As Way Opens

They must first judge themselves, that presume to censure others: And such will not be apt to overshoot the Mark.

We are too ready to retaliate, rather than forgive, or gain by Love and Information.

And yet we could hurt no Man that we believe loves us.

Let us then try what Love will do: For if Men did once see we Love them, we should soon find they would not harm us.

Force may subdue, but Love gains: And he that forgives first, wins the Lawrel.

If I am even with my Enemy, the Debt is paid; but if I forgive it, I oblige him for ever.

Love is the hardest Lesson in Christianity; but, for that reason, it should be most our care to learn it.

It is a severe Rebuke upon us, that God makes us so many Allowances, and we make so few to our Neighbour: As if Charity had nothing to do with Religion; Or Love with Faith, that ought to work by it.                         

From Some Fruits of Solitude; Religion, William Penn

We often think of William Penn for his great accomplishments as a statesman and his political force, establishing ‘Penn’s Sylvania’ and bringing to bear the fruit of his Quaker convincement in governance.  But perhaps we often overlook the inward view of Penn’s spiritual depth and character.  Some Fruits of Solitude’ gives us that chance. Penn was able, in his own words, ‘to take a view of himself and the world, and observe wherein he hath hit and missed the mark; what might have been done, what mended, and what avoided in his human conduct.”  How often are we able to take this long view back at our lives lived, and consider our ‘mark’?  Perhaps if we did, we might more readily understand the power of love and forgiveness.  We might see and recognize the depth of love others have for us, and could then more easily reciprocate that love.  We might be better students in the lessons of love God lays out for us – not learning by rote - but taking care to comprehend love fully, exercise it well, and courageous enough to try it.  And so, as Penn asks us, let us then try - not what love can do, might do, could do, or should do, but what Love will do.

Happy Valentine’s Day,


 Joys & Concerns

This lovely plant is a gift to us all from Larry Stimson.  He received it this past Saturday as a remembrance from Roncalli High School for his wife Janet, and he in turn, is giving it to our Meeting.  Thank you Larry, and may God bless you with the life of the spirit and peace, as you are comforted.

Announcements, Reports, & Opportunities

Join us Sunday as we celebrate Scouting in Meeting for Worship.  Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Brownies will serve in worship, as we remember the scout challenge to ‘be reverent’. First Friends was the sponsor of Boy Scout Troop 200 for many years, and it’s good to remember and celebrate the place of Scouting in Quakerism, and in the hearts of First Friends.

Please hold the date of Sunday March 26th for Ruthie’s goodbye celebration.  We will have a pitch in lunch and program right after Meeting for Worship.  To show our appreciation for Ruthie’s time and energy here at First Friends, we welcome any love offering or contribution for this purpose. Please send in your contribution to the office or with your regular offering identifying it is for Ruthie.

Pop-Up Coats and Warm Clothing Collection ~ We are collecting coats and warm clothing for the John H. Boner Community Center. The center serves some of the poorest neighborhoods in Indianapolis. Before winter ends, please consider donating. Please place coats and clothing in the labeled box in Fellowship Hall. But hurry! You only have two weeks! If you have any questions, please contact the office. Thank you!

2017 Eco-Film Series Begins THIS FRIDAY, Feb. 10 with “The Last Mountain”

Please join our area faith community for film and discussion- 7 p.m. in the parlor at First Friends

In the valleys of Appalachia, a battle is being fought over a mountain. It is a battle with severe consequences that affect every American, regardless of their social status, economic background or where they live. It is a battle that has taken many lives and continues to do so the longer it is waged. It is a battle over protecting our health and environment from the destructive power of Big Coal.

For more information please contact the office.

The Pastoral Search Committee invites you to contemplate and provide feedback on the following query this week: In your opinion, how can our new pastor best participate in Quaker activities beyond First Friends?  Please provide your thoughts on the query (or any other feedback on the search process) to Dan R., who will be looking forward to hearing from you just outside the Meeting Room after Meeting for Worship this Sunday, February 12th!

An Evening with Carrie Newcomer airs on WFYI television Thursday, February 16th from 8:00-9:30 pm.  Carrie is a folk singer/songwriter and a local Quaker! Be sure to tune in!

Meridian Street Preschool Cooperative will be having our annual silent auction on February 18th.  First Friends has been such a wonderful place to call home for our preschool. MSPC appreciates all you do to support us. We would like to invite anyone who is interested to donate to the silent auction. Do you have a small business to promote? This is a great opportunity to do so. Don't own a business? Think about a handmade item, a gift basket or offering a class. If you or someone you know have any items, good or services to donate, you can contact the office. Thank you!

Want to attend the silent auction? If you or anyone you know is interested in attending MSPC’s auction, please feel free to RSVP! The auction is at The Riviera Club, 5640 North Illinois Street, and opens at 5pm. Cocktail casual attire encouraged. A light dinner will be served. Please note, this is an adult only event. If you’d like to attend, please fill out the RSVP card and follow instructions here:

Regarding Recycling: Friends, the light bulb bin in the recycling area is intended for CFLs (Compact Florescent Lights) only. Also, please do not bring in any egg cartons until further notice. Be aware that Styrofoam containers cannot be recycled and are environmentally negative. Cardboard containers are biodegradable and can be put in the trash. Of course both can be reused.                                                                         Thank you, Ed M

First Friends Game Night:
Saturday, February 25 at 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM At the Meetinghouse

Informal gathering for board games, card games, etc.
Bring a game along.
There will be snacks!
We will need volunteers to bring snacks.
First to choose to bring snacks and/or drinks will be chosen!
We will kick off with the ISH group!

For further information, contact the office.

The Right Sharing of World Resources (RSWR) board will be holding their semiannual board meeting at First Friends from April 20th - 22nd.  Our Meeting approved hosting this Meeting with Quakers from around the country.

We need some folks to be willing to open their home for RSWR board members to stay with them.  This will be for 3 nights starting April 20th and going through April 22nd - it includes a bed for these evening and breakfast each morning - please let Beth know if you would be willing to provide home hospitality.

We also need people to help with lunch and dinner on April 20th, lunch on April 21st and lunch on April 22nd.   Please contact Beth if you would be willing to help.

Are You A Quaker? QuakerSpeak recently released a short video, ‘Are You A Quaker?’ which briefly discusses Quakers and how most people would likely identify with Quaker beliefs. It’s a great video to share with your friends, especially anyone who might be considering the Quaker faith. It even features our very own Norma W! Watch and share the video here:

Join the new Art Committee! Nichole M. is looking for (but not limited to) anyone interested in art, history, or preservation who would like to be a part of the Art committee.  This committee would focus on looking after the German Children's/American Friends Service Committee historical collection here at First Friends. 

Possible Committee Goals:

  • Decide where the collection goes next
  • Look into better sign and boxes for transportation
  • Possible numbering to make sure pieces aren't lost
  • Contact the venue and arrange for pieces to be delivered there
  • Decide permanent homes for parts or all of the collection

The Meditational Woods Committee is announcing their work days for 2017.  Starting on March 18, one Saturday each month will be an opportunity for Meeting members to help keep our woods in good condition.  We will be working hard at removing winter creeper (euonymus fortunei) an invasive ground cover that smothers the native wildflowers that we are trying to restore to the landscape.  Put on your gloves and come work with us!
Also, if you have shade tolerant native plants such as may apples, trillium and Virginia bluebells, please let Terry T. know.  She is helping coordinate our native plant restoration.

  • March 18, 2017
  • April 22, 2017   Earth Day!
  • May 13, 2017
  • June 10,2017
  • July 15,2017
  • August- off
  • September 16, 2017
  • October 14, 2017 – last work day

 ~Mary B. & Mindy S


We have walkers available! Thanks to a donation from Danny H., First Friends now has walkers available for anyone who may need to use them. These two walkers will be stored inside the closet immediately to your left after entering the East door. Those who discover that they need one can borrow one from us, rather than renting one from a medical supply company. Thank you!