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Dear Possible Junior Yearly Meeting Attenders,
Junior Yearly Meeting (JYM) 2014 is just around the corner and all of us from the JYM planning committee are interested in having you join us! While there is a general age limit (grades 9-12 are recommended), attendance is based primarily upon maturity level and self-readiness. So don’t hesitate to ask your parents, anyone on the JYM planning committee, or even other Quakers familiar with the program about registering for JYM, the Middle School program, or as a Young Adult Friend.
There is considerable energy and discussion among PYM Friends about what makes wider Quaker gatherings deepening and nourishing as well as the challenges that arise as Friends contemplate distance, schedules, and costs of attendance. As Friends are brainstorming and generating ideas which might be useful for our Yearly Meeting to consider for our future sessions, we want to hear from our Monthly Meetings. Please set aside some time at your June or July business meeting to give the following queries some thought. We are especially interested in hearing from Friends (whether members or attenders) who do NOT tend to go to Quarterly or Yearly Meeting, to find out what would draw them in and what is currently getting in their way from attending. It will be important to hear from as wide a group as possible, so we urge you to make time for this discussion and to send us your notes in whatever form they take. We are not expecting your Meeting to come to unity at this stage, rather we are initiating the dialogue.
What do you look forward to (or would you look forward to) when you attend wider Quaker gatherings?
What have you experienced in a wider Quaker gathering that has inspired you or moved you to a deeper sense of Spirit working in your life?
What prevents you from attending wider Quaker gatherings, in particular PYM’s Annual Session? Could changes in format, schedule, cost, etc. make it possible for you to attend?
“Your Sons and Your Daughters will Prophesy” (Acts 2:17 & Joel 2:28)
I so look forward to being with Friends at Pacific Yearly Meeting this summer. After nearly 30 years of wandering in the eastern parts of this country, I am especially blessed to be invited “home” to the yearly meeting where I was raised. I grew up in Orange Grove Monthly Meeting in Pasadena. My first formal travel in ministry was under the care of Pacific Yearly Meeting. In 1982, with a minute from Santa Cruz Monthly Meeting endorsed by the Yearly Meeting, I took part in a cross-continental bicycle peace pilgrimage called the “Peace Peddlers.” Six west coast adult young Friends, all of us in our 20s, rode from San Francisco to Washington DC (touching Mexico and Canada), listening to the American people for the spiritual grounding that would lead to nuclear disarmament.
The mural was planned by teens, young adults, and the SCQM Youth Planning Committee, with artist Tanna Moontaro (Santa Monica Friends Meeting) and Alyssa Nelson (PYM Youth Program Coordinator / Davis Meeting). Younger children, parents, and others joined them to paint, and everyone signed it at the end of the day with colorful thumbprint “buds” on a community vine (see picture at bottom of page).