Spark, March 2013
15 Rutherford Place
New York, NY 10003
|New York Yearly Meeting News|
|The Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)||March 2013|
|Editor, Steven Davison|
- Spring Sessions
Theme Features: Volunteering Among Friends
Introduction — Our exciting experiment with a new blog format
Read this before you click on an article link below.
- Let Us Try What Love Can Do: Quaker Voluntary Service ~ Kristina Keefe-Perry (blog entry)
- Reflections on Volunteering for Friends ~ John Scardina (blog entry)
- The Privilege of Volunteering ~ Margaret Lechner (blog entry)
- Volunteering at the FGC Gathering Healing Center ~ Kathy Slattery (blog entry)
- Volunteering in Quaker Schools ~ Peter F. Baily (blog entry)
- Quaker Values in Action ~ Lewis Webb, Jr. (blog entry)
- Volunteering with the Quaker Bolivian Education Fund ~ Jane Simkin (blog entry)
- Saturday Nights in Auburn Prison ~ Jill McLellan (blog entry)
- Volunteering—A Baby Boomer's Selfish View ~ Carl Blumenthal (blog entry)
- Quaker Resources on Volunteering
- Quaker Volunteers from the Past: Bayard Rustin
- Quaker Volunteers from the Past: Alice Paul
- Introduction — Our exciting experiment with a new blog format
- Yearly Meeting News
Around Our Yearly Meeting
- A Growing Greater Canandaigua Meeting
- Farmington Friends Honor Their Elders
- Powell House Offers Free Sojourn or Weekend to New Members
- Powell House Discounts Available for Multiple Registrations from a Meeting
- Junior Yearly Meeting Volunteers Wanted
- News from the Chwele Task Group
- Spring Nightingales—Imagine . . .
- Introduction to Conflict Transformation
- New Hydrofracking Listserv Launches
- ARCH Ways—News from Aging Resources Consultation and Help
- Around Our Yearly Meeting
- Upcoming Issue Themes
- May 2013: Patriotism
- September 2013: Religious Education and First Day School
- We invite your contributions on these themes. Contact Steven Davison ([email protected]) for deadlines.
Introduction to New York Yearly Meeting's
Experiment with a Blog
Beginning with the March issue of Spark, we will experiment with publishing our theme articles on Volunteering Among Friends as blog entries. This will allow Friends to comment on the articles and we hope that it will foster a lively conversation within the Yearly Meeting on themes that are important to the life of the Meeting. Our authors have agreed to participate, so they will be able to respond to your comments, as well.
Thus the links in the table of contents above do not lead to articles farther down on this web page, as in the past (except for the entries for Quaker Resources on Volunteering and the two items on Quaker Volunteers from the Past, featuring Bayard Rustin and Alice Paul). Instead, they will take you to the blog entry for that article.
Here's how you add your comment (note that every article has a link to these instructions at the bottom):
- When the blog entry for the article opens, you can enter your comment in the box labeled "Comment," which appears below the article. You can ignore the field labeled "Subject."
- When you are done writing your comment, click on the Preview button that appears below the Comment box at the bottom of the page.
This opens a new window that shows you how the comment will look and displays the Comment box again, where you can make new changes to your comment. Once you are satisfied that your comment reads the way you want it to, you can
- click on the Preview button below the Comment box to Preview the comment again, or
- click on the Save button below the Comment box, which closes the window and returns you to the article.
- You will see a little notice below the article's title that says: "Your comment has been queued for moderation by site administrators and will be published after approval." The system notifies the moderator that someone has posted a comment and the comment gets published when the moderator approves it.
Because the moderator does not work on Fridays and has other tasks, it may take a little while for a comment to get published. We will aim for 24 hours, when possible. Thanks for your patience in this.
Let us emphasize that this is an experiment. We've never done it before, so we can expect to have some things to iron out in the beginning. If you have problems or questions, email the moderator, Steven Davison, at [email protected] We are eager to try this out and we look forward to your comments on the articles and your comments on this innovation in our communications.
