriptions as working drafts. No plan is currently entertained to print the handbook in full for each officer or representative. Instead, we would like to have it posted on the yearly meeting web site for any interested with only a few copies made on paper and requests for sections made available through the SAYMA office for Friends not using the Internet. The fluid nature of the handbook (it will change as SAYMA's work changes) and the fact that each person needs only a small portion of the handbook, led us to recommend that course of action.


The second half of our work this past year was that of formulating questions regarding the experience of each officer stepping down from an appointment. We hope to glean information to check against the existing descriptions for accuracy. This, too, will depend upon responses. The handbook will only be of service if it reflects current practices.


At the April Representative Meeting the Ad Hoc Handbook Committee requested that the yearly meeting appoint or hire a web manager. I submit the following general description of the position, with details being left to those actually carrying out the work. We have been very fortunate to have had Kendall Ivie and Tim Lamm offer to work on the web site without having been appointed. Their gifts and time have made us aware of the need for a position within the yearly meeting structure.


The web manager of Southern Appalachian Yearly Meeting and Association will add material approved for posting during yearly meeting business meetings to the web site and will keep current postings that are time-sensitive for Friends. Our web site will be maintained as a source of information for all those interested. A committee will provide oversight and assistance in carrying out the work of the web manager.


9.         Quaker House

Chuck Fager, director of Quaker House in Fayetteville, North Carolina, spoke about the work of Quaker House, which is next door to Fort Bragg . Quaker House is a manifestation of Friends' peace witness to Fort Bragg and the region. The organization's staff members counsel GIs wanting to get out of the military. In 2001 Quaker House handled 3200 calls; in 2002 it handled more than 4000 calls; and so far in 2003 the number of calls is breaking records each month. Quaker House also does peace work in cooperation with other citizens of the area. Quaker House is financially supported almost entirely by Friends, including SAYMA. Quaker House is a co-sponsor with several other groups of a GI rights hotline. Quaker House handles calls from 11 states. More phone counselors are needed. This is a job that can be done from other locations; interested Friends should contact Chuck Fager.


10.       Additional Members and Visitors

The clerk asked Friends from meetings not represented at the opening of the meeting to stand. The following meetings and worship groups were recognized as being present: Anneewakee Creek, Birmingham and Clemson.


The clerk also welcomed several visitors from outside SAYMA who had not yet been introduced:

            Lloyd Lee Wilson, Rich Square Monthly Meeting, North Carolina Yearly Meeting (Conservative)

            Mike Arnold, North Carolina Yearly Meeting (Conservative)

            Nancy Gideon Clark, Homewood Monthly Meeting, Baltimore Yearly Meeting

            Tom Munk, Chapel Hill


The morning session closed with a period of worship.

June 6, 2003 - Sixth Day (Friday) 2:30 pm


The afternoon session opened with a period of worship.


11.       Budget

Chris Berg, clerk of the Finance Committee, presented comparative balance sheets for the past several years. A copy is attached in Appendix C as “SAYMA End of Fiscal Year Account Balances Report.” He explained that SAYMA has deliberately reduced its cash balance over the past several years by running a deficit budget. However, the yearly meeting is getting close to the target cash balance of $10,000.


Chris Berg presented a budget for expenditures. If the current assessment is maintained, these expenditures would result in a deficit of about $13,000. The finance committee has not yet determined whether to recommend an increase in the assessment to reduce this deficit. Chris invited Friends to address questions to the committee as they continue their work at this yearly meeting in preparation for further consideration of the budget.


12.       Faith and Practice

Geeta McGahey presented the report of the Faith and Practice Revision Committee. The report is attached in Appendix C.


Friends turned to consideration of the revisions of the Introduction and Part One: Continuing Quaker History presented by the committee. Several Friends spoke to the importance of monthly meeting consideration of all changes to SAYMA's Guide to Our Faith and Our Practice, with various individuals pointing out the attention required by monthly meetings and by the revision committee to this process.


