Tag Archives: community

First They Came…

23 Nov

I am often quiet in the midst of many changing things.  I have observed the uprisings of the Occupy movement in every state.  I’ve witnessed my home of Centre Country be rocked by sex scandal and lack of leadership and have seen the community struggle to pull itself together.   I have said little in the way of either.  I have watched a middle aged women tell her aging mother that the Occupy Moment is just folks complaining about the rich.  And when her mother asked if this was happening world wide, she said no.  She must not have seen the 300,000 people in Madrid Spain, or the oust of political leaders in Rome Italy, or the streets of London.  She must not have been watching.  She must have simply been consumed by her own mundane life.

But I said nothing to her elderly mother.  I did not tell her assessment was right.  Yes, there is something going on in the world.  And I thought about this quote from Niemöller:

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.

So, I share this.  Someone from my community, who was a graduate student from Penn State when I first met him:

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West Philly Worship Group

9 Jun

I’m not too into religion, but I have to say I’ve been a church shopper before.  I am however, a Quaker.  Weird, huh?  A modern girl like myself.

Either way, Quakers in West Philly have been doing something cool and a little be out of the ordinary.  (Quakers in West Philly, who thought that was ordinary!?)  They hold a small worship group on Wednesday at 7:30pm, typically in someone’s living room.  Since it moves place to place each week, its good to check in with their list-serve. (Touch base here for more details: West Philly Google Group.

About 15-30 folks show up each week ranging in age (thought mostly in the 35 and under crowd) and coming from a wide range of spiritual (or non-spiritual) backgrounds.  The worship evening goes something like this:

  • Approximately 15 min of Check-Ins.  (Check-in is a period of time where folks can share their name and a little bit about themselves.)
  • 40 Mins of worship.  (Worship is silent.  Out of the silence anyone may be “moved” to speak and share a message.  If there are lots of messages, it is practice to leave a small amount of space in-between messages.  I typically count to ten.)
  • About 10 min. for After thoughts (anything that didn’t rise to the level of a message.), Joys/Concerns/Prayers, and Announcements.

There is always a bit of socializing afterwards and if anyone has questions about Quakers or the Worship Group, there are always folks available to answer questions.

Not sure what your spiritual inclination is?  Take the Belief-o-Matic quiz to get a better perspective!