Wednesday, April 3, 2013

New April Newsletter for Young Adult Friends, and Families, in NYYM!

Now you know!

A newsletter for Young Adult Friends, and Families,
of New York Yearly Meeting

April 2013

Greetings Friend!

Spring is finally here!!
As we move into the Spring and Summer I want to let you know about all sorts of things that are going on.  I know there is a lot of information in these newsletters.  I am trying to find a way of getting the information that people want, to the people, without overwhelming Friends with Information.  The problem is that people have different needs and interests.  Feel free to look at the list of the contents below, and skip to the part that speaks to you.

April 5-7 is Spring Sessions in Locust Valley, NY.  That is on Long Island.  I highly recommend this weekend.  (see my description in the list of where I will be traveling) It is a great way to see what happens in the Yearly Meeting business and committees.

At Powell House on May 10-12, there will be a weekend especially for families.  This is an opportunity for families to spend time together.  We will be looking at our Quaker Practices, and how we can use them and learn from them at all ages.  Together we will be exploring stories, songs, role playing and art to create a literal and figurative tool box to help us use our Quaker tools in our families, lives and communities.  We will be looking at tools like Centering/worship, Queries, discernment, and holding someone in the light.  We will work together as a multi age group.  Please see for the listing.  There is a discount for people attending this event and there is financial aid.

SAVE THE DATE!!  MAY 31-JUNE 2!!  Young Adult Concerns Committee and the Spiritual Nurture Working Group are sponsoring a weekend on SELF CARE AND SPIRITUALITY.  The weekend will be held at Casowasco conference center, in the Central Finger Lakes.  Luke Jones, Anne Pomeroy and Gabi Savory Bailey are facilitating.  This is a family friendly weekend and child care will be provided.  This weekend is for 18- 35 ish year olds.   The fee is still being negotiated, but no one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Finally, I would like to let you know about a very special program that is held at Pendle Hill, in PA, this June. The Young Adult Friends Conference, is organizing a 6 day conference, Continuing Rev_l_tion: Be Brought Low and Back to the Root Young Adult Friends Conference on Simplicity June 14 - 19, 2013.  There is a massive discount for room, board and programs.  There is also funding from NYYM to help you attend.  Friends ages 18-35 are welcome.  Please look here,  This promises to be a very rich opportunity to be with other Young Adults from all over North America, and across the branches of Quakerism.  I attended part of it last year, and was very glad I did!

Do you have something you would like to share with YAF and Families in NYYM?  I would welcome photographs, artwork, poetry, essays, haiku, meaningful quotes and passages, you name it!

In Peace,
Gabi Savory Bailey
Young Adult Field Secretary, NYYM—


  • What is YACC?

  • Where has Gabi been? Where is she going?
  • Upcoming conferences at Powell House and Pendle Hill
  • Internship opportunities
  • Spotlight on a committee, Advancement Committee
  • YAF Spotlight on Jenny Pronto, Adirondack MM/ Ithaca MM/ Brooktondale Worship Group
  • What is going on with other YAF and Families in NYYM?

What is YACC?  

The Young Adults Concern Committee (YACC) is a committee of NY Yearly Meeting.  It is the committee that oversees the Circle of Young Friends (CYF) and the retreats they plan.  YACC also plans the CYF activities for Summer Sessions each year.  This committee is one way that Young Adults can find voice in the Yearly Meeting.  YACC meets regularly throughout the year on the internet, and also in person at Summer Sessions, and one other annual meeting.
Currently sitting on this committee are: Lucas Braun- Old Chatham MM, Rosie Stillman—Montclair MM,  Audrey Jaynes—Montclair MM,  Jenny Pronto Adirondack/Ithaca/Poplar Ridge MM,  Anthony Smith—New Brunswick MM, Alanna Badgley—Poughkeepsie MM, Barbara vonSalis (coopted member) Brooklyn MM.  If you have any questions, ideas or concerns please contact a member of YACC.  You can also contact me to put you in touch with YACC.  Are you interested in getting involved with YACC?   Contact me at

Where has Gabi been?  Where is she going?

 Here are some of my plans for the future.  Please note:  these are subject to change, and I will try to keep people updated as possible. 

March 2 Meetings for Discernment- Brooklyn MM

March 17 Albany MM.

April 5-7 Spring Sessions, Locust Valley, NY (That is on Long Island).  Truth be told, I love Spring Sessions.  It is a low commitment way to see what is happening in the Yearly Meeting.  I get to catch up with People that I have not seen since Summer, or Fall.  I get to dabble in the committees, and Coordinating committees with no commitment to joining.  I do not have the same expense as summer sessions, and less time commitment, but I still walk away connected to the wider Quaker Body.  Also, I get to stay with other Friends who I may or may not know yet, for Free!  I LOVE staying with Friends and seeing them at home, and getting to know them.  It is another gift of travelling, and knowing each other in different ways.  If you have not been to Spring Sessions, please consider going.  Financial Aid is available.

