As Way Opens
I have been looking at the pictures of Bob Davis, Duffy, Ed Thomas, Jerry’s sister and Catherine Swanson’s father every day for the past week on our Remembrance Banner. I think about these people and so many others that we have lost and how these folks have affected my life, your life and how many of them have helped shape our faith community here at First Friends. The loss of Bob and Duffy have been really hard on me personally this past year as these 2 men that were so different touched my heart, my mind and my spirit in a special way and they lived out their faith each day in big and small ways. As time passes in our loss, we realize that the impact of a person on our life is based on how they made us feel while they were here. Maya Angelou says " I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”.
The people I miss the most begin to fade a bit in my memory when I try to recall their words or details around something they did. But I never forget the feeling.
I think this is the basis of Jesus ministry and the new covenant that he declares. While it is helpful to memorize scripture and create discipline in our lives by observant practices, what makes us feel alive, what makes us joyful, what brings us into the arms of God is the experience. Jesus tells us to come and taste God and see that it is good. Early Quakers got this right as they recognized the power and the feeling of the Inward Teacher.
I appreciated the service on Sunday to collectively remember our beloved ones we have lost. I was told that during the lighting of the candles there were two birds sitting in a nest together beak to beak. Two birds being alive, bringing new life forward and sharing the experience together. A reminder outside of our window of the power of the resurrection.
Considering the Query: We do not own the world, and its riches are not ours to dispose of at will. Show a loving consideration for all creatures, and seek to maintain the beauty and variety of the world. Work to ensure that our increasing power over nature is used responsibly, with reverence for life. Rejoice in the splendor of God’s continuing creation. From: Advices and queries; Britain Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice, 5th edition, @ 1995-2015 Quaker Faith and Practice
Joys & Concerns
Remember, Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday, March 13th at 2:00 am!! This means that we “spring forward” in time as we anticipate the wonderful weather to come with it.
Amy Perry had successful surgery this past Tuesday morning. Amy is doing well, and was moved into a regular hospital room for recovery. If you’d like to send Amy a card please write her at 106 Chippenham LN, Fishers, IN 46038.
Bill Heitman is recovering nicely from his emergency surgery a couple weeks ago. He is full speed ahead already diving in MG&P meetings. If you’d like to continue to hold him in the Light, please send him a card at his new address 115 E. 28th St, Indianapolis, IN 46205.
There was a set of keys found outside the North Entrance (by the preschool) on Monday. The coop has asked all of their parents, and it does not belong to any of them. If it belongs to you, please stop by the office to claim them.
Announcements, Reports, & Opportunities
Scout Sunday, will be celebrated this Sunday, March 13th. We will have a fellowship hour sponsored by Christian Education with some popcorn and cookies. We invite our Scouts to wear their uniforms on Sunday Morning.
During Fellowship Hour, Beth Henricks will be selling chocolate bars, hot cocoa, olive oil, and coffee to raise money for our Youth Group activities. They are so delicious!
Kelly Kellum, former Clerk of Friends United Meeting, will be hosting a gathering of Friends on Sunday, March 13th from 4:00 to 6:00 pm at First Friends Meeting. Friends from across Indiana will be gathering to discuss the good work of FUM and how we can all better partner together and support our shared work both here in North America and around the globe. Part of the gathering will focus on Energize, Equip and Connect: The FUM Campaign. We are in the midst of a three-year $3,000,000 effort to strengthen FUM’s sustainability and enable us to launch several new initiatives, including many aimed at revitalizing our work and witness in North America. Please RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org. There will be refreshments and great fellowship for all. We hope to see you there!
Mid-North Food Pantry Garden Shower and Open House~ Celebrate Spring and grow with us at Mid-North Food Pantry’s Garden Shower! It will be on Sunday, March 13th, at 12:15 at the Pantry (3333 N. Meridian St). Take a tour of the pantry, feast on some healthy treats, and check out our plans for growing the garden space this year. With your help, this year we will expand production with 2 new raised beds and install flat soaker hoses to minimize water waste and labor hours. We’d love to receive gifts of garden soil or monetary gifts for the purchase of tomato, pepper plants, and other supplies. For more information about the garden and a detailed supply wishlist, please see www.midnorthfoodpantry.org/about/garden
YFYF Youth Group Meets Sunday, March 13th after Worship. Lunch will be provided per usual. Get ready for good discussions, and good fellowship!