Friends approved the changes as proposed by the committee with one friendly amendment. The approved version is attached in Appendix C.


13.       Newsletter

Kim Carlyle, co-editor with Susan Carlyle of the Southern Appalachian Friend newsletter, presented the editors' report. The report is attached in Appendix C.


14.       Oxford Monthly Meeting

The clerk read a letter from Oxford Monthly Meeting requesting membership in SAYMA. The letter is attached in Appendix C. Kristi Estes of Memphis explained how Oxford Friends worked with Memphis Friends Meeting, following the process outlined in Faith and Practice to move from being a worship group through preparative meeting status to becoming a monthly meeting.


A concern was raised about extending SAYMA's boundaries beyond a workable geographic area. A suggestion was made that a quarterly meeting system could address the difficulty of travel and foster ongoing communication about yearly meeting issues.


Friends united in welcoming Oxford Monthly Meeting as a member monthly meeting of SAYMA. We hope to send a delegation to visit and welcome Oxford Friends as SAYMA members.

15.       Ministry and Nurture

Kathy Burke presented a report for the Ministry and Nurture Committee. The report is attached in Appendix C.


16.       Personnel Committee

As clerk of the Personnel Committee, John Geary presented the following report:


The Personnel Committee meets during every representative meeting of SAYMA. Discussion this year centered around SAYMA's administrative assistant's job description and duties. The committee reviewed job descriptions from two yearly meetings, Baltimore Yearly Meeting and New England Yearly Meeting. Drafting of a comprehensive job description by members of the committee is in progress. Some form of performance evaluation will be required for merit increases. This would be in addition to cost-of-living adjustments. The job description of the SAYF administrative assistant is current but may need revision in the near future. It was noted that the SAYF administrative assistant has also taken on the responsibility of treasurer of SAYF. Time sheets for both positions should be consistent and simple. The problem of health benefits was considered.


Models for pay raises were reviewed but no decision was made. The committee agreed that the preparation of the payroll should be outsourced to an accountant to relieve the SAYMA treasurer of this responsibility.


Since no comprehensive performance evaluation method exists at this time, the committee decided not to give merit increases. The committee did submit a cost-of-living adjustment and health benefit increase to the Finance Committee.


17.       SAYF Steering Committee

Dick Houghton presented a report from the SAYF Steering Committee. The report is attached in Appendix C.


18.       Site Selection Committee

Larry Ingle reviewed the history of SAYMA's attempts to find a site west of the mountains. Eight or ten years ago SAYMA set the goal of alternating two years on the east of the mountains and two years on the west. Attempts over these years to find an affordable site west of the mountains have not been successful. It is possible that Shorter College in Rome, Georgia might now be a possibility. He also reminded Friends that SAYMA has a reservation at Warren Wilson for the weekend of June 10-13, 2004.


Memphis and Oxford Friends expressed support for Warren Wilson as a location; the journey is a day's drive for them whichever side of the mountains is selected. A Friend from North Carolina expressed two concerns about the role of area Friends. Many local Friends do not choose to stay overnight at Warren Wilson, thus missing the benefit of the residential retreat offered by the yearly meeting. Second, we may be wearing out our welcome, as local Friends bear a heavy burden for arrangements.


Friends approved meeting at Warren Wilson College June 10-13, 2004, as scheduled. Friends asked that the Nominating Committee continue to identify members for the Site Selection Committee to keep an eye out for other possible sites.


19.       Friends Peace Teams

Rosa Packard of Friends Peace Teams expressed her gratitude for the blessings she has received through visiting among us. Friends Peace Teams encourages participation of Friends in peace teams, both Quaker-sponsored and others, through small grants and encouraging monthly meetings to support such work through the traditions of gospel order.


Friends Peace Teams is asking monthly meetings to explore the meanings and possibilities of the challenge of "Every Meeting a Peace Center," a challenge brought to us by Elise Boulding and Mary Lord, the first co-clerks of Friends Peace Teams. Rosa Packard referred to a set of queries around conscientious objection for monthly meetings to consider and invited Friends to discern whether they are led to work in this area as a peace team project.


