All monthly meetings, quarterly meetings, and other local Quaker communities within the PYM area are invited and encouraged to submit State of the Meeting Reports. A version of the recent letter to known leaders of monthly and quarterly meetings provides guidance (if desired) on how to conduct the spiritual self-assessment of your community that would lead to composing a State of the Meeting Report. See the Guidelines for a Spiritual Self-assessment of the Meeting section of our Faith & Practice for more information.
The Ministry and Care Committee of QLC receives the reports and uses them to compose a State of the Yearly Meeting Report. The committee has set April 15, 2022, the deadline for receiving reports. Any received after this date will be incorporated into the following year’s State of the Yearly Meeting Report.
Each year, the Ministry and Care Committee collects and reads Spiritual State of the Meeting Reports from quarterly meetings and individual monthly meetings and uses them as the base on which to build a picture of our yearly meeting: the Spiritual State of the Yearly Meeting Report, available at annual sessions each year.
Many meetings also prepare a separate report to submit to the yearly meeting detailing membership statistics (births, deaths, transfers of membership) and other specific events undertaken by the meeting throughout the year. Although both reports are important ways of sharing the experience of the Monthly Meeting throughout the year, the Spiritual State of the Meeting Report, as its title suggests, focuses on the spiritual life of the meeting; it is for this report that the Ministry and Care Committee of QLC provides requests and queries each year, and it is this report that provides a foundation for the Spiritual State of the Yearly Meeting Report.
For some Friends, it is helpful to use specific queries to focus the report; the Ministry and Care Committee of QLC spends time early each Fall in prayerful consideration of queries that might serve as a foundation for these reports. The committee offers the following queries to form the basis of the 2021 Spiritual State of the Meeting Report for those meetings that find such queries provide them with a useful organizational platform.
- In July 2021, PYM approved minutes of action to be taken on anti-racism and climate change. How has your meeting been called to address these issues? What other concerns and initiatives has your meeting been led to address this past year?
- How has your meeting evolved as a spiritual community given the ongoing opportunities and challenges of the pandemic?
- What practices and strategies are employed by your meeting to help members and attenders of all ages prepare for worship – whether in meeting for worship or in meeting for business?
- What is most needed to strengthen the communal witness of the meeting to the local community and beyond?
- Is there a query, or are there queries that your meeting would like to respond to that have not been included here? Please share it/them and your response.
Quarterly Meeting Submissions
We are aware that quarterly meetings have different current practices regarding the Spiritual State of the Meeting Report. For some, reports are collected from the constituent monthly meetings and are forwarded to the yearly meeting with or without a report on the spiritual state of the quarterly meeting. For some, reporting on the spiritual state of the quarterly meeting is a separate enterprise undertaken by the quarterly meeting coordinator or clerk. We are sure there are other practices as well. We deeply appreciate learning of the spiritual state of both the quarterly and the monthly meetings.
Purpose – Document How Spirit Moves in the Worship Community
The purpose of the reports is to create an opportunity for Friends in meetings to consider how Spirit has been moving in their worship community during the year just passed. The need for self-assessment is valuable to the meeting, we believe, and to the yearly meeting. Learning that there are needs and gifts that can be shared among us or that there is a need for greater capacity or support in a particular area is one important outcome from prayerful consideration of the Spiritual State of the Meeting reports.
We look forward to learning about your meeting and having the opportunity to share that learning more widely. Please plan to submit your report for this year to the yearly meeting by 15th of 4th Month, 2022 (April 15).
How to submit your report
Monthly and quarterly meetings may submit reports in a variety of ways.
- Via this online form: The form allows Friends to respond to any of the above queries. If you would rather not use the queries, you may upload your report as a PDF or M. Word file, using the same online form, or copy and paste your report into a box that is also in the same form.
- Via electronic mail: Send the report as an attachment to an email message (in whatever file format) or in the body of the email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Send the report as a hard copy via snail mail to:
Philadelphia Yearly Meeting
Ministry & Care Committee
c/o Zachary T. Dutton
1515 Cherry St
Philadelphia, PA 19102
With gratitude and blessings,
— Jean-Marie Prestwidge Barch, Clerk, on behalf of Ministry and Care Committee of Quaker Life Council
Read Last Year’s State of the Meeting Reports
State of the meeting reports were published by quarter in a news story. There are 13 quarters containing news on some 55 meetings. reports.
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