8/27/2017 minutes

Takoma Park Friends Meeting-Preparative gathered on 8/27/2017 at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland. We heard queries and advices from the 2013 draft Baltimore Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on vocal ministry. We took to heart the advice to be careful in speaking. We heard of an urge to speak when newcomers are present, to avoid them going away bored, and of a need to watch this tendency. We heard appreciation for the reminder that not all messages may speak to us individually; part of listening is exercising patience, made easier when we remember past messages that have been on point. We heard that all we need to do is listen to messages, not form judgments about them; doing so is a great exercise.

7/23/2017 minutes

Takoma Park Friends Meeting-Preparative gathered on 7/23/2017 at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland. We heard queries and advices from the 2013 draft Baltimore Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on stewardship of the Earth. We heard a sense that the advices might better refer to “the next generation” rather than “future generations.” We heard of the theory that all human wars have been fought over resources; understanding how to conserve and share our resources will let us find the peace we seek. We heard of how ownership of land by distant corporations can lead to lack of care for and pollution of the land and can complicate efforts to restore it. We heard of how the failure of one jurisdiction to recycle certain items can lead to taking those items to another jurisdiction, with the necessity of being aware of the environmental costs of transporting them. We heard surprise that some folks with children seem insensitive to the effect of resource use and misuse on those children. We heard of how growth in the average size of people leads to things wearing out faster, and of the unsustainable nature of “junk food.” We heard a question of whether the “all creation” mentioned in the advices and queries includes even the squishy, non-rent-paying creatures in our homes.

6/25/2017 minutes

Takoma Park Friends Meeting-Preparative gathered on 6/25/2017 at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland. We heard queries and advices from the 2013 draft Baltimore Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on personal resources. We heard of difficulty in convincing others to adopt sharing ways, even when we are able to do so ourselves. We heard of how the skill of lumberjacks can be seen in the simplicity of the tools they use; perhaps our stewardship can be gauged similarly. We heard of when, with retirement, we get to change from being careful stewards of the money we earn to careful stewards of our time. We heard of how use of gifts from God might be seen as “regifting,” and of how we might instead give gifts to others as God has given gifts to us. We heard of how giving may lead to reciprocation; while we may not want to give manipulatively hoping for reciprocation, we can give with the intent of building connection.

5/28/2017 minutes

Takoma Park Friends Meeting-Preparative gathered on 5/28/2017 at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland. We heard queries and advices from the 2013 draft Baltimore Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on social concerns. We heard a concern that the queries separate prisoners from non-prisoners, despite the fact that we are all one; similarly, we are all disadvantaged in some ways and had best not think of ourselves as noble when sharing with others. We heard of how even if we don’t think of ourselves as religious people of faith, we can ground our social action in our values. We heard of how social action may be more effective if we try to relate our concerns to those of others.

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