“Exploring the Quaker Way”

Our own Steve Chase visited and worshiped with us at Putney Friends Meeting this weekend.   He informed us of this new online learning opportunity offered by him at Pendle Hill.

“The goals of this course are to help seekers, attenders, and interested members of Friends meetings: 1) deepen their understanding of the Quaker movement; 2) better understand the spiritual journey common among early and current Quakers; 3) reflect on their own spiritual journeys within this spiritual tradition; and 4) become more familiar with several key elements of building vibrant and caring Quaker meetings.”

“Exploring the Quaker Way”

 A Pendle Hill Quaker Studies Online Summer Course

June 5 through August 28, 2016http://www.pendlehill.org/learn/quaker-studies-online/exploring-quaker-way-description/#.VztmwmPnfMV-175x200

“Exploring the Quaker Way” is an extended online course for people who want to learn more about the simple, radical, and contemporary spiritual path of Quakers.

Click here for more info and sign up!

Embracing Change – Growing and Strengthening Quaker Communities


Shocking Purple Flowers, Photo by Roger Vincent Jasaitis, RVJart.com

I’m inspired by Friends’ excitement. I’ve only been FGC’s Spiritual Deepening Coordinator for two months, and already I’ve heard from so many Friends about how excited they are to bring the Spiritual Deepening program to their meeting.

I know that many of you are eager to get started on outreach and building a deeper spiritual community in your meeting. I’m excited to share a few resources that you can use today:

  • Working on outreach? The Grow Our Meetings Toolkit includes resources and activities to help Friends at your meeting get to know each other and newcomers on a deeper level
  • Looking for an outside perspective?Check out FGC’s list of Friends willing to travel to help with outreach, conflict, mentoring a new meeting, and inclusion
  • Searching for Religious Education ideas? Start with activity pages for children, or explore the selection at QuakerBooks

These resources are made possible thanks to your generous financial support. Please consider donating today!

In the Spirit,

Rachel Ernst Stahlhut
Spiritual Deepening CoordinatorPS – You can also sign up for updates on the Spiritual Deepening Program, which will launch in the fall.

Quiet Please

Can a Quaker Meeting be quiet enough? Putney Friends Meeting has been working towards sound remediation in the Worship space over the past few years. With so many wood surfaces, the sound of voices was very reverberant and it was difficult at times to hear vocal testimony.

This week Brent, Ken, Chris and Roger installed acoustic panels to control the amount of echo. Many thanks to all who contributed to this project.


Woolman Hill Quaker Retreat Center

“Energy giant Kinder Morgan Inc. hascropped-940_conf_ctr_spring476k suspended additional work and spending on its Northeast Energy Direct project, a controversial natural gas pipeline proposed through Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
Kinder Morgan said on Wednesday that the company didn’t receive the extra commitments from big customers that it needed to proceed with the $3.3 billion project. As a result, Kinder Morgan said in a statement, ‘there are currently neither sufficient volumes, nor a reasonable expectation of securing them, to proceed with the project as it is currently configured.'”
Margaret Cooley
Executive Director
Woolman Hill Quaker Retreat Center


Race: the Power of an Illusion – The differences between us

Justice and Peace Committee of Putney Friends Meeting presents a Film and Discussion series on Racism

All are welcome to this opportunity to watch the films together, consider the history of P1080847racism, particularly in the USA, consider what white privilege is for those of us who are white, and pursue conversations on race and racism with one another.

Friday evenings from 7 to 8:30 at the Meeting house

Friday, April 22nd – Race: the Power of an Illusion – The differences between us.  Facilitated by Nancy Shepherd

Friday, May 6th– Race: the Power of an Illusion – the story we tell.  Facilitated by Gail Haines

Friday, May 20th – Race: the Power of an Illusion – The house we live in.  Facilitated by Sandy Lynn

Friday, June 3rd – Last Chance for Eden, part 1 – Conversations around race and racism.  Facilitated by Mike Mrowicki

Please join us. For questions contact  the Justice and Peace Committee.


