Ujima Friends Meeting announced in June 2021 that: “In an act of declaration and commitment, we, a people of African descent, our families and friends, respond to the movement of the Spirit among us to form Ujima Friends Meeting within the Religious Society of Friends. Ujima Friends Meeting is a community of faith without borders, dedicated to bearing witness to peace, justice, and love.”What follows is republished From Philadelphia Quarterly Meeting’s January Newsletter.
A Remarkable Act of Self-Determination
A remarkable act of self-determination occurred on June 20, 2021 with the formation of the Ujima Friends Meeting within the Religious Society of Friends, creating a meeting for Quakers of African Descent everywhere (see Minute of Declaration and Commitment of the Ujima Friends Meeting).
Ayesha Imani, Clerk of the Ujima Friends Peace Center wrote that the new meeting is “a monthly meeting without geographic borders” that is “happy to be in fellowship with any Quaker entity that recognizes and welcomes us as members of the Religious Society of Friends.”
Ayesha Imani (or Dr. Mama as her students address her) mentioned that core members and clerks live in Colorado, North Carolina, Oakland, and outside the U.S. That means that community, spirit, and unity will be shared virtually for the most part. “We are making the path, by walking it” she acknowledges.
Many Philadelphia members of Ujima Friends Meeting are active in the work of Ujima Friends Peace Center, which is a ministry of the meeting.
Currently, the Meeting for Worship on Sundays at 2 p.m. is virtual and attended by both the Ujima Friends Meeting and the folks of the Ujima Friends Peace Center.
Monthly Grocery Giveaway
The Friends of Ujima Friends Peace Center (UFPC) continue to show us what spirit can do. In keeping with their origin, the center is a safe community space for conflict resolution. Grocery Giveaway on Last Saturday continues; the menstrual pad project with the Black women elders of the Sankofa Artisan Guild is helping African girls to attend school despite ‘period poverty’. And that is just a few activities in this center!
Freedom Summer School
Last year the Freedom School Summer 2021 opened up outdoor safe spaces to youths during the pandemic. The incredible success of the session is palpable in the video clip below. No wonder the students agreed, “Dr. Mama, we have to do this again!”
With Freedom School Summer 2022 just around the corner, Ayesha Imani invites Friends to think about green spaces, pools, and other environmental resources you have or know of, that might be available and please contact her if led.
Photo Credits: Pexels