Quaker Resources on Volunteering
Volunteer Work Camps: A Psychological Evaluation, by Henry Reicken; $12 used. A study of the domestic Work Camp program of AFSC and the author’s evaluation of such social action programs.
Gentlemen Volunteers: The Story of the American Ambulance Drivers in the First World War, by Arlen Hansen; $5.50. The story of the men and women who formed the first ambulance corps, who included Ernest Hemingway, e. e. cummings, Malcolm Cowley, and Walt Disney.
Checkpoints and Changes: Eyewitness Accounts from an Observer in Israel-Palestine, by Katherine Maycock, Britain YM; $10. The author was a volunteer international observer based in Bethlehem for Quaker Peace and Social Witness from 2002 to 2004.
Rebecca Janney Timbres Clark: Turned in the Hand of God, by Lyndon Back, Pendle Hill Pamphlet #393; $6.50. The story of Rebecca’s year as a volunteer for the AFSC in Poland at the end of WWI.
Quaker Volunteers in the Past
A master strategist and tireless activist, Bayard Rustin is best remembered as the organizer of the 1963 March on Washington, one of the largest nonviolent protests ever held in the United States. He brought Gandhi’s protest techniques to the American civil rights movement and helped mold Martin Luther King, Jr. into an international symbol of peace and nonviolence. Despite these achievements, Rustin was silenced, threatened, arrested, beaten, imprisoned, and fired from important leadership positions, largely because he was an openly gay man in a fiercely homophobic era.
Today, the United States is still struggling with many of the issues Bayard Rustin sought to change during his long, illustrious career. His focus on civil and economic rights and his belief in peace, human rights, and the dignity of all people remain as relevant today as they were in the 1950s and 60s.
In February 1956, when Bayard Rustin arrived in Montgomery to assist with the nascent bus boycott, Martin Luther King, Jr. had not personally embraced nonviolence. In fact, there were guns inside King’s house, and armed guards posted at his doors. Rustin persuaded boycott leaders to adopt complete nonviolence, teaching them Gandhian nonviolent direct protest.
Rustin’s biography is particularly important for lesbian and gay Americans, highlighting the major contributions of a gay man to ending official segregation in America. Rustin stands at the confluence of the great struggles for civil, legal, and human rights by African-Americans and lesbian and gay Americans. In a nation still torn by racial hatred and violence, bigotry against homosexuals, and extraordinary divides between rich and poor. His eloquent voice is needed today.
Apart from his career as an activist, Rustin the man was also fun-loving, mischievous, artistic, gifted with a fine singing voice, and known as an art collector who sometimes found museum-quality pieces in New York City trash. Historian John D’Emilio calls Rustin the “lost prophet” of the civil rights movement.
Text quoted from www.rustin.org.
Some Quotes by Bayard Rustin:
To be afraid is to behave as if the truth were not true.
When an individual is protesting society's refusal to acknowledge his dignity as a human being, his very act of protest confers dignity on him.
[Bigotry's] birthplace is the sinister back room of the mind where plots and schemes are hatched for the persecution and oppression of other human beings.
American suffragist and activist Alice Paul helped lead a successful campaign for women's suffrage that led to the passage of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote in 1920.
Alice Paul graduated from Swarthmore College and then earned her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. She earned a LL.B from the Washington College of Law at American University in 1922, then an LL.M. in 1927 and a Doctorate in Civil Laws from American University in 1928.
After graduating from UPenn, Paul joined the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) and was appointed Chairwoman of their Congressional Committee in Washington, D.C. They organized a parade in Washington the day before President Wilson's inauguration, which was a success. After months of fundraising and raising awareness for the cause, membership numbers went up in 1913. They then lobbied for a constitutional amendment to secure women's right to vote and Congress passed the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1920. Paul also was the original author of a proposed Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution in 1923. The ERA finally was approved by the U.S. Senate in 1972, but it failed to pass approval by the required 38 states.
Alice Paul died at 92 on July 9, 1977 at the Quaker Greenleaf Extension Home in Moorestown Township, New Jersey, near her family home of Paulsdale.
