About

About the Mission

Friends United Meeting (FUM) is a gathering of 30+ yearly meetings of Friends (Quakers) in North America, the Carribean, and east Africa. (A yearly meeting is a gathering of several local meetings/churches.) FUM has had a ministry in Belize for several years, at the invitation of Ms. Sadie Vernon.

First there was a girls school, then a boy’s continuation school.  The girls school grew to the point where it became Sadie Vernon public school.  The boys school is still alive and well, except that it now accepts girls as well and we now call it the Belize Friends School rather than the Belize Friends Boys School.

Recently FUM has begun to ask if there are other “places” that God may be leading us in Belize and this site is the public expression of that exploration.  Dale Graves will live in Belize for a year and explore as many options and connections as possible and will keep the readers of this site as up to date as possible.

About Me

My name is Dale Graves. I am an active member of West Newton Monthly Meeting of Friends southwest of Indianapolis just outside the Interstate 465 loop. I was the presiding clerk of Western Yearly Meeting for the past 4 years until I was released by the yearly meeting do serve with Friends United Meeting in Belize for a one year interim assignment. I have been active with Friends United Meeting in different capacities for some time.

Some of you may well know my wife, Sylvia Graves, better than you know me.  She was the general secretary of Friends United Meeting for six years. She’s much nicer than I am.

I was a public school teacher at Mooresville High School, in Mooresville Indiana.  I began that in the fall of 1968 and retired in June of 2007.  During that time I took two leaves, one to teach at Oskaloosa High School, in Oskaloosa, Iowa for a year while Sylvia completed her elementary education degree at William Penn College, and the other for 3 years while I served at the ‘youth and Christian ed guy’ for Western Yearly Meeting.

I loved teaching and looked forward to my Physics classes every single day. I still love teaching and resigned from a position teaching GED prep math to guys in the jail in Plainfield, Indiana, to take this assignment.

I have two children, Maria and Eric.  Maria lives in Lansing MI with her husband Jay and two adopted Guatemalan children, Elena and Mateo.  Eric lives in the foothills west of Denver with his wife Laura and their two children, Eliea and Cohen.

Perhaps that is enough for an initial introduction.

For more information about my assignment please check out this link to the FUM website.

6 thoughts on “About

  1. Dale: Great to learn of your blog at last evening’s clinic board meeting and appreciated hearing
    about your going and coming. May God continue to be with you.

    Bud

  2. Dec 30
    Dale,
    I received your message a few days ago but it disappeared. We are scheduled to arrive in Belize January 19th and stay til March 31. We’ll get together sometime. I can be reached on my Belizean cell phone at 624-0050.
    – Dan Beane

  3. Great to hear a blog about Belizeans and Quaker work there.
    How do we contact the school?
    I’d live to ask some questions bout what you need in the arts.
    I am an artist who had planned to help Sadie Vernon in the 80’s, but never made it to Belize…yet.
    Hope to someday. Perhaps as peace corps?
    I’d like contact info.
    FYI I “grew up” @ first friends in Whittier, CA.
    Thanks for the good info regarding this place.
    Peace,
    Susan Walker Conta

  4. Hello Dale,

    Are you still in Belize? And is there a Quaker meeting here? I am a Belizean who has recently returned to the country after studying abroad and would be very interested in joining a Quaker meeting. I know my grandmother was good friends with Ms. Sadie Vernon (but I confess I was ignorant of Sadie Vernon’s Quaker links).

    Anyway, I, and my family, are interested in learning more about attending, also about possibly assisting the work in Belize. Although not from Quaker backgrounds (though my wife and I attended a Quaker meeting in Edinburgh for a time) we know a bit about the Quakers from a (Northern Indiana) Mennonite connection (my wife and I attended Goshen College).

    Would love to hear from you about Quakers in Belize.

    Best,
    Christopher

    • Christopher, how can we meet? I would love to meet you and get acquainted with your family. The school is at #4 Allenby St and I’m there most mornings. But I would be glad to meet you anywhere else you might suggest. Maybe we could even meet over dinner in a restaurant. I would be glad to buy a meal for us. My Belize phone is 633-3646. My email is daleggraves@gmail.com

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