Daybreak.jpgIf you serve your Meeting or Quarter

on Ministry & Counsel, Ministry & Worship, Worship & Oversight

or Pastoral Care Committee
or you work on outreach

or adult religious education or spiritual formation

or clearness, support, or oversight/accountability committees
That’s part of the multi-faceted work that is Ministry & Counsel!

So, you’re invited to a


provided by your Yearly Meeting Ministry & Counsel Committee

at Smithfield Friends Meeting, Smithfield, Rhode Island

Saturday, May 7 from 9:30 to 3:00

What’s a DayTreat?

  • This may seem obvious, but it’s one day away from your worldly life when we, from YM M&C, take care of you. We’ll bring the food and drink. We’ll provide childcare. We’ll do the cleanup. Be our guests!
  • It’s a chance to get together because we do the work of caring for our meetings’ spiritual lives. We’ll share our hopes and joys as well as our challenges and problems. 
  • It’ll be a time for learning from and supporting one another – finding community in our work and recharging our spiritual batteries.

So – 

No need to rsvp. If you have questions, or there’s some topic you’d like to have us try to include, contact Sarah Spencer, 617-965-7042spencertaber@verizon.net

And – 

We’ll provide childcare. No need to call ahead, but if you can let us know how many children of what ages to expect that’s a real help. Contact Allison Randall, 603-654-2179allisonjoyful1@netzero.com

Unless you need a special diet (other than vegan or vegetarian) there’s no need to pack a lunch. We’re bringing soup, munchies and drinks. 

Sr. Helen Prejean: “Dead Man Walking: The Journey Continues”

New Hampshire Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty

Sr. Helen Prejean: “Dead Man Walking: The Journey Continues”

Monday, March 7, 2016

Bishop Guertin High School, Nashua, NH
(Click here for directions)

7pm – 9pm

This event is free and open to the public



More news on yesterday’s vote:

NH 1 VIDEO: Tie vote in state Senate means death penalty repeal fails

Landrigan: State Senate deadlocks, effectively kills move to repeal the state’s death penalty

NHPR: N.H. Senate Deadlocks On Repealing Death Penalty

Restorative Justice Opportunities

Following you will find two upcoming restorative justice opportunities;

Pendle Hill

Beyond Crime and Punishment: Fostering Transformative Justice in Community

We envision a world where people who offend are not caged, exiled, and stigmatized for life, where public school children aren’t fodder for the school-to-prison pipeline, and where historic intergenerational wounds are acknowledged and healed.

Such a world is already in the making and looking for our support.

“Restorative justice is a process to involve, to the extent possible, those who have a stake in a specific offence and to collectively identify and address harms, needs and obligations, in order to heal and put things as right as possible.” —Howard ZehrThe Little Book of Restorative Justice

A Conference for Inspiration, Education, Networking, and Action
Mar 10-13, 2016

Special guests: Kay Pranis, Joy DeGruy, Rev. Nelson and Joyce Johnson, Lorraine Stutzman Amstutz, and many others!

Click to register online.

Introduction to Restorative Practices in Schools


Click to visit.

Kay Frazer Memorial

MEMORIAL INFORMATION: There will be a memorial gathering at the Putney Friends Meeting House on Saturday, Feb. 20, at 1 p.m. Donations to the Putney Friends Meeting, in care of Treasurer, Putney, VT 05346.

