CYFYM Report 2019

Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends 2019 Report

Thank you for blessing us to share with you.

We, as Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, continue to find joy, hope, and community in the new life of our Yearly Meeting. Our new structure continues to serve our community well. Thank you for your support in this journey.

For the upcoming year, we have asked Zaley Warkentin and Wesley Weima to continue as CYFYM Representatives with the addition of Stephen Ginley (Peterborough MM). We thank Alex Wickenheiser for his service as a Representative over the past year.

We ask our Regional Contacts to continue in their roles from the previous year. They are Daniel Von Schulmann, Rebecca Wolfe-Gage, Rose Coutts, and David Summerhays, with the addition of Alex Wickenheiser (subject to consent).

Our Pre-Gathering this year brought both joys and challenges. It was felt to be both invaluable and transformative. We wish to hold another pre-gathering in 2020, and have identified the following Friends to serve in that capacity. Evelyne Russell (Toronto MM), Stephen Ginley (Peterborough MM), Caileigh Morrison (Winnipeg MM), Harmony Morris (Lethbridge WG; subject to consent) and Caroline Martindale (Hamilton MM; subject to consent) to liaise with Program Committee in her role on said committee. Stephen Ginley will liaise with fellow CYFYM Representatives.

Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting chose to name the following Young Friends to CYM committees.[1]

We name Caroline Martindale to serve as a CYFYM representative to CYM Program Committee for a term of two years.

We name Rebecca Ivanoff (Yonge Street MM) to serve on the Organisation and Procedure Subcommittee. Although Rebecca recently aged out, she is a (slightly) Older Adult Friend under the care of CYFYM, to whom we have given freedom of the meeting and feel led to have her represent us in this important work.

Cameron Fraser in his role as CYM Secretary, has been invaluable in supporting the CYFYM Representatives and the Gathering Committee. Many Friends expressed thanks for his mentorship and advocacy on behalf of Young Friends and Young Adult Friends. We feel that the support of a staff person such as the CYM Secretary is crucial to CYFYM being able to hold retreats and to function in general.

CYFYM acknowledges CYM is undergoing a process of transition. Change is hard, but there is joy in transformation and in resurrection. As Young Friends we want and need CYM to be here, because we need it to survive out there. We recognize and deeply appreciate that CYM does its best to meet our needs as we bring them forward. How do we meet the needs of CYM in its process of transformation? Changing is hard. We need to be brave. We need to be brave together.

A call to monthly meetings: we want to be at home in you. Education and mentorship should start in monthly meetings. If we want to uphold everyone and lift up spiritual and non-spiritual gifts, Friends need training. There is much intergenerational learning to be had.

After much discernment we bring forward the following requests to Yearly Meeting.

  • We ask Program Committee to prioritize CYM In Session workshops on clerking, recording clerking, vocal ministry, nonviolent communication, self-empowerment and digital literacy, on a reasonable timeline.
  • We ask Delegates to take this call for Quaker education back to their monthly meetings for discernment. What area of Friends Faith and Practice does your Meeting need to foster?
  • We ask Delegates to ask their monthly meetings to consider mentored positions so Friends of all ages can develop and practice skills in these areas.
  • We ask the CYM Clerk to distribute this minute to monthly meetings on our behalf. The relevant minutes will be forwarded.

We bring these requests as starting points. We feel there are many more opportunities to be explored in the future, and we encourage Canadian Yearly Meeting to seek way forward in this direction. The kind of change Canadian Yearly Meeting needs requires both laying down and lifting up. This will be difficult and at times even painful, but we believe The Spirit will strengthen us. We believe we can be brave together.

Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting names you to the Committee of Hope. We don’t feel like we’re dying out. Be brave with us.

[1] CYFYM laid down the practice of asking for reserved slots on CYM committees. As we are led and able, we may send Young Friends serve on CYM committees, and we ask for understanding of the sporadic nature of these namings.

CYFYM Minutes 2019

Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting in Session 2019

Eighth Month, Sixth Day (August 6), 2019

In attendance: Asher Segel-Brown, Sarah and Saloma Owocki, Zaley Warkentin, Wesley Weima, Kailey Trevithick, Caroline Martindale, Lilia Fick, Stephen Ginley, Caileigh Morrison, Maggie Knight, Evelyne Russell, Greg Allan, Harmony Morris, Ian Cotterill, Christopher Paradis, Jackie Bonner, Tim Kitz.

