Concerns, Announcements and Devotional Thought

A Weekly Ministry of Indianapolis First Friends Meeting


As Way Opens   by Beth Henricks

This past Sunday, John Woolman (aka David Beatty) joined our service.  He was dressed all in white.  The young children thought he looked like a snowman.  There was something haunting and eerie to see this historical figure dressed with absolutely no color in any of his garments.  John Woolman dressed this way as a matter of personal integrity - he would not purchase dyed cloth because of the slave labor that was used to produce this cloth.  He lived in the mid 1700's and is considered one of the most influential Quakers in our history.  Over the course of 30 years, he gently and peacefully persuaded Quaker slave owners (there were many) to free their slaves and no longer participate in the slave trade.  


We talked about John Woolman and others in our Quaker Affirmation class on Sunday.  If you get a chance, step into the brightly colored youth room across from Fellowship Hall and you will see a timeline with cards of significant events and important people in our Quaker history.  What is interesting to observe, is the abundance of people that were changing our world early on in our Quaker history.  This was the period of time where Quakerism was a movement.  But as we move down the timeline, there are many fewer people and events that have been making a mark on our society.  Quakerism turned into an institution and we have become concerned with matters of correct theology, membership, administrative affairs and the like.   Our young people were very astute on Sunday to identify the key elements of a movement versus an institution and what happens when we become an institution - the divisions and splits within our Quaker branches that happened and continue to happen today.

But John Woolman is calling to us - he is calling us to be a movement - as Ruthie told us on Sunday, we are called "to move" - love in motion.  How can I be a part of that movement?  

Announcements, Reports, & Opportunities

Please note that there will not be a Friend to Friend sent out next week. The next newsletter will be sent on Wednesday, October 29th.  Amanda Bow will be out of the office next week on vacation, please see Beth or Ruthie with any questions.

Monthly Meeting for Business is this Sunday following Meeting for Worship! Last Month’s Meeting Minutes are attached for your review.

Peace Coalition Churches and Peace Learning Center become Partners! Quakers, Mennonites and Brethren have united in a desire to help make Indy a more peaceful city. How? By becoming facilitators of peace. Peace facilitators are tutors or coaches who go into schools, camps, or other community centers and equip people with nonviolent tools and techniques to resolve conflict. To become peace facilitators, volunteers from our churches must participate in three 6-7 hour training sessions from PLC.  Are you willing?  Are you interested?  Deb Hejl will be sharing more about this at Monthly Meeting.

Sign up for Softball! We’re trying to get a team together to play. Date and location TBD. Contact Coach Jim Donahue or Batboy Dan Mitchell if interested in playing.

Plan to come and see our own Jeff Rasley give a Tedx talk at Fishers High School this Friday, October 17th.  The theme of the event is “Mistakes, Failures and Reflections.”  There will be a number of speakers as well as two Ted Talk videos.  The event will take place from 7:00 to 10:00 pm in the Black Box Theatre.  Doors open at 6:30 with student entertainment.  Enter the building through door FH7, on the east side between the football stadium and auditorium.  Tickets are $3 and can be reserved at this eventbrite website:   The seating for this event is limited – there are only 35 seats reserved for the general public, so sign up now!

Looking for some family-friendly fun this fall? The Meridian Street Preschool Co-Op is hosting their annual Fall Festival here at First Friends! Join us this Saturday, October 18th from 4-6pm for a chili cook-off, family photos, a costume contest, a bounce house, and family-friendly games and activities. You are welcome to add your best chili recipe into the contest – there will be prizes!

The 35th annual Indianapolis CROP Hunger Walk is this Sunday, October 19th. This is a great opportunity to get to know Friends from the Meeting! Indianapolis area congregations of all faiths, civic groups and other organizations are invited to participate. Walkers cover a designated route beginning and ending at the Christian Theological Seminary on 42nd St near Michigan Rd (near Butler University). Funds raised from this walk are channeled through Church World Service to help fight hunger around the world. Registration starts at 1:30 and you begin walking immediately, setting your own pace. We are putting together a team of people to participate in CROP walk. If you are interested please contact Jim Donahue at or Beth Henricks at If you would like to donate to the cause, we will have a table set up at the Meetinghouse collecting donations before the event. For more information, please visit  

The Finance Committee would like to thank those of you who have provided an indication of your expected financial support for next year.  For those who have not yet provided a 2015 financial pledge, we respectfully request that you let us know your intention as soon as possible.  We want to ensure that we can confidently continue our many programs and services under the leadership of our excellent pastoral and other staff.  Please send your 2015 pledge via email to Carol Donahue, Finance Committee Clerk, at  Alternatively, you may provide your pledge card to the office as soon as possible.  We are trying to finalize our 2015 budget.  Thanks for your financial commitment to First Friends Meeting! 

Noblesville First Friends is celebrating the recent renovation of their pipe organ. You can join them for a free concert by Martin Ellis, Concert Organist, this Sunday, October 19th, at 3pm. They are located at 1055 Division Street in Noblesville. Everyone is welcome.

Poetry Group will meet this month on Tuesday, the 21st, at 2:00 p.m. in the Parlor.  We're excited to have Catherine Swanson reading poems from her about to be published book, "A Map in the Wind!"

Ladies!  Oak Leaf: Meeting for Reading will be discussing Elizabeth Clines’ Overdressed on the third Tuesday of October, the 21st, at 7 pm in the Parlor.   If you would like to be on the email list or need a copy of the book list for 2014, please contact Kathy Rhyne at Listening to the Light, by Jim Pym is our upcoming book for November.

You are invited! To a “Seasoned Friends” Potluck Luncheon (for retirement age or older!) on Tuesday, October 28th at 11:30. Weather-permitting we’ll have a wiener roast in the courtyard. Bill & Kathy Farris will be bringing hot dogs (vegetarian hotdogs upon request) and soup; please bring a side or dessert to share! Brian Pozen from The Englewood Group, who purchased the old church at 13th & Alabama, will be here to share their plans for the building. Come prepared to share stories and memories!  Please RSVP to the Meeting Office at 255-2485 by Thursday, Oct. 23rd. We'd love to see you!

 Nov. 13 "Books and Basics" Party Will Welcome Baby Comacho.  Introducing...Valerie Elizabeth Flores, born to Rocio and Jose on Thurs., Oct. 9th. Rocio is our cherished custodian and friend, and we invite you to celebrate Valerie's birth at a party on Thursday, Nov. 13, from 7:00 to 8:30 pm, in the parlor. Refreshments will be hearty snacks, and, in keeping with the Quaker commitment to equality, this celebration is not gender-limited.  All are welcome! If you would like to welcome Valerie with a gift, here are three ways to do that:

     An assortment of excellent children's books will be on display at the party.  You may purchase one or more as your gift.  That's the "books" part of the party.

    As for the "basics," you could bring a package of disposable diapers, in a size that is likely to fit Valerie sometime between now and her first birthday.

     As our community gift, we are going to purchase a high chair.  If you would like to participate in this purchase, you may give your contribution to Amanda, in the office.

Please RSVP to Amanda Bow at or by calling 255-2485, to help those who are preparing refreshments.

Would you like to receive a copy of each First Day’s sermon?  Simply sign-up for Wednesday Word by sending an email request to or call the Meeting Office at 317-255-2485. The sermons are also available both in text and audio on