Newsletter of Bellingham Friends Meeting – October 2011
Advices and Queries
How can we make the meeting a community in which each person is accepted and nurtured and strangers are welcome? Seek to know one another in the things which are eternal, bear the burden of each other’s failings and pray for one another. As we enter with tender sympathy into the joys and sorrows of each other’s lives, ready to give and help and to receive it, our meeting can be a channel for God’s love and forgiveness.
–From: #18 Advices & Queries , Britain Yearly Meeting
Earthcare Advice and Query
“Do we daily remind ourselves of our connections with people, all living things, and all that sustains life in a way that brings joy, thankfulness and nourishment into our lives?”
Earthcare Speak Truth to Power
PACE is a program that allows homeowners to partner with their city to cover the upfront cost of a new renewable energy system, which the homeowner then repays through an addition to their property taxes or a lien. In most cases the savings from the renewable energy covers the payback cost.
Federal mortgage lenders have refused to lend to PACE -associated homeowners. The PACE Assessment Protection Act of 2011 (H.R. 2599) would prohibit such lender discrimination. Please ask Rick Larsen to support this bi-partisan bill.
Peace and Social Concerns Speak Truth to Power
P&SC suggests that Friends consider writing letters to the editor of their favorite publication urging a no vote on I 1183 which would privatize liquor sales in the state of WA. Some points that might be included are:
a) Privatization of liquor sales in WA would shift money from the public coffers into the bank accounts of owners of corporations.
b) The main beneficiary of I 1183 would be large box stores who will receive the means to increase their profits and undercut profits of small, locally owned stores.
c) The state of WA needs the revenue to support infrastructure, schools, health care, safety, and social services.
d) I 1183 would allow liquor sales at convenience stores which are only 75% compliant with liquor laws that forbid sale of alcohol to minors. If this passes, 1 in 4 teenagers who try to do so, will likely be able to purchase alcohol. Drunk driving accidents and deaths would likely rise accordingly.
Whatcom Peace and Justice Center is a great resource. Their website: http://www.whatcompjc.org/calendar.html
Date/time Activity Description Contact
Sunday October 23rd
Howard Harris will lead a discussion on Quaker Beliefs: an introduction
10 am Outreach & Welcoming Committee at the home of Howard Harris. All are welcome to give input to a committee member before the meeting or to attend the meeting. Don Goldstein
Sunday October 30th A Surprising (maybe even spooky?) Second Hour with our children. Contact Jessica Bee with any questions (393-4249)
Wednesday, November 2 Earthcare Committee Meeting at the home of Doris Ferm (756-0621)
All are welcome to give input and attend the meeting
Thursday, November 3rd
7 pm Spirit Group at the home of Sharon Trent Discussion of Thomas Kelly’s A Testament of Devotion Sharon Trent
November 6th Potluck Daylight saving time ends!!!
November 7th at 7 pm Book Group at the home of Joan Ofteness Discussion of Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life By Dacher Keltner Joan (671-0699)
November 13th Meeting for Worship for the Conduct of Business Alice Turtle Robb 312-8234
Friends are encouraged to sign up to teach the children during first hour. There is a sign-up clipboard at each meeting. Any questions about topics or support may be directed to Childrens Program Clerk Jessica Bee. Joanne Cowan has agreed to coordinate the schedule.
Winter Coat Drive: Sunday, October 23rd is the last day to bring coats, mittens, gloves, scarves and hats to Sharon Trent so they may be distributed to those who need warm clothing.
Gospel Concert: Saturday, October 22 at 7 pm, free-will offering. Custer United Methodist Church at 2996 Main Street in Custer. There will be choirs from 4 congregations to raise money for Our House in Ferndale, which offers case management and shelter to homeless families in northern Whatcom County.
Cabaret of the Arts: Saturday, November 5th, 7 pm at Lynden United Methodist Church, 500 N. 14th St. Tickets are $10 at the door. The event will benefit severe-weather shelters
Autumn Dinner: Sunday, November 20th at Windows on the Bay at Squalicum Harbor. Wine reception begins at 6 pm and dinner is at 7. The cost is $135.