20.       American Friends Service Committee Southeast Region

Debra Johnson, one of SAYMA's representatives to the American Friends Service Committee Southeast Region (AFSC-SERO), presented highlights of her report. The full report is attached in Appendix D. Three staff members were present at SAYMA, available to talk with Friends about their work: Samir Moukaddam with the Middle East peace program; Angela Henderson with the youth program HIP (Help Increase the Peace); and peace educator Sarah Gill.


21.       Friends Committee in Unity with Nature

Kim Carlyle, SAYMA representative to Friends Committee on Unity with Nature, presented highlights of his report. The full report is attached in Appendix D.


22.       Quaker House

Dick Houghton presented a report from Geoff Pratt of Nashville Monthly Meeting, SAYMA's representative to Quaker House. The report is attached in Appendix D.


23.       Compact Fluorescent Bulb Project

Susan Carlyle reported the following results from the Ecological Concerns Network's project to encourage SAYMA Friends to replace incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs. Friends reported installing 163 new compact fluorescent bulbs. Conservatively estimated, these light bulbs will result in a reduction of 475 pounds of sulfur dioxide (which contributes to haze and acid rain); 258 pounds of nitrogen oxides (which depletes the ozone layer and contributes to acid rain); and 69,989 pounds of carbon dioxide (the leading "greenhouse gas") in the atmosphere.


The afternoon session closed with a period of worship.

June 7, 2003 - Seventh Day (Saturday) 9:30 am


The meeting began with a period of worship.


24.       Nominating Committee

Penelope Wright, clerk of the Nominating Committee, spoke of her joy and gratitude in being able to bring forward an almost complete slate for the positions that were unfilled yesterday. The names brought forward and the years in which the terms will end are:


            Treasurer, David Ciscel, 2005

            Recording Clerk, Lee Ann Swarm, 2005

            Faith and Practice Revision Committee Member, Errol Hess, indefinite

            Nominating Committee Member, Errol Hess, 2005

            Personnel Committee Member, Judy Prince, 2005

            Personnel Committee Member, Lee Ann Swarm, 2005

            SAYF Oversight Committee Member, Cathi Watkins, 2005

            SAYF Steering Committee Member, Jeremiah Gold-Hopton, 2005

            Workshop Coordinator, Ellen Johnson, 2005

            Co-Registrar, Beth Myers, 2005

            Co-Registrar, Barbara Conant, 2005

            AFSC Corporation Alternate, Barbara Esther, 2005

            AFSC Corporation Alternate, Colin Sukioga, 2005

            AFSC-SERO, Hector Black, 2004


Friends approved these appointments. A complete list of positions of responsibility, the individuals serving in them and their terms as of the end of Yearly Meeting 2003 is included in Appendix C.


The committee is awaiting further information on a Friends World Committee for Consultation position.


Larry and Becky Ingle offered to serve a two-year term on the Site Selection Committee. Friends gratefully accepted this offer asked the Site Selection Committee to work with the Handbook Committee to develop a description of the criteria needed and the committee's role in site selection. Dick Houghton offered to assist the Site Selection Committee in exploring a site in Cookeville, Tennessee.


Friends returned to the question of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee. As reported yesterday, the Nominating Committee has been unable to identify Friends led to serve as clerk and assistant clerk for the committee.


Friends considered factors that may have contributed to the difficulty of finding leadership for the committee. Friends reconsidered the purpose of the committee and considered a variety of options for changing the committee's charge and structure. Friends also considered alternative ways of meeting the needs for which the committee was formed.


Friends agreed to relieve the Nominating Committee of the responsibility of continuing to search for leadership for the Peace and Social Concerns Committee for the current term. However, if Friends come forward, the Nominating Committee will consider their offer.


