Over the last few years the Middle School Friends program has visited many meetings. Out of the 100+ meetings that are part of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting we have visited well over 25. This is a gift, both for the Middle Schoolers and the meeting attenders. They get to see Quakers as something larger than their own meeting, and notice the small differences between meetings. Meeting members get to experience the vibrancy of the Middle School Friends community. Recently I was able to do another sort of visit. I was invited by Goshen Friends Meeting to come and visit them. They wanted to hear from me about the Middle School Friends program, and have my input as they made plans for religious education within their own meeting. They told me that their first day school group was spending time thinking about conflict resolution and would be excited for an activity around the subject.
I was very grateful for the invitation, and happy to make the visit! On a snowy Sunday morning I took the train out to Goshen meeting to run the first day school. I was able to talk with five young people who have never participated in PYM youth programs before, and to talk with the religious education committee about what PYM has to offer. I was also excited to hear from them about what their thoughts were about religious education on the Monthly Meeting level, and to share my input. I would love to do this again! Does your meeting have a population of Young people? Would your meeting appreciate guidance about running youth programs? Does your meeting have great ideas about how to run youth programs that should be spread? Please let me know if this is something that your meeting might be interested in! You can get in touch by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: 215-241-7171. Looking forward to hearing from you! Matt