by Anita Paul
The most delightful cross-generation communication I've experienced in a Quaker meeting was at Farmington Friends. The handbell choir was divided between white-haired ladies and teen guys, and they sure sounded great. Past tense because the lads all graduated.
I've long thought that meetings should create an intentional 10 month program to usher teens into meeting by assigning each teen a mentor who is not a relative, to meet with the teen monthly, attend worship together and discuss what's happening there, practice centering and mindfulness, read books in order to talk about Quaker history and procedures, go to a business meeting, and engage in the Quaker service of the teen's choice. At the end of the 10 months the teen is invited to join meeting. There is no further expectation of First Day School for them, but teen group fun and service would continue.