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“I just couldn’t let that stand . . .”

Posted by admin on Jan 28, 2009 in Meeting News

“I hate those Mexicans!”

A Friend shared with us during Meeting for Worship his experience while tossing a football with a group of neighborhood youngsters. He had just come home from work and the boys were playing just down the street, so he parked his car and joined in. Since they were playing in the street, their game was occasionally interrupted by a passing car. One car came by with a Latino family that lived around the corner.

Much to the Friend’s surprise, one of the boys exclaimed “I hate those Mexicans!” The Friend was so taken aback he was speechless for a moment, but then he asked the boy to explain himself. It turned out the boy’s father had recently lost his job, and somehow the boy had come to fix blame on “Mexicans”.

The Friend said he just couldn’t let that stand. After they had played a while longer, he invited the boy to go with him and some other folks to a UNCA basketball game that next Friday. And he resolved that he would also invite several of his Latino friends as well.

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News from Ariel

Posted by admin on Jan 26, 2009 in Uncategorized

Most of us old-timers remember Ariel Hearne grew up in our Meeting, all the way from her earliest days through her teen years. Then she went off to college and met Chris Maddocks, who soon became her husband. She was married under the care of the Meeting in 2003, just before our marriage moratorium began.

Now Ariel sends greetings from Boston, MA, where she and Chris have settled with their new family member Elliot! Elliott was born Oct 25th, 6 pounds 2 ounces and 21 inches long. Last week was Ariel’s first week back at work.

Chris is working at Children’s Hospital and Ariel is still with AIG. Remarkable!

Chris sends his greetings too, by the way.

 
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First hour: storytelling and snowflake-making

Posted by admin on Jan 25, 2009 in Meeting Events

Today during first hour we had the opportunity to enjoy the company of our young Friends and the gift of Laurel’s storytelling. Laurel told us two delightful stories. The first was a Native American tale that explained how a race between two brothers gave us “Indian Summer”. The second retold how a selfish King learned how much pleasure there could be in giving away his possessions.

As is our newfound custom during story hours, we joined with the children in a craft activity. With paper and scissors, glue and glitter, and tiny plastic eyeballs, we decorated smooth, round river stones and made three-dimensional snowflakes. The focused concentration of SaraWila was counterpoint to the liveliness of Blayze and Calvin, Wyatt, Eli, and Nick. And there were two new little faces among us. I wish I could remember their names!

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Upcoming: “East Meets West” presentation and group meditation

Posted by admin on Jan 25, 2009 in Meeting Events

Craig Bullock, founder of the Assisi Institute in Rochester, NY, will be visiting Carrie and Steve C on the weekend of Feb. 20, and has agreed to host an evening presentation about Eastern and Western Mysticism that Friday evening. Craig will present a talk about his own experience, the Assisi Peace Project, Kriya Yoga, and how Eastern and Western mysticism can bring harmony in our world. Experiential learning for participants includes chanting through the chakras and meditation exercises.

The talk will begin at 6 pm and there will be time for conversation over snacks and beverages afterward. Child care is being arranged. There is no charge for the evening.

For more information, click here to see the flyer. Or you can email Carrie if you have questions.

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Updates needed!

Posted by admin on Jan 21, 2009 in Meeting News, Uncategorized

By now everyone in the Meeting community has heard from Gary B asking for updates of your contact information for the new Meeting directory. Our intention is for the directory to include everyone who is active in the life of the Meeting. It’s up to you to decide if that means you!

Please email Gary asap with your updated info, or if the info in the old yellow directory is still valid, just let him know it’s okay to go with the old. We are especially concerned to get everyone’s email address. A lot have changed!

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Peace and Earth disbursements

Posted by admin on Jan 19, 2009 in Meeting News

Our Meeting allocates a portion of its budget to support local non-Quaker organizations that members of the community are involved in, and whose work supports our Quaker values. Peace and Earth Committee is charged with the responsibility of recommending which groups will receive these funds, and what amounts we will donate to each.

During the first hour on 1/18, Peace and Earth met with a few other interested Friends to decide how to recommend disbursing the funds allocated in our 2008 budget. After careful consideration of our intent in making these donations, and the leadings of the various Friends that were impacted by them, the Committee came up with its recommendations.