Friends agreed that over the course of the coming year, the charge of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee will be revisited by an ad hoc committee. The ad hoc committee will communicate with monthly meetings in revisiting the charge. The clerk appointed Steve Livingston, convener, Anne Welsh and Dennis Gregg. Penelope Wright will serve as a corresponding member.


Penelope Wright reported that the matter of whether the Junior Yearly Meeting coordinator should be a paid or gift-filled position in the future is still under consideration. A recommendation from the Ad Hoc Junior Yearly Meeting Committee will be forthcoming at September Representative Meeting. Friends who are under the weight of a concern on this topic are encouraged to contact Clerk Sharon Annis before the September meeting.


25.       Treasurer's Report

Treasurer Kendall Ivie presented the following report:


SAYMA currently has $12,213 in available funds plus $8,244 in dedicated funds. See the Account Balances Report for details.


For the fiscal 2003 year to date SAYMA has income of $63,365 and expenses of $67,717 leaving a net loss of $4,352. Details of income and expense to date are included in the FY2004 Proposed Budget.


The Treasurer has two requests:

                        1)         that reimbursement requests be submitted in a timely manner,

                        2)         that assessments be sent in quarterly.


The treasurer reviewed the comparative balance sheet showing FY 2000 forward. He also presented a year-to-date budget report showing actual vs. budgeted expenses. Copies of both appear in Appendix C.


26.       Finance Committee

Chris Berg, clerk, reported that the Finance Committee has on its ongoing agenda: setting up payroll tasks with an outside vendor; liability insurance; and gingerly approaching the possibility of applying for 501(c)3 status with the IRS.


After consideration, the Finance Committee did not recommend a change in the assessment for the coming year. A question arose about whether the Finance Committee had considered an increase in wider Quaker organization contributions to cover inflation. The committee had not given this issue consideration. Friends were reminded that requests for budget additions should be submitted before April Representative Meeting.


A question was raised about the proposed contribution to Rural Southern Voice for Peace. Friends asked that the Finance Committee, with the assistance of Celo Friends, reconsider the contribution to RSVP and recommend to September Representative Meeting a reallocation of some or all of the RSVP contribution to a wider Quaker organization if appropriate.


A Friend asked whether the budget could cover an additional FCUN representative. The treasurer replied that the line for delegate travel has been increased from $5350 to $6500, but it is difficult to forecast delegate expenses with precision.

Friends approved the budget as proposed by the Finance Committee, with no change in the assessment of $55 per person.


27.       Ad Hoc Committee for Advancement

Kristi Estes reported that the Ad Hoc Committee for Advancement established by April 2003 Representative Meeting is still in the process of formation. This committee's charge is "to draft text that describes rightly ordered process for worship group/monthly meeting relationships and the process for a monthly meeting becoming a member of SAYMA." The committee is also charged "to review the issue of the geographic boundaries of SAYMA."


28.       Language

A visiting Friend suggested that SAYMA Friends consider our use of terms in distinguishing between positions of responsibility that are paid and unpaid. The use of the term "gift-filled" may suggest that Friends who are paid are not using their gifts. He suggested using the term "released Friend" to describe the situation of Friends who are remunerated by the yearly meeting to allow them to bring their gifts in service to the yearly meeting. They are released from the need to support themselves financially by other work.


A Friend pointed out that SAYMA has a Released Friend Fund for other purposes, and that as we seek terms that express the truth we need to avoid confusion in that direction.


29.       Visit to Oxford Friends

Friends who are led to travel to Oxford, Mississippi to welcome Oxford Monthly Meeting as a member meeting of SAYMA should contact Kathy Burke, clerk of Ministry and Nurture.


30.       Faith and Practice Copies to Young Friends

Chris Berg announced that the Faith and Practice Revision Committee is working with the Finance Committee to provide copies of SAYMA's Guide to Our Faith and Our Practice to the participants in the Southern Appalachian Young Friends group at this yearly meeting.