Peace and Social Concerns is facilitating our effort to come to consensus regarding the wording for the minute on population stabilization and resource distribution. Please send comments and suggestions for revision to Judy Hopkinson, clerk of Peace and Social Concerns. When the meeting reaches consensus regarding the wording of this minute, it will be brought forth for adoption by our meeting and forwarded to Yearly meeting as a statement of our Light on this topic
REVISED MINUTE ON POPULATION STABILIZATION AND
RESOURCE DISTRIBUTION -7/5/11
OUR VISION of an earth restored includes all creation thriving long into the future. It appears that our species is currently exceeding or on its way to exceeding the carrying capacity of the Earth. Current technological practices and consumption patterns waste precious resources and disrupt natural life and mineral cycles. In order to maintain our standard of living, wealthy peoples in particular have been consuming planetary resources at an unsustainable rate.
We have allowed our own and other international corporations to extract, stockpile, and sale for profit resources necessary for the stability of planetary weather cycles and the survival of indigenous peoples. Moreover, we have allowed these activities without requiring restoration of full ecosystem function or restoration of lifestyles to the people whose way of life has been disrupted.
The drain on resources in less “developed” nations reduces their ability to produce sufficient food for their people and forces them to destroy great swaths of forest and to exploit less and less desirable land to produce food crops. At the same time, world population has been growing at over 75 million persons per year, over 200,000 persons per day, over 8,500 per hour. This combination of resource exploitation for use by a handful of wealthy individuals and increased population growth worldwide has brought us to the brink of planetary carrying capacity. We are reaching, or have exceeded the limits of arable land, ocean fish populations, fresh underground water, fossil fuels, and other resources, and are crowding out the spaces and resources essential to other species. Forests are being cut down at the rate of 5,000 acres per hour, water tables are being drawn down at alarming rates, and wastes and poisons are polluting the air, water, and land at an increasing pace.
In order to realize our Quaker vision of a peaceful, just society, we must seek ways to, reduce non-sustainable patterns of resources utilization, prevent exploitation of impoverished nations and peoples, and stabilize human population growth. As Friends in the United States, we realize that action begins with us as well as with others, speaking out against laws that allow corporations to extract resources without ecosystem restoration, speaking out against laws that allow appropriation of land from indigenous peoples and family farming communities, living our own lives more lightly on the earth, seeing God in each person, and practicing what love can do. We recognize that the reasons for resource depletion and population growth are greatly varied, and we encourage the development of deeper understandings of these complex issues.
We call for efforts to end the structural inequalities that perpetuate poverty and contribute to high birth rates, as well as voluntary measures to promote appropriate family size and reduced consumption, including (1) limiting the rights of corporations to extract resources without full restoration of ecosystem function, (2) insuring that indigenous lifestyles and methods of food production and farmlands are not sacrificed for corporate profits, (3) adopting simpler lifestyles in high-consuming nations such as the United States, including fewer possessions, greater sharing, and more responsible choices in what we eat such as reduced consumption of meat (4 ) offering support for those who choose adoption, shared childrearing, or childless lifestyles as well as those who chose biological parenthood , (5) raising the status of women, and providing better access to education for women and men (6) ,providing access to family planning services worldwide, and (7) increased research on sustainable methods of food production, energy production, and other ways to meet human needs throughout the world without sacrificing the health of natural systems or the ability of future generations to meet their needs.
We believe that these and other voluntary approaches should be vigorously pursued now to avoid the inevitability of more coercive measures by societies in the future to maintain a needed balance of resources between present and future generations of humans and other species.
We urge Friends and others everywhere to join us in pursuing these and other population stabilization measures in our personal lives and in our local communities, states, and nations.
A note from Virginia Herrick
My friend Valerie Wade is looking for a housemate. She would prefer someone quiet, collaborative, and non-smoking, with minimal to zero interest in television. She has a nice little two-bedroom house on the north side of Bellingham, and would charge about $400 a month plus utilities. She has a large garden space, lots of fruit trees, and a big fenced back yard. She has two cats, one of which is extremely unfriendly to other cats. They have lived with a large, mellow dog before without problems. Anyone interested should contact me, 671-2454, or email@example.com and I’ll put you in touch with Val.
Meeting for Worship Sundays at 10 AM at Explorations Academy, 1701 Ellis Street, Bellingham
Phone 360-734-0244 Mailing Address P.O. Box 30144 Bellingham, 98228-2144 Website BellinghamFriends.org
Co-Clerks: Alice Turtle Robb, (312-8234) and Judy Hopkinson (713-816-3009), Ministry and Counsel Members: Alice Turtle Robb (312-8234) Lorina Hall (734-8170) , Mimi Freshley (933-4566), Janine Hart-Horner (676-6029). Childrens Program Clerk, Jessica Bee (393-4249)