Just got back from a terrific, 5-day trip to LA to hear that the son of someone in our Wednesday night’s meal-and-sharing circle has been murdered.
Another dear person in our circle’s sister was recently murdered in a murder-suicide in western Massachusetts.
Four years ago, when a group of us from Friends Meeting at Cambridge considered beginning a sharing circle for “the formerly incarcerated and those who care about them,” did any of us anticipate how profoundly the violence and tragedy people of color routinely experience would touch our lives?
I certainly didn’t.
Thanks for your presentation at yearly meeting. It reminded me of the first part of the Palmer quote I had mentioned to you… Here it is in its entirety:
Inward Seeking, Outward Acts
The core of the Quaker tradition is a way of inward seeking which leads to outward acts of integrity and service. Friends are most in the Spirit when they stand at the crossing point of the inward and the outward life. And that is the intersection at which we find community. Community is a place where the connections felt in the heart make themselves known in bonds between people, and where the tuggings and pullings of those bonds keep opening up our hearts.
The Society of Friends can make its greatest contribution to community by continuing to be a religious society I mean, by centering on the practice of corporate worship which opens itself to continuing revelation.
Parker J. Palmer: A place called community, (Pendle Hill pamphlet, no. 212), 1977, p. 27
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