Convergent Friends’ Dinner in Indiana – April 2008

Want to come? If you’re reading this, and the idea of an informal meal with Friends you’ve never met before sounds good to you, you’re invited.

If you're not sure what I mean by "convergent Friends," here's my definition.

So the occasion is that I’m going to the Friends World Committee for Consultation Section of the Americas Annual Meeting again this year. The story of last year’s annual meeting in Providence and the subsequent convergent dinner in Boston are also available here (Will T.), and here (Liz Opp), and here (C. Wess Daniels). Oh, and the article that Wess and I wrote about it for Friends Journal is still online.

I haven’t been invited to speak at the annual meeting this year, but young adult Friend Rachel Stacy will deliver the keynote address. You can listen to her speech from the FWCC 70th Anniversary here. She even wrote a term paper about the brief history of convergent Friends last year. I met her briefly last summer when she was leading a workshop for middle school students and I can say I’m looking forward to hearing more from her.

I’m going to the annual meeting this year because now I’m an official representative of Pacific Yearly Meeting to FWCC. I’m hoping I won’t be so overwhelmed with new and important and exciting stuff this time. I’m looking forward to seeing many of the same people I met last year, and meeting many more new people this time.

Like last year’s momentous trip to Providence and Boston, this is my first trip to Indiana. Well, I did drive through a bit of it when Chris and I moved to California thirteen years ago, but that doesn’t really count. This time, I’m hoping to meet more Friends from the local area.

I am delighted to announce that Quaker blogger and book author J. Brent Bill has offered to host the dinner at his home. He and his wife Nancy live on a farm, not far from the retreat center where the FWCC meeting will be or from the Indianapolis airport. He and I have not yet met in person, but I am really looking forward to the evening.

The usual schedule has been:
Hang out and chat while people are still arriving.
Order pizza. Talk. Eat.
Worship sharing on a topic to be determined as the Holy Spirit moves us.
Eat more chocolate chip cookies.
Pass the hat for the pizza.
This is not a hard and fast rule. I don’t know how well the pizza delivery system works in rural Indiana. We may end up with a different food arrangement. I think Brent was trying to warn me about this.

Put this in your calendar: Sunday, April 6, 2008. The Bill family farm. Exact time is still to be determined.

If you’re interested, please leave me a comment or send me an email (to the address in my profile) and I will send you more details as they are available.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds wonderful Robin! May the Lord be with you as you do this! You will do wonderful!

1/09/2008 11:54 AM  
Blogger Chris M. said...

Yes, I want to come. *Sigh*

Maybe I can come to another Convergent dinner in Northern California... Did you find out yet if and when Quaker Heritage Day will be this year?

-- Chris M.

1/09/2008 5:02 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Thanks Wess. I will miss you this time! Say hi to E. and L. for me.

Chris, I sent an email to Berkeley Friends Church, but I didn't hear back yet. Since they are still without a pastor, I don't know if it will happen or not.

1/09/2008 10:44 PM  
Blogger Liz in the Mist said...

Wish I could go to the FWCC meeting and this dinner but doubtful, which stinks, want to hear Rachel speak and would love this dinner.

Sorry about the book, maybe you can borrow it while at FGC since there is so much free time for everyone while there ;)

I think I stubmled across something that you will be doing at FGC and it looks great!! I am still leaving my calendar open for FGC so we will see what happens (I am going to be directing VBS this year at our church and I made sure it wouldn't conflict)!!

1/10/2008 11:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yay sounds cool, keep up the good work converging.

1/11/2008 5:27 PM  
Blogger Johan Maurer said...

I feel as if I know every inch of Indiana--we spent eighteen years in or near Richmond, and I spent most of those years traveling for Friends. You'll meet so many dear friends, I don't know where to start! I know you'll be blessed, and you'll be a blessing, too.

1/11/2008 6:41 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Liz, thanks, keep thinking about the trip to Indiana. How far is it for you? Would there be a roadtrip possibility for the weekend? And I'll write more about my upcoming workshop at FGC soon.

Allison - thanks. It's good to have local folks reading my blog and keeping up on what else I'm doing!

Johan, if there were any chance you might come, that would be a blessing. But even if you're sticking closer to home for a while, if you know of someone who might be interested in coming, but unlikely to be reading blogs, please pass on the word.

1/14/2008 11:43 AM  
Blogger Bill said...

If you would like to add something to the schedule -- Plainfield Friends is having a Homecoming Celebration Sunday, April 6 from 2-4 pm featuring Tom Mullen and the Gospel Revelations choir from Earlham College. It will be in the Western Yearly Meeting building (about 5 miles due north of Brent Bill's home)

1/16/2008 10:09 AM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Bill, thanks for the invitation. I am still clueless about the transportation logistics for the whole weekend, but this might be a great afternoon addition.

Will you join us for the evening or will you still be too busy with your meeting event to come to dinner?

1/16/2008 11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds wonderful! And I would love the chance to hang out with you more and chat. I am planning to be at the weekend, so unless plans change drastically, count me in. :)

1/21/2008 8:53 AM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Erin, that will be wonderful!

1/21/2008 12:44 PM  
Blogger Brent Bill said...

Ah, actually getting pizza to Ploughshares Farm is not that difficult. The best pizza place in Indiana (in Nancy's and my opinion) is just a few miles away. We just thought that it might be fun, depending on the number, to put Nancy's culinary and hospitality gifts to good use!

We're looking forward to it.

1/26/2008 1:48 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Brent, the menu I will leave up to your discretion. I just don't want it to become too much of a burden on you or Nancy. It is enough that you are willing to have a TBD number of people come to your house.

So everybody, just read "pizza" as a stand in for something simple and crowd-friendly that you can pitch in toward the cost of.

Also, I just heard a rumor that the knowledgeable and witty Eric Moon, a former clerk of PYM, will be speaking at Quaker Heritage Day in Berkeley at the end of April. More details will be posted as I get them...

1/26/2008 5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, Robin. We met in Providence at the FWCC Annual Meeting. I'm looking forward to seeing you again here in Indiana. I'll be at FWCC and would love to join you for dinner at Brent and Nancy's place. (It's heaven on earth!) I can drive about 5 people in my minivan from FWCC to the farm, and then drop that many off at the airport after dinner.

It will be great!

Cathy Habschmidt
Clear Creek Meeting
Richmond, IN

2/02/2008 5:21 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Cathy, I am delighted to hear that you will come. In fact, I had just a few days ago asked Brent if he knew how to contact you so that we could invite you specifically. He sent me your email, but I hadn't written yet. And getting from the FWCC site to his house was the piece I hadn't figured out yet. This is wonderful news. I look forward to seeing you again!

2/02/2008 11:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to attend this dinner as well. Having been to Brent and Nancy's farm, I know it's a beautiful and peaceful place. I will be arriving home to Indianapolis from Chicago that day, so I may come skidding in a bit late.


3/03/2008 7:19 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Hi Cath, it would be great to meet you in person. We'll see you there!


3/03/2008 7:51 PM  
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1/15/2009 4:18 AM  

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