June 8, 2003 - First Day (Sunday) 9:30 am


The meeting began with a period of worship.


31.       Junior Yearly Meeting

Ron McDonald told how the parable of the Good Shepherd, the theme of this year's Junior Yearly Meeting, had been lived out in relationships among JYM participants this weekend. Rebekah Rocjewicz, JYM lead teacher, led the children in sharing some of the wisdom drawn from the stories of the Good Shepherd, the pearl of great value and the mustard seed. The children sang a song full of images of the kingdom of God and another about the kingdom being above us, in all the earth, and inside of us. They concluded with a spirited rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game." Ron McDonald thanked the many adults who had helped with the program.


32.       Southern Appalachian Young Friends

Southern Appalachian Young Friends presented the following epistle:


To begin the year and plan before the first retreat, the Oversight, Nurturing and Steering committees met at Nichole Rennie’s house in Atlanta, Georgia during August 2002.


The September retreat was held in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. It was a service-oriented retreat, and the major project was the cleaning of the river. One of the highlights of the September retreat was the dance that was held on Saturday night.


As per tradition, the October retreat was at Penn Center in South Carolina . At that retreat, Young Friends enjoyed the beach, a service project, and a local community potluck.


West Knoxville , Tennessee hosted the November retreat. The theme was physicality; this theme was explored through participation in a yoga workshop, a contradance, and physical games such as the ever-popular game called “wink.”


To the disappointment of Young Friends and FAPs alike, the January retreat was snowed out. Although Asheville was unable to host the January retreat, it was the location of choice for the February retreat for the Nurturing, Steering and Oversight committees. Friends met in the spirit of worship to discuss regulations concerning handheld electronics, the respect guideline, and signing up for Nurturing Committee at SAYMA.


Beautiful Cloudland Canyon , Georgia , hosted the March retreat. Friends experienced guided meditation at a waterfall and learned how to build wilderness shelters. They also performed a talent show and enjoyed a very successful business meeting.


The theme of the April retreat, which was at the West Knoxville meetinghouse, was nonviolent conflict resolution. A workshop was held on the topic. A group of experienced nonviolent protesters who wanted to close down the Y-12 bomb plant hosted it. Friends also worked on a meetinghouse-oriented service project and joined Knoxville Friends in meeting for worship.


Friends gathered at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina to attend the SAYF program within yearly meeting. We attended workshops with the themes of music therapy, games about tradition, and building a labyrinth. We also held a successful business meeting in which we discussed joining Nurturing Committee, handheld electronics, and the respect guideline. Young Friends led and participated in a talent show with the wider community. Thank you to all of the Friends of the wider community who assisted and educated the SAYF program.


33.       Young Adult Friends

Young Adult Friends introduced themselves as they individually moved to the front of the room and created a human pyramid. They reported that this yearly meeting has been a time of building a structure for their group. They had their first meeting for business ever; got up at 8:30 am; did worship sharing around embers of Quaker tradition; talked about many, many topics; appointed a clerk and planning committee; continued the tradition of welcoming new SAYF graduates by “covertly” kidnaping them and helping them transition into the YAF community through a game of wink, chatting and hanging out; and decided to build more bridges between the YAF group and the wider yearly meeting.


34.       Registrar's Report

Carol Gray, co-registrar, presented the following report on numbers of participants:


                                                    2003                2002                2001


            Total                                   260                   233                   248

            JYM                                     23                     13                     18

            SAYF                                   47                     33                     45

            YAF                                     10                     10                      5

            All MM & WG                      36                     36                     33

            Non-SAYMA MM&WG         8                      6


35.       Nominating Committee

Penelope Wright, clerk of the Nominating Committee, expressed her joy in bringing forth the following names, including two young adult friends, for service:


            Nominating Committee Member, Trina Farmer, 2005

            Yearly Meeting Planning Committee Member, Jonah McDonald, 2004

            Faith and Practice Revision Committee, Barbara Esther, indefinite


36.       FCUN Representative

Friends continued their consideration of the proposal to appoint a second representative from SAYMA to the Friends Committee on Unity with Nature.