08.06.1 Clerk

We approved Evelyne Russell to serve as Clerk for this session.

08.06.2 Freedom of the Meeting

We granted freedom of the Meeting to Rebecca Ivanoff and David Summerhays.

08.06.3 Recording Clerk

We approved Maggie Knight to serve as Recording Clerk for this session.

08.06.4 Consideration of the Agenda

We considered and amended the agenda.

08.06.5 Naming to Program Committee

All regular CYM Program Committee positions are currently filled, but CYFYM is able to name a Friend to serve in an additional spot. We approve Caroline Martindale to serve as a CYFYM representative to CYM Program Committee for a term of two years.

08.06.6 Card and greetings to Alex Roberts (VIMM)

Gathered CYFYM Friends will send a card with love and greetings to Alex Roberts, a Young Adult Friend from Vancouver Island Monthly Meeting who planned to attend CYM in Session this year but had a serious scooter accident in which she broke both her femurs. We will hold her in the Light.

08.06.7 General check-in

Friends shared joys and sorrows of their presence at CYM 2019 so far. Many Friends are having fun, enjoying community, and appreciating the programming; one Friend expressed that she found the Young Friends/Young Adult Friends gathering transformational. Some Friends have had more difficult and painful experiences and are wondering about their future with this Yearly Meeting community. Several Friends are carrying heavy CYFYM and/or CYM service responsibilities, which can be both joyous and draining. Friends spoke of the challenges and joys of inter-generational interactions, and desires for older Friends to rely less on the younger Friends for all things technological assistance. Some Friends are not over-committed and are finding joy in food coop service and in being asked to do favours for gathered Friends. Some Friends expressed growing and continued interest in attending YF/YAF gatherings and CYM in Session. Friends reflected on the challenges of Quaker process and terminology, which can be inaccessible to Friends who are new to Quakers and/or new to Canadian Yearly Meeting in Session. Friends reflected on themes of resilience. Friends expressed gratitude for all those who have helped organize the YF/YAF Gathering and CYM in Session, and for the intimate, honest space of Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting.

The check-in ended with spontaneous group hugs.

08.06.8 Freedom of the Meeting, Act 2

We extended freedom of the meeting to Tim Kitz. There was expectant chewing.

08.06.9 CYFYM Representatives report

CYFYM Representatives Wesley Weima and Zaley Warkentin reported, providing information about the reps’ activities over the past year. Alex Wickenheiser, the third CYFYM Representative, was unable to attend CYM in Session this year. The Representatives’ report is attached.

The CYFYM Representatives expressed their strong support for the continuation of the CYM Secretary position. Cameron Fraser has been invaluable in supporting the representatives and the gathering committee. Many Friends gave thanks for his mentorship and advocacy on behalf of Young Friends and Young Adult Friends. Friends feel that the support of a staff person such as the CYM Secretary is crucial to CYFYM being able to hold retreats and function in its current structure.

The Representatives received a request from Continuing Meeting of Ministry & Counsel to name a Young Friend / Young Adult Friend to CMM&C, and discerned that they did not have capacity to do so. The Representatives will communicate to CMM&C that they hope that CMM&C will seek younger Friends to serve through the existing Monthly Meeting nomination process.

The Representatives reported on their use of the CYFYM budgeted funds; significant funds remain for travel and other CYFYM expenses this year. Friends thanked them for their financial stewardship and care. Friends spoke of the importance of individual discernment regarding our financial needs and capacity when discerning both whether to seek financial assistance (for example, to attend gatherings) and how we may feel led and able to contribute financially to CYM; Friends reflected on how their needs and capacity has ebbed and flowed over time.

Friends thanked the representatives for their service.

[Notes: Zaley to Anabaptist conference, Wesley to Seattle. Communications have been somewhat improved by having a email account.]

08.06.10 Nomination of 2019-2020 CYFYM Representatives

After considerable discernment, the following Friends were named to be CYFYM Representatives for 2019-2020: Zaley Warkentin (Winnipeg MM), Wesley Weima (Thousand Islands MM), and Stephen Ginley (Peterborough MM).

08.06.11 Closing Worship

We closed with silent worship.