• Katherine (Kay) R. Frazer, 92, of Saxtons River. Died Jan. 28. Wife of the late Grant Frazer. Mother of Dr. James E. Frazer and his wife, Sharon, of Mishawaka, Ind., and Susan R. Frazer-Stebbins of Saxtons River. Sister of the late Allen Webster. Also survived by five grandchildren and seven great- grand-children. Born in Hazlet, N.J., daughter of the late Angelo M. and Madeline R. (Young) Webster, after her local education, she actively pursued her higher education in medicine and divinity. She graduated from Temple University and Methodist Teaching Hospital in Philadelphia. It was while she was in Philadelphia that she met the love of her life and equal, Grant, and they were married there in 1954. His teaching career brought the family to Saxtons River in 1960, where they would make their permanent home. She would always say how lucky she was to live in the beauty of Vermont. In 1965, seeing a need in the community for seniors and shut-ins to have a social outlet, Kay formed “Club 39.” The Christmas parties she would host for the club were the talk of the town and highly anticipated. Also during the 1960s she worked at the local hospital and for a local physician. She would hear complaints that patients could not be released for the simple reason of monitoring vitals or changing dressings. She proposed to a doctor that “there was no reason a nurse couldn’t go into a home and do these things.” Hence was born the Visiting Nurse Association out of a tiny office in Charlestown, N.H. In retirement, she was instrumental in the founding of Our Place Drop In Center, and volunteered at Parks Place Community Resource. She was a very devoted and active member of Putney Friends Meeting, including herself on committees concerning her Quaker Community as well as the community at large. One of her richest late life friendships was with Hattie Reeves Forsythe. The two of them were inseparable as they traveled the globe in their 70s and 80s. Her most important love was that of her family, that they remain close and looked after each other, and that traditions were continued.

Leahy Introduces BIPARTISAN Bill to Tackle Illegal Guns

I have exciting news! Today Senator Leahy introduced a new bill, the Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act of 2016, and it already has strong bipartisan support! Please take a moment to read the press release below and then call Senator Leahy’s office at (202) 224-4242 to thank him for his leadership! (You can also contact Senator Leahy through his website at: https://www.leahy.senate.gov/contact.)


Thank Senator Leahy for working to address the problem of illegal firearms. As he says below, “In Vermont and across the country, we have seen firearms serve as currency for illegal drugs.  Addicts are at times directed to straw purchase firearms by dealers who could not pass a background check themselves,” Senator Leahy said.  “It is time to take action – and only Congress can fill the gaps in our laws.  Congress must not become so numb to tragedy after tragedy that we fail to fulfill our responsibility to legislate.”

Let Senator Leahy know that you agree!

Thank you!

Leahy & Collins Unveil Bipartisan Legislation to Combat Illegal Straw Purchasing and Firearms Trafficking

WASHINGTON (THURSDAY, Feb. 11, 2016) – Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) introduced legislation on Thursday to combat the practice of straw purchasing and illegal trafficking in firearms.

The Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act of 2016 responds to calls from law enforcement officials for more effective tools to investigate and deter straw purchasers and gun traffickers.

Currently, there is no law that explicitly makes straw purchasing a crime, and it is only unlawful to traffic a firearm if the transferor had actual knowledge that the firearm would be used in connection with a crime.  The recent terrorist attack in San Bernardino, California highlighted this gap; the rifles in that shooting were allegedly acquired through a straw purchaser.  Firearms trafficking is also an increasingly significant problem in New England, where the surge in opioid abuse has exposed a “guns for drugs” trade.

The bipartisan bill introduced by Leahy and Collins today would make clear that the straw purchasing and trafficking of firearms are federal crimes.

“In Vermont and across the country, we have seen firearms serve as currency for illegal drugs.  Addicts are at times directed to straw purchase firearms by dealers who could not pass a background check themselves,” Senator Leahy said.  “It is time to take action – and only Congress can fill the gaps in our laws.  Congress must not become so numb to tragedy after tragedy that we fail to fulfill our responsibility to legislate.”

“Our bill would provide law enforcement with an effective tool to fight the violence that too often goes hand in hand with drug trafficking,” said Senator Collins. “Straw purchasing and the trafficking of firearms put guns directly in the hands of drug dealers and violent criminals who smuggle heroin into Maine.”

The bill does not affect lawful purchases from federal firearms licensees, nor does it prohibit the innocent transfer of a firearm as a gift, or in relation to a legitimate raffle, auction or contest.  The measure is supported by numerous law enforcement organizations, including the National Fraternal Order of Police, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, the National Tactical Officers Association, the National District Attorneys Association, and the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys.

A similar version of the Leahy-Collins legislation drew the support of a bipartisan majority of the Senate in 2013.

Text of the Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act of 2016 is available online.  A one-page summary of the bill is also available online. Leahy’s full remarks can be found here.