State of the Meeting Report 2013
What is currently happening in Blacksburg Friends Meeting?
By the Numbers…
- First Day School is small (4-6 children) but stable and a youth safety policy has been worked on in stages and is nearing completion.
- Spiritual Formation group is very large (14-18 people) and active.
- Bible study is steady (10 people) who meet once a month after Meeting.
- Our once-a-month workday to take care of the building and the grounds continues to be a joyous time of growing together (8-12 people) with lots of opportunity for easy side conversations and shared satisfaction in a job well done.
- Once a month we volunteer (about 6 people) at the local food pantry and donate food. The food donations are brought to Meeting on second Sundays with an email reminder to help us pull together on this project.
Meeting Work of Note:
- Quaker Earthcare committee worked on local, national, international issues and has invited speakers in.
- Ministry and Oversight has created a pamphlet to guide anyone interested in seeking membership in the Meeting.
- We began a soon-to-be-annual tradition of celebrating new members with a small party near the Fall Equinox.
- Last year’s new tradition of having a special Meeting for Love and Remembrance near the Spring Equinox was a very meaningful time of sharing joys, sorrows, and celebrating lives of people we loved who have passed away. This will continue.
- We supported the local Christmas Store, a place for needy families to “shop” for Christmas presents, with donations again this year.
- We hosted Blue Ridge Gathering.
What Do We Worry About:
- Attendance is down from an average of 35 people to an average of 26 people. We contact new attendees and individuals who have not been at Meeting for a while.
- We have too few teachers for First Day School. The same two or three people do almost all of the teaching.
- We are on the edge with keeping up our finances to pay off the building. Loss of one family who donates could jeopardize our ability to pay our mortgage.
- There have been no clerks for Peace and Social Concerns, Hospitality and Outreach, or Adult Education Committees for several years now.
- We perform hospitality and outreach activities, but without a clerk it doesn’t seem organized. We do take care of communication like listserv and webpage maintenance, a short bulletin reminding people of upcoming events, a Christmas Eve party, gifts for graduating high school seniors, notes to newcomers, etc, but it often falls to whomever sees the need and just does it.
What Do We Wish For:
- Some wish for more response to the needs of the world related to FCNL and AFSC.
- Some miss an organized adult ed.
- We all wish for stability and increased attendance that would allow these things to happen and allow the same group of Friends not to have to work so hard.