Newsletter - February/March 2023

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Published monthly – Issue #93 – 02/03

February/March 2023

Table of Contents

Schedule of Meetings for Worship
3rd Month Query
Thinking About Race
​​Monthly Meeting for Business Minutes - January 8, 2023
Meeting for Business Minutes - February 12, 2023


Sundays:  9:00 - 10:00 am (online);  10:30-11:30 am (online & in-person;  6:00-7:00 pm

Wednesdays:  6:00 - 7:00 pm
Monthly Meeting for Business:  12:15 pm February 12, March 12 (2nd Sunday)

Masks required for in-person participation.

Meetings for worship are being held via Zoom.  Join 10:30 Meeting here.
For more information, email


Are love and harmony within the Meeting community fostered by a spirit of open sharing? Do you endeavor to widen your circle of friendships within the Meeting, seeking to know persons of all ages and at all stages of the spiritual journey? Does the Meeting provide for the spiritual refreshment of all members and attenders? Do Friends provide spiritual and practical care for the elderly, the lonely, and others with special needs?  (For more see: Statement on Spiritual Unity, 1964; The Meeting as Caring Community; Fellowship and Community).  Source:  BYM Faith & Practice, Part II The Queries


JE McNeil’s Quakerspeak Video: 

J.E.’s video titled "The Secret to True Communication" has been listed as #3 among QuakerSpeak’s  top  Top 5 Videos of 2022 . You can access it HERE

Grate Patrol - helping our unhoused neighbors

On the First Sunday of each month, FMW’s First Day School + other community members prepare and distribute a meal to 60 homeless residents of DC.  The kids have already decorated paper bags used to assemble sandwiches, snacks and fruit.  Community members can help.  Volunteers are also needed each to make a nutritious hot soup or stew.  For more information contact Emilie Schmeidler email:

On New Years Day, First Day School prepared suppers for 60 DC residents living on the streets as part of FMW’s ongoing collaboration with the Salvation Army’s Grate Patrol Program.

FMW hosts Quaker activist & scholar George Lakey, “Dancing with History”

On Sunday, January 22, FMW’s Peace & Social Concers and Library, Records & Handbook Committees hosted Quaker social justice activist George Lakey.  Joined by discussion partner Steve Chase, Lakey shared stories from a life of personal and political work, shaping campaigns and of learning from failures as well as successes.  George Lakey’s new memoir, “Dancing with History” is available now. [LINK}

Polar Plunge: Quaking Quakers raise over $20K for climate and social justice

On Saturday, February 13, FMW’s Quaking Quakers plunged into the Potomac River at National Harbor to keep a promise to F/friends and family members who had donated, collectively over $20,000 –the most raised by any team in the 18-year history of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network’s polar bear plunge.  The money will be split between CCAN and FMW’s social justice fund–where it will be used to fund the social justice and climate activities of our community.

15 team members plunged together at National Harbor, united in spirit with member Susan Griffin, who fulfilled her commitment by way of an ice bucket dousing near her home at Friends House in Sandy Spring.



Quaker Spiritual Development Programs - Full schedule for February and March

Friendly Quaker Film Club Showing “La La Land (2016), FMW Assembly Room, Feb 22, 6pm Please join us this month as we watch La La Land (2016) followed by a discussion centered around Quaker ethics and values.  La La Land (2016) PG-13 - (Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone) See trailer Here.  For more information contact Bill Parker, 301-221-4539

Ministry and Worship Committee asks your input in the annual Spiritual State of the Meeting. How did FMW nurture or support your spiritual life in 2022? You can provide answers to this and other queries here (anonymously if you prefer).  Or–Attend Worship Sharing in Quaker House Living Room and online, February 26, 12:15 pm.  For more information, contact Ministry and Worship clerk, Gray Handley, Kathy Powell, or Raymond Patch or any other member of the committee. 

Writing Testimonies of Complicity & Commitment, Quaker House, Sunday, Feb 26, 12:15 Because we live in a racist culture, the Global Majority Caucus of Baltimore Yearly Meeting has asked white Friends to write personal testimonies of complicity in the oppression of people of color and commitment to living anti-racist lives. (Some examples.)  FMW’s Change Committee wants to support white FMW Friends in responding to that call. This is one action white Friends can take for racial justice.  Please join us for this in-depth workshop, including time for self-compassion, reflection, and writing. For more information, contact Debby Churchman, or David Etheridge,

FMW History 1930 to present - available to purchase on Sunday, February 26!
The Library, Records, and Handbook Committee will have the FMW History book available for sale in the Assembly Room at Rise of Meeting at a cost of $15.  It is also available on Amazon for $20. We will also bring back the book sale, which is ‘pay as you are so led’ –by Venmo, checks, and credit cards. 

FMW Spring “Quakerism 101”, Tuesdays March 7 - April 4, 7:00 - 8:30 pm online - Register here This introductory class on Quaker faith and practice consists of five sessions that provide a strong foundation of understanding as you begin your spiritual journey into the rich tradition of the Quakers - Religious Society of Friends. Detailed outline here.

