Join Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee for a conversation with Quinton Law and Harry Lewis, leaders of Moorestown Alumni for Racial Equity & Inclusion (MAREI). MAREI formed in the aftermath of a teach-in on racism in Moorestown schools held last spring. (That teach-in was organized by a group that included two young Quakers.) MAREI developed a detailed Call to Action recommending specific steps schools can take to promote equity and inclusion, and are working with the board of education, New Jersey Legislature and others to implement meaningful action. Click here to join the discussion, or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 815 8781 6369.
Calling all Bridge Contacts and folks wishing to serve as a Bridge Contact for your meeting, quarter, worship group, collaborative, or other PYM group.
Let’s gather together on Monday, March 29 from 4:30pm – 5:30pm in community for conversations, connections, and communication! The 4 Quaker ‘Cs’!
Please complete the form to indicate both your attendance, as well as the discussion topics that you would like as a focus for our gathering. I am looking forward to our time together!
In the meanwhile, feel free to reach out with your thoughts, ideas, or concerns.
Olivia Brangan, Community Engagement Coordinator
Points of connection – email: email@example.com ; office: 215.241.7238
Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee invites you to read and discuss this essay by Reginald Dwayne Betts, a poet, lawyer and ex-convict whose mother survived a violent crime, and worked to put her attacker in prison. Betts brings an important, multi-layered and eloquent perspective to questions of crime, punishment and race in America today. Click here to join the conversation on Thursday, March 25 at 7:30 pm, or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting #873 3565 8140.
If the link above doesn’t work, copy this URL and paste into your internet browser to read the essay: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/20/magazine/kamala-harris-crime-prison.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article.
If the link for the meeting doesn’t work, copy and paste this URL to join the conversation: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87335658140.
Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee welcomes you to read and discuss this essay by Reginald Dwayne Betts, a poet, lawyer and ex-convict whose mother survived a violent crime, and worked to put her attacker in prison. Betts brings an important, multi-layered and eloquent perspective to questions of crime, punishment and race in America today. Click here to join the conversation, or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting #873 3565 8140.
Boaz Matlack, a criminal justice activist and former Camp Dark Waters counselor, joins Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee for a conversation about working with law enforcement, school districts, F/friends and neighbors to address racial justice issues in our communities. Click here to join the conversation on Thursday, March 11 at 7:30 pm, or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting #815 8781 6369.
Join us on 3/7/21 at 10:30am for Silent Worship followed by a short music selection by Ed Aniski. We look forward to seeing you!
Barnegat Monthly Meeting is pleased to partner with Carrie Newcomer to present her online concert at the Mandolin site. Buy tickets here:
Carrie Newcomer is a performer, recording artist, and educator, described as a “prairie mystic” by the Boston Globe and one who “asks all the right questions” by Rolling Stone. Her song “I Should’ve Known Better” appeared on Nickel Creek’s Grammy award-winning gold-certified album “This Side”, and she earned a regional Emmy for the PBS special “An Evening with Carrie Newcomer.” Carrie is the 2019 recipient of the Shalem Institute Contemplative Voices Award. Recent media appearances include PBS’s Religion and Ethics and Krista Tippett’s On Being. In the fall of 2009 and 2011 Newcomer was a cultural ambassador to India, invited by the American Embassy of India, resulting in her interfaith collaborative benefit album Everything is Everywhere with world master of the Indian Sarod, Amjad Ali Khan and his sons Ayan and Amaan. In 2012 and 2013 Carrie traveled to Kenya and the Middle East performing in schools, spiritual communities and AIDS hospitals. Carrie has 17 nationally released albums on Available Light and Rounder Records, including The Point of Arrival, The Beautiful Not Yet, A Permeable Life, and Everything is Everywhere. Newcomer has also released two companion books of poetry and essays, A Permeable Life: Poems and Essays and The Beautiful Not Yet: Poems, Essays, & Lyrics. Newcomer’s first theatrical production, Betty’s Diner: The Musical, was performed at a sold out run at Purdue University in 2015 and is now available to interested theaters, universities, and spiritual communities.
In 2016 Carrie presented the Goshen College commencement address and was awarded an honorary degree in Music for Social Change. She regularly works with Parker J. Palmer in live programs, including Healing the Heart of Democracy: A Gathering of Spirits for the Common Good and What We Need is Here: Hope, Hard Times, and Human Possibility. Newcomer and Palmer also are actively collaborating on The Growing Edge, a website, podcast, and retreat. Spirituality and Health Magazine named The Growing Edge collaboration as one of the top ten spiritual leaders and programs for the next 20 years. Three of Newcomer’s songs are included in Palmer’s newest book. Other special collaborations include presentations with neuroscientist Jill Bolte Taylor, author Rabbi Sandy Sasso, and environmental author Scott Russell Sanders.
Carrie lives in the woods of southern Indiana with her husband and two shaggy dogs.
