Executive Committee of Ohio Valley Yearly Meeting
Eleventh Month 7, 2020, 12:00noon
Meeting for Business via Zoom
1. Opening worship. Friends entered into waiting worship.
2. Roll call. The Recording Clerk called the roll of Yearly Meeting officers and administrators, Committee Clerks, Quarterly and Monthly Meeting Representatives, and Yearly Meeting staff:
Yearly Meeting officers and administrators
Presiding Clerk: Martha Viehmann
Assistant Presiding Clerk: Rachel Ernst-Stahlhut
Recording Clerk: Rex Sprouse
Assistant Recording Clerk: Lisa Cayard
Treasurer: Wilson Palmer
Assistant Treasurer: (office vacant)
Auditing: not present
Braddock Fund: Steve Angell
Budget & Finance: Steve Angell, Fred Feitler
Children’s: not present
Development: Betsy Neale
Earthcare: David Duvall
Faith & Practice: Rex Sprouse
Nominating: Rhonda Pfaltzgraff-Carlson
Peace & Social Concerns: Carol Simmons
Personnel: Steve Angell
Records: not present
Religious Nurture & Education: Nikki Coffey Tousley
Yearly Meeting Planning: Carol Simmons
Young Adult Friends: not present
Youth Services: not present (Jason Swank sends regrets)
Quarterly Meeting Clerks
Miami: Peter Hardy
Whitewater: Terre Holada
Monthly Meeting representatives
Bloomington: Elizabeth Terney
Campus: not present
Clear Creek: Cathy Habschmidt
Community: Eric Wolff, Deborah Jordan
Dayton: Nikki Coffey Tousley
Eastern Hills: Wilson Palmer
Fall Creek: Daniel Day
Fort Wayne: Fred Feitler
Lafayette: not present
Lexington: Richard Mitchell
Louisville: not present
Miami: not present
North Meadow: Dinah Duvall
Oxford: Steve Angell
White Rose: not present
Yellow Springs: Carol Simmons
Yearly Meeting staff
Administrative Secretary: Deborah Jordan
Youth Secretary: Kaia Jackson
Website Administrator: Daniel Day
Statistician: Bill Heilbron
Sexual Misconduct Task Force: Betsy Neale
3. Brief period of additional worship. Just as Executive Committee meeting began, it was announced that Joseph Biden was almost certain to win the 2020 US Presidential election. Friends paused to hold in the Light both the opportunities and the risks that came with this announcement.
4. Discussion of anti-racism work at the monthly meeting level. Friends from various constituent monthly meetings shared information about the anti-racism work their meetings were engaged in. This included book and Pendle Hill pamphlet study, interfaith relationships with predominantly African-American churches, participation in Black Lives Matter demonstrations, sharing space with an Iglesia de Amigos congregation who had lost their meeting space, discussion at meeting for business, and participation in webinars on anti-racism sponsored by American Friends Service Committee. This information will be shared with Connie McNeely and Princess Nelson, who have volunteered to serve with the Ministry on Racism Program of Friends General Conference. Friends are encouraged to share their anti-racism activities in the Quaker Quill.
5. Consideration of the practice of Noticing. Friends entered into an extended discussion about the possibility of adopting for use by Executive Committee the practice of Noticing, as recently practiced by New England Yearly Meeting and Friends General Conference Central Committee. Some Friends who had recently experienced Noticing at Friends General Conference Central Committee felt that it had been beneficial in opening new perspectives and that it had called the body to greater faithfulness. It was also pointed out that we can view Noticing as an example of eldering with a specific focus. Some Friends expressed discomfort with Noticing because of the possibility that this practice could become counter-productive and shaming. Friends agreed that they would take back to their monthly meetings the question of how Ohio Valley Yearly Meeting is committed to becoming an anti-racist faith community.
6. Treasurer’s report. Wilson Palmer presented the report, the written text of which is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
7. Nominating Committee Report. Rhonda Pfaltzgraff-Carlson presented the report. Rhonda reported that both Earthcare Committee and Peace and Social Concerns Committee had accepted Nominating Committee’s offer of assistance in identifying names to bring forward for service on these respective committees. Rhonda brought forward the name of Lois Kay to serve as the Yearly Meeting Representative to Friends Peace Teams. Friends approved. Friends accepted the report.
8. Youth Secretary Report. Kaia Jackson presented the report, highlighting recent, current, and future events. For example, a Political Healing Circle will be held via Zoom on 2020-11-08. Also, plans are underway for a Quake that Rocked the Continent, which is to be held via Zoom on 2020-12-12. Friends are referred to Kaia for information about upcoming events. Friends accepted the report.
9. Youth Services Committee Report. The Clerk read aloud Jason Swank’s written report, which is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
10. Earthcare Committee Report. David Duvall presented the report, highlighting a “Green Sixth Day” event as an alternative to “Black Friday.” David had submitted a written report, which had been distributed to Executive Committee members in advance and is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
11. Miami Quarterly Meeting report. Peter Hardy presented the report, highlighting the recent successful Joint Quarterly Meeting. Peter had submitted a written report, which had been distributed to Executive Committee members in advance and is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
12. Religious Nurture and Education Report. Nikki Coffey Tousley presented the report, highlighting an upcoming retreat in Third Month 2021 to be led by Rachel Ernst-Stahlhut. Nikki had submitted a written report, which had been distributed to Executive Committee members in advance and is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
13. Budget and Finance Report. Fred Feitler had submitted a written report, which had been distributed to Executive Committee members in advance and is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
14. Faith and Practice Committee Report. Paul Buckley presented the report, previewing for Friends how the cover and text of the new Book of Faith and Practice will look. Friends thanked Betsy Neale, Gail Koehler, and Andy Garrison for their very helpful proofreading of the final text. The Committee members thank the constituent monthly meetings for responding to the Committee’s question about the number of copies requested. Friends accepted the report.
15. Conflict Reconciliation Process Report. Steve Angell presented the report, which is appended to these minutes. Friends offered reflections on this reconciliation process, including thoughts about how we can do better as a yearly meeting in the future. Although there was a sense of unfinished business, no further actions regarding this particular conflict are planned at this time. Friends accepted the report.
16. Auditing Committee Report. The Clerk read aloud the written report, which Veronica Frost had submitted and is appended to these minutes. Friends accepted the report.
17. Clerk’s report on outreach to monthly meetings and Yearly Meeting committees. The Clerk reported on outreach to monthly meetings and Yearly Meeting committees who have seldom been represented at Executive Committee meetings in recent times. Happily, this outreach has led to increased representation in some cases. Friends accepted the report.
18. Yearly Meeting Planning Committee Report. Carol Simmons presented a brief report, highlighting the recent work of the Committee, particularly work on discerning a theme for 2021. Friends accepted the report.
19. Yearly Meeting Directory update. Friends agreed that the Administrative Secretary will compile a list of updates to the Yearly Meeting Directory rather than a completely updated Directory for this year. Friends were reminded that they can request a pdf of the Yearly Meeting Directory at any time.
20. Closing worship. Friends ended with a brief period of waiting worship.
Next Executive Committee Meeting: 2021-02-06 at 10am via Zoom.