Minutes, Epistles, & Reports
This page contains links to the minutes of New York Yearly Meeting business sessions and other documents related to the life of the Yearly Meeting. Below the table of links are brief descriptions of these types of documents.
Minutes of our recent sessions (2010 to the present)
Minutes Archive : Spring & Fall Sessions (Representative Meetings) 2000–20009, and Summer Sessions 2004–2009
Recent Minutes of Conscience
State of the Society Reports
Friends conduct our business as a meeting for worship with a concern for the work of the meeting. When the presiding clerk has discerned that the meeting has come to unity on a matter, a statement of the decision is approved by the body of the meeting and duly recorded. This statement is called a "minute".
Minutes of Conscience
Minutes of conscience are records of our commitment to moral stands on specific matters of deep concern to Friends in the light of our testimonies. Our "testimonies" are more general truths about how we should live our lives that have been opened to us by the prompting of the Holy Spirit over the years and centuries of the Quaker movement.
In a tradition dating back to the first days of the Christian church, we compose and send out epistles describing how we perceive the movement of the Spirit among us as a meeting, how we are faring, what our concerns are at that time, and what our hopes are for the future. Typically, these epistles are addressed "to Friends Everywhere" and are distributed to the wider Quaker community, but they are also intended for the wider world beyond Quaker circles.
State of the Society Reports
Every year, the Yearly Meeting's Ministry Coordinating Committee crafts queries inquiring about the life of the meeting and sends them to the local meetings. The State of the Society Committee then synthesizes these State of the Meeting Reports into an annual State of the Society Report, which is brought to the Yearly Meeting at Summer Sessions.
At the end of the year, the Yearly Meeting staff prepares a report that highlights significant events and ministries of Friends and meetings throughout the Yearly Meeting, and of Yearly Meeting committees and staff.
Each year, New York Yearly Meeting's committees write reports on their activities for the year since the preceeding Summer Session. These Advance Reports are published in July as handouts in advance of each Summer Session and in October as part of each year's Yearbook.
At the passing of a Friend, her or his local meeting writes a memorial minute that describes and celebrates the life of the Friend and testifies to the work that God has done in the world through the Friend. Memorial minutes are read in the local meeting during a meeting for business in worship and are therefore added to the formal record of the meeting. When the Friend has been active in the Yearly Meeting or the Friend's life and work were notable beyond the local meeting, the memorial minute is also read in a session of the gathered Yearly Meeting and added to the formal record of the Yearly Meeting.