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FUM News in Brief – May/June 2013

Friends United Meeting Announces New Global Ministries Director

Current FUM Field Staff member, Eden Grace, will soon be serving as the FUM Global Ministries Director. Along with her ministry experience and service abroad, Eden possesses a deep love for Jesus and a relentless conviction that Christ seeks to use FUM to both proclaim and demonstrate the good news to the whole world. She has tremendous organizational and administrative gifts and a passion to help translate ministry ideas into effective programming.

The timeline for Eden and her family to move to Indiana is still being negotiated. Please continue to support Eden in her work as a Field Staff member over the next several months. In the future, your support of the FUM general fund will help release Eden to better coordinate the work we do around the world.

Ramallah Friends School Appoints Principal for Lower School

Ramallah Friends School Board of Trustees and Friends United Meeting appointed Dr. Kenneth Hulslander to serve as Friends Girls School (FGS/lower school) Principal. Kenneth has a B.A. in French from the University of Colorado, Boulder and an Education Specialist degree in Educational Leadership and Policy from the University of Colorado, Denver. He holds a M.A. in Text Linguistics and a Ph.D. in Semiology (cultural linguistics) from the Université du Québec à Montréal.

Dr. Hulslander began his career in adult education and then moved to teaching English as a second language (ESL) for high school students in Québec City and Montréal, Canada. During that time, he helped build a secondary school and wrote curriculum for the ESL program in the district. After 26 years in Canada, he returned to the U.S. and spent three years working for the Wyoming Department of Education as a school improvement and accreditation consultant. From there Dr. Hulslander became a principal of a K-12 school and then moved to Denver to assume his current position as the principal of an elementary school where many of the students are learning English as a second language.

Kenneth will be responsible for working with the administrative team at FGS, continuing the excellent work started under Hendrik Taatgen’s leadership and improving the quality of education to better meet international standards. Ken shared, “I am thrilled to be joining your community and to be able to contribute to the continued advancement of education at the Ramallah Friends School through its great Quaker tradition.”

Of his educational philosophy, Ken said, “I also have the profound belief that our job on this planet it to make sure that we open as many doors for as many people as possible and that true evil is embodied in keeping our fellow human beings from being all that they can be. Socrates spoke of it in terms of ‘purifying the light.’ This belief manifested itself through my work as a teacher and continues now in my role as a leader. Furthermore, I believe that in order to learn, one must be willing to be off balance — I have always tried to provide metaphoric spaces where students and staff feel safe enough to step outside of the box and try new things, or in some cases, become something that they have always dreamed of becoming and didn’t have the time or the confidence to do so. Education is about showing people that doors of opportunity exist and then helping them to open them.”

Kaimosi Hospital Intern for a Day

By Eden Grace

My job allows me to help other people experience Kenya and learn about themselves through that experience. Recently, a college student from Chicago who is in Kenya on a semester study abroad program happened to meet my husband at the kiosk where he usually buys his lunch. Attracted to his American accent and being a bit homesick, she introduced herself to him. My husband invited her to dinner at our house, and we really enjoyed getting to know her. We learned that she is a pre-med student doing an internship at a Kisumu city council health clinic, but she has been disappointed with the lack of patient contact.

I offered to take her with me to Kaimosi Hospital so she could see medicine practiced in a rural context. On the day we went to Kaimosi there was supposed to be an outreach event at a USFW conference, but the hospital wasn’t able to get any HIV test kits, so the outreach was cancelled. Consequently our guest spent the entire morning talking to Agatha, our HIV/AIDS program coordinator. In the afternoon, two emergencies arrived; Dr. Ben pulled the pre-med student into the operating room to observe. Dr. Ben is a tremendously gifted teacher and has a very hands-on approach. Before long our visitor was learning how to examine the uterus to determine if the placenta had been retained. Afterwards she told me that she was terrified to touch the patient, but was able to overcome that fear and discover in herself a capacity that she didn’t know she had. She speaks of coming back to Kaimosi for a year before entering medical school to get that real-world experience that Dr. Ben is so good at providing. I couldn’t help but take a picture of her as she dove into her first real patient contact.

Kaimosi Hospital Update

By Eden Grace

It has been helpful for me to think of Friends United Meeting’s role with Kaimosi Hospital as a “receiver general” assuming the management of a company that has declared bankruptcy. In January 2006, when FUM stepped in, the hospital needed, for its survival, massive recapitalization, better management and better strategies to enhance community relationships.

With God’s help and the partnership of many thousands of Friends around the world, the hospital has come a long way! Currently, it is well staffed and offers quality healthcare to the surrounding community. Yes, things could be better, and improvements could be made. However, when I look back on the progress this ministry has made, I must celebrate all of its accomplishments.

The prospects for the future of Kaimosi Hospital recently took an unexpected turn. Over the last few months, I have had several meetings, telephone conversations and countless emails regarding a new proposal for a partnership between Kaimosi Hospital and the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK). The NCCK has selected Kaimosi to be its first pilot site of a new project developing superior-quality ecumenical hospitals throughout Kenya. In a partnership involving NCCK, East Africa Yearly Meeting and Friends Church in Kenya, the hospital will be renamed Jumuia (pronounced joo-moo-EE-ah) meaning community or council in Swahili. The NCCK will bring extensive investment to facilities, equipment and staffing, allowing a quality of service heretofore unknown in rural western Kenya.

