As Way Opens
I have been reading quite a bit about Desmond Tutu and his theology of Ubuntu to address apartheid in South Africa in the 20th century. Bishop Tutu became Bishop of the Anglican church in South Africa and his embrace of spirituality and the idea that all are created in the image of God helped lead his country out of racial oppression with a heart of reconciliation over revenge. His Ubuntu theology finds redemption through Christ and refused to define individuals by race or other differences. All human beings have worth for the very reason that they are created in imago Dei. Tutu’s model seeks to restore an oppressors humanity and have those oppressed see their oppressors as peers of God. Ubuntu seeks a beloved community made up of unique individuals. Tutu embraces community but can see the potential danger that community can lead to conformity. He views the obsession with the western model of individuality and personal salvation as not creating a community of care and support. He encourages the terrifying idea of losing one’s identity in order to emerge as a redeemed person to God and to one’s truest self.
Tutu was insightful to understand that we are all potential oppressors without the transformation of God in our lives. As I read through the history of South Africa, I am astounded with the fact that the white Afrikaners were oppressed and enslaved by the British (during the late 1800’s) and yet they in turn created apartheid to oppress and enslave people of color in their country.
How do we create Ubuntu? A diverse and unique community of believers where we are all valued and beloved. As Richard Rohr points out “if Christians emphasize retribution and judgment, we will only contribute to more violence and division. We become what we believe ourselves to be.” What do we believe about ourselves? How do I live out Ubuntu?
Joys & Concerns
How generous of our food pantry volunteers to again donate their time and effort to the Mid-North Food Pantry. Thank you to Linda and Rik L, Kathy and Bill F, Ray G, and Carol and Jim D. We were very busy, with 111 families served!
In need of some inspiration? Come take a stroll around our Meetinghouse and see the fall colors at their peak! The sun is out and I bet you could use a break! How beautiful this Fall is turning out to be!
Announcements, Reports, & Opportunities
This Little Light of Mine after Charlottesville ~ The poem Catherine S read at the Labor of love Meeting for Worship has been published. To access the poem, visit the link below and follow instructions to access an internal link. The poem is in page 9 of the publication.http://indymenno.org/2017/11/power-fall-issue-of-mennoexpressions/ Enjoy!
Words Matter! Writing for Healing, Action, & Change ~ Indianapolis First Friends Meeting is hosting a workshop for the Spirit & Place Festival this year! Join four talented writers—Philip Gulley, Diana Ensign, Amber Stearns, and Barbara Shoup—as they explore the power of words to spark compassion, dialogue, and positive change. Words are powerful! Written language imparts knowledge, shapes thoughts, spurs ideas, and provokes action. Words inspire, uplift, and motivate. Misused, words can be a tool for manipulation or bullying. It matters how we use them. Do our words create positive change in the world? Do our words send waves of fear and anger? Or do our words unify? This panel presentation will examine the power of words and will ask attendees to answer in writing, “How have you been inspired to use your words to create change?” Selected responses will be published in NUVO. Prior to the panel discussion and after the discussion enjoy music by classically trained guitarist Michelle Qureshi. This will be held Friday, November 10, from 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM in the Meetingroom. This is free and open to anyone! Walk-ins welcome, but RSVPs encouraged by Nov. 10. Please RSVP here: https://goo.gl/27bwng.
Silent Auction and Talent Show! ~ Friends, music can lift us all up into the light! We have installed a lift in the choir room which means that the choir room had to move which means that we need a new piano. We are having a talent show/silent auction to raise money for the new piano. Do you have a secret talent? Do you have something to share? We are looking for your talents. For the silent auction we need anything but clothes. Own Colts season tickets you can’t use? Have a son or daughter who can cut grass? Maybe an old piece of furniture you don’t need? Maybe someone else can use these things! Please donate items and leave them on the stage clearly marked for the silent auction. Please plan to attend November 11 at 7pm for Quaker talent night and silent auction!
Want to see the Colts game this Sunday, November 12? Plan your weekend now! This Saturday the Silent Auction (mentioned above) will be auctioning off 2 tickets to the Colts vs Pittsburg Steelers for the next day, November 12, 1 pm. Face value $92 each! Starting bid: $50/pair. You can submit your bid to the office by calling 317-255-2485, or email firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday at 5pm. Of course you may also bid at the Silent Auction on Saturday. We will also be featuring many other great prizes, such as 2 tickets to the Festival of Carols by the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir Dec 13, 14, or 15 (see the flyer on the bulletin board in the hallway)! Hope to see you there!
Calling All Gardeners! Please clean up your garden plots. Let Samantha R or Nancy S know by Thanksgiving if you want to retain your plot for next year. Inform us if you are willing to trade plots. List what you planted so we can keep records to help monitor insects, disease and to assist with crop rotation. To winterize:
· Put diseased crops & weeds in the trash bin.
· Put healthy garden waste in the compost bin beside the garage.
· Sanitize your garden tools, tomato cages, etc.
· If you want, dig in dead leaves to fertilize.
Better care now makes a healthier garden next year!
Vespers is Fast Approaching! Vespers is coming December 3rd. If you would like to participate but can’t come to choir on Sundays, please come November 18th at 10:00AM to learn the music with the choir. We would love to have you join us for this joyous occasion! ~Eric & the Choir
Ecumenical Thanksgiving ~ Tuesday evening, November 21st at 7:00 is the date and time set for our annual Shalom Zone Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service, this year at St. Pius X Catholic Church (7200 Sarto Dr, Indianapolis, IN 46240). Everyone is welcome! First Friends, Cross and Crown, Allisonville Christian, and St. Pius congregations will join together in worship and song, as we give thanks to God for the many gifts and graces we receive. Join us in thanksgiving!
Grief Gathering on Sunday November 26th after Meeting for Worship - Circle of Care is hosting a lunch and discussion for those who have experienced a loss of a family member or cherished friend. This lunch and time together is a tangible way our Meeting is demonstrating our care for each other during times of sadness. We will also be featuring guest speaker Dan Mosley, author of Lose, Love, Live: The Spiritual Gifts of Loss and Change. We invite anyone that is interested in gathering with others to share and reflect on the experience of loss. Feel free to bring any family members. Please contact the office (email@example.com) if you plan to attend. This event is hosted by our Circle of Care.
Greening the Statehouse ~ Don't miss the largest annual gathering of environmentally-minded citizens in the state! It will be held Saturday, December 2nd, 9am-4pm at the Hendricks County Fairgrounds! Greening the Statehouse (#GTS2017) will be a day full of opportunities to become a better advocate for the environment, public health, and a sustainable economy. This year GTS will be a day of how-to’s: how to organize in your community, how to engage with lawmakers, how to communicate with the media, and so many more; we will focus on practical and necessary skills that should be in every advocate’s toolbox! Stay tuned for more info on our panelists. Don't miss out on the chance to get informed and inspired by Mitch Hescox, one of the most well-known conservative advocates for the environment in the country, who is working tirelessly to engage Americans across the political and faith spectrum. Tickets are $25 each ($10 students). For more information and to register, please visit www.hecweb.org/get-involved/gts2017.
Christmas Calendar at First Friends Meeting
‘Royal Sensation Choir’ in Meeting
Vespers at 5:00pm
Complimentary Light Buffet following concert
Christmas Tea just following Worship
Children’s Christmas Pageant in Meeting
Take your poinsettias home!
Unprogrammed worship in the Parlor at 10:15am
Christmas Eve Service at 5:30 pm