In early February, a link to materials about affiliating with Friends General Conference was circulated: FAQ link on FGC Affiliation, February 2018
Monthly meetings were asked by Ministry and Oversight Committee (M&O) to review this information and reflect on the following queries in preparation for continued discernment at the 2018 Annual Session:
- What could Pacific Yearly Meeting and your monthly meeting gain by affiliating with FGC?
- What undesirable consequences might result from affiliating with FGC?
- What additional information would be helpful to members of your meeting in considering the pros and cons of affiliation?
As noted in February, we were not asking your monthly meeting to reach unity or make a recommendation as to whether or not to affiliate with FGC. We were asking monthly meetings to season this matter and send a summary of reflections from the seasoning process to M&O member Shan Cretin by April 30, 2018. After April 30, M&O will synthesize and share the reflections from monthly meetings and make this available prior to our discernment at Annual Session.
Several meetings have already reported back and other meetings are still engaged in seasoning. Since February, additional questions have surfaced and after Representative Committee Meeting in March, we asked FGC staff to provide the following additional information:
- A list of programs initiated over the past 10 years
- A list of programs laid down over the past 10 years and any programs planned for laying down
- How has laying down Stewardship Services affected fundraising, including major donors, annual budget, potential bequests? What has replaced Stewardship Services and how is it functioning?
- A description of the role of affiliated yearly meetings in initiating or laying down programs
- FGC current structure has been called too large and unwieldy—What, if any, plans are there to change it?
- The current FGC budget and end of year financial reports for the previous 5 years.
In response to this request, FGC staff have compiled additional information that is now available at this link: Responses to PacYM Questions April 2018.
A summary of the process M&O is undertaking to bring this matter to the Yearly Meeting is available at this link: M&O Process for Discerning Possible Affiliation with FGC since 2014.
Rather than wait until we have synthesized monthly meeting responses, we are providing this information now and ask all meetings, including those that have already reported back, to circulate this new link to all meeting members.
If you have any questions, please contact M&O Member Shan Cretin: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kylin Navarro and Sally Kingsland, Co-Clerks, Ministry and Oversight Committee