FUM’s 2013 Summer Mission Project: Teacher for Teachers

Friends around the world joined together to pray for peaceful elections in Kenya this year. Those prayers, alongside the faithful presence and witness of Friends in the country, helped minimize violence and promote peace and reconciliation in many places. As a result, hopeful signs of change may be emerging in a country known for violence and conflict.

What about Kenya’s future? Can peacemaking efforts strengthen and expand the influence of the next generation of Friends? The 2013 Summer Mission Project aims in this direction. By equipping, energizing educators and better supporting the 1200+ Quaker schools in Kenya, FUM hopes to nurture a new generation of young people committed to peace and Friends values.

The African Ministries Office of FUM hired Education Director Zadock Malesi, a specialist in the field of education to serve as a liaison between FUM all of the Quaker schools in Kenya. Leadership development and training of administrators and teachers to promote Quaker faith and testimonies in the school curriculum is Zadock’s primary focus. He further desires to see the development and implementation of the peace curriculum in all the schools. FUM feels his influence in the schools will make a direct and vital impact on many lives.

Imagine the impact of biblical peacemaking, practical tools and training for conflict resolution taught to thousands of children across Kenya! What differences might peace-making skills make in the classroom, in the lives of families, in neighborhoods and across tribal lines? Imagine Christian-Quaker values formed into the lives of a next generation of leaders, business people and community members. As one Kenyan Friend said at an FUM event, “This is one of the most important projects FUM is doing in our country right now!”

FUM’s Summer Mission goal is to raise $20,000 to support Zadock’s work in these schools. Instead of building a classroom this year, help FUM invest directly in the lives of Friends students!

FUM Yearly Meeting Schedule

Yearly Meeting Session – Dates Session – Location

Cuba Yearly Meeting – Campanento Amigos, Gibara Holguin, Cuba
Western Association – Feb 8-9, 2013 – Whittier First Friends Meeting, California
USFWI Treinnial – July 4-7, 2013 – Indianapolis, Indiana
Great Plains Yearly Meeting – May 30 – June 2, 2013 – Wichita, Kansas
Western Yearly Meeting – July 18-21, 2013 – Plainfield, Indiana
New York Yearly Meeting – July 21-27, 2013 – Silver Bay, New York
Wilmington Yearly Meeting – August 2-4, 2013 – Wilmington area churches, Ohio
Indiana Yearly Meeting – July 25-28, 2013 – Quaker Haven Camp, Indiana
Baltimore Yearly Meeting – July 29-August 4, 2013 – Frostburg State University, Maryland
Jamaica Yearly Meeting – Shortwood Teachers College, Kingston, Jamaica

Guilford College Students Mission Trip to Cuba

By Linda Garrison

In early January, Linda and Meredith Garrison led a group of six Guilford College students and a recent grad on a Quaker Peace Study Tour in Cuba. Friends United Meeting partnered with Guilford College (Greensboro, North Carolina) to offer this opportunity.

Neither Guilford nor FUM required participants to speak Spanish, or that they be Christian or Quaker. It was, however, expected that students be interested in peacemaking, have the overall stamina for travel and community life, and understand and accept they would be attending many church gatherings.

Part of the experience was attending two seminary courses, with 20 Cuban Friends at the Cuban Quaker Institute for Peace. Capable translators helped in the classroom and Americans joined Cubans in small groups and later in walks around town. Friendships were formed, meals were shared, opinions and addresses exchanged; slowly, community formed.

Some of the work on facilities included painting and the arduous task at Holguin Meeting of lifting supplies using buckets via rope and pulleys. Community was formed as the mason patiently allowed the students to prepare whatever MEZCLA (mix) was needed.

The group visited different homes in the city of Holguin every evening (when they weren’t in church services), sharing a meal and getting a glimpse of family life in multi-generational homes. Chess games were lost (by Americans), new foods eaten (again, by Americans), strange phrases spoken — often incorrectly (by both Americans and Cubans) and respect began to grow.
It was a time of learning and a time of growth for all who were involved.

Save the Date!

• Sharing our Stories: The First Annual Gathering of Friendly Mystics — A retreat organized by the editors of What Canst Thou Say?
June 14-16, 2013
Earlham College Richmond, Indiana
Email Michael Resman at: resmanmh@aol.com

• USFWI/QMI Triennial Conference
July 4-7, 2013
Radisson Airport Hotel in Indianapolis, Indiana
Theme: Take Courage

• Bridging Gaps: For those who care for Youth and Young AdultsSeptember 20-22, 2013
Friends United Meeting, Richmond, Indiana

• Friends United Meeting Triennial
June 11-14, 2014
Indiana Wesleyan University, Marion, Indiana
Theme: A Great People to be Gathered — in Christ,in Community, for Mission
Richard J. Foster — Johnson Lecturer
James Bryan Smith — Quaker Mens Banquet and
Daily Devotion Speaker

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