FMW Newsletter - September 2020

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Published monthly – Issue #90 – 09

Table of Contents

Meetings for Worship schedule
9th Month Query
In Memoriam: Stephen F Williams
- Courageous Conversations on Racism - Saturday, August 29
- Quaker Spring's Interim Retreat - Saturday September 12
- FMW Community Zinner - Monday, September 14
- BYM 9th Month Interim Meeting - Saturday, September 26
- FCNL Annual Meeting and Lobby Day - November 14-17
- Reclaim Our Vote: Postcards & Calls
- FMW Social Justice Fund Deadline - September 19
Thinking About Race: White Supremacy Culture
FMW Events & Rentals News
- FMW Offers Micro-Weddings
- Just 1 great office available in Quaker House



  • Sundays:  9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Join by Zoom  
    By phone: 301-715-8592   Meeting ID: 395 231 896# Password: 738314
  • Sundays, 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. Join by Zoom
    By phone:  301-715-8592  Meeting ID: 979 505 413# Password:  706188
  • Sundays, 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. Outdoors at FMW.  Register here. Space limited.
  • Tuesdays:  6:00 - 7:00 p.m. Join by Zoom
    By phone:  (646( 876-9923 Meeting ID: 2025778431#  Password: 254224#
  • Monthly Meeting for Business:  2nd Sundays (Sept 13) 12:15 p.m. Join by Zoom
    By phone:  301-715-8592  Meeting ID: 979 505 413# Password:  706188

Most meetings  continue to be held via Zoom due to the pandemic.
For more information, email

9th Month Query: The Social Order

Do you promote social justice and make your life a testimony to fair dealing? Do you seek to understand and appreciate differing cultures and social values? Do you support fair treatment of all regardless of race, gender, age and other differences? Are you concerned for those in our society who are disadvantaged? Do you take your full share of civic responsibility by voting and giving service? Do you oppose the use of land, labor, technology and capital for human exploitation or in ways destructive to other living things?
See: Civic Responsibility; Vocational and Financial Decisions; Social Responsibility.  Source:  BYM Faith & Practice, Part II The Queries


In Memoriam:  Stephen F Williams
Stephen Williams, husband of beloved FMW member Faith Williams died on August 7 after a long illness with COVID-19.    His obituary from the Washington Post is here.


Courageous Conversations on Racism 3-White Fragility, Sat, August 29, 2:00-3:00 p.m. via Zoom. Sponsored by FMW’s Change Committee for Racia Justice.  
Contact Debby Churchman,   Click here to Join by Zoom.
To join by phone dial: 301-715-8592.  On prompt enter Meeting ID: 85218021043#

Quaker Spring’s Interim Retreat, September 12, 1:00-4:00 p.m. - Register
Join us for Quaker Spring's Interim Retreat on Saturday, Sept 12, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern time USA, GMT-4) via Zoom.  This free gathering will include:
12:00 p.m. - Zoom Room Opens -informal fellowship
1:00 p.m.:  A time of reading Bible passages out of silent waiting
2:00 p.m.:  Meeting for Worship (and perhaps a period of more open sharing as led)
4:00 p.m.:  Closing, Informal fellowship
Register here.  For more information go to

FMW Community Zinner (Get-together via Zoom) Mon, Sept 14, 7-8:00 p.m.
Join us for Covid-safe but socially close conversation, fun and fellowship via Zoom.
For more info, contact clerk Rebecca Nelson, email:
Join by Zoom HERE.  Join by phone: (301)715-8592.  On prompt enter: 83157485982# 

BYM Ninth Month Interim Meeting, Saturday, Sept 26, 10:00 a.m. - Register now!
BYM will hold a Called Interim Meetings on Saturday, September 26 and November 7 (in an effort to handle necessary business in shorter, more manageable  Zoom meetings.  The September Interim Meeting will include reports by three staff members. If your Committee wishes to be on the agenda, please contact Interim Meeting clerk Marcy Seitel,
Click here to register. (You will receive a link to join by Zoom the night before (on 9/25)

FCNL Annual Meeting and Quaker Public Policy Institute--on Anti-Racism, Nov 14-17 (via Zoom)
In concert with the upswell of protests and calls for justice across the country this year, antiracism will be a major focus of FCNL’s Annual Meeting and lobbying effort this November.  Quakers will gather (virtually) to conduct worshipful business and lobby for the Justice in Policing Act (H.R. 7120/S.3912).  Learn more and register here for FCNL’s Annual Meeting (Nov. 14-17) to act in faith and feel Spirit weave us together as Friends uniting for the world we seek.


Make Calls.  Send Postcards.

Fight voter suppression.  Help Get Out The Vote!

Reclaim Our Vote needs volunteers to make phonecalls and/or send postcards.  ROV volunteers reach out to minority voters in eight states with long histories of voter suppression, to encourage voter registration and turnout.  Making  phone calls or sending postcards with ROC is one thing we can do to work against systemic racism.  Reclaim Our Vote is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) organization supported by NAACP and many others.  Learn more here.  Watch Suppressed: The Fight To Vote.  Read these FAQs.   To register and receive training, contact Laurie Wilner, or, or register directly here. You can pick up postcards & stamps at FMW.


