I’m sorry to have been absent from here for a bit. Fortunately, it is for good reason.
I’ve been occupied with progress being made related to the Quaker Social Change Ministry (QSCM) program. As I’ve written before, North Meadow Circle of Friends (NMCF) has been participating in the pilot of this program from AFSC’s Friends Liaison program. We have found this program to be very beneficial in a number of ways.
What has been occupying me lately are two things related to QSCM. I spoke about QSCM last summer at Des Moines Valley Friends meeting just prior to Iowa Yearly Meeting (Conservative)’s annual sessions, and then at those annual sessions during our Peace and Social Concerns Committee meetings. I hope monthly meetings in IYMC will adopt the QSCM approach to social concerns work. So I have been communicating with the Yearly Meeting planning committee about possibilities to talk more about QSCM, including our experience this past year in Indianapolis, at this summer’s annual sessions.
In the meantime, recent deportation raids caused the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) to urge Friends meetings to consider offering sanctuary or hospitality to those facing deportation. After sharing that with IYMC’s Peace and Social Concerns Committee, Des Moines Valley Friends indicated they had talked about this during business meeting, and were going to look into this further.
Immigration issues are one of the areas QSCM is designed to address. This seemed like an opportunity to both work on immigration issues and introduce QSCM as a possible framework for approaching that work.
Yesterday Greg Elliott, the AFSC person in charge of QSCM informed me that he will be able to attend IYMC’s annual sessions this summer to talk about QSCM. I hope we can somehow share the stories of North Meadow Friends and the KI (Kheprw Institute) and their experience with QSCM.
In addition, Greg and I are setting up a conference call for all who are interested in the sanctuary movement, to explore how QSCM might be helpful to Friends efforts in this area.