Takoma Park Friends Meeting-Preparative gathered on 6/24/2018 at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland. We heard queries and advices from the 2013 draft Baltimore Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on equality. We heard appreciation for the meeting’s gifts to Parents of Special Needs Adults. We heard of the tension between being competitive and compromising. We heard regret for society’s focus on the rich and famous, with the good works of the poor covered as an afterthought. We heard of the social value of taking part in continuing education, which provides an opportunity for people of different backgrounds to mix. We heard of how racial equity is an enormous issue, and of the danger of trying to deal with it with small responses. We heard of how speaking in positive terms of those who are different applies to those who simply have opinions different from our own, especially when those others may have poor opinions of us. We heard of how stands that we disagree with may be understandable when we learn the reasons for them.
Takoma Park Friends Meeting-Preparative gathered on 6/3/2018 at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland, having rescheduled our planned 5/27/2018 meeting. We heard queries and advices from the 2013 draft Baltimore Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice on education. We heard of how holding a degree can confer status and of how lacking a degree can lead to a sense of lack of status. We heard a concern about lack of Quaker focus on public schools, recognizing that that’s a big piece of cheese. We heard of interest in and participation in board of education elections as ways to promote education. We heard of the clash of the idea of continuing revelation with the idea that “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks;” we get to overcome the second idea when promoting the first. We heard of how religious education can come from practice, and that study may be inadequate. We heard a concern that our meeting does not spend enough time learning about other faiths and beliefs. We heard of the use of different translations of the Bible by different Christian denominations; variety of belief occurs both among and within faiths. We heard of how learning about other faiths can help us find common ground with and understanding of people of those faiths.