Baltimore Yearly Meeting - Interim Meeting hosted by FMW, March 25, 2023 
This is our community’s opportunity to welcome and get to know Quakers from all over our region, and to become more familiar with our regional body, Baltimore Yearly Meeting’s program.  For more info and to volunteer, contact Greg Robb

Note:  Beginning in March, the Library will be “open” and staffed at Rise of Meeting 

Thinking about Race

February 2023:  In a world without caste 

In 2022, Baltimore Yearly Meeting undertook a “One-Book Project,” to read and discuss Isabel Wilkerson’s book Caste. With gratitude to those who planned and facilitated this project, as well as to those who attended the seven sessions, which ended in December, we share a quote from Wilkerson’s epilogue (p. 388):

“In a world without caste, instead of a false swagger over our own tribe or family or ascribed community, we would look upon all of humanity with wonderment: the lithe beauty of an Ethiopian runner, the bravery of a Swedish girl determined to save the planet, the physics-defying aerobatics of an African-American Olympian, the brilliance of a composer of Puerto Rican descent who can rap the history of the founding of America at 144 words a minute—all of these feats should fill us with astonishment at what the species is capable of and gratitude to be alive for this.”

March 2023:  You Are Your Best Thing

In You Are Your Best Thing (Tarana Burke and Brené Brown, editors), twenty Black people from many domains share parts of their life stories, their experiences of vulnerability, shame and resilience.   In an introductory conversation with her friend Brené Brown, Tarana Burke writes, “These pages are breathing room for our [Black] humanity.  White supremacy has added a layer of shame for Blacks, and to the resilience that we have to build, and the vulnerability we are constantly subjected to… I do not believe in your antiracist work if you have not engaged with Black humanity.”

In her essay “Steps to Being Whole on Your Terms,” Aiko D. Bethea writes, “Being seen and compelling others to witness the violence of white supremacy invites accountability…. It injects truth into a façade.” “Truth-telling is a powerful step in dismantling white supremacy, putting cracks in it. White women and anyone else with a targeted identity reap the benefits of Black women’s willingness to be vulnerable. When we are vulnerable, we are literally breaking chains. In the moments when we are vulnerable in these white spaces through truth-telling, we’re extending an invitation to authenticity and potential connection to those who aren’t assaulted by white supremacy in the same way as Black women.”

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 most months on the first Saturday, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, currently via Zoom.  If you would like to attend, contact the clerk at

Meeting for Business Minutes:  January and February 2023

Friends Meeting of Washington
Monthly Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business
Minutes - January 8, 2023


In-Person Attendees: 15
Online Attendees: 9
First Time Attendees: 

Query for Worship Sharing:  How could the choices we are contemplating affect those who have been harmed by systemic, institutional, interpersonal and/or internal racism?

Clerk’s Report, January 2023

Upcoming Events

Clerking Workshop, Saturday January 7th, 1-4pm In Quaker House Living Room Meg Meyer of Baltimore Yearly Meeting will host a clerking workshop

Several friends noted their appreciation for FMW’s former co-clerks.
Several friends noted their appreciation for the work done at the clerking workshop.

  • Migrant Respite, Wednesday, January 11 all day at FMW.  For more information contact Jim Bell, email:
  • Conversation with Quaker Activist George Lakey, Sunday, Jan 22, 12:15 In Quaker House Living Room or join on Zoom.  Lifelong social justice activist George Lakey is a scholar and strategist for social, economic and climate justice.  He will discuss his new memoir “Dancing with History, A life for Peace and Social Justice.” Sponsored by FMW’s Library, Records and Handbook and Peace & Social Concerns Committees.  For more info, contact Steve Chase, email: 
  • Committee of Clerks Meeting, Sunday January 29th, 9am On 5th Sundays, FMW Committee clerks meet to discuss, coordinate and plan.  For more info contact clerks
    Elaine Wilson (, Allen Fawcett (
  • Visit to the African American Museum, Sunday, Jan. 22 at 1:15 pm The Change Committee invites you to a group visit to the African American Museum to see a special exhibit about the role of religion in African American History. Please contact Debbie Churchman if you plan to attend so she can keep track of the number of tickets needed.
  • Polar Bear Plunge! - Join FMW’s Quaking Quakers on Saturday, Feb 11  Help keep winter cold by joining or supporting FMW’s Quaking Quakers Polar Bear Plunge into the Potomac River to raise money for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network and FMW’s own social justice and climate work.  Join or donate here!  For more information, contact team Captain Steve Chase, 

FMW Community Highlights & Kudos

  • Financial State of the Meeting:  On December 18, Finance and Stewardship offered a presentation on the financial state of the meeting–an update on FMW’s mortgage, ongoing budgetary challenges, and the fundraising amounts required to balance our budgets and retire our debt. See a recording of the session here, and the slide presentation here.   
  • Solidarity with Migrants:  On December 14, 2022 the Meeting hosted 30 migrants in our space as part of the Migrant Respite effort.  

Tenant Updates- Activities at our Meeting House - report attached.

Major Business

Membership (Robb Farr) 

First presentation, Nick Warren
The presentation was held over because membership has not yet met.

Helen Qubain, transferring membership from Belgium & Luxembourg Yearly Meeting.
Friends approved the transfer.

The Membership Committee Report will have minor amendments regarding Helena Cobban and Helen Qubain.

One friend asked for information about our membership and attendee list. Robb Farr noted there was a need to update our lists and we don’t currently have an answer. They are working on the issue.

