Media Friends Meeting annual state of the meeting report includes a compilation of information from our committee’s annual reports through 2022-2023.
Worship, Membership, Education
Our worship remains a focal point of our community, a place where we draw strength and spiritual renewal. There were 84 adult members, and 9 child associate members listed as of December 31, 2022. Our attendance for weekly Meeting for Worship was approximately 15 people, with folks attending both in person and via our Zoom link. We are grateful for the increased opportunities to gather in person while continuing to have Zoom access to allow participation for those who have travel or health concerns. The meeting will continue to utilize a hybrid system as long as it serves our community.
We grieve the death of members and find comfort in the opportunity to gather for memorial services and celebrate the gifts of those who are no longer with us in the body but continue to strengthen and guide us in spirit.
We have increased our meeting resources to support those who face financial challenges by approving a Hardship Aid Grant that is intended to help alleviate suffering or extreme difficulties experienced by our members.
Worship and Ministry was pleased to sponsor several events which we hope fostered a sense of community and deepened our experience of spirit. Worship-Sharing sessions were based on three sources – Quaker Speak, articles in Friends Journal, and suggestions from meeting members. We were pleased to revive our traditional Christmas Eve Celebration. It was great for us to gather for a celebration. We continue to pray for the spiritual life of the meeting and work to provide events to build community.
Quaker Education Committee has carried on our meeting’s commitment to increasing social justice awareness especially around societal racism through readings and discussions. We read Braiding Sweetgrass and Holy Troublemakers and Unconventional Saints,, In addition to book discussions we offered intergenerational Faith and Play© presentations as well as our annual Christmas Crafts program that included members of Providence Friends Meeting. The committee also led the meeting’s discernment and response regarding reproduction health issues requested by FCNL. Our programs and discussions were attended in person and via zoom.
Ministry in Action
In the last year we delivered hundreds of meals to The Life Center of Delaware County. Our meeting, with support from parents, students and staff at Media Providence Friends School, as well as the home-schooling resource center Open Connections, prepared and coordinated meal delivery on the first weekend of every other month.
Our Prayer Shawl Ministry continued to deeply touch those in physical and spiritual need. This year we shared 8 shawls, 10 blankets (3 of which were baby blankets), and 66 scarves. The shared love and gratitude that comes from this ministry is amazing and beyond any number.
Our solar panel projects now total 51 panels that produced approximately $3000 in energy production and credits this past year. We are awaiting guidelines from the government on rebates for non-profit organizations that install solar, after which we are considering an additional 49 panel project to bring our total to 100 panels!
Meeting School Partnership
We have worked to build a stronger, more supportive and engaged care relationship with Media Providence Friends School, with whom we share our property.
- April: We co-sponsored with MPFS and other schools an excellent Zoom event with educator and diversity specialist Rosetta Lee. We appreciated this opportunity to further our diversity work, as that is vital for the Meeting.
- September: We purchased a Peace Pole with support of members and in partnership with the school. It was “planted” in a wonderful ceremony on September 21, 2022, which is the International Day of Peace.
- October: We hosted the annual Pizza Pumpkin night for the school community.
- February: We hosted an informative joint dinner with the meeting and the MPFS Board of Trustees, to engage in creating more connection and a stronger care relationship.
- All Year:
- We have a Joint Meeting/School Green Committee that has developed three medicinal herb beds with the help of the 8th graders and in concert with Singularity Botanicals (singularitybotanicals.net), to help address health challenges faced by our neighbors living in the city of Chester.
- Our Property Committee works diligently with the school to maintain the four buildings on our property as well as the grounds,
- We have continued to strengthen our communication and engagement through our quarterly triad meetings with the clerk and assistant clerk of the meeting, the tri clerks of the MPFS board, and the head of school.
As we look to the future, we hope to grow the Meeting through in-reach and out-reach. We plan to offer a variety of discussions and activities that will be open to both members and the general public to create a welcoming and invigorated spiritual community steeped in our tradition of sacred worship.
Janet MacColl Nicholson, Clerk
Media Friends Meeting
April 30, 2023