Vigil for Las Vegas

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VIGIL FOR LAS VEGAS
Local faith communities are calling for a vigil to remember and mourn the lives lost and affected by the Las Vegas tragedy.  Tens of lives were lost, hundreds were injured and thousands of lives were affected forever by the loss of loved ones.  The nation mourns this tragedy and again questions the whys of this tragedy and seeks answers– but for tonight, Wednesday, October 4, this will be an opportunity to come together and mourn, to hear words of solace and to commit ourselves to building communities and nurturing children so that this is less likely to happen again.  Centre Congregational Church on Main Street, Brattleboro will host the 7PM Vigil. Clergy from many local faith communities will take part and Andy Davis will lead accompany music for the evening.   Everyone is welcome.

Love is Sanctuary

Join the webinar

Photo: AFSC/Pedro Rios

“Love is sanctuary, a safehaven and place to rest.” – Theodore Volgoff

What does “sanctuary” mean to you? When do you feel as though your heart can rest, as though you are in the place where the tensions and furor of the world is released, the place where you feel you can be your whole and most clear self?

For me this comes in meeting for worship, in the company of certain loved ones, when I walk near a creek or river. I had a conversation recently with an anti-racist activist I admire and felt the whole conversation offered sanctuary.

But for too many, sanctuary is elusive—for undocumented immigrants, for Black people targeted by the police, for Muslims, for queer and trans folks. Walking down the street can feel perilous as the systems of state-sanctioned violence, white supremacy, homophobia, xenophobia render so many vulnerable.

In response to the rising tide of hate and oppression, AFSC and community members across the country are coming together to create a sense of Sanctuary Everywhere—working as activists and people of faith to create the sense of fairness and sacred space for all people. We long to create Sanctuary Everywhere so that refuge from oppression isn’t needed anywhere.

Starting this month, AFSC will offer a series of free webinars to share what we’ve learned about how to support and work for Sanctuary Everywhere in local communities.

You can sign up today to join our first webinar.

These interactive sessions will help you create Sanctuary Everywhere in a range of ways—from learning how to intervene when you witness public instances of racist and other forms of oppressive violence and harassment to working for sanctuary policies in your school or community.

Our first webinar will take place on Sept. 21, from 8:30 p.m. EDT// 7:30 p.m. CDT // 6:30 p.m.  MDT// 5 p.m. PDT.

This will be an interactive introduction to Quaker Social Change Ministry, a model for congregations and others to work for social justice in small groups using spiritual practices and focusing on accompanying organizations and people most impacted by injustice. I will be leading this session with Gabriela Flora, AFSC immigrant rights organizer in Denver.

Find out more and register here.

I hope you will join us for skill-building and learning in the months ahead, so that all of us can work to create Sanctuary Everywhere.

In Peace,
Lucy


Lucy Duncan
AFSC Director of Friends Relations

Register Here

American Friends Service Committee
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
United States

AFSC Against DACA Termination

Quaker org speaks out against DACA termination

PUBLISHED: SEPTEMBER 5, 2017

Photo: AFSC

WASHINGTON, DC (September 5, 2017) Today, the Trump administration announced that they would rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a program that has provided temporary deportation relief to almost 800,000 people who came to the U.S. as children. The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) – a Quaker organization that has worked for immigrant and refugee rights for almost 100 years – condemned the decision.

“The decision to rescind DACA is an inhumane attack on young people, their families, and our communities,” said Kristin Kumpf, AFSC’s Human Migration and Mobility Director. “This decision puts thousands of young people at risk of deportation, and a six-month delay does nothing to mitigate that. We support DACA because we strongly believe that no one should be deported.”

Since the DACA program was announced by executive order in 2012, AFSC has been involved in helping people sign up for the program, providing know-your-rights information,  advocating for DACA expansion (which was effectively blocked by the Supreme Court in 2016), and mobilizing constituents to contact their congress people in support of the program.

“DACA has created opportunities for young immigrants to work, pursue educational opportunities, and support themselves and their families,” said Chia-Chia Wang, Organizing and Advocacy Director in AFSC’s Newark office. “In the absence of just and humane immigration policies, the program provided some necessary relief for thousands of people. These protections should be expanded, not rescinded.”

Many DACA recipients have also spoken out about how DACA has impacted them and why future programs or legislation need to be expanded. “As an undocumented student, I was able to benefit from DACA. This enabled me to continue my education, get a job with AFSC, and pursue a master’s degree,” said Jesús Palafox, Regional Administrative Associate in AFSC’s Chicago office. “DACA has been very helpful to me, but I am just part of a tiny minority of millions of people living in this country who need to be able to adjust their status. We need solutions that include everyone.”