Canadian Young Friends Yearly Meeting 2019 Session

Eighth Month, Eighth Day (August 8), 2019

In attendance: Asher Segel-Brown, Zaley Warkentin, Wesley Weima, Kailey Trevithick, Caroline Martindale, Lilia Fick, Stephen Ginley, Caileigh Morrison, Maggie Knight, Evelyne Russell, Jackie Bonner, Tim Kitz, David Cheatley.

08/08/1 Recording Clerk

We approved Caileigh Morrison to serve as Recording Clerk for this session.

08/08/2 Freedom of the Meeting

We granted freedom of the Meeting to David Cheatley.

08/08/3 Gathering Report

Jackie, Zaley, Evelyne and Harmony were identified as the gathering committee. The committee made an oral report. Friends shared that it was a great weekend. There was spirit, joy, fun, and bonding. Young Friends in particular had a lot of fun and continued play during CYM in Session. The organizers showcased their gifts in the activities they planned. The Swarthmore Lecture screening and discussion after were a highlight for many Friends. The Gathering built the foundations for a strong community of young people. Organization was a lot of work. Process and deadlines were unclear, which made work more complicated. Cameron Fraser was very helpful as the committee went through the process. Despite the issues, the gathering was very positive. The theme of the gathering was “transformation.” This year’s committee has created a lot of infrastructure that can be passed on to next year’s committee, which will make the process run more smoothly.

08/08/4 Safe Nurture Issue

Dealing with situations involving minors is very challenging and supervision needs to be improved. Safe Nurture Training was completed the first day of the gathering, and risk assessment did not occur. There were communication issues between CYM and CYFYM regarding Safe Nurture Training. There are also provincial laws regarding minor supervision that were not researched in advance. This issue must be raised seriously with CYM, as minors, facilitators and the gathering as a whole are put at risk when procedure is not followed. The organizing committee will write a letter to raise this issue with CYM. A draft will be completed and sent out for input from CYFYM by the end of August. The letter will be finalized and submitted to CYM by the end of September.

 08/08/5 2020 Gathering

Evelyne Russell (Toronto MM), Stephen Ginley (Peterborough MM), Caileigh Morrison (Winnipeg MM), Harmony Morris (Lethbridge WG; subject to consent) and Caroline Martindale (Hamilton MM; subject to consent) were named to YF Gathering Committee for 2020. Caroline Martindale will liaise with Program Committee in her role on said committee. Stephen Ginley will liaise with fellow CYFYM reps.

08/08/6 Freedom of the Meeting Act 2

We granted freedom of the Meeting to Catherine Novak.

 08/08/7 Organization and Procedure Rewrite Nomination

CYM has approved an Organization & Procedure rewrite subcommittee of Discipline Review Committee and CYFYM can choose to name a representative to this subcommittee. We name Rebecca Ivanoff (Yonge Street MM) to serve on this subcommittee. Rebecca is a (slightly) Older Adult Friend under the care of CYFYM, to whom we have given freedom of the meeting during our business meetings this week. Rebecca is encouraged to consult with CYFYM as she feels led.

08/08/8 Planning for a discussion regarding the future of Canadian Yearly Meeting, and YF/YAFs in relation to CYM

CYFYM would like to acknowledge that CYM is undergoing a process of transition. Change is hard, but there is joy in transformation and resurrection. As Young Friends, we want and need CYM to be here because we need it to survive out there. If we bring our needs to CYM, they are met. How do we meet the needs of CYM in its transformation? We promise to be brave and share our bravery with CYM as it responds to its challenges.

If we want to uphold everyone and have them share their gifts, Friends need training. Young Friends do a lot of technological labour, and would appreciate being held in this endeavour and to be met by Older Friends. Older Friends have much knowledge to share with Younger Friends.

A call to monthly meetings: we want to be at home in you. Education and mentorship should start in monthly meetings.

CYFYM is the Committee for Hope. We don’t feel like we’re dying out.

CYFYM asks for the following:

    1. Program Committee to prioritize, on a reasonable timeline, CYM In Session workshops on clerking, recording clerking, vocal ministry, nonviolent communication, self-empowerment and digital literacy.
    2. Delegates to take this call for Quaker education back to their monthly meetings for discernment.
    3. Delegates to ask their monthly meetings to consider mentored positions so Friends of all ages can develop and practice skills in these areas.
    4. CYM Clerk to distribute this minute to monthly meetings on our behalf.

08/08/9 Regional Contacts

Regional contacts will continue in their roles, subject to consent. Zaley will confirm.

08/08/10 Closing Worship

We closed with silent worship.