One friend asked how individuals could help. Robb Farr noted that individuals could provide their input on attendance of members.

One friend asked for clarity regarding the definition of “attender”.

One friend suggested we count those who are on committees.The executive secretary responded that those in attendance are attenders, and noted the difficulties of maintaining membership and attendance lists for organizations.

One friend suggested using name tags as a proxy for attenders. The executive secretary responded that those who request name tags are currently considered in our lists as attenders.

The clerk of library, records, and handbook requested that, once a definition of attender is established, it be added to the handbook.

Trustees Report  (Elaine Wilson)

One friend suggested we add the name of the auditor to the report. Elaine responded affirmatively.

One friend requested information on how the deficit would be financed. Elaine responded that the deficit’s financing is covered by the finance and stewardship committee.

One friend requested whether there would be a report from finance and stewardship. Elaine responded that she would ask.

Friends accepted the report with the auditor name amendment.

Nominating –Aaron Johnson, clerk of Personnel Committee (waiver required)

One friend noted Aaron’s credentials and experience.
One friend noted their approval for the exception.
Friends approved the waiver / exception.

Beth Cogswell - withdrawal from Membership
Friends accepted the withdrawal.

Chris Zubowicz - Membership
Friends approved.

Jean Capps - Ministry and Worship
Friends approved.

Marriage and Family Relations (Martha Solt)

Marriage and Family Relations would like to advance the request for marriage under the care of the Meeting of Kathryn (Kate) Oberg and Travis Grout.

The request was laid over for one month until second presentation in February.

One friend urged the meeting to approve the request, noting their love as well as their commitment to activism.

One friend noted that Kate has been a strong steward of the young adult friends and expected she would be a phenomenal partner and parent.

Other Concerns:

One friend requested information about how applying members are notified of their membership approval. Robb Farr responded that new members are notified and sent a certificate.
Friends approved the minutes.

Meeting for Business concluded at 1:23 pm with silent worship.


FMW Membership Committee Report for Calendar Year 2022

The Membership Committee was pleased to see more applications for membership and transfers in 2022 than we have received since the beginning of the Covid pandemic. The committee consisted of Beth Cogswell, Rob Farr (clerk) Gray Handley, Marsha Holliday, Zoe Plaugher, Bobby Trice, and Elaine Wilson.

The Meeting received five applications for membership at FMW, all of which were approved by Meeting for Business. The meeting welcomed new members Letty Coffin and children (Seville and Flinn Edeler, associate members), Allen Fawcett and children (Owen and Nora Fawcett, associate members), Kate Oberg, Dan O’Sullivan, and Jason Terry.

There were five transfer applications to FMW: Helena Cobban from Belgium and Luxembourg Yearly Meeting, Tristan Kirkman from Herndon Friends Meeting, Patrick Lozada, from Davidson Monthly Meeting, North Carolina, Kathy Powell from Alexandria Friends Meeting, and Lucia Elena Sanchez from Chattanooga Friends Meeting.  There was one transfer from FMW: Malachy Kilbride to Homewood Friends Meeting, Baltimore. 

On May 15, the membership committee hosted a welcome for all members and transferees who have joined since the beginning of 2020. The event was a success and we anticipate this becoming an annual event.

Respectfully submitted on Jan. 5, 2023, by committee clerk Rob Farr

Trustees Report November 2022

Trustees considered how our investments at Friends Fiduciary Fund are placed in the variety of funds that FFF offers to institutions.  To do this we considered the anti-racism queries that FMW has adopted and a group of us had a briefing via Zoom with Richard Kent of FFF to inform many of us how FFF operates and to help us think about whether rebalancing the funds made sense.   We are planning to make some rebalances to the funds in which our money is placed, in consultation with Finance and Stewardship.

Funds from the Alex Matthews Estate were disbursed to the Meeting in two installments.  While the funds are unrestricted and thus go into the general fund, Trustees were concerned that we discuss how some of these might be used in a way that Alex would have approved.  Because of Alex’s long service with hospitality committee and his love of cooking we agreed that he would approve of funds being used to upgrade the kitchen.

We approved one of our members (Martha Solt) serving on a newly constituted Child Safety group along with a member of RE and Personnel committees.  The Trustee member will bring a particular concern for complying with our insurance requirements, and thus is knowledgeable about those requirements, including undergoing any required trainings.

Chris Wickham undertook to do some trainings recommended by Guide One Insurance in order to reduce our annual premiums.  Our insurance deductible was raised slightly in the past year to $10,000 but the premium has remained the same.  

As is the Trustees annual duty, we engaged an independent auditor to review our books and management practices for FY2021, which, in FY21 was not an audit, which is conducted every third year. 

The important thing to know about this Review is that it showed that FMW bookkeeping practices conformed with the generally accepted accounting principles. The auditor’s review is available online. While the Review was favorable in that our books fairly reflect our fiscal condition, as the Finance & Stewardship Committee has reported, the Meeting still is operating in the red. According to F&S, our projected annual deficit is still likely to be about $-257,000. We hope that a combination of increased donations, increased space use revenues, and reduced spending will help the Meeting reduce this deficit.

We have now engaged our independent auditing firm to perform our FY2022 audit.