Despite the setback, AFSC and immigrant rights groups across the country say this movement for immigrant rights, family reunification and social justice is not over. “We will continue our work – in the courts, in our communities, and in the streets – until everyone has access to legal status,” said Kumpf.

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The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker organization that promotes lasting peace with justice, as a practical expression of faith in action. Drawing on continuing spiritual insights and working with people of many backgrounds, we nurture the seeds of change and respect for human life that transform social systems.

FCNL’s Visiting Friends Program

Dear Friends,
We have a guest, Nancy Corindia, attending Meeting for worship tomorrow. She will stay and share our First Day potluck and speak of her experiences.

Greetings Friends,Logo_for_FCNL

My name is Nancy Corindia and I am a member of Sarasota Monthly Meeting in Florida. (Formerly, a member of Hanover Monthly Meeting.) I have been active with the Friends Committee on National Legislation community for several years and am now one of Southeastern Yearly Meeting’s representatives to the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL). Recently, I became a part of FCNL’s Visiting Friends Program to travel to Meetings to share my leadings on faith and Quaker advocacy with FCNL.

I’ll be coming to worship with Friends in Putney tomorrow and would welcome the opportunity to speak from my experience. I would speak for about 20 minutes and ask Friends for questions. It will be a pleasure to worship with you, share a meal at your potluck, and speak to Friends about my spiritual journey toward work with the Friends Committee for National Legislation.

In Peace and Light,
Nancy Corindia
https://www.fcnl.org

The Friends Committee on National Legislation lobbies Congress and the administration to advance peace, justice, opportunity, and environmental stewardship.
FCNL.ORG

How to Offer Sanctuary

Learn how to offer sanctuary

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Dear Friends,

I get at least one call per week from Quaker congregations asking about congregational sanctuary. Since the rate of arrests leading to deportation has risen 38 percent and immigrants are afraid to attend immigration check ins because many are being detained and deported, the need for congregations willing to stand up and offer safety and refuge for immigrants is growing. Join our national call on July 13th from 8 to 9:30 pm ET to hear from people across the country who have direct experience with sanctuary.

Conference Call: How to Offer Sanctuary 

Thursday, July 13, 2017 @ 8pm EDT // 6pm MDT // 5pm PDT

Presenters will include:

  • Pastors and a Quaker leader who have offered sanctuary in their congregation.
  • An individual who has lived in sanctuary.
  • An attorney who can help participants understand the legal challenges of sanctuary.
  • Experienced community organizers at the local and national levels.

The call will be in English with Spanish interpretation on a separate line. Please share with groups and individuals who may be interested.

Register Here! 

In Peace,

Lucy Duncan

 

 

American Friends Service Committee
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
United States

June Offerings

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Hello Friends!

I’m reaching out because Pendle Hill still has full scholarships available for our two upcoming Quakerism workshops with Ben Pink Dandelion and Deborah Shaw, please share these opportunities as you are able and encourage those who are interested to reach out to John Meyer (jmeyer@pendlehill.org, 610-566-4507 ext 129) regarding scholarships.

Thank you!

Best,Lina


 Lina Blount, Communications and Outreach Coordinator, Pendle Hill

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Our Common Life

Our Common Life New England Yearly Meeting of Friends (Quakers)

One of the most enlivening aspects of my work is visiting local meetings across New England, connecting with Friends and encouraging the Life of the Spirit in the Quaker Movement.

In my travels in recent years—in meetings small and large, pastoral and unprogrammed, urban and rural, with meetinghouses and without—I’ve noticed similarities that seem to underlie our diversity. Though we organize and express our common life as Friends in myriad ways, at the root of our life together are several ways of being and doing that to me seem essential.

I’ve been searching for ways to describe these qualities, and want to ask for your experience and perspective.

In our meetings, when we’re thriving, I see us:

  • worshipping together
  • learning to love one another
  • engaging and exploring Friends’ tradition and how it’s relevant today
  • supporting one another to live our faith in our daily lives
  • making decisions together—with Divine guidance—and acting on those decisions
I’d love to hear about your experience of these aspects of our common life as together we continue to share, learn, nourish and encourage the thriving of our local meetings, which are the heart of the Quaker Movement.

You can email me here; I look forward to hearing from you.

In this issue, you’ll find news of how Friends are doing this work throughout our region. I hope you find these stories and opportunities enlivening.

In faith and service,

Noah Merrill
Secretary
New England Yearly Meeting of Friends (Quakers)

In This Issue: