News

Category: News

Quaker Meetings

Brent & StephaniPsst. Hey you. Quaker Meeting. Yeah, you. I know about you. I read your minutes and your State of Society reports. I know what you’re good at. You’re good at hospitality: celebrations, potlucks, welcoming new people into your midst. Social justice: prisoners, refugees, small African countries, homeless folks. Discussion. Lord, you’re good at discussion! It doesn’t always lead to action – or even decision – but goodness can you discuss stuff!

I also know what you struggle with. Quaker process in business meetings. The quality of worship. Vocal ministry. Too much silence. Not enough silence. Teaching children and new Friends about traditional Quaker practices. Finances – having enough, knowing where you can spend them, knowing how to report them.  Knowing Quaker history. Conflict.

And I know what you love. You love visitors! It shines through all your minutes, reports, and newsletters. Visitors from other Meetings, other countries, other churches, other traditions. Visitors bring you together in community. They spark joy and interest. A visitor can teach you, help you with the places you struggle, and celebrate with you the things you do well. Visitors help you see yourselves through new eyes, and know yourselves better.

So why don’t you have more visitors? You know you love it.  Go on, invite someone. It’ll be wonderful. You’ll both grow stronger.

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Stories, Poetry and Art Wanted for “The Canadian Friend”

cf_friendDo you have a story to tell, or a creative gift to share with Quakers in Canada?  Contributions are invited for the new issue of The Canadian Friend, the twice-yearly magazine of Canadian Yearly Meeting (CYM).  Prose, poetry, art, photos, etc. are welcome.

Topics could include this past summer’s CYM gathering, updates or photos from your Monthly Meeting or Worship Group, books you’ve read, or something new you’ve experienced or learned.

To take a trip down memory lane or seek inspiration, The Canadian Friend back issues are available online.  If your library is missing one, you can even download back issues and print them.  For Friends who don’t have internet access (and those of us who don’t always check our email), consider distributing or posting paper copies of this Call for Submissions poster.

Submit To

cf-editor@quaker.ca

Canadian Friend Editor

91A Fourth Ave.
Ottawa, ON, Canada, K1S 2L1

Submission Date

Nov. 30, 2016

Style Guide

When you submit, the editor will work with you to make your piece consistent with The Canadian Friend’s technical guidelines, if necessary.  Reading through the guide in advance can help both you and the editor get your piece ready for print more quickly.

Subscriptions and Advertising

You can order a print subscription to The Canadian Friend by contacting the editor. The Canadian Friend also accepts advertising! Send camera-ready or clear, readable copy to the editor, by e-mail. For rates and details, contact the editor, above.

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Canadian Young Friends’ Yearly Meeting Epistle 2016

This week in Camrose (August 6 – 13, 2016) held a great diversity of experiences for Canadian Young Friends’ Yearly Meting (CYFYM); deep conversations, shared laughter, gathered meetings for business, and involvement in rich Canadian Yearly Meeting (CYM) programming made this gathering an impactful experience. Our session also included challenges that brought us together and helped us to follow leadings of the Spirit. A significant outcome of the week was our discernment to give CYFYM a hiatus, which we enter into with some sorrow but also expectancy for future leadings.

Some of our daily smiles this week have come from memes in the Daily Quacker, CYM’s daily home-made news bulletin. These memes were composed of an image of George Fox with a short comment or joke written over top. We’ve created a few memes to reflect some of the experiences we’ve had here in Camrose.

Although CYFYM will be taking a hiatus, there are also things we are looking forward to…

Meme1
We enjoyed the presence of young friends who accompanied us for short visits during the week, bringing new energy and connections…

Meme2
This year we were excited to have young friends join us who we had seen in the children’s program in previous years. For example…

Meme3
When some young friends arrived at the airport they waited for their carpool van to show up and it turned out to be a lot better…

Meme4

 

Meme 5: “Few in number- extra potent”
Although there may have been few of us this year…

Meme5

 

We heard from young friends about Quaker events in the world…

Meme6

 

If you couldn’t find someone throughout the week there was usually a reliable explanation…

Meme7

 

This week held powerful moments in which we were able to come to unity on difficult discernment…

Meme8

 

We enjoyed singing with (F)riends in the evenings and despite our best attempts to engage local staff…

MEme9

 

We shared a week with many wonderful moments to carry home with us….

 

Meme10 copy

Canadian Young Friends’ Yearly Meeting 2016

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Thankfulness and Celebration Usher in CYM 2016

With a song of gratitude in his native tongue, Elder Rick Lightning welcomed us to Treaty Six Cree territory. We were gathered in Wahkohtowin Lodge at Augustana University in Camrose, Alberta. This Cree word refers to creating kinship with the natural world. So it is fitting that Elder Rick deplored the accelerating destruction of Mother Earth and the consequent violation of Aboriginal rights. The Cree who signed Treaty Six in the late 1800s understood that the treaty would allow the settlers to use the top six inches of soil, in other words plow and farm the land, whereas mineral exploitation nowadays pollutes to a much deeper depth. Pointing to the children in our midst and referring to his own grandchildren, Elder Rick stressed that it was they who would bear the brunt of environmental destruction.

Elder Rick Lightning welcomes Friends to Treaty 6 Territory. Camrose, AB.

Elder Rick Lightning welcomes Friends to Treaty 6 Territory. Camrose, AB.

When the treaties were signed, cultural misunderstandings were rife, and there was a gulf between the expectations of the two parties to these legal documents. The new arrivals understood the Indians to have many gods as they appeared to be worshiping rocks, trees and the like, whereas they were actually giving thanks to one deity, the Creator.

Briefly, and without bitterness, Elder Rick reminded us of past injustices inflicted on the Cree and on Aboriginal peoples in general. Both his parents went through residential school. Under the Indian Act, native languages and ceremonies were suppressed, depriving the Indian peoples of their own culture. But what touched me most in his welcoming address was that he did not dwell on this painful past. “Let it go,” he said. “Don’t hang on to it.” In other words, his message was that relationship building in the here and now is what counts.

This theme of moving forward by relationship building was continued on Monday at a Special Interest Group showing of the movie Elder in the Making: Treaty Seven. This road trip documentary of reconciliation, set in stunningly beautiful Alberta landscapes, traces the history of the area from an Aboriginal perspective and centres on a Blackfoot whose ancestors lived there for thousands of years and who feels disconnected from the place he calls home. It is a profoundly moving film.

In friendship,

Sheila Havard.

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Yearly Meeting is upon us.

Augustana Campus

Friends, we will gather in Camrose at the Augustana Campus of the University of Alberta, starting this Friday, Aug 4, with a Pre-YM Retreat led by Beverly Shepard.  Yearly Meeting session will follow with a community celebration on Saturday; the Sunderland P. Gardner Lecture given by Maggie Knight on Sunday evening and a week filled with activity, sharing, time for quiet reflection and spiritual growth and learning.  Every year we come together as a family, it’s an event that nourishes body and soul.

Should you need to reach anyone during this time – you can either call the YM office (888-296-3222) and leave a voicemail – messages will be retrieved daily; or you can call the CYM on-site contact number 780-781-0507 .

Visit www.quaker.ca/business/cym2016 to download reports and information from our Session.

If you are not able to be among us in person, we ask you to hold our Session in the Light.

 

Founders Hall

 

 

 

 

 

 

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