FMW Rental Report

Prepared by Brian Lutenegger, Event and Rental Manager 

December 2022

Financials – FY23 and FY24 Bookings
Here is a breakdown of where we are in term of bookings for FY23 as of December 31, 2022 in comparison with other past and future fiscal years.

Our budgeted goal for FY23 is $300,000. I have seen forecasts of $350,000 for this fiscal year which may or may not prove realistic. The charts above show that we’ve booked over $247,000 in rentals so far this fiscal year. Our fiscal year runs from July 1 to the following June 30th.

We’ve also booked $24,400 worth of events for FY24. We are pacing a bit behind where we were at this point for FY23 and about the same as FY22 (not counting inflation). I have felt a bit of a lag over the past 1-2 months.

Financials – FY23 Earned

In December, we earned $20,064.75 for events successfully completed and $182,797.25 fiscal year to date.

December Events

The following activities occurred at FMW during December:

  • DC Minyan continuing to hold regular services – along with celebratory events connected to these communities
  • A debrief for a group from St. Louis following a visit to the African American History Museum
  • Events connected to the U.S.-African Summit held in DC
  • Memorial services
  • Multiple staff retreats / board meetings / conferences / workshops – these are often meetings of staff and stakeholders from across the country
  • Weekly Al-Anon meetings
  • Several celebratory events for individuals including holiday parties
  • Fundraisers for nonprofits
  • Film crews – though we are turning away many of these due to sound issues

Office Space Rentals

Income from office rentals has changed in recent months due to turnover in tenants.

This fiscal year, we have so far collected $88,142 in office tenant rent through January with one payment outstanding. Our fiscal year budget is $150,000.

At present, we have thirteen nonprofit and small business tenants including two of our tenants who now share an office. We have one remaining office space for rent with another tenant (an occupational therapist) moving in during January.

Our existing office tenants include a range of nonprofits, small businesses, and mental health professionals.

Opportunities for the FMW community to help with rentals

Please think about whether your employer, an organization whose board you sit on – or even yourself for a special event – might be able to make use of our event rental spaces.

If you have ideas for content that we can post on Facebook and Instagram that might be of interest to a wide (not necessarily Quaker) audience, I am happy to consider. 

Finally, if you know of any potential new office tenants, please connect them to me.

###END February 2023 Minutes###


Friends Meeting of Washington
Monthly Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business
Minutes - February 12, 2023

In Person Attendees: 34
Online Attendees: 10
New Attendees: Jake Karaisz, Arne Nelson, Sean Murphee, Zuzanna Kiwerska, Raymond Patch, Amy Norris, Noah Lichenstein

Query for Worship Sharing:   In our meetings with each other, do you strive to be tender and considerate to those with differing views? 

Clerk’s Report, February 2023

In Memoriam

  • Tom Greene, father of Meg, grandfather of Julian Greenberg

Upcoming Events

  • School for Friends Listening Session, Bridge Room & online, Sunday, February 19, 12:15We invite the FMW community to share input. Join in person or join on Zoom. Please contact Marissa Yeakey ( with any questions.

  • Q201 Workshops: Four Doors to the Meeting For Worship, Tuesdays, Feb 21, 28, 7:00 - 8:30 pm  Register here.

  • Friendly Quaker Film Club Showing “La La Land (2016), FMW Assembly Room, Feb 22, 6pm See trailer Here.  For more information contact Bill Parker, 301-221-4539

  • Dinner & Discussion: FMW’s work with WIN!, Decatur Place Room, Thurs, Feb 23, 6:30-8:00  Washington Interfaith Network is building faith-led power on work with and on behalf of DC’s low income residents.  If you think that WIN’s hands-on advocacy work might be for you, join us!  For more information, contact Elaine Wilson (, Barbara Briggs (

  • Ministry and Worship Committee asks your input in the annual Spiritual State of the Meeting.  How did FMW nurture or support your spiritual life in 2022? You can provide answers to this and other queries here, or–Attend Worship Sharing on Sunday, February 26, 12:15 pm.  For more info, contact M&W clerk, Gray Handley, Kathy Powell, or Ray Patch

  • Workshop on Writing Testimonies of Complicity and Commitment to Anti-Racism, Quaker House Living Room, Sunday, February 26, 12:15.   The Global Majority Caucus of Baltimore Yearly Meeting has asked white Friends to write these personal testimonies.  Here are some examples.)  For more information, contact FMW’s Change Committee: Debby Churchman, or David Etheridge,

FMW Community Highlights & Kudos

  • Grate Patrol & Board Games Feb 5 (& 1st Sundays?)
  • Congratulations to the 16 members of FMW’s Quaking Quakers team, who plunged into the Potomac on Saturday to raise $18448.12 for climate and social justice!

Tenant Updates- Activities at our Meeting House

  • Multiple staff retreats / board meetings / conferences / workshops in January–demand for FMW to hold this kind of meeting seems to be on the upswing.  Rental report for January 2023

Major Business

Membership ( Bobby Trice and Beth Cogswell)

  • Nick Warren–Second Presentation.    Friends approved.
  • Amy Norris, Josh Lichtenstein, and Noah Lichtenstein (Associate Membership)–First Presentations.  Held over for one month.
  • Raymond Patch–First Presentation.  Held over for one month.
  • Pat Michaelson and Joel Bowman–Transfer from the Atlanta Meeting. Friends accepted the transfer.