The first concern that Peace and Earth addressed was replenishing Ministry and Counsel’s “emergency needs” fund. The committee agreed to transfer about $600 to the fund. With a total of $2180 remaining to disburse, the committee settled on the following recommendations: $364 to Meals on Wheels and ABCCM Medical Clinic, $276 to Manna Food Bank and Asheville-Buncombe Community Resource Center, $250 to Wild South, the Canary Coalition, and Green Opportunities, $100 to International Links, and $50 to the Global Report.

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The purple pencil

Posted by admin on Jan 19, 2009 in Meeting News

Once there was a young girl who loved the color purple. She had a purple bookbag, purple socks, purple bows in her hair . . . she even had a purple pencil. One day though, her purple pencil came up missing. She was distressed!

She asked everyone she could think of: have you seen my purple pencil? Everyone said no. For several days, she was dejected and forlorn. Then one day, she noticed a classmate had a purple pencil just like hers.

She might have accused her classmate of stealing her purple pencil, she might have claimed it as her own and taken it by force. But she chose a third way. She said to her classmate, “I see you like the color purple too. You have a purple pencil just like the one I used to have. I don’t know if maybe you borrowed it from me, but if you did I want you to have it for a while, and when you are ready you can return it to me.”

Jesus admonished his followers that if someone demands your coat, to let that person have your cloak as well. And if someone strikes your cheek, turn the other cheek as well. Resist not evil, Jesus suggested. Perhaps the girl with the purple pencil suggests another way to view the lesson that Jesus was teaching.

Are you comfortable with the time-honed Quaker ideal that nothing we have actually belongs to us? Can you let go of your material possessions in favor of your spiritual treasures? Can you let go of your personal pains and commit them to the loving care of others?

These are some of the ideas and questions that rose up in ministry at our Meeting for Worship last week.

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Kathryn goes to Honduras

Posted by admin on Jan 15, 2009 in Meeting News

Kathryn K is on her way to Honduras Saturday for a two-week visit with the group “Shoulder to Shoulder”. Founded by fellow Cincinattian Dr. Jeffrey Heck – who also, coincidentally, now calls Asheville home – Shoulder to Shoulder serves the rural poor with four health clinics and provides a daily meal for over 2000 children. There are programs with home and community water filters, women’s health, dentistry, Yo Puedo or young girls empowerment, scholarships for the brightest and poorest, libraries for the children. Shoulder to Shoulder is expanding rapidly with the addition of 3 new academic partnerships at 3 new sites and are building a new 5500 sq ft clinic in Concepcion.

Kathryn reports that she has no idea in what capacity she will be serving, but eagerly awaits her assignment. She feels privileged to join this mission as they don’t often accept non-medical personnel.

Perhaps they’ve found a need for a good psychologist?

Visit their website here. Hold Kathryn in the Light as she embarks on yet another great adventure!

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FGC Spring conference: Weaving Sacred Wholeness

Posted by admin on Jan 15, 2009 in Other Events, Uncategorized

FGC’s Spring Conference, “Weaving Sacred Wholeness: Embracing Diversity Among Friends”, will take place at the Penn Center on St Helena Island, SC, March 6-8, 2009. Weaving Sacred Wholeness is an intergenerational conference which provides an opportunity for all Friends to explore diversity through deep conversation and experiential activities.

This conference is collaboratively organized by the Youth Ministries Committee and the Committee for Ministry on Racism of FGC. These committees work to bring Friends together to discuss how race and age affect our experiences as Quakers. As a group we will share our experiences with racism, classism, sexism, ageism, homophobia (and more), and begin to identify ways to strengthen our faith community and build a more whole Religious Society of Friends.

Registration for the conference is $245 for a double room, or $220 triple/quad room. Children’s rates are available for kids five and under. An Early Registration Discount is available until 1/19, a discount of $40 per adult.

Financial aid is limited and might be fully distributed to Friends who register by January 19th. Request financial aid during registration.

Come to worship, listen, share, have fun and envision change!

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First hour activities booked through March!

Posted by admin on Jan 14, 2009 in Meeting Events, Meeting News

Our Spiritual Enrichment Committee has released the first hour to the care and leadings of the Meeting community, and numerous Friends have come forward to fill the spaces. Upcoming activities include Peace and Earth decision making (see below), storytelling with Laurel W, Quaker testimonies with Steve L, and intergenerational activities hosted by the Religious Education Committee. Every first hour is booked through mid March!

A schedule has been posted here.

If you have an offering for first hour, please contact Laura M or Steve L to get on the schedule. Don’t delay! The schedule is filling up fast!

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