April 12-14 Adirondack MM, Glens Falls, NY There will be a gathering of YAF and Families on Saturday evening.  On Sunday anyone in the area is welcome to worship at 10:30.  I am hoping to bring the message to worship.  If you have never experienced a programmed worship, this would be a great opportunity.

April 26-28 Farmington Scipio Spring Gathering, Pan Yan, NY.  This is a GEM of a gathering.  I never knew it existed!  What fun for individuals and families!  It is held at a camp in the Central Finger Lakes.  Anyone is welcome.  There is time to worship, fellowship, and sessions on different things.  I do not know what this year is.  There is a great Youth Program.  My whole family loves it.  I have met wonderful people there.  Camping is available.  If you live in Farmington Scipio RM, or want to see what I am talking about, PLEASE consider going.  There are usually a good number of YAF there, as well as families.  Kids love it!

May 10-12 Leading a Family Weekend at Powell House  This is a Powell House opportunity for the WHOLE family. During this weekend we will look at what tools Quakerism gives us as families and individuals to help us in our daily life.  Through story, art, role playing, discussion, small groups, worship and active participation of people of all ages, we will be exploring tools like holding someone in the light, worship/centering, simplicity, clearness committees/discernment and others.  We will create a “toolbox” that families and their members can use. There will not be childcare at this weekend, as the children will be part of the sessions with the adults.  There will be time for parents to talk about their experiences as well.  More info is coming!
  I am so excited for this opportunity for families to do meaningful Quaker work together!  My 2 year old will be there!  Will you and your family?

May 31June 2 SelfCare and Spirituality, We've all been busy, whether it's with work, school, family, life, every one of us is under strain. As Friends we are often found in service, to our community, to others, to the world, but in our dedication we may forget or lose the time to service ourselves. How do you nurture yourself?

Come take a weekend where neediness is encouraged, relax with friends, eat, sleep, and self-obsess a little. We will focus on self care as a manifestation of divine love. As we cherish the gift of life our spirituality deepens. We will delve into the relationship of faithfulness and care of self. Setting aside common teachings that care of self is selfish we will consider how it is integral to our faith journey.

Cost:  Casowasco will charge us $150 per person.  Through the generosity of some NYYM committees we are hoping to reduce that charge to as low as $70 pp, if needed by the individual. If you can afford the full amount, or more than $70, that will allow more people to get reduced funding.  Funding is also often available from Monthly and Regional Meetings.  Please do not hesitate to contact Gabi Savory Bailey about ways to access various funding sources.

Registration will open on April 10, 2013.  Please visit this link to register after April 10.  

You can also visit the event page on Facebook for updates.

Please contact Gabi Savory Bailey, NYYM Young Adult Field Secretary, at or Luke Jones with any questions or concerns
July 21-27 Summer Sessions, Silver Bay.  This is the annual NYYM Sessions held at Silver Bay on Lake George.  It is a residential gathering for people of all ages where we do our YM business, fellowship, speakers, Junior Yearly Meeting, committees, interest groups, swimming and activities, and worship.   There will be much more information coming up soon.  If you love Summer Sessions, tell people!  If you want to know more, contact me for information.

Would you like me to come to your Meeting, or Region?  Would you like someone to support the work that is already being done there?  I am eager to travel to do a program, support an existing program, or simply sit and listen.  Contact me at

Upcoming Powell House  and Pendle Hill weekends

Women's Weekend, A weekend just for women! April 12-14, 2013
Annie Patterson, Rise Up Singing

Our souls long to be fed and nurtured, but our lives are often so busy and filled with outward noise that we forget how to listen to the deepest place within our hearts.  Singing can take us right there - to that innermost place that cries out to be held and loved. Writing our thoughts, without judgment, can lead to a place of deep healing within us. This weekend is all about women, taking time to feed and nurture our spirits and enjoy being together in the process! Come prepared to sing and worship together, and devote some time to listening to our inner voices through writing. We will spend much of the weekend singing songs from Rise Up Singing. We'll meet in small groups for shorter, but just as rich, time to write together on Saturday afternoon. Annie Patterson has played a central role in helping to create a quiet revolution of group singing in the US and abroad. She is co-creator, along with her husband Peter Blood, of the iconic songbook, Rise Up Singing, now it its 22nd year. Rise Up Singing has sold over a million copies around the world. A member of Mt. Toby Meeting, NEYM.

