3.20.2010

FWCC 2010, Day 3

Last night, the keynote presentation by Deborah Suess, a pastor from North Carolina Yearly Meeting (FUM), was a little Bible-geeky at the beginning, but it warmed up by the end. Her topic was the theme of the new commandment: Love one another as I have loved you. (John 13:34) She pointed out that in the other Gospels, the Great Commandment is to love the Lord your God and your neighbor as yourself. But in John, the point is that we have to love each other, the people we live with, our family, the people in our own meetings. Not just those other people over there. But these people that we run into all the time. And we have to love them with relentless dedication and grace. God help us all.

I got to chat with Deborah for a few minutes afterwards and she was delightful. Friendly, funny, smart. I hope our paths will cross again one day.

This morning, the message in today’s programmed worship was brought by a Friend from Jamaica Yearly Meeting. Her topic was “We Are the Light of the World.” We always talk about Jesus as the Light of the world, but he says that we are the Light of the world. How are we living that out? After her message, a woman rose and sang a song she said she learned from Rolene Walker [a member of my Meeting] who had a leading to do a walk for the beauty of the Earth, from San Diego, CA to Santiago, Chile. The song was beautiful, and it went,

Let me taste your salt
Let me taste your salt
Don’t go hiding the light of the world
Let me taste your salt.

Nancy Irving, General Secretary of the FWCC World Office, finished her report. Here are the two websites for the upcoming projects of the World Office.

Information about the initiative on global change can be found at www.fwccglobalchange.org

Information about the World Conference of Friends in 2012, in Kenya, will be at www.saltandlight2012.org

The Section of the Americas proposal to bring the Salt and Light discussions to where Friends are, by having a series of small events rather than a large annual meeting next year, was approved quickly. Since we had a long time to talk about it on Thursday afternoon in small groups, people had a chance to ask their questions and to ruminate on it before this morning’s business session.

The budget discussion was not a slam dunk, but it was relatively painless, and adopted as presented on Thursday. Because we’re trying something completely new, the budget reflects that. There’s still a little deficit projected for this year, but it’s way less than the last few years. It’s also totally a gamble, a shot in the dark. Nobody knows if the assumptions in this budget will come true. Both the economic uncertainty and the programmatic changes add to this.

This afternoon, the Regional groups met. Pacific Yearly Meeting and Intermountain Yearly Meeting are in the same Southwest Region. Evangelical Friends Church-Southwest would be in our region too, but they have chosen not to affiliate with FWCC at this time. We discussed how this would really work out in our enormous geographic region. We decided that there are probably different responses in different areas. In Northern California, we decided to start with making substantive reports back to our monthly meetings, and to support one another in leading Second Hour worship sharing on the queries we used here this week. (I’ll write more about those another day.) We will then arrange interest groups that also include some worship sharing opportunities at College Park Quarterly Meeting and Pacific Yearly Meeting sessions, and then regroup based on those experiences.

This evening will be the presentation by local Friends about Baltimore Yearly Meeting. This could be dry and long or it could be humorous and engaging. I have no idea.

Today was the first day that I didn’t feel like I absolutely needed a nap after lunch. I went for a little walk in the woods around the center. It was sunny and the temperature was in the seventies. There was a little bitty stream in the woods that was lovely. I feel much better.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Hollister said...

Hi Robin,
I'm Hollister Knowlton from Philadelphia YM, and...
imagine my delight when I just now googled the opening lines of the song I sang this morning (to see if I could find its origin at the request of several Friends here)...found the exact words, clicked, and found your account! I don't know if I've met you yet, but hope I can figure out who you are by your photo before we disperse tomorrow. Meanwhile, the second and third verses (I'm not sure of the order in which Rolene sang them. I'm also not sure if the words might not be "don't go hiding your light from the world" rather than what I sang) are:

Let me dream your dream....
Let me hear your voice...

blessings, Hollister and please give my love to Rolene!

3/20/2010 7:34 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Hi Hollister! We spoke at some point during this gathering. I'll introduce myself tomorrow morning. Thanks for the other verses. I couldn't remember the second one. I will be delighted to give your love to Rolene. One of the things I missed in the last couple of years was Rolene singing in meeting for worship.

3/20/2010 10:27 PM  
Blogger Aimee said...

Hi Robin, thanks so much for posting what's going on at FWCC this year. I didn't make it to the annual meeting this time around but I'm always curious what happens. Post a little something if you hear what the YAFs are up to. Thanks again for posting - so I can be there vicariously. =)

3/21/2010 7:42 PM  

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