Library, Records, and Handbook–held over from January (Gene Throwe)  
Revisions to FMW’s handbook of agreements and protocols. 

  • One friend noted their appreciation for the recently published book on the history of the meeting.
  • One friend noted their appreciation for the annual report and for the committee clerk.
  • One friend asked about library hours. The clerk of LRH stated they did not have library hours currently but they are working on organizing them.

Friends accepted the report with gratitude.

Marriage and Family Relations (Martha Solt) [Allen]

Second presentation of Kathryn (Kate) Oberg and Travis Grout.  The marriage will be under the care of the Meeting.  The oversight committee members include Debby Churchman, David Henderson, Amanda Nadeau, Chuck Mayer, and Michael Huffington.

One friend asked about the date of the wedding. Kate responded that the wedding would be June 17th.

Friends approved.

Committee of Clerks Report (Elaine Wilson)

FMW is hosting the BYM interim committee on Saturday March 25th. Help is requested for Friday March 24th through March 26; those able to help should contact Greg Robb.  

Finance and Stewardship  (Grant Thompson) Draft statement for consideration at a future MfB to help clarify and slightly expand confidentiality standards to accommodate volunteers for fundraising tasks. 

The names of those making donations to the Meeting and the amounts they donate are treated with care to avoid any appearance of linking financial support with importance or influence. At the same time, to permit committees and individuals responsible for raising funds and accounting for their receipt, it is essential that some information be shared to a limited number of individuals. 

To accommodate both confidentiality and effectiveness, the Meeting authorizes the Meeting’s Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer, members of the Finance & Stewardship Committee, members of the Fundraising Sub-Committee of F&S, staff members and consultants serving the Meeting who deal with financial matters, and volunteers appointed and trained by F&S to perform limited fundraising tasks to have access to information sufficient to accomplish their tasks. In all cases, those granted access shall acknowledge that the information they are receiving is not to be shared with others or used in any way beyond what is necessary to accomplish the tasks at hand. In addition, upon request, Finance & Stewardship Committee may provide to Membership Committee upon their request a list of those persons who have made no financial contributions to the Meeting or to any of its separately funded activities within four years prior to the report in order to assist the Membership Committee’s efforts to maintain accurate, up-to-date records.

  • One friend thanked F&S for their work. They asked for more detail on who would be granted access to this information.

Grant Thompson responded that volunteers who were asked to reach out to a specific individual would receive information about that specific individual. The friend clarified that they were looking for the creation of a codified list of which members were given access to financial information that would be available to the membership. The friend also requested clarity on why information about those who have not given monetary contributions would be given to the membership committee. 

Jason Terry clarified that a recent record of donation would indicate to membership whether or not a particular individual still maintained a connection to FMW.

  • One friend expressed a desire for the community to trust the assembled committees and for more members to contribute, and expressed their support for the draft statement.
  • One friend expressed their thanks to F&S and noted the difficulty of fundraising, and noted that from their experience supplying volunteers with more specific information was helpful.
  • One friend expressed that they thought the draft statement was a good idea and noted that volunteers should be counseled that the information should exclusively be used for fundraising purposes.
  • One friend noted that some out of town friends are only contacted when FMW was asking for money, and that more frequent communication prior to fundraising may be helpful.
  • One friend noted that F&S should be viewed within the Quaker values of trust and integrity.
  • One friend noted their support for the change but noted that monetary struggles may often be hidden from view, and that F&S should be more careful when discussing the membership’s overall financial status.
  • One friend hoped that the statement would include a connection to quaker testimonies, and also a more explicit consideration of the qualifications and training of volunteers.
  • An amendment was suggested to add ‘and trained’ to the draft statement after “and volunteers appointed”. Friends approved the amendment.
  • One friend noted that they personally had financial struggles and some of the language regarding lack of poverty in our community by the previous speaker, gave them pause. They recommended reaching out to other quaker communities for guidance. They also requested the impact on young friends be considered.
  • One friend asked whether or not individuals with access to financial information were required to be members. Jason Terry responded that those on the F&S committee were not required to be members.
  • An amendment was suggested that the Membership committee would come to F&S to see which members who had an ambiguous connection to the meeting had a history of contributing, with the purpose of helping maintain the membership database. The proposed amendment was to change “upon request, Finance & Stewardship Committee may provide to Membership Committee a list of those persons…” to “Finance & Stewardship Committee may provide to Membership Committee upon their request a list of those persons…”. Grant Thompson stated that this amendment more accurately reflected the original intent of the draft statement. Friends approved the amendment.
  • One friend noted that they had requested to be on F&S but that they were not a member. They encouraged the meeting to allow those on F&S and those helping F&S to have the information they needed to help.
  • One friend expressed their support for the statement and noted that the list of those individuals who have any access to financial information should be available to the meeting. They also expressed a hope that even those members with limited finances could prioritize financial contributions to the meeting.

Friends approved the amended draft statement.

Other Business

Ministry and Worship Gray Handley, clerk.

M&W is considering various issues related to our Meeting for Worship at 10:30 a.m. on each First Day.  These are particularly important given that our community seems to be increasingly returning to in-person Meetings for Worship.  The Committee’s overarching concern is to maintain the meeting as an essential and protected occasion for spiritually gathered worship while balancing our commitment to welcoming all and embracing community-building opportunities, which also are critically important to our FMW community. 