The Anti-Racism Committee of Moorestown Friends Meeting seeks to identify political and legislative priorities to support anti-racism. Given the Meeting’s roots in NJ farming, one obvious area of interest is agriculture. The committee acknowledges the systemic racism that permeates agriculture and farming in the United States. US Senator Cory Booker has taken note of the relative paucity of Black-owned farmland not just in NJ but throughout our nation. The direct connection between discriminatory practices of the USDA and the status of Black farmers was first documented by government-sponsored reports in 1997. The discrimination primarily took the shape of denying Black farmers timely access to government loans which caused Black farmers to lose their farms. The 2002 Farm Bill and the 2018 Farm Bill signaled progressive efforts to address this discrimination. While some progress has been made, e.g., an increase in the number of Black farmers and the acreage of Black farms, more is needed as the average farm income of Black-operated farms in 2017 was 40% of that of white-operated farms. To address this gap, the Justice for Black Farmers Act, co-sponsored by Senator Booker in late 2020, seeks to provide land grants to Black farmers.
On the recommendation of Member Pete Small, several committee members met for a tour of Free Haven Farm in early November 2020. We fell in love with the owners, the kale, and the fire sauce. Established in 2017, Free Haven Farms is a Black-owned farm in Lawnside, NJ. Its owners are Cynthia (Moorestown Friends School, 1997) and Micaiah Hall. The Halls are passionate about their mission of sustainability and attainability. To that end, Free Haven Farm produces much more than produce – farm tours, ag workshops, soil testing, garden consultation, a science camp for kids, and yoga and capoeira angola (Brazilian martial art) classes. Mr. Hall is the former Farm Director of Mill Creek Farm in Philadelphia. Dr. Cynthia Hall is an environmental geochemist and Associate Professor at West Chester University. Their farm reflects their interest in building bridges into the community through healthy food and food education for those with limited access to both.
Please join the Moorestown Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee on Thursday, February 25 at 7:30 pm by Zoom for a conversation with Cynthia and Micaiah Hall. Click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting #873 3565 8140.
Co-hosted with Chestnut Hill Meeting
This thread gathering calls us to unlearn and be accountable to our past and present anti-Black ideologies, institutions, and behaviors. Knowing that this journey has no finish line, we bravely and humbly come together to move forward in our journeys with intention to continue to learn and unlearn, through interrogation, conversation and understanding in ourselves, our faith community, and with each other.
Disengaging from Comfort or Decentering Comfort
As Friends, we lean on our understanding that we need discomfort to learn to be present during silence, and this discomfort is a growing relationship with spirit. This discomfort is the same discomfort we are growing with and building a relationship with when we are uprooting oppressive thoughts and behaviors. Racism and white supremacy means some of us are more accustomed to discomfort than others, as well as that what is comfortable for some is dangerous and violent to others. We invite participants to acknowledge and address that tension and imbalance with us.
- 9:00am Optional worship – led by Chestnut Hill Meeting
- 10:00am Introductions & tech review
- 10:15am Walking with Anti-Blackness – Oskar Castro
- 12:00pm Optional communal lunch
- 12:45pm Interrogating and Weeding out Anti-Blackness – Tenaja Henson and Sarah Willie-LeBreton
- 2:00pm Resources and Closing
Oskar Pierre Castro is a professional with over twenty-five years of service in the social justice wing of the non-profit sector currently serving as the Director of HR and Inclusion at Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. A 1992 graduate of Rowan University where they majored in law & justice, over the course of their professional life Oskar’s work has supported BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) young adults in navigating the challenges of corporate culture, served as a national resource for activists concerned with the militarization of young people in the U.S. with an emphasis on the “poverty draft”, and conducted intense research to support local labor campaigns for service workers in Philadelphia. Most recently they provided pastoral care to young adults seeking to challenge themselves through a year of service with Quaker Voluntary Service where Oskar served as the Philadelphia City Coordinator and the Director of Equity & Inclusion for the broader organization. A member of Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, Oskar is also a writer, artist, and anti-racist activist who is married to a like-minded soul and is the parent of two amazing daughters.
Tenaja Henson, known by many as Ten, uses they/them pronouns. Ten grew up in Pennsylvania and is a member of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. As a queer afro-latinx growing up in a predominantly white space, Ten found it hard to find representation and support in a lot of the spaces they showed up in. This pushed them to search for more in the work they pursued. During the time they were pursuing their undergraduate degree from Guilford College, Ten began to fall in love with community healing and facilitation. Their passions helped them to facilitate groups at Guilford College and return to their roots, and has helped PYM work through some of the challenges of reconciling with a racist past and how to move forward with accountability and love on the front lines. Currently Ten still facilitates around the topic of anti-blackness and Quakerism with PYM, and currently resides in North Carolina as the NC Campaign Coordinator for Reproaction, advancing access to abortion and reproductive justice across the state and the country.
Sarah Willie-LeBreton is the provost and dean of the faculty at Swarthmore College, where she has taught sociology and black studies for more than 20 years. A convinced Quaker, she is a member of Providence Monthly Meeting in Delaware County, Philadelphia Yearly Meeting and an alumna of Haverford College. She writes and speaks on education, equity, and racial justice issues.
Registration for this event is now closed. Check out upcoming Thread Gatherings on The Seasons in the Life of a Meeting (February 6th), Truth and Transformation in Community (February 27th), and Engagement and Fundraising (March 6th).
A snapshot of the Community Engagement Team’s work by Zachary Dutton, Associate Secretary for Program and Religious Life