[QuakerFolks] Fwd: Holding the Election in the Light

Nancy Riffer

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: JUDITH WELLMAN judith.wellman@... [QuakerFolks] <QuakerFolks-noreply@...>
Date: Mon, Nov 2, 2020 at 10:52 AM
Subject: [QuakerFolks] Fwd: Holding the Election in the Light
To: QuakerFolks <QuakerFolks@...>
Cc: Judith Wellman <judith.wellman@...>


Hi Friends—I thought some of us might be interested in this initiative from New England Yearly Meeting, holding an election vigil from 8 p.m. Tuesday night to 7 a.m. Wednesday.

In community, 

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From: New England Quakers <neym@...>
Date: Sat, Oct 31, 2020 at 4:59 PM
Subject: Holding the Election in the Light
To: <cornfrog@...>

Opportunities for worship, witness, and connection surrounding the coming election
Artwork: Maggie Nelson, Portland (ME) Friends Meeting

An Invitation to Prayer and Witness 


In this time of pandemic, vitriol, threatened and actual violence, and concern about what this election means for our country, many of us are unsettled and anxious.

We know that many Friends have been strengthening and refreshing their skills around conflict prevention, de-escalation, and nonviolent resistance, praying that these skills will not be needed.

We have also heard from many a longing to be together in worship and prayer, a time to ground our faith, to seek the comfort and guidance of the Divine.

We're aware that several monthly meetings across our region are planning worship during and immediately surrounding the election. Those that have shared that they welcome visitors are listed below, with links to more details if you would like to join them.

The Yearly Meeting will also host a worship vigil through the night of November 3-4, starting at 8:00 PM on Tuesday, and concluding at 7:00 AM on Wednesday.

A number of New England Friends have committed to provide a grounding presence, in one hour shifts through the night, so there will always be at least two Friends present. You may join at any time, for as long or short a time as you wish.

The hosts may occasionally offer a prayer or reading to help ground the worship and draw Friends into a greater sense of being gathered together.

During the vigil, we ask that Friends refrain from partisan or demeaning speech. While the election will be very much on our minds and in our hearts, our intention is not to provide a forum for discussion, but to offer a space to find comfort, even in our yearning for wholeness and our collective reaching for the Spirit.

To join the worship vigil on Zoom, use the information below:

A waiting room will be enabled for security purposes; please be patient.

Election Worship and Vigil 
Time: Nov 3, 2020 08:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) to 7:00 PM, Nov 4

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 992 6236 3554
One tap mobile
+13126266799,,99262363554# US (Chicago)

Dial by phone: 
        +1 646 558 8656 US (New York)

If you choose not to join on Zoom, consider joining in spirit from wherever you are, knowing that others are gathered.

Bruce Neumann, Fresh Pond (MA) Friends Meeting
Presiding Clerk
New England Yearly Meeting of Friends

Other Opportunities

Gatherings for Worship with Local Meetings

Nov 2:  Westport Friends Called Meeting for Worship
Nov 3:  Providence Friends Called Meeting for Worship
Nov 4:  Providence Friends Called Meeting for Worship

Middlebury (VT) Friends invite you to join them to hold the country and the world in the Light for fifteen minutes each day, at 9AM and/or 5PM.

Barnstable (MA) Friends suggest meditation on the 23rd Psalm, making a healing quilt where each community member prayerfully creates one square, and using this opportunity to renew a personal commitment to the ongoing spiritual work of racial justice and healing.    

Rising Together: Breadmaking on Election Day

For Friends seeking prayerful connection and nourishment—through baking—on the day of the election, Gretchen Baker-Smith (Westport, MA, Friends Meeting and JYM-JHYM Coordinator for New England Quakers) will be hosting an all-ages, all-skill-levels online bread making workshop on Tuesday, Nov. 3 from 4PM-7PM.

For more information and to register, click here. 

Supporting Friends Witness

While we don’t know what the election will bring, many Friends are working with local and national groups to prepare for responses on November 4th.

Below is a partial list of events that Friends are joining or hosting. We ask that in the event that these actions to witness in support of democracy—vigils, protests, marches, actions—are needed, please consider praying on the 4th for those Friends who are witnessing in public spaces, as well as those Friends supporting them from home. We are together in the Spirit.

Nov 4: Worcester, MA: 10AM-5PM. Protect the Vote witness
Nov 4: Boston, MA: Boston Common, 3:30PM. Contact Lisa Graustein to connect with Friends
Nov 4: Portland, ME: Deering Oak Park, 5PM. Contact Rob Levin to connect with Friends 

Resources Online

  • Here's a link to a collection of resources used in a course on preparing for and responding to the election offered by Lisa Graustein (Beacon Hill and Three Rivers, MA, Friends Meetings) in partnership with Beacon Hill Friends House. Includes ideas for pastoral care, toolkits for organizing actions, and more. 
  • We're aware many Friends in New England and beyond have participated in trainings and planning to nonviolently prevent an attempted coup, to ensure all votes are counted, and to protect the results of the election.

    An important project in these efforts, called Choose Democracy, is led by a diverse collaboration of trainers and strategists including Friend George Lakey of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. 
  • Friends Committee on National Legislation has collected many resources for before, during, and after the election. 
  • The American Friends Service Committee also has a resource pageoffering specific action steps and updates.

We Will Be Here With You

Over the coming days, as new information is received, we'll continue to post events and provide updates as we have them. We'll be in ongoing consultation with regional faith communities and interfaith partners, including leadership among those most at risk if tensions continue to escalate.  

Have further updates or news to share about what Friends are doing in your area? Contact us with needs or questions—before, during, or after the election—and we'll try to connect you with other Friends and resources. 

Remember, Friends—we are in this together, held in the infinite love of God.
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Worcester, MA 01602

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Posted by: JUDITH WELLMAN <judith.wellman@...>
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New England Yearly Meeting will hold a vigil and there is information about available activities from other NEYM m