Pastoral Care

In our meetings, the Pastoral Care Committees have the responsibility of caring for the membership.  The scope of this work is tremendous. It includes clearness committees for membership and marriage, shepherding memorials, supporting Friends in need, and addressing issues of mental health.  The skill range to support this work is equally tremendous.  The Pastoral Care Threadletter offers a means for sharing what works across our community while offering inspiration, foundation and practical skills. Access archived issues, and subscribe to future issues!  You can subscribe to receive the Threadletter via email or view this Threadletter Blog anytime.

How to Contribute

Share news of your meeting’s work,  ask for help from others or let Friends know about an upcoming event by submitting information and stories to the threadletter blog; click below. You can also share ideas for the featured stories in the Threadletter.  To contribute, contact the Associate Secretary for Program & Religious Life at or 215-241-7008.

Winter 2015 Posts

0ecad8c9-da22-4c9f-adc3-ce24280637ecSpiritual Discernment in Pastoral Care: An Interview with Nancy Bieber

“Clearly, listening with an open heart without a sense of foreknowledge in pastoral care is a challenge, to bring our openness to whatever truth or answer may arise in a situation of helping is not always easy…” Read the full article.

The School of the Spirit Ministry

The School of the Spirit serves all those who wish to be more faithful listeners and responders to the work of Christ, the Inward Teacher. Read more. 

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archive: 
Discerning Our Leadings as Overseers by Martha Bush

View the full archived Threadletter.

October 2014 Posts

The Pastoral Care Assistance Committee 
In the past, Pastoral Care Assistance  committees were concerned with helping “necessitous” individuals experiencing temporary financial distress, job loss or other unexpected situations and conditions which affected their temporal needs. Today, a pastoral care sub-group within a care committee may address issues of prolonged bereavement, chronic grief and the behavioral problems associated with trauma and illness as well as monetary loss and career set-backs. Learn more about the Committee.

Resource: The Greenleaf Fund

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archive Choice: When Finances Turn South

View the full archived Threadletter. 

April 2014 Posts

Nurturing Gifts, Knowing Lives!

Members of Care and Oversight Committees need to offer to Friends the gift of being known. When Friends and their spiritual journeys are known, most people are willing to engage in and serve the life of the meeting. This is a powerful way of providing support and eldering. Learn more about Spirit-Led Eldering.

Spirit-Led Process to Connect Gifts & Service 

Strawberry Creek Meeting in Berkely, CA, has developed a Spirit-led process for nominations, which starts from a sense of abundance; raising up gifts of members rather than focusing on the scarcity of those willing to serve.

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archive:
Nurturing the Meeting Community

View the full archived Threadletter.

January 2014 Posts

711Pastoral Care of Children: Building Caring Relationships

Cross generational connections are important in a child’s development. They give children a rich community beyond their family life. A parent shares the gift of her family of multigenerational relationships at her meeting. Read the full story.

Building Multigenerational Community 

The Build It! Toolkit is a resource for meetings and worship groups filled with activities designed to strengthen and nurture ties among generations.

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archive:
Weaving Children & Adults into Full Meeting Life

View the full archived Threadletter.

December 2013 Posts

zak-and-mattThis issue of the PYM Pastoral Care Threadletter presents articles focusing on caring for our Young Adult Friends. Young adults (18 – 35 years of age) have unique pastoral care needs and concerns. As Friends providing pastoral care, it is important that we learn to respond to these concerns by engaging with young adult Friends in the life of the Spirit.

Message from the Field: Making the Effort to Stay Connected with Young Adult Friends

Resource: Caring for Young Adult Friends, a story from the Western Friend

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archives: Staying Connected with Young Adult Friends


View archived complete Threadletter

September 2013 Posts

Planning for the End of Life Journey

559This issue of the Pastoral Care Threadletter presents articles on how we, as Friends, can plan for the end of our life journey. The articles and resources below describe now meetings can support Friends in planning for this final stage of life in ways which offer a path to peace.


Message from the FieldOpportunities For Funeral and Green Burial Planning

Reflection from Experience:  Helping Families Care for Their Own Dead

Resource: All Are Welcome: A Natural Undertaking

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archive: Facing Death: Helping People Grieve

View complete archived threadletter

May 2013 Posts

Addressing Issues of Race and Diversity

This issue of the Pastoral Care Threadletter presents ideas and resources for addressing issues of race and diversity. Because Pastoral Care Committees are where Friends support the lives of members, especially in times of difficulty, examining our actions and choices is essential.

Message from the Field: Recognizing White Privilege

Reflection from Experience: Bayard Rustin, A Faithful Life

Resource: Help Your Meeting Challenge Racism

Pastoral Care Newsletter Archive: Pastoral Care & Issues of Race

View complete archived threadletter

March 2013 Posts

Disability & Accessibility: A Pastoral Care Concern

391This issue of the Pastoral Care Threadletter presents articles on how to reach out to Friends with physical disabilities.  Our identity as an inclusive and gathered community is often tested when it comes to welcoming persons challenged by physical limitations.  The articles below describe how meetings can become more inviting to disabled persons and the richness to be found in responding to this concern.

View complete archived threadletter

January 2013 Posts

Aging In The Light: The Needs of Older Friends 

sunThis issue of the Pastoral Care Threadletter presents articles about supporting aging Friends.  Awareness of issues related to aging can be of great benefit to Friends aging-in-place and the meeting community. The stories below describe how opportunities to share our concerns on aging are essential to the life of the meeting for all generations.

View complete archived Threadletter

November 2012 Posts

When More is Needed: Where to turn for support

open-doorThis issue of the Pastoral Care Threadletter presents articles about a common dilemma presented to Care Committees: Where to turn when loving and supportive spiritual nurture is not enough. How do we make the decision to refer Friends in emotional pain or struggling with psychological issues to competent professional care? And, do we find and maintain unity among us when responding to a troubled or disruptive Friend? The stories and resources below help to answer these questions.

Archived complete threadletter

September 2012 Posts

The Threads of Our Ministries Weave Us Together

red-threadThis is the inaugural issue of PYM Pastoral Care! Threadletters are bi-monthly e-newsletters which allow us to share the work, wisdom and resources for a thread of ministry that weaves through our meetings. The Pastoral Care Threadletter supports Friends called to leadership in maintaining a caring meeting community, helping all members to find their right role as spiritual nurturers.

Complete archived issue