Call to IMYM Annual Session 2014 - Unabridged

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Call to the Annual Gathering of Intermountain Yearly Meeting, 2014 What do we have to offer as Quakers in these challenging times? June 8 -15, 2014; Ghost Ranch, Abiquiu, New Mexico

Beloved Friends in Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico:  Come to the 2014 Intermountain Yearly Meeting Annual Gathering  at Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu, New Mexico.  Early Days  will be June 8-11 and Annual Sessions will be June 11-15.    

The theme of this year’s gathering builds on last year’s and asks us to engage with each other and with our speakers in dialogue around questions:

  • What do we have to offer as Quakers for the challenges of our time?
  • What are the sources of the uniquely Quaker gifts that we have to offer?   

Quakers are distinguished from many others who pursue similar goals – justice, peace, equality, environmental sustainability – by the spirit-led character of our approach to action in the world.  What can we offer here and now? 

Friends are invited to consider related questions that follow-up on our 2013 gathering;  "How do we move from a greater society based on empire to one based on building the beloved community?"  “How are we responding to the Kabarak call?” (full text of the Kabarak call at imym.org)

Diane Randall, Executive Secretary of Friends Committee on National Legislation and Shan Cretin, General Secretary of American Friends Service Committee, will be our guests and provide a keynote plenary of dialogue and worship around these questions.  They will offer a half-day Early Days workshop on the joint AFSC/FCNL Shared Security initiative.  Aura Kanegis, Director of AFSC Office of Public Policy will also join us for the week.

Youth programming will continue as in previous years.  Junior and Senior Young Friends are designing group activities that deepen their Quaker experience—“fun in a Quakerly way,” along with use of Quaker process.  Lively intergenerational activities, including a Listening Session organized by Senior Young Friends, will bring us together in new ways.

A rich variety of Interest Groups are planned to share information and invite reflective dialogue around the theme.  Art themed activities will continue.  Singing, dancing and creativity nights are part of the week’s plans.  Come experience the first ever IMYM Quaker dance band.

Welcome to all who can come for any or all of 2014 Annual Gathering.   

Sara Keeney, Clerk

Intermountain Yearly Meeting

 

Biographical information about guest speakers

Shan Cretin, General Secretary of American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)

Shan Cretin has been General Secretary – the executive head – of the American Friends Service Committee since September 2010.  Before this appointment Shan served as Director of the AFSC’s Pacific Southwest Region for seven years, where she was responsible for programs in Southern California, Hawai’i, Arizona, and New Mexico.  Those programs focus on several key social issues, including immigrants’ rights, prison reform, food security, peace, and demilitarization.

A member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), Shan is a former clerk of Pacific Yearly Meeting, the regional body that includes Quaker meetings from California, Hawai’i, Mexico, and Guatemala. She co-founded the Los Angeles chapter of Alternatives to Violence Project and has facilitated conflict resolution workshops at the Chino Youth Correctional Facility and in the Los Angeles community. She also serves on the board of directors of The California Endowment.

Shan has lived, worked, and traveled throughout the US and many locations in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Latin America, and Canada. A graduate of MIT and Yale, Shan served on the faculties of Harvard, Yale, West China Medical University and University of California at Los Angeles.  

Diane Randall, Executive Secretary of the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)

Diane leads FCNL’s staff to effectively educate and lobby for the policies and legislative priorities established by FCNL’s General Committee. A lifelong advocate for peace and social justice, Diane is a fierce proponent for citizen engagement that advances policies and practices to create a better society for all.

Diane joined FCNL in March, 2011 as the fourth Executive Secretary in its 70-year history. Diane travels widely on behalf of FCNL and represents a voice for Quaker advocacy in Washington on the Hill, within the faith community, in media, and throughout the United States.  Before coming to FCNL, Diane was Executive Director of Partnership for Strong Communities, a Connecticut-based non-profit organization providing leadership, advocacy, and policy development on solutions to homelessness, affordable housing and community development. Her engagement in the peace movement began in the early 1980s, when she directed the Omaha Nuclear Freeze Campaign.

Diane relocated to Connecticut in 1986 where she directed the state Network to Abolish the Death Penalty and worked for the Office of Urban Affairs of the Archdiocese of Hartford, launching a twenty-year career lobbying the state legislature. During that time, Diane became the first Executive Director of the Connecticut AIDS Residence Coalition, dedicated to advocacy and effective delivery of housing and services for people living with HIV/AIDS.

Diane is a member of Hartford Monthly Meeting, of New England Yearly Meeting. Diane currently serves on the Board of Trustees for Sidwell Friends School, the Board of Directors of the Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellowship, and the Corporation of Haverford College. She previously served on the Board of Advisors of the Earlham School of Religion. She is married to Roger Catlin and is the mother of Alex, Lillie and Nora.  

R. Aura Kanegis, Director of Public Policy and Advocacy for the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)

Aura provides strategic direction for all aspects of AFSC’s engagement with the federal government. She works to bring Quaker values and AFSC’s organizational experience to bear in a broad spectrum of foreign and domestic policy areas, and served as one of the lead authors of the joint AFSC-FCNL working paper on Shared Security. Prior to joining AFSC, she served as Director of Campaigns and Iraq Peace Campaign Director for the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL), a Quaker lobby in the public interest that partners closely with AFSC on legislative concerns.

Aura previously worked for over a decade on issues impacting Native American communities, serving the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) first as Deputy Director for Governmental Affairs and subsequently as Director of Operations and Programs, providing lead oversight and coordination for the oldest, largest, and most representative organization of American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments and individuals. Later she served as Director of Communications and Development for the First Nations Development Institute, working to restore Native control and culturally-compatible stewardship of the assets they own, and to establish new assets for ensuring the long-term vitality of Native communities. Aura served as Legislative Specialist on a range of client concerns with the Indian law practice of Hobbs, Straus, Dean and Walker, LLP after coordinating the FCNL Native American Program and chairing the Native American Working Group of the Washington Inter-religious Staff Community during the mid-1990s. 

Aura is a member of Frederick Monthly Meeting (MD), has served on the Executive Board of FCNL as Assistant Treasurer, and is a past Executive Committee member of the American Friends Service Committee’s Mid-Atlantic Region.  She holds a B.A. in Third World Studies and Women’s Studies from Oberlin College and an I.B. from the Armand Hammer United World College (now UWC-USA) in Las Vegas, New Mexico.  She is the lead vocalist of Brûlée, a jazz-blues band performing in the Washington area. Her career path has been deeply influenced by time spent in the southwest during her formative years, and she is pleased for this opportunity to join Friends new and old at IMYM.