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We will come under the weight of climate change as a yearly meeting. This will be one in a series of plenary sessions considered to be part of our extended, virtual 2020 Annual Sessions.
- 10:00 AM to 11 AM – Optional worship with land acknowledgement (60 mins)
- 11 AM to 11:15 AM – Introductions from Clerk, Review of Agenda and Tech (15 mins)
- 11:15 AM to 11:25 AM – Review of the strategic direction on corporate ministry and explanation of yearly-meeting-wide witness (10 mins)
- 11:25 AM to 11:35 AM – Receiving the climate change minute(s) (10 mins)
- 11:35 AM to 11:55 AM – Brief Q&A, involving panelists from the recorded panel discussion (20 mins)
- 11:55 AM to 12:40 — Small groups, queries related to climate change as a yearly meeting wide witness (45 mins)
- 12:40 PM to 1:00 PM – Report back from small groups and closing worship (30 mins)
To prepare for the plenary session we encourage Friends to watch the below video of a recorded panel discussion we hosted recently on the topic of climate change as a yearly meeting wide witness. The panelists included Jonathan Ogle, Margaret Mansfield, Ruth Darlington, Tom Rickards, Monty Ogden, Scott Smith, and Liz Robinson. Bios are listed below the video.
Jonathan Ogle, member of the Earth Quaker Action Team
Jonathan has taught for twenty five years in English, History, and Religion Departments of Friends Schools, including Westtown, Friends Select, and the Monteverde Friends School in Costa Rica, where he became increasingly invested in climate change and sustainability work. On returning from Costa Rica, he joined in the Earth Quaker Action Team’s nonviolent action campaign to get PECO to create solar installation jobs in low-income communities of color by committing to reach 20% local solar by 2025. Jonathan teaches at Westtown and is a member of Monteverde Friends Meeting and currently active in Lansdowne Friends Meeting.
Margaret Mansfield, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting Eco-Justice Collaborative
Margaret Mansfield, member of Providence Meeting, Chester Quarter, is a former chair of the Social Studies Department at Moorestown Friends School. Since her retirement in 2006, she has been active with Friends Committee on National Legislation as a member of its General Committee. Among those who helped initiate the Ecojustice Collaborative, she helped create the Collaborative’s video: Climate Race and Justice, which focuses on the intersection of race, climate and economic inequality.
Ruth Darlington, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting representative to Quaker Earthcare Witness
Ruth Darlington is a convinced Friend, who found her spiritual home in Medford Monthly Meeting almost 30 years ago. Ruth is currently Clerk of Medford Monthly Meeting as well as serving on the meeting’s Climate Change Group. She is co-clerk with Pat Finley of the Eco Justice Collaborative and a PYM representative, along with Pat Finley, to Quaker Earthcare Witness.
Tom Rickards, Penn Charter Coordinator of Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability
Tom Rickards is the Coordinator of Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability at the William Penn Charter School. He has been Department Chair of Religious Studies and Philosophy in recent years and also teaches Outdoor Education. Tom has degrees in Religious Studies, Philosophy, and a Masters in Theological Studies. He volunteers with Friends of the Wissahickon, Philadelphia American Alpine Climbing Chapter, and is an instructor at the Philadelphia Canoe Club. He is interested in Environmental Ethics, solutions to our climate crisis, and the transformative power of the outdoors.
Monty Ogden, Friends Central Middle and Upper School English and Humanities Departments
Monty Ogden is an English teacher at Friends’ Central School and board member with Philly-based environmental justice group EQAT. At Friends’ Central he co-teaches a climate justice and literature elective titled Everything Change: Love in the Anthropocene. He returned to Friends’ Central in September after two years at the Monteverde Friends School in Costa Rica.
Scott Smith, P.E. member of West Chester Friends Meeting
West Chester Monthly Meeting Clerk of Peace & Social Concerns Committee that helped to organize and present a program on reducing the carbon footprint of a household. Environmental engineer with environmental consulting business (not related to climate change).
Liz Robinson, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting Eco-Justice Collaborative
Liz is currently the Executive Director of the Philadelphia Solar Energy Association (PSEA), a local nonprofit dedicated to expanding solar energy across the state. Prior to coming to PSEA, Liz founded and directed the Energy Coordinating Agency (ECA) for more than 30 years. ECA provides energy efficiency, education, workforce development, home repair and bill payment assistance services to thousands of low–income households every year. Liz also co-founded and directed the Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance (KEEA) Pennsylvania’s energy efficiency trade association. She also managed the Energy Cooperative Association of Philadelphia (ECAP), expanding it to a regional organization and taking it into the renewable energy market.