Quakers & Shamanism April 19-21
Tara Lindsay, Kate Smith, Brian McGuire and Kelli DeFlora.
Anthropologists, archaeologists, historians, and psychologists have all studied shamanism whose origin dates back centuries. Practiced throughout the world, but most especially in Asian, South American, and Native American cultures, shamanic practice does not replace individual religious disciplines and traditions but transcends them and brings practitioners face to face with what it means to be "spiritual." In addition to quiet time for reflection and time in nature, the weekend will include three key components of Shamanic practice.
The Shamanic Journey is a way of finding answers, information, healing and knowledge, as well as guidance or help with one’s personal life. Through drumming, rattling, and smudging, the facilitators will provide "an opportunity to open yourself to receive the wisdom of the universe and live in a more connected way to the earthly and heavenly forces that are guiding your life."
The Fire Ceremony is an active and uniquely potent ceremony designed to give participants the opportunity to make significant changes in their lives. Focused on the work of the South, of release, this deeply experiential ceremony utilizes deep drumming and focused movement to create a supported, intentional space for growth and transformation.
The Healing Circle, as its name implies, is an oasis of healing modalities encouraging participants to slow down, reflect and take better care of themselves. Through the sound of singing bowls, the scent of essential oils, the healing touch of Reiki, the cleansing smoke of smudging, this ceremony is a quiet, yet tangible, invitation to purify your energy field.

Upcoming Family Weekend May 10-12  

This is a Powell House opportunity for the WHOLE family. During this weekend we will look at what tools Quakerism gives us as families and individuals to help us in our daily life.  Through story, art, role playing, discussion, small groups, worship and active participation of people of all ages, we will be exploring tools like holding someone in the light, worship/centering, simplicity, clearness committees/discernment and others.  We will create a “toolbox” that families and their members can use. There will not be childcare at this weekend, as the children will be part of the sessions with the adults.  There will be time for parents to talk about their experiences as well.  More info is coming!
  I am so excited for this opportunity for families to do meaningful Quaker work together!  My 2 year old will be there!  Will you and your family?

Upcoming Pendle Hill weekends

Apr 21 - 28, 2013

The Refuge of Awakening: A Seven-Day Mindfulness Meditation Retreat

Mary Grace Orr, assisted by Anne Briggs
This retreat will be a time of silence, with periods of sitting and walking practice, opportunities to talk about your own practice, and formal presentations.

The Nonviolent Atonement

May 10 - 12, 2013
Michael and Lorri Hardin
Using the work of RenĂ© Girard, Michael Hardin has articulated a nonviolent paradigm for the atonement. Explore questions such as: Is God violent? Was Jesus’s death a demonstration of God’s love?

Return to Communitas, the Love-Awakened Community

May 17 - 19, 2013
Ken and Katharine Jacobsen
Early Christian communities and early Quaker communities were socially and culturally diverse groups of people, surprisingly knit together by the power of divine Love into communitas – new and Love-awakened relationship with one another and with the world

Come Away and Rest Awhile

May 31 - Jun 2, 2013
John Calvi
Relax your mind and body, renew your spiritual connection, and gather a deeper sense of your own goodness and wholeness in this gently paced retreat.

Writing the Children’s Book You Hold in Your Heart

June 9 - 13, 2013
Becky Birtha
Is there a children’s book or story you’ve longed to write, perhaps begun, or maybe just carried in your heart for years?

There are funds available to help make conferences possible!  PLEASE contact me, Helen Garay Toppins ( or the clerk of your Monthly Meeting to find out how to get financial assistance.  Questions about Transportation?  Let’s talk.  I bet there is a solution!

Internship possibilities

American Friends Service Committee
Each year, the AFSC welcomes more than 100 fellows, interns, apprentices, and young volunteers across the globe. Like the AFSC, these advocates believe that there is worth in every person and that love can overcome violence and injustice.
The AFSC’s programs develop leaders for social change. They build bridges of understanding and active alliances among young people – and communities – of diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

Spotlight on a Committee: Advancement Committee 
It seems fair to say that there has been a significant shift in focus and activity for The NYYM Advancement Committee over the last 5 years.  While the committee continues oversight of several funds in support of meetings and ministers there has been a proactive move to a new emphasis on the support of active ministries throughout the YM.

The 4th Advancement Consultation is scheduled for September 13-15, 2013 and will gather Friends who are active in prophetic ministry and also Friends who are active in the Elder/Companion work that is vital to those ministers.  It has become clear to the committee and others in the YM that if we are to keep to our charge as outlined in the YM Handbook we must do far more than distribute funds.  From the Handbook:
Purposes and Objectives
1.              to disseminate widely an awareness of the faith, practice and testimonies of Friends and to encourage their observance by monthly, quarterly and regional meetings and by members of the Yearly Meeting.
2.              To reach out to seekers
3.              To knit Friends and Friends meetings more closely together
To encourage outreach and growth in existing meetings, to undergird and strengthen weak meetings, and to help new worship groups.
These objectives will best be realized through active prophetic and pastoral ministries. The Advancement Committee is committed to identifying and supporting ministries across the YM and that include Friends of every age group.

