Canadian Yearly Meeting 2012 in Camrose

August 17th 2012

CYM Young Friends Epistle,

            This year has been a fun and exciting one for Quaker youth here at CYM in Camrose, Alberta. Much fun was had by all thanks to our Youth Secretary; Katrina McQuail, as well as many other hard working young friends. Throughout the week, young adult friends attended Special Interest Groups and meetings. Thanks to their efforts, the upcoming years will be filled with many new faces and opportunities.

The week started late Friday evening when many exhausted friends arrived dreary from their trips. After making some first-time acquaintances over card games, young friends pitched their tents, made their beds, and fell into a well-earned sleep. The following morning all the young friends met officially for the first time and got to know each other better. We then explored Camrose and its respective 7-11’s and Dairy Queen’s. Later in the day we got to know each other’s wild sides with some ice breaking card games. Sunday began with meeting for worship and ended curled up under the stars, telling jokes and watching the meteors fall from the sky.

This year the young friends community was smaller than usual but because of this our relationships were also stronger and more intimate. Monday entailed more board games, which were becoming a reoccurring theme in our week. Later we had our first young friends business meeting. We discussed the exciting prospect of the Youth Challenge, an initiative to send as many as fifty youth to the 2013 Canadian Yearly Meeting.

Tuesday commenced with a talk on relationships and sexuality from Bill and Dale, which provided us a new outlook on human relationships and responsibilities. Yet more board games were played to keep spirits high through an unusual Alberta rain. Quaker Trading Cards started appearing on Wednesday, cards created by the younger friends to raise money for CFSC. Much fun was had as cards were sold and swapped. After lunch many of the young friends made their way down to the local pool, where hours were spent sliding, and splashing through the waves. We capped off the day with a walk to Subway, and yet more games.

Thursday, exhausted from a week of fun we indulged in a morning of sleep, followed by a nature walk guided by Vince Zelazny. After a brief rest we toured a local Youth Center, “The Open Door”, which proved to be very eye-opening. The day ended with young friends gathered, sharing stories and playing games, and much later, typing the dreaded epistle. In the half-asleep words of a young friend; Friday is half an hour young, Saturday is yet to come, and there’s no Sunday – nope, nope, nope!


CYM Young Friends, 2012

Jane Ackerman, Shaun Bartoo, Ben Von Schulmann



FLGBTQC Mid-Winter Gathering info


As in the past, the Midwinter Gathering will be held over Presidents’ Weekend – February 15-18, 2013.

LOCATION: The Gathering will be held at Bryn Mawr Mountain Conference Center. This is located in Honesdale, PA, which is in the Poconos. (Note: This is NOT in Philadelphia, and it’s NOT in the town of Bryn Mawr with which you may be familiar because of a Quaker college of that name which is in that town.)  Here is the website for the conference center at Bryn Mawr Mountain:

TRANSPORTATION: The nearest airport to Bryn Mawr Mountain is the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Airport (AVP), located about 1 hour away. This is a smaller airport, but our research indicates that it is actually less expensive to fly to this airport from most major cities in the US. Other airport options include: Lehigh Valley/Allentown (ABE) – 2 hours away. Newark (EWR) – 2 1/2 hours away. Philadelphia (PHL) – over 3 hours away. We strongly encourage you to use the Scranton airport if possible!

We are working on a way to provide shared transportation from Philadelphia to the Gathering. It is likely that we will arrange a bus or vas, as we anticipate a large number of attendees from the Philadelphia area. If you are coming from the Philadelphia area, please be assured that we will have updates for you as soon as possible on how we can help you get to the Gathering!

REGISTRATION: The registration form will be available soon (thank you for your patience!), but we do now have the information about registration fees. The standard adult rate will be $260 (per adult, for the whole weekend, all meals included). Some of the rooms are “summer camp” style (3-6 bunk beds, shared bathroom); others are “dormitory” style (1 bunk bed, 1 single bed, bathrooms on the hall) — all these rooms are $260 per adult. There are a few rooms available which are further separated from the rest of the campus and have private baths; these rooms will be $280 (per adult). The rate for teens (age 13-18) will be $100, and for children (3-12) will be $60 (per teen/child, full weekend, all meals included). Children 2 and under can attend for free.

There are scholarships to assist with transportation and registration costs, and that more info on how to request this will also be available soon.

If you have questions, please direct them to Planning Committee Co-Clerks – Karen Lightner and Kody Hersh…but please know that your question may be answered soon as we will have much more information available for you, hopefully within the next few weeks!

If you have questions about OUTREACH – (i.e. “What can I do to help promote the gathering?” “What should I say when I tell people about this Gathering?” “Where should I make announcements about the Gathering?”) – please direct THOSE kinds of questions to me!

We’re looking forward to a really awesome Gathering and hope to see you there! Please stay tuned for further updates!


Oliver Danni


First Day, twenty-eighth of the Tenth Month, 2012

to be hosted by Pelham Executive Meeting (Niagara Quakers)

Norwich Museum, Norwich, Ontario


Draft Agenda

9:15 – 9:40  Arrival and greetings, with coffee, tea and refreshments

9:40 – 10:50  Meeting for Worship for Business (Pelham Executive Meeting will provide a recording clerk)

10:50 – 11:00   Break

11:00 – 12:00  Meeting for Worship

12:15 – 1:15   Pot Luck Lunch  –  Guests will bring fruit, baked goods, etc.

1:30 – 3:30   Afternoon Programme: 

Quakers in Popular Culture, to be led by members of Pelham Executive Meeting

Epistle from the Ontario Young Friends Thanksgiving Retreat at Camp NeeKauNis

The Thanksgiving retreat at NeeKauNis this year was absolutely fantabulistic. We had Friends from all over the continent, including New Brunswick, British Columbia, Indiana and New York State. In total, there were over 50 people (and 5 dogs) who showed up to partake in the festivities. Surprisingly no one sustained any serious injuries from our exciting game of wink. On Saturday we set out completing various work projects around camp, involving cleaning up brush, wood splitting, preparing for winter as well as filling up and unloading canoes full of lakeweed for the gardens. Throughout the weekend many an intense card game was had.

As usual Aden and the kitchen staff out did themselves giving us a marvelous Thanksgiving feast ending with phenomenal fruit pies. On Saturday evening after the feast came an interesting and informative presentation by Lucy M and Rick T on their experience of the Quaker Youth Pilgrimage 2012. That night, before quiet time, we celebrated our time together by attacking each other ferociously with pillows. The following morning we had a wonderful Meeting for Worship outside on the hill, concluded by an enormous snail group hug.

Over the course of the retreat everyone was so welcoming and friendly that the entire group always felt included. This was aided by the numerous croissants and occasional half donuts* shared by Friends. What with the wonderful people, delicious food and fun of dancing around the kitchen during dishes; this weekend retreat was a definite success.


*note from the YS: When speaking about community and inclusivity, the shape of a croissant is considered inclusive and welcoming, while the shape of a donut feels exclusive and difficult to break into.