Author and activist Kimberly Jones went viral with a YouTube interview in which she asks, “How can we win?” Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee recommends the interview highly; we’ll host a discussion of Jones’s perspective on race, protest, violence and economics for this Let’s Talk session on Thursday 22 July. Watch Jones’s seven-minute interview on YouTube – and maybe her 12-minute appearance on The Daily Show – then join us to discuss Jones’s ideas and our own perspectives; click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 815 8781 6369.
Join Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee for a discussion of Clint Smith’s new exploration of the roots and present-day impact of the U.S.A.’s slave economy of the 17th-19th centuries. An ‘instant #1 New York Times bestseller,’ the book is widely available. If you’re not able to read or listen to it before the meeting, Little, Brown’s website has some excerpts; and The Atlantic has a short, valuable adaption. Please join us to help support the important work our meeting is doing in witness to our testament of equality; click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 873 3565 8140.
Take a listen to a few of these great songs: Billie Holiday’s ‘Strange Fruit,’ Janis Ian’s ‘Society’s Child,’ Gil Scott-Heron’s ‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,’ Bruce Springsteen’s ‘American Skin,’ Solomon Burke’s ‘None of Us Are Free,’ Adia Victoria’s ‘South Gotta Change,’ Tyler Childers’s ‘Long Violent History,’ and Amethyst Kiah’s ‘Black Myself’ – or all of them. (These are free YouTube videos; all the songs should be available on streaming services as well.) Then bring your thoughts, and your recommendations, and join our Anti-Racism Committee to help support the important work our meeting is doing in witness to our testament of equality; click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 815 8781 6369.
On Thursday, June 24 at 7:30pm, Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee members will offer a range of ideas for books, articles, movies, videos, podcasts – and maybe more – that brought them new insights into racism and racial justice. We’ll share a few quick takes as well as longer works, and welcome your ideas as well. Please join us to help support the important work F/friends are doing in support of our testament of equality; click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 873 3565 8140.
Burlington County college students and activists Ashlynn Conley and Jasmine Cartwright-Atkins join Moorestown F/friends to discuss Juneteenth, a celebration of emancipation in the U.S. Jasmine and Ashlynn will tell us something about the beginnings of this holiday, when many enslaved people in Texas first learned, on June 19, 1865, of the Emancipation Proclamation, almost three years after it officially ended legal enslavement. They will also discuss their plans for a second annual Juneteenth celebration at the Perkins Center in Moorestown on Saturday, June 19. All are welcome to join the conversation at 7:30pm on Thursday 10 June; click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 815 8781 6369.
Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee member Michelle Maikis, a teacher with experience in both Quaker and public schools, and Nikki Tatum, Michelle’s vice principal at Franklin Park School in Somerset, New Jersey, will join F/friends to discuss their public school district’s commitment to providing diversity training and anti-racism awareness to staff. Together, we’ll explore one district’s approach to making lasting change in the face of some negative history. All are welcome to join the conversation; click here or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 873 3565 8140.
Following on our April 22 ‘Let’s Talk About Deep Delta Justice’ session, Moorestown Friends Meeting’s Anti-Racism Committee welcomes our member Matthew van Meter to continue the conversation of his compelling book, the historic Supreme Court case Duncan v. Louisiana, and its implications for anti-racism efforts today. The book is available through Pendle Hill and numerous other outlets. Click here to join the discussion, or phone 646-558-8656 and use meeting ID 815 8781 6369.
Green Street Meeting’s EMIR Ministry Support Group says a heartfelt “Thank you!” to everyone at Green Street, the meetings in Philadelphia Quarter, and beyond who supported our school supplies drive in summer 2018.
The drive benefited 103 children whose families had lost a loved one to homicide, and who received services and support from the EMIR Healing Center. The center was founded by our member Victoria Greene, and named in memory of her son Emir, who was murdered. The name also makes the statement “Every Murder Is Real.” No matter who the victim was, or how much or little attention the crime received, that person’s loved ones are mourning their loss for years afterwards.
Still going strong in Philadelphia’s Germantown neighborhood, after 19 years, the EMIR Healing Center continues to help families survive and eventually heal from the pain of losing a loved one to homicide.
Friends from Green Street Meeting formed the EMIR Ministry Support Group in early 2018. We use the Quaker Social Change Ministry model, developed by American Friends Service Committee (especially Green Street member Lucy Duncan). In this model, a group of Quakers partner with a local organization led by people most impacted by a particular issue. The Quaker group follows their lead in deciding what to work on. The model also makes time for spiritual sharing, connection, and reflection, leading to deeper relationship, followership, and grounding of action.
Victoria asked our group at Green Street to organize a drive to provide backpacks with school supplies to the children EMIR serves. When a parent is mourning a murdered family member, whether it be a brother, sister, parent, or child, it can be very hard for them to keep things together for the rest of the family. They may be depressed and overwhelmed, and not as able to track things like school start dates and supply lists. They may lose income or even their job.
Our ministry support group got organized in the spring, asked the Meeting to take us under their care, and then spent the summer campaigning and publicizing the drive. An online buying service was set up so supporters could buy things and have them shipped directly to EMIR. (See this PYM news story from May 2018.)
With a couple of weeks to go before our deadline, we had 51 backpacks, toward our goal of 85. And then we found out there were 103 kids served by EMIR! With God’s abundance, people came through. We had enough to serve every child. We raised about $1,750 in donations, which enabled us to fill gaps in what was bought online or contributed in person.
The week before school started, we gave away 103 backpacks with school supplies in them at the EMIR office. The little children in particular were overjoyed. There were even a few backpacks left over, in case other children have a need.
Victoria said it was a great success and thanked our support group for doing the project and everyone who contributed supplies, funds, or time.
To everyone who purchased supplies online, dropped off supplies directly at the Meetinghouse or at the EMIR office, or made a donation, THANK YOU!
– Chris Mohr, support group convenor
Photo: Victoria Greene, member of Green Street Meeting and founder of EMIR Healing Center, with a box used to collect school supplies. Learn more about EMIR at emirphilly.org.