FSRM Fall Gathering 2020 Invitation and Schedule

Farmington-Scipio Friends,

We invite you to join us for Fall Gathering, to be held via Zoom on Saturday, September 19, 2020! Here is the invitation and preliminary schedule.Registration and Zoom links to follow.

Angela Hopkins and Antonia Saxon, co-clerks

Farmington Scipio Fall Gathering Retreat

September 19, 2020



How are we feeling led today, in this time of uncertainty?

Visioning, discernment, and naming the gifts in our region as we consider our work


Friends, Fall Gathering is upon us. We know things are not going to look the way they have looked in the past. Due to the pandemic, some events in the region—Extended Meeting for Worship, Ministry and Counsel’s fall retreat—have been cancelled or postponed. We considered postponing, but we’re going ahead with Fall Gathering on its originally scheduled date.


Like Spring Gathering, Fall Gathering will be held via Zoom. Many Friends and Friends’ organizations have found that holding gatherings by Zoom has some unexpected advantages. We have the chance to learn more about who we are as a region, and the opportunity to have more of the region included in our gatherings and in the work of the region.


At FSRM’s Fall Gathering 2019, we asked: “How do we live as Quakers in a world with increased acts of intolerance, fear, and hate? How do we live our Quaker values?”


Much has occurred in our world since then, and no one has escaped the impact of these events. This fall we are asking: What and how have things changed? What has changed in our Quaker communities? What changes are still needed?


We hope to confirm what is emerging in the region. Many of our State of the Meeting reports express the desire to widen conversations in our communities. The co-clerks began to engage in a process of naming which tasks of clerking were ours. We began by considering our gifts and our challenges. We then engaged in this process with Ministry and Counsel.


Friends have named some of the Region’s immediate concerns. The rotating schedule that sorts the tasks of organizing Spring Gathering has been problematic for some. Friends are often tapped for more than one task, more than one role, and might wear many hats simultaneously in their home meetings.  The Nominating Committee process that identifies Friends to do the work of the region does not serve us well.


Queries that arise are:

·      How can we come from a place of strength—a strength-based way of meeting the region’s needs rather than a lack-based way? Rather than coming from a not-enough-ness, a sense of burnout, and the need to fill positions, we might ask: 

·      What are we good at? What do we have? What can we give? 

·      What are the strengths of our meeting/church/worship group? 

·      What would we like to do, if we could do anything?


Some of us use our gifts to repair the world, some of us use them to grow and sustain our meetings: What is our part in the region’s work?

Farmington Scipio Regional Meeting

Fall Gathering

September 19, 2020


Tech check-in/optional fellowship/chat/conversation/preplanned meeting groups


Meeting for Worship/

Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business

·      Acknowledgement of the Land

·      Review agenda

·      Roll Call

·      Silent Waiting Worship

·      Reading (from “Welcome to Extended Meeting for Worship”)


Morning group time:

Meet in monthly meeting/church groups.

Last year each meeting considered concerns, challenges, and gifts. These were included in the State of the Meeting Reports.


·      What has changed, and what may need to be changed?

·      How do we recognize what is needed? Describe your sense of how Friends are called into community.

·      How do we create the Beloved Community? How can we live into being and creating community?

·      Are there practical steps you hope Friends will commit to?  


Lunch/ Self-care/ Optional discussion and group time


Preparation/transition time for 1:30pm session


Afternoon group time

This morning, we met in our monthly meetings and church groups. This afternoon, we will meet in affinity groups formed around the gifts and leadings we named this morning, considering our spiritual gifts as we engage in the emerging work of the region.


Spiritual gifts are abilities we have that often seem to come naturally to us. They may stand out as exceptional to others. Friends have gifts for working with children, for managing money, for resolving conflict, for comforting the sick, and more.


Sometimes we know our own gifts. Sometimes it takes others to see Spirit at work in us. Recognizing our own gifts and those of others helps us restore justice and repair the world. Can the naming and evoking of gifts within our meetings and churches help us address the region's most pressing needs?




·      What is emerging in our region? How are we called to respond?

·      Where and how do we discern what we are going to do? What are our next steps?




Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business

·      Report from the afternoon’s affinity groups regarding next steps

·      Spring Gathering Report

·      State of the Region Report

·      Suspension of FSRM rotation schedule

·      (additional agenda items invited)


Optional dinnertime reflections and conversations


Angela Hopkins and Antonia Saxon

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