Lenten Nourishment: Have you seen the weekly blog entry on our First Friends website? It’s an invitation to reflect daily on your relationship with yourself and God. Persons from the Meeting are being interviewed, as well, about spiritual practices that have enriched their lives. Check it out at: http://www.indyfriends.org/thoughts-from-friends/
This Friday ~ Walking with Kathy Rhyne at the Monon Community Center in Carmel at 9:30 am This Sunday ~ Evening Meditation Group has been suspended because of Bill Heitman’s recovery
Quaker Affirmation Sunday School class - Please join us for this interactive look at our Quaker faith each Sunday in the parlor at 9:00 a.m. Here is our schedule of topics: March 13th - Daud and several young people from his mosque will be leading the class about the Muslim faith for our understanding March 20th - Maltie Maraj (Larry and Krishan Coffman’s wife/mother) will share with us about her Hindu faith March 27th - We will examine Quaker writers, artists and musicians April 3rd - We will discuss what Quakers are doing in the world today April 10th - We will talk specifically about several Quaker organizations
FCNL priority setting next Sunday during Fellowship after Worship. Grab a drink and something to eat after worship next Sunday and come to the parlor to discuss what legislative priorities we would like for Friends Committee on National Legislation to focus on during the next Congress. FCNL seeks the input from all Quaker Meetings and Churches to compile its list of priorities to work on with Congress. We have attached the list of priorities we submitted 2 years ago (this process occurs every 2 years) and will be discerning together what is the list we want to submit this year. We will need to present our list to Monthly Meeting for Business on March 21st. We welcome your input and encourage you to join us in the parlor after you get your fellowship treats.
FCNL ADVOCACY MEETINGS The FCNL Advocacy Team will meet at First Friends at 10 am. on Saturday, March 12th and again at 1 pm. on Sunday, March 20th. Anyone interested in being an advocate for FCNL is invited to attend. What can we do to restore our democracy? When the Congressional Management Foundation surveyed hundreds of Congressional staff members, they found that in-person meetings with your members of Congress are the most effective way to influence policy decisions. Be the change Congress needs!
Meet Margery Abbott! Tuesday, March 15th at Fairfield Friends in the ‘Quaker Spirituality’ discussion group led by Steve Angell, Professor of Quaker Studies at Earlham School of Religion. Tuesday evenings at 7:00 PM - Fairfield Friends Meeting March 15, 2016—Margery Abbott Free of charge but a one-time donation of $10.00 for ESR is suggested. For further information, contact Sarah Lookabill (email@example.com).
You’ll find a purple basket has been placed outside of the Meeting Room for Easter Candy donations. We are looking to fill many eggs for our annual Easter Egg hunt for the children. Easter is very early this year, and falls on March 27th, 2016. We thank you in advance for your donation.
Do you have shoes or others types of footwear that you no longer wear? If so, please drop them in the Changing Footprints container at the Donation Station in Fellowship Hall. All types are needed, including tennis shoes, dress shoes, casual shoes, sandals, flip flops, boots, slippers, and sports cleats. Last year 17,500 pairs of shoes were distributed, with most given to local nonprofit organizations; the remainder were provided to other countries. If we can increase the supply of shoes, we can distribute even more this year. Thanks for your past contributions!
Eco-Film Coming Up! Friday, March 11 – “Racing Extinction” In “Racing Extinction”, a team of artists and activists exposes the hidden world of extinction with neverbefore-seen images that will change the way we see the planet. Two worlds drive extinction across the globe, potentially resulting in the loss of half of all species. The international wildlife trade creates bogus markets at the expense of creatures that have survived on this planet for millions of years. And the other surrounds us, hiding in plain sight — a world that the oil and gas companies don’t want the rest of us to see. Using covert tactics and state-of-the-art technology, the Racing Extinction team exposes these two worlds in an inspiring affirmation to preserve life as we know it. From the Academy Award® Winning Filmmakers of "The Cove.” Extinction is a race we can’t afford to lose. (90 min., 2015) http://racingextinction.com/the-film/ The Eco-Film Series runs every first Friday of every month, 7p.m. at Cross and Crown Lutheran Church (5933 E. 79th Street). Each film is free of charge, although free-will offerings will be accepted to help defray costs.
Poetry Group!! Jim Winters will present a program on the life and works of Carl Sandburg in the Parlor at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 15. His previous 2 programs have been highlights of the year!
Western Yearly Meeting is having its annual Spring Retreat at Quaker Haven Camp on April 8th-April 10th. This year’s retreat will be led by Scott Wagoner, who is the founder and director of “Growing Edge Resources”. Scott has been a pastor for over twenty-five years. He is a graduate from Taylor University, and got his Masters of Divinity from Earlham. He will be speaking at Spring Retreat and Western Yearly Meeting sessions. This year’s retreat is focused on expanding the vision of discipleship. Please contact either the office or WYM PME Director Della Stanley-Green (firstname.lastname@example.org). The registration deadline is March 15th.
Veterans For Peace~ Our friends with the Islamic Society of North America are hosting an open house on Saturday, March 19, 11:00-2:00. What a great opportunity to compare real people who are a part of our community with the stereotypes being painted by our politicians and others who have never met a Muslim! We in Veterans For Peace can attest to the admirable character and warm friendliness we have experienced with friends and fellow citizens among Muslims in local communities with whom we have worked. Come and see this for yourself! And invite others in your networks.
“Friends of Nature Kids” ~ Tracks~ Tracks are the impression made by an animal’s feet in the ground. Look around you and see how many tracks of different animals you can find. Can you see any human tracks? What about bird tracks? In addition to looking for tracks, see what other ways you can determine that an animal has been there. Are there any stray feathers, nibbled leaves, or droppings on the ground? From 52 Nature Activities by Lynn Gordon, Chronicle Books, San Francisco.