Oh Shenandoah! Photo by Sheila Garrett

Sheila Garrett deconstructed the word responsiblity as part of her following note. Have you ever thought of this word in this way? It opens up possibilities for action in ways that you may not have thought of… both as individuals and as Faith groups.
Sheila is walking from Vermont to Georgia. You can follow her diary on PutneyFriendsMeeting.org; Sheila’s walk to Georgia.
Part of what I struggle with in understanding and explaining my ministry is the universality and inclusivity of it.  One thing became clear in the past few days.  The Doctrine of Discovery, the Papal edicts of the 1400s justifying the subjugation and annihilation of indigenous peoples, was the EXACT same system, the same definition of Christianity that justified/called for slavery of African people.  John Woolman’s writings make that very clear. The exploitation of natural resources and of other species is also justified the same way.  It really is all connected.
When people ask ‘why are you walking?’ I say ‘I’m walking with a concern for the earth and all it’s beings, including you.’  In saying that, I intend to honor John Woolman’s approach.  Woolman was very intentional in making all those connections, perhaps especially the inclusive aspect of concern for the slaveholder as well as the slave.  I think when I can, I need to be able to articulate clearly and concisely what I mean by this. It is what Woolman and others say about ‘taking away the occasion for war.’ It is that BLACK LIVES MATTER as much as any lives matter, more than others right now, because the movement (Black Lives Matter) needs support and because they have been so intentionally and consistently disregarded. This is not to say that other lives don’t matter, too. When I met with the working party on Racism at Stony Brook in Baltimore, people were saying they thought the message should be BLACK LIVES MATTER, TOO.  I think it’s good to hold the line on BLACK LIVES MATTER as a definitive statement of the need for redress. It means for me that no matter how simply I live I will always be privileged and with that privilege comes responsibility, the ABILITY to respond effectively to injustice.  I carry that response ability and I need to use it as best I can.  I need to find ways to effectively express it and live into it so it can resonate with each person I meet.  For me prayer and direct connection to the divine are completely entwined with this.  I cannot do this alone. For some, it is obvious and easy to discuss. For others, ‘God talk’ shuts them down immediately.  Same with talk of social justice. And there are levels that work and don’t work for each of us. I pray for the ability to be sensitive to each person’s needs.  I try to meet each person where she/he is and engage meaningfully to whatever extent possible.
Blessings, Sheila
To read more about Sheila go to Fellowship of Reconciliation 

Photo by Roger Vincent Jasaitis, RVJart.com, Copyright 2004

A FINAL SERVICE

Preparation for Death

On Living and Dying, Putney Friends Meeting


Putney Friends Meeting created this pamphlet in 2010 to assist members in their preparation for death in the manner of Friends. Since that time many requests have been made to make this useful tool available to a wider audience. Here is a link to a PDF file of this pamphlet. Click on the Following link to open a new window displaying the text.

PFM A Final Service

This link will now be available at any time in the right hand column under Books & Pamphlets.

PUTNEY FRIENDS INTERGENERATIONAL RETREAT

Saturday Sept 26  9 to 5  &

 Sunday Sept 27 9:30 to 10:20

 Theme:  Exploring our Gifts

 Place:   Meetinghouse

Come to whatever parts appeal to you. Childcare provided 10-12:30 and 1:30-4:00


Saturday, September 26 

9 a.m.  Muffins, tea, coffee, and OJ

9:30     All ages celebration of our new Peace Pole  – outside parking lot

with Francie Marbury and Brent Seabrook

10 a.m.  Exploring Our Gifts

All ages presentation by Laurie Rizzo Medved  using Godly Play

materials and an opportunity to draw/collage/write afterwards and sharing

our responses with all ages. Bring your own journal  if you  have one.

Writing and art supplies provided.

11:15     Choose one of these two activities

  •    Worship Sharing in the Meeting Room – getting to know better some

of the folks you worship with – led by Elisabeth Dearborn

OR

  •     Making pizza for lunch with Gail Haines and Ann Coakley

12:30     Lunch starting with gathering songs led by Julie Forsythe

1:30     Clean Up

2:00     Choose one of these two activities

  •      Deep Relaxation with John Calvi in the meetingroom. Bring your

own yoga mat if you have one, blanket, pillow as needed

OR

  •      Hiking to Putney Mountain led by  ???

4:00    Lemonade and Cookies

4:30- 5:00  Intergenerational Games led by Richard Brady and Gail Haines.

Get to know your community of Friends in new ways!

5:00    Closing Song(s)  led by Francie Marbury


Sunday, September 27 

9:30 to 10:20  Noah Merrill will be offering some reflections on exploring

our gifts.  All are welcome!  Let us know if you need childcare because

you plan to attend this.


LOOK FOR THE FOOD AND FLOWER SIGN UP SHEET & help it happen !

Be in touch with Gail Haines or Elisabeth Dearborn with questions

Bring your Rise Up Singing book if you have one. 

