Message from the Pastoral Care and Eldership Team (PaCET) for Sunday Meeting 10th July 2022
Dear Friends, I like to read the Epistles from other Yearly Meetings to get an idea of what Friends in other countries are doing. The ones for the past year … Message from the Pastoral Care and Eldership Team (PaCET) for Sunday Meeting 10th July 2022
I like to read the Epistles from other Yearly Meetings to get an idea of what Friends in other countries are doing. The ones for the past year echo much of our experience of the value and limitations of using Zoom in sustaining our Quaker communities as well as the deep desire to make a better world. I find the Epistles give interesting glimpses of how Friends are responding in their situations and challenge us as to what we are doing in ours.
Southern Africa Friends “supported a proposal to explore the viability of an ambitious Peace Education programme in the region”. Friends in the Florida area call for opposition to legislation on various gender and sexual issues saying: “Compliance with these laws will seriously inhibit the possibility of love, truth, and reconciliation which are prerequisites to attaining a just society of equals.” Australian Friends feel called “to healing of many types—to heal country, heal community and heal the Earth—as we continue to live with the legacy of colonisation and racism.” Racism and relations with original inhabitants are live issues in several YMs; Intermountain YM in the USA records that two of their Meetings “have demonstrated that the process of consulting with our Indigenous neighbours and drafting statements honouring their communities and heritage can initiate ongoing relationships.”
Many YMs are long established, but others are newer. Sierra-Cascades YM started 5 years ago to as a grouping of Meetings in the Oregon area which wanted to support one another in being fully inclusive, particularly in relation to sexual identity. It does not yet have its own ‘Faith and Practice’ book and comment:
“If you want to know what kind of Quakers we are, and what matters to us, then come and spend some time with us. We fall short, of course, but we aspire to live lives of love, sharing freely the Divine love that resides in each and every one. We assure you that you are not only loved by God, but that you are wired to love and that our Creator rejoices when we recognize this fundamental truth. The only thing that counts is Faith expressing itself in love.”
How would we in our Meeting measure up to that way of showing who we are?
You can find all the Epistles at Epistles – FWCC
On behalf of the Pastoral Care and Eldership Team; Bob Harwood, David Hitchin, Chris Lawson, Theresa Samms and Nancy Wall