Testimonies and Concerns 2015 Annual Report:

The purpose of Third Haven Friends' Testimonies & Concerns committee is to help members and attendees of our Meeting intentionally enact the major testimony of Friends' practice of "letting one's life speak" one's spiritual belief. The Committee's work, therefore, relates to Friends' testimonies of simplicity, peace, integrity, community and equality, especially as they pertain to social justice concerns in today's world. Quaker values sit at the heart of what we try to accomplish in T&C.

2015 began with the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting Minute on Racism. This minute came from a meeting held January 10, at the Arch Street Meeting House. Nearly 400 Friends from over 80 monthly meetings, yearly meetings and other religious organizations attended this Called Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business to discern how we, as a faith community, are being led to address racism.

At the conclusion of the meeting a "Minute of Action" was approved, which reads, in part:

(We) "commit to increase our consciousness as Friends about the intersection of privilege and race in our culture and spiritual community. We know our knowledge is often limited by our own experiences and that we have much to learn from each other and from outside resources."

This minute became part of each of our T&C meetings as we discussed our understanding of the intent of the minute and its implications to us as Third Haven Quakers and as individuals. As we discussed different ways to bring our concerns to the entire meeting, it was suggested that in place of trying to arrange for a workshop on racism or white privilege, we might be better off trying to directly engage with local communities who have been impacted this racism and privilege. To this end, we approached friends at Asbury United Methodist Church to share ideas of how our two faith communities might become closer in this work. In the past six months, a small group of Friends met regularly over soup together with a small group of Asbury AME members.

Other work that the Testimonies and Concerns committee has undertaken, to "increase our consciousness" and "move forward with our entire community":

Looking forward, along with Philadelphia Yearly Meeting's committee on Undoing Racism, we will continue to follow and help promote the 17th annual White Privilege Conference, to be held in April 2016 in Philadelphia. From their website: "The WPC is a conference that examines challenging concepts of privilege and oppression and offers solutions and team building strategies to work toward a more equitable world." This conference is designed to examine issues of privilege that go beyond skin color, as we all experience some form of privilege, whether it is gender, sexuality, class, disability or skin color, or some intersection of these—and that we're all affected by that privilege.

Also this year:

Some other Interfaith Efforts led by T&C members include:

The T&C Committee is also charged with distributing funds from the Shoffner International Education Fund. This fund began in 2010 with a loving donation following the death of member John Shoffner. 5% of this fund is donated yearly to organizations that support our Quaker testimonies. In 2015 the fund gave $960 to Aguayuda, an organization that began locally, to support their work to improve life and health in poor rural communities through clean water and education.

Third Haven Friends Monthly Meeting is a member of Southern Quarterly Meeting of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting of Friends General Conference of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Meetings for Worship: Sundays 10:00AM, Wednesdays 5:30PM

Childrens' program: 1st and 3rd Sundays 10:00AM

Meetings for Worship with Attention to Business: 2nd Sunday of the Month following Meeting for Worship (except for the months of July and August)

Contact: 405 S. Washington St., Easton, MD 21601; (410) 822-0293; 3rdhaven@gmail.com; Find Us on Facebook


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