Note: Childcare is  available  Saturday 10-12:30 and 1:30-4:00

FullSizeRenderSHEILA STARTS WALKING THE WALK

Saturday, 8 August, 2015

Blessings and love to all my dear Putney MM f/Friends.  I hold you all in my heart with deep, wide gratitude!   After a wonder-full six days at Yearly Meeting sessions, I have spent two days with my new beloved F/friend Anne Moore of Northampton Friends Meeting.  Today I will attend the weekly Peace Vigil here and take the train to Hartford. Tomorrow, Wanny McDonald and I will walk the first two days together, staying the first night in New Britain and the second in Middletown. I’ve already lined up two lakes to swim!

Special message to my support team – I have sent my boots to my son who will have them for me when we meet up in Maine for Thanksgiving.  I will wear sandals and walking shoes and my beloved Darn Tough socks!

I have made many contacts and continue to do so with the help of lots and lots of folks.  Thanks so much for all yours, inc. contacts and prayers.  If you think of anyone else you know, esp. in VA and SC please let me know.  And if you are led, hold a special prayer for if I am meant to be either in Philly or DC when the Pope is there.  I am asking that logistic query right now.

I will be holding you all in my prayers, too.  I have my prayer flag in a special pocket and I take it out each day. And, yes, I did get my Travel Minute.

Love, Sheila

A local interfaith group committed to addressing the root causes of poverty is sponsoring a training in faith-based community organizing basics, taught by Vermont Interfaith Action on Saturday, February 28, 2015, from 1:00 to 4:00 pm at Centre Congregational Church in Brattleboro. This training will help people of faith bring our values and convictions into the public square. Topics include how to: build relationships, identify self-interest, speak faithfully in public, frame an issue, conduct policy research, hold elected officials accountable, develop local organizing teams, and involve clergy. If you’re frustrated with the inequality in today’s society and passionate to introduce greater justice in your community, this event is for you!

If Friends have questions about the event contact Darah Kehnemuyi, PFM liaison to Brattleboro Interfaith Initiative.

More than 24000 Domestic Violence Calls in 2013

Dear Friends,

If you didn’t see the Governor’s comments on the news last night, this clip is worth watching. From WCAX: He says voters sent him a message to act on property taxes and education costs, not gun laws or picking the state dog and vegetable. ‘I just don’t know very many Vermonters who come up to me and say, ‘You know governor, all of my problems are because Vermont’s gun laws aren’t serving us well.’ It’s not something I’m getting; so let’s focus on the things Vermonters asked us to get done.”

The phone number at the Governor’s office is (802) 828-3333. Let’s let Governor Shumlin know that those 12,000 petition signatures we delivered two weeks ago were actual Vermonters asking him to take action on this issue!

And thank you to all of you who stepped up to share yesterday’s fact in support of criminal background checks. Lawmakers are appreciative of your efforts and saying “Please encourage more to write,” — and given the rhetoric used at last night anti-criminal background check rally it’s essential that we keep making our voices heard!

Ann Braden
http://www.gunsensevt.org/

*********************
Today’s Fact of the Day:

In 2013 in Vermont, abuse victims seeking help made 24,000 calls to the state domestic violence crisis hotline — an increase of 138% over the previous two years.

Source: State of Vermont, Domestic Violence Fatality Review Commission Report, 2014, 

http://ago.vermont.gov/assets/files/Criminal/2014%20Domestic%20Violence.pdf

*********************

On behalf of these families we can’t afford to ignore our domestic violence problem and allow abusers to have easy access to guns. Please share this fact with your lawmakers right now. (Direct links to lawmaker e-mail addresses are below.)

Please drop us a quick e-mail letting us know that you’ve reached out to your lawmakers.

Thank you!
Ann

P.S. Here is the VTDigger article about yesterday’s rally at the statehouse against criminal background checks.

P.P.S. Here are the basic steps for sharing the fact of the day with your lawmakers.
1) Highlight the fact of the day, and use the right-click button to copy it.
2) Click on the e-mail address of one of your lawmakers and right-click inside the e-mail body to paste it.
3) Add a personal message from you for your lawmaker.
4) Highlight your full e-mail text before you send it, and right-click to copy it. Then press send.
5) Click on each of your other lawmakers’ e-mail addresses and right-click to paste your e-mail text into the box that pops up. Send each one as you go.
P.P.P.S. Here are direct links to each of the lawmakers’ e-mail addresses. If you’re not sure what district you’re in, you can use the statehouse website to search for your lawmakers based on the town where you live.