Concerns have been expressed by some Friends about late-comers interrupting the silence, the timing of our children’s participation, the inclusion of “Joys and Sorrows” within the customary hour of silent worship, and our practice of rotating among committees the opportunity to sit Head of Meeting. 

 Following its own discernment and after these ideas lay over for a few weeks so others may share their thoughts with the committee, M&W plans to “pilot” some revised practices.

– To reduce disruption while still welcoming all, late-comers will be asked by the Greeter to enter quietly and sit in the benches closest to the door (a sign on these benches will ask that on-time worshipers not use them).

–  M&W will consult further with the Religious Education Committee about the timing of the children’s participation, noting that some regret not hearing from the children about their First Day activities.  

–  For the inclusion of Joys and Sorrows (J&S) while remaining gathered in worshipful, the Head of Meeting will rise at 11:30 to invite the sharing of J&S for 5-10 minutes, which will extend Meeting for that additional time, if needed.  

To assist introduction of these revisions of procedure, M&W and the Administrative Secretary will work with  all the committees to assure Head of Meeting and Greeting duties are understood, clearly assigned every week and carefully executed.  Updated guidance will be placed on the Facing Bench to assist these individuals identified by the responsible committees.  

For example, the Greeter will remain on “duty” outside the door until 10:45 to assure late-comers are carefully guided to the nearest benches.  M&W is eager to hear from others what their thoughts are on these proposed enhancements and any other ideas it should consider to strengthen our occasions for worship and fellowship. 

  • One friend on the Ministry and Worship committee noted that the intention was that, whichever committee was sitting head of meeting, would assign one member to organize those entering MfW.
  • One friend requested that those with name tags and those without name tags be separated when entering the meeting to help those with name tags pick them up faster.
  • One friend noted their appreciation for setting aside the first benches for latecomers. They also noted a concern for overly dictating what is or is not a joy or sorrow.
  • One friend raised that more frequent worship sharings regarding grieving or loss would be helpful. 
  • One friend expressed appreciation for joys and sorrows occurring at 11:30. They also expressed support for M&W to experiment with how MfW is conducted and that minor modifications can be implemented without requiring approval from MfB. They also raised that announcements are often up to 25 minutes in length and that encouraging brevity in announcements would be helpful.
  • One friend noted that the proposed changes are similar to how MfW was conducted in the past that worked well.

Update on Visioning Event (Betsy Bramon)

  • One friend requested clarity on specific dates and a schedule. Betsy noted that a schedule was forthcoming.
  • One friend requested clarity on the initially proposed separation of events. Betsy responded that the more current proposal was to have two initial closed meetings specifically with those who may not feel comfortable raising their concerns and representing a wide diversity of members.
  • One friend requested whether there be a written statement about the proposed events. Betsy responded that the written information was available on request.
  • One friend requested clarity on what “closed” and “invitation only” meant. Betsy responded that those interested would need to request to join the closed events and be invited to register rather than them being fully open.
  • One friend expressed their support for the events particularly juxtaposed with the meeting’s work on financial matters.
  • One friend noted that several meeting members do not live in DC, and asked that the language reflect the meeting’s larger DMV attendance.

Quaking Quakers report on Polar Plunge - Quaking Quakers Plunge Video (Steve Chase)

One friend noted that the event was highly useful for community outreach.
One friend expressed their appreciation for the polar plunge team and their joy at being able to contribute.

Friends concluded MfB with silent worship at 2:07.
Friends approved the minutes at 2:19 pm.



What we’ve done this year-We have not submitted an annual report since 2020, just before COVID 19 reared its ugly head. The Committee was expanded in late 2020 with a merger with the Records and Handbook Committee as a way to pare down the number of committees. We gained new members due to this merger. The Committee created a list of goals in First Month (January) 2020 but almost all of those goals were placed on hold in Third Month (March) 2020 as COVID 19 affected everyday life and activities at FMW came to a standstill. 

Starting in 2021, all committees were sent their sections of the handbook to see if changes needed to be made. Some of the committees have responded but others will need to submit changes. A reminder will be sent this month. 

Also in 2021, the Historian brought up that the history of the Meeting from 1993-2013 was long overdue. The Committee decided that in addition to the new 20 year history installment, it would be better to create one book with all of the previous histories and various other histories of parts of the meeting, such as the library, gardens, and the Peace and Social Concerns Committee. The book has been completed as of Second Month (February) 2023 and is available on Amazon for $20 plus shipping or can be purchased in the Meetinghouse for $15 starting Second Month (February) 26. The history book is being promoted nationally and will also be sent to the DC Public Library and DC Historical Society. The Historian is collecting histories of Quakers in the DMV region and will create a section in the library. The Historian also reminds all committees to keep accurate minutes.

During the summer of 2021, the committee approached the Meeting about having a large book sale. This morphed into an open house in Eleventh Month (November) 2021 with everyone in the Meeting participating in welcoming Friends back to the Meetinghouse and our neighbors. The Library raised almost $600 for its budget. 

