Summer Sessions 2014
Moving into Action:
Where is God Leading Us?
Summer Sessions 2014
July 20–26 • Silver Bay, New York
Welcome to New York Yearly Meeting Summer Sessions 2014
Quicklinks to Summer Sessions pages
- Online registration forms
- Message from the clerk
- Advance Documents
- Sessions & Program Information
- At Silver Bay
- Junior Yearly Meeting
- Travel to Silver Bay
Message from the Clerk
Friends are feeling a readiness. We are grounded in our faith. It speaks to us. The daily presence of the Spirit informs our lives. Our monthly meetings and worship groups sustain our beliefs and affirm our values, enfolding us in supportive communities. And yet our theme this year speaks to a yearning for something more. Indeed, more than a yearning. We are ready to make something happen.
Where is God leading us? How shall we act? Living in the midst of continuing revelation, we never fully answer these questions. But we have given significant effort and discernment to these matters. The Priorities Working Group has visited virtually every monthly meeting and worship group, speaking with Friends throughout our Yearly Meeting, and now they have distilled their findings in a report with recommendations. All Friends are encouraged to read and weigh their findings. At Summer Sessions we will review their work and discover, through our own discernment carried out in God’s presence, how we are led to direct our efforts as a yearly meeting over the next few years. We will shape our sense of who we are as a community, what our purpose in the world may be, and how our yearly meeting as an institution can be molded to our aspirations.
We hear other calls to action, too. Friends have witnessed to our concern for just treatment of Indigenous peoples and Afro-descendants by approving minutes on the Doctrine of Discovery and an Apology for Slavery and Jim Crow. We have called for a halt to fracking practices. There is a rising concern among us to challenge and limit the fossil fuel empire. We feel restless in an age of short-sighted materialism, mass incarceration, and the savage exploitation of God’s creation.
Our faith sustains us. We yearn to reach out. We whisper to the world that we have an alternative. We want to learn how to speak in a voice that will be heard.
Friends have spoken to all these things.
The world is a vibrant, living presence. Change comes upon us. Even if our thoughts, beliefs, and actions remain static, it’s inevitable. How we change, and how we are changed, is another matter.
At Summer Sessions we will live the theme. Joyce Schroeder (Purchase), our plenary speaker, will talk about the “Pathway to Change.” A frequent guest speaker, she has been following her leading to share her knowledge of organizational change and leadership with Friends. In 2012 she gave the keynote at the Earlham School of Religion Leadership Conference. Friend Joyce will share her insights about what is required for an organization to create a movement.
And we will talk and share our own insights with each other, sometimes in planned discussion activities, other times in worship, and still other times in the many informal occasions that make up our week.
Not all will be change. Some things will remain the same. Familiar activities still appear on the schedule. Frequent attenders of Summer Sessions, of all ages, will meet one another again. Some Friends will attend for the first time. And as we have done as a yearly meeting for more than 300 years, we will be gathered, once again, in God’s presence.
Jeffrey L. Hitchcock,
Clerk of New York Yearly Meeting
Download our Summer Sessions brochure!
Click here to download a brochure (pictured above) inviting us to attend Summer Sessions 2013. Note that it prints on legal size paper.