Some quotes by Alice Paul
We women of America tell you that America is not a democracy. Twenty million women are denied the right to vote.
There will never be a new world order until women are a part of it.
When you put your hand to the plow, you can't put it down until you get to the end of the row.
I always feel the movement is a sort of mosaic. Each of us puts in one little stone, and then you get a great mosaic at the end.
Text excerpted and adapted from Wikipedia.
Back to contents
News of ARCH—Aging Resources Consultation and Help
Callie Janoff's ARCH FAQs:
Q: So what is it you do?
A: It’s a mouthful, but I work for New York Yearly Meeting’s ARCH Program.
Q: And what does ARCH stand for again?
A: Aging, Resources, Consultation, and Help.
Q: So, right, what is it you do? I’m still not clear . . .
A: I’m the newest member of the ARCH Coordinator team. Barbara Spring and Anita Paul started the program one afternoon at NYYM Summer Sessions a few years ago in response to a session with folks from the Friends Foundation for the Aging. So they were the first coordinators. I’m joining them in their work.
Q: Um hm. And that work is . . . ?
A: The coordinators carry a concern for aging issues as they travel around the Yearly Meeting visiting monthly meetings. They facilitate informative workshops, offer individual consultations, and connect people who are experiencing the joys and challenges of aging with folks who have experienced the ARCH Visitor Training.
Q: Wait, so who are ARCH Visitors?
A: ARCH Visitors are people from all over the Yearly Meeting who for one reason or another also carry a concern for issues of aging and disability. They have come to one of our weekend training retreats that usually happen about twice a year at different places around the Yearly Meeting. One of our roles as coordinators is to serve our Visitor Volunteers as they serve their communities in a wide variety of ways.
Q: So what do you mean by “Visitor”?
A: An ARCH Visitor can mean many things. A person comfortable with his/her own aging. A spokesperson for aging issues within the family. An advocate for age-related programs within the monthly meeting. A helping-hand coordinator: creating Care Teams. A listening ear—who may prepare Life Stories. A ‘go-to’ person who knows where to find resources. A person doing what he/she can, when able, for persons over 60 and those with a disability. One who visits. This role is still evolving and growing, and those who participate are as diverse in how they see themselves as any group of Quakers!
Q: So, you’ve talked a lot about what Barbara and Anita have done. But I still don’t know what you’re doing.
A: I’m doing a lot of learning and listening and trying to keep up with these ladies! I’m helping out with things like using communications tools, keeping things organized, and those sorts of practical technological things. I’m also working on some visioning about what ARCH is becoming and how it will continue to evolve and respond to our growing needs as a community. We are all aging. A lot of my work is to listen to what this all feels like and respond in a spirit-led way to the needs of our community as they arise. I think that part of my job is to broaden the way we celebrate our aging and the wisdom and insights that come with the years. There is a spiritual dimension to growing older that I want to inspire and nurture in our meetings.
Q: Okay, I think I get it now. So what’s next for you and ARCH?
A: Well, by the time you read this we will have just had another Visitor Training Weekend in Syracuse, but don’t worry, we’ll have another one in the fall, location TBD. Interested? Email Barbara: [email protected].
Aloysius Barnes – Brooklyn
Diana Barnes – Brooklyn
Matilda Barnes – Brooklyn
Callie Janoff – Brooklyn
Dorothy Savage – Morningside
Gina Lobue Smith – Wilton
Augustus James Powell, on December 5, 2012, to Angela B. Campbell, member of Jericho, and Ethan A. Powell
Emily Rose Whitely, on November 12,2012, to Christopher Whitely, member of Chatham-Summit, and Kara Richardson Whitely
Lucy Wilbur Booth, member of Easton, on January 17, 2013
Marianne Longstreet, member of Rahway-Plainfield, on December 23, 2012
Noel Palmer, member of Westbury, on January 28, 2013
Jean Sterrett, member of Brooklyn, on August 12, 2012
Marjorie Harnish, member of Farmington, on January 29, 2013