Starting in mid-2021, the Committee started to work on adding new books to the collection from donations from the book sale. We also realized this was a good time to resuscitate the goals from 2020. Since 2022, the Committee has met regularly for work days about once a month to go through each shelf and decide if books in the collection still belong in the collection, and if damaged, are they worth replacing. Also, the Committee is committed to updating all library call numbers using only one system. In the 90+ years, each Librarian has used a different version of the Dewey Decimal system. Doing this updating will simplify the system and help us discover duplicates with different call numbers. Yes, this has happened more than once. 

How to use the Library-To locate a book in the Library, first find the library website by going to The books in the Library have been cataloged on


The FMW Library catalog is viewable at or on mobile devices at by entering the collection name FMWLibrary.

You can locate books by author, or subject, or title.  To find where the book you want is located, find the call number under the Comments section.  If necessary, ask Library Committee members for help.  If you can't find the book you want on the shelf, check the notebook to see if someone else has it out. 

We continue our new system for checkout, using a notebook for signing out.  We trust you to return them, and cross out your entry. Try to return books within three weeks so that others may use them too.  Although we do not charge late fees, the Committee is not above giving withering glares to scofflaws. 

About the Collection-As of Second Month (February) 11, 2023, the Library held 2,530 books in the collection, an increase of 107 volumes since 2020. Additions to the collection came partly from donations and new books bought by the committee. We will continue to seek suggestions from the community and look for new titles relating to Quakerism to add to the collection.  

Before donating books, please talk to committee members. The Library’s scope for collecting includes Quaker history and biography, spirituality, LGBTQA+ spirituality, mysticism, social justice, and non-violence.  The Committee hopes to resume the book sales regularly. Proceeds from the book sales help purchase more books and other needed items for the Library. The last book sale in First Month (January) netted over $160, thanks to the large donation of books from our beloved member Gerry Fitzgerald’s estate. We used some of the proceeds from the book sale in Eleventh Month (November) 2021 to purchase a new periodical rack and supplies for the Library. 

The library owns five Kindle paperwhites, which are available to be used by reading groups in the meeting. These Kindles are an early generation but still usable. Ask the librarians about them if you are interested. The Library has also added more links to electronic versions of classic Quaker titles to the Library’s homepage, including John Woolman’s Journal, Robert Barclay’s Apology, and Journal of the Life and Religious Labours of Elias Hicks. We have included a basic introduction to Quakerism website, and a link to another Quaker library which has even more material. If people need assistance downloading these to their own Kindles or other e-book readers, please contact Library Committee members 

The Committee Goals-As we continue to plan for 2023 and beyond, the Committee will continue to update the library collection, update the Handbook, and create better signage. We meet the first First Day (Sunday) at 12 noon. This allows at least one First Day in which the Committee can assist patrons in the Library as we do our work. Please interrupt our committee meetings! 

We could always use assistance and actively welcome new members. If you have an interest, please approach one of the committee members. 

Members of the Library Committee:
Gene Throwe, Clerk and Librarian, Hayden Wetzel, Historian, Greg Robb, Historian, Kylie Carpenter, Brandon Engle, Mark Kawar, Brandon Miliate, Elizabeth Nyman, Patrick Turley, Jessica Vermooten, Faith Williams (emeritus)

Committee of Clerks, Meeting Minutes - January 29, 2023 9:00 am

Friends Present:  Clerks Present:

  • Allen Fawcett; Co-Clerk, Elaine Wilson; Co-Clerk, Greg Robb; Clerk of Hospitality,  
  • Julie Johnson; Clerk of Religious Education, Gray Handley; Clerk of Ministry and Worship
  • Hayden Wetzel; Clerk of Personal Aid / Historian, Grant Thompson; Co-Clerk of Finance and Stewardship
  • Michael Beer; Clerk of Nominating, Tristan Kirkman; Recording Clerk
  • Ken Forsberg; Co-Clerk of Property, Michael Wood; Co-Clerk of Property
  • Jason Terry; Co-Clerk of Finance and Stewardship, Aaron Johnson; Clerk of Personnel
  • Barbara Briggs; Clerk of Peace and Social Concerns / Administrator
  • Anne Kendall; Clerk of Mary J. Simpson Committee, Bobby Trice; Co-Clerk of Membership
  • Gene Throwe; Clerk of Library, Records and Handbook,  Bill Foskett; Clerk of Trustees, Rashid Darden; Betsy Bramon; 

Query: How can we be careful stewards of Friends Meeting of Washington in our roles as clerks? 

Introductions and opportunities for clerks to share their hopes/plans/highlights for the upcoming year.  

Resources for Committees Barbara Briggs presented the resources to aid committee work.

  • Google Docs:  Committee folders.  Running Minutes (like this one!).  
  • Clerks resources folder
  • Training and tech support
  • Payment Reimbursements
  • Process for reserving rooms / Zoom meetings - contact Barbara /
  • Due dates:  Committee reports.  Head of Meeting & hospitality support.  Current practice.  Would sending calendar invites be helpful?
  • Felt needs, ideas & next steps

Bill: Calendar invites appreciated

Julie: Reminders of reports are very helpful

Elaine: Look in advance at when sitting head of meeting, incorporate into first committee meetings

Barbara: Schedule for head of meeting / hospitality is in announcements

Gray: Ministry and Worship’s responsibility to work on head of meeting schedule, working on it now. If there are problems with a date, individual committee’s responsibility to find a replacement / switch and then inform Barbara of the change.