FCUN has requested two representatives from each yearly meeting. FCUN has recently affiliated with Friends Committee on National Legislation, which requires that its member organizations have 50 percent of their governing bodies appointed by yearly meetings. Friends spoke to the importance of SAYMA's witness on behalf of the earth. Concern was expressed about the ongoing budgetary requirement. A Friend spoke to the importance of monthly meeting work on issues related to the earth, and that we not take the appointment of a second representative as a way to avoid the hard work we all need to do.

Friends approved the appointment of a second representative to FCUN.


Penelope Wright brought forward the name of Alice Wald to serve as the second SAYMA representative to FCUN. Friends approved.


37.       Appreciation to Recording Clerk

Friends minuted their appreciation to Carol Lamm for her service as recording clerk.


38.       Concern about Junior Yearly Meeting

A Friend expressed a concern about the use of a "hireling minister" in the junior yearly meeting and asked that Friends seek among us for a Friend with the needed gifts.


39.       Friends General Conference

Penelope Wright, one of SAYMA's two representatives to Friends General Conference, recognized Nils Pearson, FGC visitor, and Barbara Hirschkowitz, FGC publications manager, who have been among us this weekend. In addition to our second representative, Julia Sibley Jones, Penelope called attention to other SAYMA Friends who also serve FGC:


            Sharon Annis, Central Committee

            Mary Ann Downey, Friends Journal board

            Priscilla Ewen, invited to Ministry and Nurture Committee

            John Geary, Assistant Clerk, Publishing and Distribution

            Tom Kenworthy, Development Committee

            Perry Treadwell, Clerk, Long-Range Planning Committee

            Robin Wells, invited to Religious Education Committee


Penelope Wright encouraged Friends to support FGC financially as individuals and monthly meetings. She modeled a hat with banners representing FGC programs and invited Friends to learn about these many programs.


The report from our Friends General Conference representatives is attached in Appendix D.


40.       FCNL

Joe Taylor reported that at the end of this month FCNL staff will be moving out of their building for its renovation. About 75 per cent of the funds needed for this renovation have already been raised. More money is needed; request letters will be coming to Friends.


FCNL yard signs with the message "War is not the answer" have had the effect of almost doubling the number of people using FCNL as a resource. Joe has handled the distribution of about 20,000 signs from Atlanta to other parts of the country.


41.       AFSC

Ruth Seely, AFSC associate general secretary, spoke of her gratitude for the warm welcome she has experienced from SAYMA Friends. AFSC appreciates SAYMA's financial contribution and also the many contributions SAYMA makes through individuals who serve both through AFSC-SERO and at the national level. An epistle from AFSC is attached in Appendix C.


42.       Friends for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Concerns

Annie Black expressed her gratitude for the opportunity to attend the FLGBTQC mid-winter gathering and her willingness to serve SAYMA in any other way she can. She explained that the group's new name reflects the importance to many Friends of having all the various groups named. Her report is attached in Appendix D.


43.       Right Sharing of World Resources

Geeta McGahey shared some excerpts of her full report on the Right Sharing of World Resources program, which is attached in Appendix D. She is willing to travel to monthly meetings and worship groups to share her experiences with RSWR. A video is available.


Kay Parke, who has been involved with RSWR on a personal basis for many years, recalled the history of the organization, which began as the "One Percent More Project." She encouraged Friends to return to this vision of contributing one percent of their income to projects in the developing world.


44.       Friends World Committee for Consultation

Rachel Weir reported that Friends World Committee for Consultation Section of the Americas has a new director. Rachel looks forward to a new blossoming of FWCC after a period of cutting back due to financial constraints. The Quaker UN office has been upgraded from "special consultative status" to "general consultative status," permitting Quakers to speak to the United Nations on a wider variety of topics. A southeast regional gathering is in the works for this fall. The FWCC report is attached in Appendix D.