Windham District Sen. Rebecca Balint bbalint@leg.state.vt.us
Windham District Sen. Jeanette White jwhite@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-1 Rep. Michael Hebert mhebert@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-2-1 Rep. Valerie Stuart vstuart@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-2-2 Rep. Mollie Burke mburke@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-2-3 Rep. Tristan Toleno ttoleno@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-3 Rep. Carolyn Partridge cpartridge@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-3 Rep. Matthew Trieber matrieber@gmail.com
Windham-4 Rep. David Deen ddeen@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-4 Rep. Michael Mrowicki mmrowicki@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-5 Rep. Emily Long elong@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-6 Rep. Ann Manwaring amanwaring@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-Bennington Rep. Laura Sibilia lsibilia@leg.state.vt.us
Windham-Bennington-Windsor Rep. Oliver Olsen oolsen@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor District Sen. John Campbell jcampbell@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor District Sen. Richard McCormack rmccormack@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor District Sen. Alice Nitka anitka@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-1 Rep. John Bartholomew jbartholomew@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-1 Rep. Donna Sweaney dsweaney@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-2 Rep. Mark Huntley mhuntley@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-3-1 Rep. Leigh Dakin ldakin@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-3-2 Rep. Alice Emmons aemmons@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-3-2 Rep. Robert Forguites rforguites@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-4-1 Rep. Teo Zagar tzagar@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-4-2 Rep. Kevin Christie kchristie@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-4-2 Rep. Gabrielle Lucke glucke@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-5 Rep. Alison Clarkson aclarkson@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-Orange-1 Rep. Sarah Buxton sbuxton@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-Orange-2 Rep. Timothy Briglin tbriglin@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-Orange-2 Rep. James Masland jmasland@leg.state.vt.us
Windsor-Rutland Rep. Sandy Haas shaas@leg.state.vt.us

 

GunsenseVT

Dear Friends,
I’m thrilled to announce that S. 31 has been officially introduced in the Senate. That means that it’s crucial that right now we all send a quick, personal e-mail to our lawmakers letting them know that we support it. (Senators’ and representatives’ e-mails are here.) This bill has three key parts, like three legs of a stool that work together to help keep guns out of the wrong hands:

  1. Criminal background checks on unlicensed sales of firearms
  2. A state law prohibiting violent felons from possessing guns (this would give local law enforcement the authority to prosecute violations)
  3. The timely submission of relevant court records to the National Instant Background Check System when a person has been adjudicated as being a danger to themself or others

If you’re interested in reading the bill in its entirely, you can see it here.

It is a huge accomplishment to have gotten this far, and looking ahead our work is cut out for us. While there area number of lawmakers who are fully supportive of this bill, there are many who are:

1. Not sure Vermont has a problem that this bill would address.
2. Wary that their constituents might not be supportive since they often only hear from the voices against any reform.

It’s up to US to help lawmakers see that this bill is necessary to help address our domestic violence problem and prevent other dangerous individuals from having easy access AND that their constituents support it!

This will require us all to make a commitment to reach out to our lawmakers on an ongoing basis. If they hear our polite and persistent collective voices day after day, democracy will work the way it should, and a bill that has 81% of Vermonters in support will get passed.

The First Step: E-mail your lawmakers right now to show your support of S. 31 and encourage them to watch our new ad that highlights gun owners standing up for background checks.
To help you do this:

The Next Step: On Monday we’re going to begin a two-week Fact-of-the-Day campaign in which we’ll focus on one key fact each day to underscore why this legislation is necessary. We’ll send you a quick e-mail in the morning with the daily fact, and then all you need to do is turn around and e-mail it to your lawmakers. The fact itself will be powerful, but it will be even more powerful coming from a constituent.

Quick, personal e-mails only take a few minutes each day, but they could EASILY be the determining factor that will make this bill successful.

You have the power to make the difference!

Together we can do this!
Ann

P.S. The daily fact e-mails are designed to make it easy for you to stay informed and speak up. However, if you don’t want to receive these emails and do want to continue to receive general GunSenseVT emails, please just e-mail us, and we’ll remove you from this specific list. Thanks!

GunSenseVT · PO Box 2533, Brattleboro, VT 05303, United States
 Like GunSenseVT on Facebook
Follow GunSenseVT on Twitter

Putney Friends Meeting Minute 2014.03.01; Minute on the Prevention of Gun Violence.

Live in “the virtue of that life and power that takes away the occasion for all wars.”

George Fox (1624- 1691)

This applies to all violence including gun violence. Violence is a reflection of the ills of society. We challenge ourselves and others to look at the depth of this issue so we can address the heart of the matter. 

Ann Braden from GunSense VT joined a group of Friends/friends at Putney Friends Meeting on January 18th to share the story of her work in founding this organization. Below is a link to a video explaining what they are trying to accomplish here in Vermont.

Please feel free to share this…

GunsenseVT

Putney Friends Meeting has endorsed the work of GunSense.  Ann Braden will be with us on Sunday January 18th at 9:45am at Putney Friends Meetinghouse to speak with us about how we can help support legislation regarding gun ownership here in Vermont.

Gun Sense VT is an independent, grassroots, Vermont-run organization fueled by volunteers from all over the state. Supporters are gun owners and non-gun owners who come from every voting district in the state and cross party lines and who want to see criminal background checks — the single most effective systematic way to keep guns out of the hands of felons, domestic abusers and other dangerous people — required on most all gun sales in Vermont.