Allen: Email to to contact other committees

Bill: Folder structure recommendations

Barbara: Not worried about file sizes; will be taking archive copies

Greg: Hospitality does not need other committees to bring in food every Sunday, Hospitality can take over responsibility. Hope to have committees help out with Meeting for Business. Remove hospitality help from committee responsibility spreadsheet. Consider removing committee exchange from sitting head of meeting and re-focus on spiritual nature of our worship. Use hospitality room to broadcast committee stuff, not the meeting room.

Ken Forsberg: Thanks to Barbara for setting up documentation

Barbara: Happy to help work with anyone to train on google documentation.

Barbara: Difficulties with the newsletter; requires a lot of work. Hoping to have help with presenting useful material.

Preserving committee records

Hayden Wetzel Next month (February 19th, 12:15) there will be a meeting on the conversion of paper records to electronic records.  Hayden also presented the first copy of the newly published History of Friends Meeting of Washington.

Finance & Stewardship - Draft statement for consideration at a future MfB to help clarify and slightly expand confidentiality standards to accommodate volunteers for fundraising tasks. 

The names of those making donations to the Meeting and the amounts they donate are treated with care to avoid any appearance of linking financial support with importance or influence. At the same time, to permit committees and individuals responsible for raising funds and accounting for their receipt, it is essential that some information be shared to a limited number of individuals. 

To accommodate both confidentiality and effectiveness, the Meeting authorizes the Meeting’s Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer, members of the Finance & Stewardship Committee, members of the Fundraising Sub-Committee of F&S, staff members and consultants serving the Meeting who deal with financial matters, and volunteers appointed by F&S to perform limited fundraising tasks to have access to information sufficient to accomplish their tasks. In all cases, those granted access shall acknowledge that the information they are receiving is not to be shared with others or used in any way beyond what is necessary to accomplish the tasks at hand. In addition, upon request, Finance & Stewardship Committee may provide to Membership Committee a list of those persons who have made no financial contributions to the Meeting or to any of its separately funded activities within four years prior to the report in order to assist the Membership Committee’s efforts to maintain accurate, up-to-date records.

Michael Beer: Support the idea. Consider the idea of a subcommittee specifically for fundraising.
Michael Wood: Consider the idea of a checkbox for confidentiality.
Grant: No one outside of specific financial members are aware of donations. Not sure if confidentiality checkbox is valuable as we do not publish or share those who donate.
Michael Wood: We could do more to advertise our regular giving options.
Grant: We’re trying to be more visible.
Gray: Support the fundraising subcommittee idea. To expand committee resources, ask for volunteers; those volunteers would have access to donation information and a commitment to protect that.
Grant: Current meeting policy prevents some help.
Gene: Surprised that current policy is so restrictive.
Friends are in agreement that this draft statement can be moved forward to Meeting for Business.

Update on Visioning Event (Rashid Darden and Betsy Bramon)

Rashid: Working with Betsy to give those whose voices are less heard (young / of color) to more of a voice in the meeting. Initially thought of a fishbowl format, moving toward 2-day (separated by 2 weeks) opportunity. First event would be for those who are less heard, recorded anonymously, and virtual; focused on building trust and community. Second event would be in person at the meeting, with format decided on by those at the first event to ensure those whose voices are less heard are comfortable.

Betsy: Will be doing a Q&A, used to inform structure. Goal is creative, collaborative, and safe dialogue in the meeting about the community becoming more accessible and increase engagement. Will likely need help with financial support and outreach. Hoping to have meetings in March, beginning of April at latest. Contact B&R with any follow up questions ,

  • Allen: We’ll follow up for updates.

BYM Interim Meeting on March 25th

Elaine: Several members volunteered to help out in October 2022 Meeting for Business.

Greg: We are hosting, coffee in the meetings  and a lunch.

Gene: We provide breakfast, then committee meetings at 9:00, then lunch, then full meeting will go to 3 or 4 pm. Need to provide some dinner options for those who are staying overnight.

Elaine: Need to have someone to coordinate.

Barbara: Bill Strein and I did this prior, it took a significant amount of work.

Greg: Hospitality will help out with coordination and delegation.

Committee of Clerks meeting times and in-person vs. hybrid

Michael Beer: I believe strongly that we need to incentivize coming in person. Online helps build wider community but we need to strengthen in-person community, especially after covid. Habits bleed into meeting for worship in terms of folks arriving late.

Greg: Suggest meeting for dinner during the week.

Bill: Agree with Greg.

Julie: Recommend keeping hybrid meetings in the sense of inclusivity, individuals have many limitations and demands on their time.

Barbara: Regarding meeting time, thankful for Elaine and Allen. Strongly support 9:00 am slot in order to keep afternoon open for whole community events.

Bobby: Julie speaks my mind. Joining online is the only feasible way to join for me. Also support Committee of Clerks to be mid-week, prevents those who attend 9:00 am meeting for worship from joining.

Gene: Also support mid-week dinner for committee of clerks. Some committees must meet in person, but don’t have a problem with other committees having a hybrid system to keep as many people involved as possible.

Hayden: 9:00 am meeting for worship attenders would be upset by their regular worship being overwritten.

Allen: Will follow-up on how to arrange next committee of clerks meeting with a hope to preserve both 9:00 am meeting and afternoon activities.