45.       Epistle

Barbara Esther presented the epistle prepared by the Epistle Committee. Friends approved the following:


Loving Greetings to Friends Everywhere,


The Southern Appalachian Yearly Meeting and Association (SAYMA) returned for its 33rd annual gathering to the beautifully wooded campus of Warren Wilson College in Swannanoa, North Carolina, on June 5-8, 2003, also the site of our first yearly meeting in 1970. Under the theme of Flames of Faith from Embers of Tradition: How Our Traditions Inspire Our Practice, we experienced a vital engagement with our Quaker roots as Lloyd Lee Wilson spoke to us on two evenings. He spoke from his experience of encountering God, allowing himself to be transformed and inviting us to practice authenticity. He described Friends' theology as the spirituality of subtraction wherein we listen for the guidance of the Inner Teacher, unmediated; but are grounded in our faith community, past and present. He reminded us of the strength of a "threefold cord" (Ecclesiastes 4:12) and the importance of each thread in a woven fabric to its strength and wholeness. So, too, can we find strength in unity with God and our fellow seekers of Truth.


In our meetings for business we wrestled with our yearly meeting's work: who has come forward to do the work, what committees and support are needed to sustain the work and how do we allocate the financial resources we are given to assist in that purpose. Friends responded to the call to serve the yearly meeting positions in a spirit of carrying forward God's work. As a witness to our concern for the Earth, many documents were not copied in great number, but instead were posted for review, saving the use of a great quantity of paper. We paused for times of worship, food, lining up for ice cream, workshops, fellowship and holding in the Light of remembrance. We welcomed a new monthly meeting, Oxford, Mississippi, a meeting formed under the care of Memphis Meeting in Tennessee , to SAYMA. We especially held our clerk, Sharon Annis in the Light as she recovers from surgery, knowing that she is holding us tenderly in the Light, as well. We are thankful for the patient and able job our assistant clerk and recording clerk have done in shepherding us through a full agenda. Reports from yearly meeting committees and representatives as well as from wider Quaker organization guests enriched our understanding of opportunities for service and gratitude for the dedication of these organizations and individuals. Three new centers were available for Friends: a women's center, a nurture center, and a center for Friends for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Concerns.


Our children were provided an opportunity to know and express their spirituality through stories and queries with the guidance of Rebekah Rojcewicz, a leader in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd method of instruction. More than twenty children ages 3-12, and several under three, participated, also hiking, swimming, boomeranging, and playing together. A favorite spot for the children was an old-fashioned swing under a spreading oak tree.


Two other age groups: thirteen Young Adult Friends, or YAFs, and 45 Southern Appalachian Young Friends (SAYF) switched among joining in adult/youth activities, separating for their own programs and leading the yearly meeting talent show. Their part in our annual gathering is always a joy and inspiration to both older and younger Friends.


We go forth encouraged by the knowledge that, like the tall redwood, our roots are long and entwined with Friends who went before us and with our contemporaries. We ask for God's guidance to strengthen and support us as we spread out across the southeastern United States , that we may let the stirrings of the Spirit flame up in our hearts.


Barbara Esther will translate the epistle into Spanish.


Friends expressed appreciation to the epistle committee for its work.


46.       Thanks to Warren Wilson     

Friends were reminded that SAYMA met at Warren Wilson College during its earliest years as a yearly meeting. Friends asked the clerk to convey the yearly meeting's gratitude to Warren Wilson College for its warm and cordial hospitality.


47.       Appreciation to Administrative Assistant.   

Friends minuted their appreciation to Mary Calhoun for her service as administrative assistant.


48.       Approval of minutes

Friends approved these minutes throughout the course of the Yearly Meeting, subject to final editing by the clerk and the recording clerk.


                       John Geary, Assistant Clerk                         Carol Lamm, Recording Clerk

                        (archive copy signed)                                (archive copy signed)