FMW Social Justice Fund Application Deadline is September 19

FMW’s Social Justice Fund, managed by the Peace & Social Concerns Committee, provides small grants (usually up to $1,000) to social justice efforts focused on driving structural change, prioritizing projects in which our members and attenders are directly involved.  For background and guidelines, go to the Social Justice Fund page on FMW’s website. Or contact PSC co-clerks Elaine Wilson, or Barbara Briggs,  To apply, fill out this simple Application Form by midnight, September 19.


Thinking About Race: White Supremacy Culture
September 2020

Have you ever wondered how to characterize “white culture,” or if there is such a thing?  This widely circulated paper by Kenneth Jones and Tema Okun focuses on organizations – which can include faith groups.  “White supremacy culture” refers to a culture where white people are mostly in charge and where white people are considered normal.

“This is a list of characteristics of white supremacy culture that show up in our organizations. Culture is powerful precisely because it is so present and at the same time so very difficult to name or identify. The characteristics listed below are damaging because they are used as norms and standards without being proactively named or chosen by the group. They are damaging because they promote white supremacy thinking. Because we all live in a white supremacy culture, these characteristics show up in the attitudes and behaviors of all of us – people of color and white people. Therefore, these attitudes and behaviors can show up in any group or organization, whether it is white-led or predominantly white or people of color-led or predominantly people of color.” 

  1. Perfectionism
  2. Right to comfort
  3. Fear of open conflict
  4. Defensiveness
  5. Quantity over quality
  6. Worship of the written word
  7. Only one right way
  8. Paternalism
  9. Either/or thinking
  10. Power hoarding
  11. Individualism
  12. I’m the only one
  13. Progress is bigger, more
  14. Objectivity
  15. Sense of urgency

From “The Characteristics of White Supremacy Culture” by Kenneth Jones and Tema Okun, ChangeWork, 2001. The paper contains descriptions of each of these 15 characteristics as well as “antidotes” to them.  From Dismantling Racism:  A Workbook Social Change Groups.   

This column is prepared by the BYM Working Group on Racism (WGR) and sent to the designated liaison at each local Meeting.  The BYM WGR meets on the first Saturday from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm.  Locations vary to allow access to more Friends.  If you would like to attend, contact clerk David Etheridge, 

FMW Events & Rentals News:

FMW Hosting Micro Weddings

Given that large weddings will be an impossibility for at least the rest of this year due to COVID-19,  Friends Meeting of Washington has teamed up with expert, local wedding planner Margo Fischer of Bright Occasions to design a smaller wedding experience for couples who want to mark the moment with friends and family in a way that is meaningful, memorable and safe.  

FMW Micro weddings will allow up to 50 people to gather -- following all local guidelines regarding the size of the event, social distancing, and use of face masks.  Couples will have the choice of one of our garden spaces (preferred in the COVID-19 era) or one of FMW’s larger indoor spaces in the case of inclement weather.  Bright Occasions can help couples plan their wedding and reception.

FMW and Bright Occasions are offering two all-inclusive packages, including wedding planning, ceremony, reception, photography, officiant and flowers for October 4 (afternoon and evening).

Should you know a couple who want to be married and might like to take advantage of this special opportunity on October 4th or the beauty and simplicity of a wedding at FMW on any date, feel free to refer them to FMW's Event and Rental Manager, Brian Lutenegger, at or 202-483-3310.

Check out FMW’s new wedding webpage:

Quaker House Office Space:  Just 1 Office Space Left!

We had considerable tenant turnover just before the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in DC. But as of August, FMW office rental space is full-up, except for the Carriage House room, which has been used for First Day School and internal meetings, but will now be converted back into office space once a suitable tenant is identified.

We have been fortunate that, despite COVID-19, we have new tenants relatively quickly. But the Carriage House room may be a bit tougher, since it is a larger space, ideal for a larger organization or an office share.  We're also exploring offering our spaces for coworking and remote workers who might be tired of working at home. There would be plenty of space to spread out!

At present, we share FMW with the following tenants:

If you know a small nonprofit, business or professionals looking for great office space, let them know about FMW, Event and Rental Manager Brian Lutenegger would be happy to answer any questions via email: or phone: 202-483-3310.

FMW Communications Tip of the Month

Communities are only as strong as the communications that link them.  While we have been doing very well, considering the challenging time we are in, it might be time to spruce up FMW’s Community Director, “Breeze.”  Breeze has some very cool functions, which we will talk more about next month.  But in the meantime:

  1. Never checked out FMW’s Breeze directory?  You can access it through FMW’s website,   On the left in “Quick Links” click on “Meeting Directory”  You will be prompted for the password, which is “Discern”
  2. Check out your own record.  Are you there?  Is your contact info correct?  Is your family listed correctly?  (If you supply your and your family’s birth dates, Breeze will tell friends whether you are 6 or 60--which is handy.
  3. Send any additions or corrections to Barbara at
  4. While you’re at it, send a photo!  (Check out Neil Froemming’s record to see how cool it looks when your Breeze profile includes a headshot.)
  5. ​Breeze’s phone app also works great!

* Note:  Since FMW’s Meeting for Business is suspended in August, there are not Meeting for Business minutes the September edition of the Newsletter.