“Both Sides Now”

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Just got back from a Prison Fellowship meeting and although pretty tired, want to try to record what struck me so powerfully tonight.

PF is a group of men and women doing prison ministry (visiting prisoners, teaching in a prison, working on re-entry issues for “returning citizens,” etc.); most but not all of us worship at Friends Meeting at Cambridge (MA). Once a month we have a potluck meal together and then check in/listen to what others in the group are doing and struggling with. From time to time, we’ll work collectively on some project. (We started a bail and legal defense fund, for example.)

Here’s what I heard tonight (I’d had dental work just before our meeting so was unable to make my mouth work. So listened more than usual!): how we explored the problems and situations presented to us—confidential issues—from many angles. How about . . . ? What if . . . ? Could it be . . . ? Maybe they thought . . . ?  Is it possible that . . . ?

Every month at a PF meeting, something happens that makes me think: “There is nowhere on God’s Earth I’d rather be than right here, doing just what we’re doing right this minute.”

Tonight that moment came when I realized how extraordinary the discussion I was  listening to really was. Trying to understand someone’s else perspective and exploring ideas other than your own; these are NO Small Things!

 

 

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1 Comment

  1. Dear Patricia,

    Hello, there, Patricia, my Sister! Wow, sister, wow! Wow and wow! What a very soulful and Spirit-filled, brilliant and inspiring blog post article this is of yours, as well as your other spectacular and magnificent ones! I am so uplifted by this great blog post article of yours, Patricia, and with its empowering Christian witness from you my Christian sister who you are so, so very much! Patricia, you and your wonderful blog post articles lift me up and help me in such a powerful way along my Christian walk, journey, and path with our Good and Gracious God! This splendid article is so full of Spirit and Christian love and wisdom, with the Prison Fellowship ministry reaching out in love to the prisoners, as our Sweet Jesus called for Jesus’ followers to do in the Gospels readings from Scripture. You and the other super others are truly doing the work of Jesus, and each and every one of you are the God with skin who can symbolize and represent God and God’s Perfect and Faithful Love to these prisoners.

    Our Sweet and Powerful Jesus called upon Jesus’ followers to visit the prisoners and to reach out to them. What loving and fantastic work you and the others are doing! This monthly potluck sounds so cool and blessedly special, and like a grand time as beloved and shared community with the prisoners to break bread together and to be in the Spirit together. This sounds so, so very absolutely cool and fabulous to me! What a great opportunity this is with this outreach for both the wonderful Friends people from your special Quaker meeting and also for the prisoners as all of you connect in unity in God’s agape love. Teaching the prisoners gives them lessons for life and helps them to re-enter a life of freedom outside of prison walls. These lessons also provide a bedrock for their spirituality and their walk with God. Each and every one of you help those prisoners who are eligible to re-enter society to prepare for this freedom, and to learn the very skills which will prove to be useful for them. The check-in period is just a very fine and excellent way to provide a forum for these precious prisoners to share where they are at in general or if they are having any struggles in which they need to air out and to receive feedback. The bail and legal defense fund provides such needed financial and legal aid, respectively, which is so sorely needed. I like how other people, too, other than the wonderful Friends people, also take part in the Prison Fellowship ministry. What a great joint effort together as all of you in unison work together in our Good God’s Love to be the human hands and arms and heart of God as God’s people representing God’s Love to the prisoners but coming in human form as God with skin. The prisoners also give back in many ways, like by being cheerful receivers of your precious outreach, and by their hard-worn wisdom of their stories they share and their intercessory prayers for all of you.

    I, too, would find the Prison Fellowship meetings and potlucks to be the best place to be ever! My dearest and precious Christian white sister, Patricia, I think that the conversations, dialogues, and discussions which occur at PF are so precious and special, and it is great to hear others’ perspectives. It is great to get other viewpoints and to creatively brainstorm together in forming new ideas and finding solutions to problems. I love how all of you ask many questions like you said, Sister.

    Indeed, Sister, these are “NO Small Things!” The title of your fantabulous blog post article, “Both Sides Now,” is so smartly titled and perfectly fits this article on how all of you in unity at PF dialogue among yourselves in the Spirit of Spirit’s Love. The picture you placed with this blog post article, as well as the other pictures with your other blog post articles, so perfectly complement your articles to perfection. I never cease to be uplifted and blessed by you my Christian sister, Patricia! I am so empowered and inspired by you as I am renewed, rejuvenated, and reinvigorated in my spirituality and walk with God by reading your spiritual blog post articles! I have such immense joy, blessings, and pleasure responding to your powerful blog post articles, Sister! You are our gift and our blessing-to me and your other very grateful and appreciative readers! It just makes my day even brighter, Sister, checking on your wonderful website, reading your cool and sagacious blog post articles, and responding to them! What a blessing to me you and your writings are to me and your other readers, sister Patricia! I thank-you, Patricia, your dearest and darling husband and the rest of your beloved family, and the special people at your Quaker meeting for thinking of me and praying for me, keeping me uplifted and covered in prayers! I can feel the love, concern thoughts, and prayers coming from all of you for me! Thank-you, thank-you!!!!! I for sure for always keep you, Patricia, your dear husband and the rest of your darling family, and the superbly super and special people at your Quaker meeting in my heart with my love and daily and often prayers and thoughts for all of you!!!!!!! I send positive energy all of your way!!!!!! I pray for each and every one of you that all of your days be so, so very especially blessed, Patricia, my Christian white sister and anti-racist ally in your allyship in solidarity!!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely Always,

    Your Christian lesbian black sister in solidarity, Sherry Gordon

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