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As Way Opens

I recently heard about the Pickett Endowment Fund that has supported many Quakers and Quaker organizations over the years.  I checked out their website and began to read about Clarence and Lilly Pickett whom this fund was named after.  I had heard their names before and knew they were significant Quakers but didn’t really know much about them. 

Wow - these were two remarkable Friends that should be inspiring all of us today!  Clarence was born in 1884, the youngest of nine children in a Quaker family in Iowa.  He was educated at Penn College, Hartford Theological Seminary and Harvard University, then was a Quaker pastor in Toronto and Oskaloosa Iowa and joined the staff of Earlham College teaching Biblical Literature.  He became the General Secretary of American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) in 1929 and remained in that position until 1950. Under Pickett’s leadership, AFSC became quite influential in supporting social justice change, representing the forgotten and the poor and working to remove causes of human suffering.  Herbert Hoover, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, Harry Truman and John F Kennedy all consulted with Pickett on various policies and programs and Eleanor Roosevelt was quoted as saying, “I always try to do the things Clarence asks because I have great trust in his judgement.”  There is another great story from 1962, when Pickett was a frail 77-year-old, picketing the White House in the morning to bring attention to ending the nuclear arms race while he and his wife attended a formal dinner in the White House that evening representing AFSC as a past Nobel Prize winner.   

The adjectives used to describe him are respected, wise, enthusiastic, humble, hopeful, practical, and that he brings out the best in people and spirit led.  AFSC won the Nobel Prize in 1947, representing Quakers in the United States and Britain. When the staff first learned of the announcement, Pickett held a silent meeting for worship asking them to ponder the query, “Beware when all men speak well of you!”.

I just read the speech given by the Nobel Foundation in making this award to the Quakers in 1947.  I was struck by this phrase in the speech, "’We weren't sent out to make converts,” a young Quaker says: “we've come out for a definite purpose, to build up in a spirit of love what has been destroyed in a spirit of hatred. We're not missionaries. We can't tell if even one person will be converted to Quakerism. Things like that don't happen in a hurry. When our work is finished, it doesn't mean that our influence dies with it. We have not come out to show the world how wonderful we are. No, the thing that seems most important is the fact that while the world is waging a war in the name of Christ, we can bind up the wounds of war in the name of Christ. Religion means very little until it is translated into positive action.”

May we consider in our lives how we build things up in a spirit of love and bind up the wounds of war, discrimination and poverty in the name of Christ?  Clarence and Lily Pickett devoted their lives into positive action for the world.  Where do I take my stand in the name of love?


Joys & Concerns

Many thanks to those who volunteered for the SAWS project this past Saturday.  The Shalom Zone had enough volunteers to divide into two groups and do two projects.  Kathy and Bill F and John M worked on one of the projects.  Derek S and Eric, Chelsea and Kendall T worked on another project.  They helped build ramps for two homes that enabled the homeowners to more easily access their homes.  Thanks to Kathy, Bill, John, Derek, Eric, Chelsea and Kendall for “doing unto others” in a way that has given help and hope to folks who needed it.

A Big Thank-You to John & Ileen M who recently repaired chairs in the Meetinghouse library. The Meetinghouse is able to run because of volunteers like you! Thank you so much!

Announcements, Reports, & Opportunities

Monthly Meeting Notice ~ Due to holidays and events, we will be holding one Monthly Meeting for Business for both June and July. It will be held Sunday, July 1st after worship in the Parlor. Please plan on joining us that afternoon.


Babysitting Co-Op ~ Our babysitting co-op is happening on Saturday June 9th from 5:30 - 9:30, hosted by Katie & Michael H. Dinner will be provided for the kids. Please contact the office at office@indyfriends.org if you would like to have your kids join in the fun that evening!


Our Community Garden Update! Our community gardeners range in age from elementary schooler to senior. Together we learn and teach environmental stewardship as we raise organic crops. Some of us have grown up on farms; others are urbanites with little or no garden know-how. We learn through experiments, mistakes and shared experience. We keep resource materials specific to Marion County next to our garden equipment. Our water supply is collected from roof runoff. A large cistern stores it and we encourage watering underneath plants so they are less likely to harbor bacteria that could cause illness sine our water is untreated. We do clean the tank regularly.

A few tips:

  • Water in the morning or in the evening—not in the heat of the day or at night. This reduces evaporation, but allows enough moisture so plants are not drenched at day’s end and fungi growth is less likely.
  • Allow ample space for plants to grow; thin seedlings so they don’t compete for nutrients.
  • Pluck and destroy weeds when they are small.
  • Work with Mother Nature so watering is consistent.


