Thursday Workshops

Annual Sessions Workshops begin at 7:15 p.m., Thursday July 24 at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA. All Thursday workshops are for ages high school and older. Children and Middle Schoolers will be engaged in their own peer-group activities and child care will be available for very little Friends.

To view a workshop description, click on the + sign next to the title of the workshop. More workshops are scheduled for Friday, July 25 and are posted on the Friday Workshops page. 

Aging in Place: Remaining in Your Home Safely- Thomas G Wells

Often physical diminishments accompany aging.   Our bodies change and need accommodations.  This is particularly true if one wants to continue living in one’s home “”forever””. Tom Wells will discuss various ways that homes can be modified so that Friends can continue to live in their homes indefinitely, safely and comfortably.

For Such a Time as This--Developing an Artful Response to the Climate Crisis: Glen Retief and Peterson Toscano

Facilitators Glen Retief and Peterson Toscano As a white South African, Glen Retief, an anti-conscription activist, was part of the Queer Liberation Movement that successfully lobbied for LGBTQ rights in the new constitution. He witnessed firsthand how activists and artists helped to topple Apartheid. His husband, Peterson Toscano, endured 17 years of gay conversion therapy, then he engaged in creative activism that led to the closure of the biggest ex-gay organizations in the world. Together they are using their art and experiences to develop responses to climate change that move people beyond feeling alarmed to a place of hopeful, artful, community action.

Fundraising Strategies for Monthly Meetings and Other Non-Profit Organizations- Development Working Group and Jennie Sheeks, Director of Development for PYM

This workshop will focus on “values based” fundraising where the specific strategies for raising money are led by the core values of your organization or Monthly Meeting. Jennie Sheeks, Director of Development at PYM will lead with active participation by Ralph Henninger, a professional fundraiser at a school in the Philadelphia area.

Inter-generational Spiritual Formation - Spiritual Formation Working Group & Young Adult Friend Coordinators

A new inter-generational program now focuses on Young Adult Friends – in community with us all.  This program begins in the fall of 2014.  The elements of Spiritual Formation include retreats, personal spiritual disciplines, readings, devotional groups and prayerful support.  We look forward to joining with our young adults in worship, practice and witness to the Eternal in our lives.

Join the movement! Work with AFSC for Peace with Justice - Lucy Duncan w/other AFSC Staff

Bring AFSC’s work to your meeting or church and join a network of Quakers around the United States working for social change. Lucy will lead you in an activity to identify stories of powerful Quaker witness that you have been a part of and talk about the elements of spiritual activism. Then we will discuss the stories you hope you might have and talk about ways that Quaker congregations are getting involved and can get involved in the issues on which AFSC focuses.  Bring powerful witness and organizing to your meeting and work around Israel/Palestine, mass incarceration, immigrant justice and so much more.

Letting Love be the First Motion, Even in Politics! - Joan G. Broadfield and Mary Lou Hatcher

When we look at Quaker political work through the lens of relationships, we find a lot of people in the room: our Quaker allies, both historic and current, our politicians, some allies and some not, and the multiple voices in our own heads. We will explore direction from ourselves and our Quaker heritage, consider how to effect dialog in the current political polarization, and consider how to follow our own leadings with integrity by learning about Friends who have, and by using tools from FCNL, Friends Committee on National Legislation.

Rooting Ourselves in Love for Creation - Pamela Haines, Susan Christian and the Eco-Justice Working Group

We long to be rooted in our love for creation, and to have our lives speak powerfully out of that love and connection. However, the problems facing our Earth are daunting, and our grief, our fears, and our isolation work to mute or limit the power of that love. In this workshop, we will pay attention to what we are in touch with loving about this earth; grieve the losses, both present and future; and reach for ways to overcome our fears and isolation, so that we live out that love and connection ever more fully.

Stories of Friends: A Yearly-Meeting Wide Video Project - Madeline Schaefer

The PYM Video Storytelling Project is a grant-funded project to collect and preserve stories of elders and others from throughout our yearly meeting. Madeline Schaefer, videographer and project editor, will introduce the project and offer training for Friends from Meetings or groups interested in participating. Participants will see sample video stories and be introduced to the Story Kits which contain how-to instructions, video equipment, suggested queries and a template for capturing the video. Age range could vary, but participants should have intent to make use of this project in their meeting or group.

The Presence in the Midst - Chris Stern and Middletown Friends

“For, when I came into the silent assemblies of God’s people I felt a secret power among them which touched my heart; and as I gave way unto it I found the evil weakening in me and the good raised up; and so I became thus knit and united unto them, hungering more and more after the increase of this power and life, whereby I might feel myself perfectly redeemed….” Robert Barclay, 1678
How can we encounter the Presence in the Midst in our Meetings today? How can we be guided by this Presence and Power in our worship and in our lives today?

White Privilege Work: Challenge and Hope for our Meeting Communities Ellen Deacon, facilitating, Carla White and Carter Nash, Elders

What is white privilege? What is privilege, in general? How do we as Friends hold the challenges and dilemmas of the privilege we carry in the Light? Using simple interactions, we will open up these questions together, through encouraging connection, honesty, openness, safety, and above all, grounding in the Spirit. Our goals: greater understanding of this phenomenon, greater integrity in our lives, leading to clearer action when circumstances require it. Inequities of privilege, and the disconnection which they produce, prevent us from having truly open and welcoming meetings. Working together, we can change our meeting communities as we change ourselves.