Interested??  Contact co-clerks Don Badgely or Mia Kissil Hewitt at
Spot light on a NYYM Young Adult Friend:
Jenny Pronto, Adirondack MM/Ithaca MM/ Brooktondale Worship Group
(editor's note:  Jenny is also a member of the Young Adult Concerns Committee. Also, of interest to some, is that Adirondack MM is a
Programmed, Pastoral Meeting, in Glens Falls, NY, one of several Pastoral Meetings in NYYM.   Interested to know more?  I will be visiting there on April 12-14.  Are you available to join me?)

How did you come to Quakerism and why did you stay?
I was born into a second generation quaker family, and I found as I grew up that the principles matched my principles and aligned with the way I wanted to live my life – simply and meaningfully. 

What Quaker work have you done, or do you do?
I have done quaker work in the area of stewardship to our earth.  I feel a deep spiritual connection to the earth and what it provides to us, and I feel it is an honor to work toward protecting our resources for future generations.  The more simply we choose to live our lives, the more we gain in connection to the earth and what it offers.  It truly is a “gift to be simple”!

What is a gift of Quakerism for you?
I love the silence – it offers so much in such a simple manner.  Something that is essentially lost in our culture – having a time set aside each week in my life where I can be still and focus is the greatest gift, and has only gotten more meaningful to me as my life has gotten more complicated.

What is a challenge of Quakerism for you?
A challenge right now is for us to find a community to join in consistently.  We have attempted to start a small worship group for families, but attendance is sparse.  I hope for myself and for my son that he can grow with the similar quaker-based experiences I had in my youth – as it’s so enriching and great to be part of a community.

What did you do wish for Quakers and Quakerism in the future?
I hope that in the future, Quakerism and its ideals are able to shape our society and our culture, because I feel we have so much to offer while we ask nothing in return.  People everywhere are so needing peace in their lives and I hope myself and my quaker community can offer this to the world.
What’s going on with YAFs and families in the Yearly Meeting?

15th Street MM- Friends under 40 (anyone is invited) meet once a month after Meeting for Worship, choose a local eatery (inexpensive preferably) and walk to lunch.  It is a very informal gathering, for fellowship and food.

Brooklyn MM- Young Adult Friends meet for a potluck once a month at the home of one of the YAF from the meeting.  There is time for food, worship and fellowship.  At least once a year there is also a gathering in the old Quaker cemetery in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, for a picnic, and sometimes worship.  They also organize hikes, and other excursions outside of the city.

Ithaca area MM -- YA Friends gather once a month at Burtt House, a property owned by Ithaca Monthly Meeting, in Ithaca, NY.  They have a potluck and fellowship.

Rochester MM family worship--This is a monthly opportunity for semi-programmed Worship for people of all ages.

Brooktondale Worship Group--This group is under the care of Poplar Ridge Monthly Meeting.  They meet the first Sunday of the month at either the home of one of the members or at a community center.  People of ALL AGES are welcome. The format will be very simple. It will start with a query, prayer, scripture, poem or song to help lead us into worship together.  Then we will sit together and share as led until 5PM.
NJ/AFRM family worship and potluck--This fall, five families with children ranging from 18 months to high school age, met for worship sharing, a potluck and fellowship.  We had the worship sharing in the nursery, all we welcome to participate.  The younger ones of us popped in and out.  It was a great opportunity to meet other families, and get to know each other a little better.  We hope to do it again.

All Friends Regional Meeting Arts Day--All Friends Regional Meeting experimented with forging and nurturing friendships among Friends across the region and generations by conducting an Arts Day at Chatham Summit Monthly Meeting one late Saturday afternoon and evening in April of 2012. It was a resounding success with 48 children and adults attending, many of them young families. Artists from various meetings oversaw mini-workshops in sculpting, fabric construction, origami, book-cover making, and beaded jewelry making.  A show and tell, potluck and singing finale capped off a very enjoyable arts day. One parent said she felt like she had been on vacation and a child asked if we could do it every week!

Canal Friends Worship Group, Princeton, NJ--Meet weekly, Tuesdays,  7 pm, at the home of Margaret and Christopher Webb.  Starts at 7 for dessert and fellowship followed by a period of worship.
 Have something great happening in your neck of the woods?  Let Gabi know!  If you have questions, or are interested in any of the opportunities listed above, contact Gabi Savory Bailey ( and I will get you the information.  There is good stuff happening in our Yearly Meeting, Let’s hear it!!

Do you have ideas for this newsletter?  I love feedback!  Do you have photos, drawings, stories, news items, jokes, quotes?  Send 'em over!
Inhale Love.
Exhale Gratitude

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