Plain in the city

A plain Quaker folk singer with a Juris Doctorate in his back pocket, salt in his blood, and a set of currach oars in the closet, Ulleann Pipes under his arm, guitar on his back, Anglo Irish baggage, wandering through New York City ... in constant amaze. Statement of Faithfulness. As a member of the Quaker Bloggers Ad Hoc Committee I affirm that I will be faithful to the Book of Discipline of my Meeting 15th Street Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends.

Friday, October 23, 2009

"Quaker Schools" Trustees and Mary Dyer...

A fragment of Quaker martyr, Mary Dyer's wedding dress
A fragment of Mary Dyer's Wedding Dress

One day, I held a small piece of Mary Dyer’s wedding dress, the dress in which she was hanged for our faith. I was moved to tears. Today, I look at the state, the craven, political, conniving state of our Meetings, and again I am moved to tears.
Once again, a capable member of a Meeting in the New York Quarter was nominated to be a trustee. And, as has happened again and again in the past, the nomination did not even come to the floor of the Meeting. Why?
Members of Trustees campaigned in the back rooms, without a process of clearness with the nominee, in order to stack the deck against a diversity of thought on Trustees.
I had a conversation with a member of Trustees who told me that he was shocked as I was and was trying to make things better… this is the email I sent this Friend:
Dear Friend:
I appreciate your intentions to help the Meeting become more Quakerly... but, the lessons of our history, not only as Quakers, but as Americans, is the time to do it, is not "with all deliberate speed"... but now.
In the time it took to make things right on Indian reservations, not only did the majority of the land and rights be taken away, funny enough, things were never made right.
In the time it took to create racial equality after Brown v. Board, not only was there white flight from the schools, but funny enough, things were never made equal...
In the time it will take to create balance and end politicking in this Meeting, we will lose property, credibility and members of faith, and my prediction is that things will never be balanced and politics will not end, and we will not come to listen to the will of God as expressed in true unity.
We are not a people of compromise. It is specifically stated in Quaker writing for over three hundred years, unity is not compromise. If we compromise on balance and fairness in this meeting, we take the gift of our faith and throw it back in God's face, and God forgive us for the weakness.
Thine in the light

I find myself convinced that our Meetings are no longer Quaker, but are rather business minded at the expense of the faith handed down to us by generations who stood on the frontiers of faith, often at the cost of their fortunes, their freedom and their lives, and once again, I find myself weeping.
Thy Friend


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