The Indianapolis Pride Parade will be June 9th beginning at 9am this year. We will be walking in support of the LGBTQ community. If you are interested in walking with us, please contact the office at office@indyfriends.org. For more information about the parade, please visit https://indypride.org/


Save the Date! Shalom Zone Garage Sale ~ On Saturday, July 28, from 8 am to noon (set up beginning at 7 am) the Shalom Zone churches will be sponsoring “garage sale’ and “craft sale” opportunities for individuals in the Cross and Crown parking lot at 79th and Allisonville Rd.  You will be able to reserve a space for $10 in advance ($15 day of sale).  The rest is up to you – bring your own table or use the trunk of your car.  You get to keep whatever you earn.  The adjoining neighborhood of Ivy Hills will have its annual garage sale the same day so there should be no shortage of folks looking for a deal.  The Shalom Zone will donate the reservation fees to School on Wheels, a voluntary program which tutors homeless children throughout Marion County.  For more info or to reserve a space contact the office at office@indyfriends.org


Seasoned Friends Open Film Showing and Field Trip: Columbus ~ Everyone is invited to our Seasoned Friends events this month. First, we will be viewing the film Columbus, held Thursday, June 21st at 6:00pm in the Parlor. Soup and salads will be served during the film. If you are interested in attending the showing, please let the office know at office@indyfriends.org so we can be sure to have enough food for everyone.

The following week, on Wednesday, June 27th, we will be taking an actual field trip to Columbus, Indiana. We will meet at the Meetinghouse and leave at 8:45am and will return around 5pm. We will be touring the town and having lunch there as well. Please contact the office if you’d like to RSVP. We hope to see you there!


Rise Up Singalong! Enjoy an evening of fun and songs old and new. Experience the retro delight of making music together. The next Sing Along will be June 22nd, at 7:00 in the parlor. Please note that this month we are holding it on the fourth Friday of the month as opposed to our usual third Friday of the month due to scheduling conflicts. Those who have Rise Up Singing and Rise Again songbooks, please bring them. We are planning a song list ahead of time and will have enlarged copies of the selections for those who lack books. Those who want to purchase books may get them directly from riseupandsing.org. Or, if you must, through Amazon. You may save a few dollars from Amazon, but you support the authors more by going directly. Learn more about the books on the website. Contact Linda L if you have questions.


What’s Your Plan? Carmel Friends Church invites everyone to a relaxed interactive event that helps people prepare for their day of passing. It will be held on Saturday, June 23rd at 11:30am. This is done in conjunction with Bussell Funerals, who have a close relationship with their church. Donna Bussell with some of her staff will share all the information needed to help be prepared for the time when we are "promoted to glory"! This is not a sales pitch for Bussell Funerals, but more of an information sharing event, with an interactive and relaxed talk about the things that will help take away uncertainty for you and your family and give you peace of mind. This is for people of all ages! A light lunch is included, so RSVPs are required. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP by Wednesday, June 13 with Carmel Friends Church 651 West Main St, Carmel, 317-846-5090 or carmelfriends@aol.com.


VBS Volunteers Needed! This year we are having Vacation Bible School from Sunday July 22nd through Thursday, July 26th. This year’s theme is Shipwrecked: Rescued by Jesus. We are looking for volunteers that can help either one night or the whole week. On Sunday VBS will be from 12-2pm, and the rest of the week will be from 6:30-8:30pm. This is a wonderful event that children look forward to each year and we are able to offer it free of charge thanks to volunteers like you! If you’d like to help, please contact the office at office@indyfriends.org


Summertime Special Music! Do you have a musical gift in ministry you’d like to share in our Meeting for Worship?  As our choir takes a well-deserved hiatus for the summer, we are looking for volunteers to share their music. We need performers most Sundays from now through September 2nd. Please consider signing up for a date when you’d be willing to offer it in Meeting. Your ministry can be a blessing during this season of the year. Thank you!


The Overman Family Scholarship, in memory of Jess and Mark Overman, is available again this year. High school seniors through graduate students are welcome to apply.  Undergraduate students will be given first consideration. The scholarship fund is designated to support the members and attenders of Indianapolis First Friends Meeting. Scholarship funds may be applied to any school related expense, i.e. books, supplies, tuition, housing, computer, etc. The deadline for application is June 30th, 2018. For an application please contact the office at  office@indyfriends.org.


Native American Crafts Needed! WYM Outreach Board is looking for donations for the Native American table during WYM annual sessions July 12-15. Items they would like: handcrafts (new) food, needlework, etc. Items need to be priced. Contact Norma W or Terry T for questions.


Quaker Life magazine is being offered to us for renewal at a group rate of $30.00 per year. Published by Friends United Meeting, issues come out quarterly, that will “inspire, inform and teach you.” The journal is normally priced at $40.00 annually. We keep one copy in our Library. Please let the office know if you would like to add your name to the list of subscribers or renew if you already subscribe. Thank you!

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