We are a group of eleven Quaker monthly meetings and worship groups in and northwest of Philadelphia, PA.
    We have activities, services, and spiritual enrichment for all ages. 

Abington Quarterly Meeting

Highlights of the 2/7/16
AQ Meeting at Richland


  Thirty seven Friends from 7 of the Quarter's 11 meetings/worship groups were on hand.

Robert Leber's appointment to AQ Trustees was approved, and appreciation was expressed to Phil Donnelly for his service. Christine Greenland presented the AQ Worship & Ministry annual report for 2015, and AQ clerk Amelia Diamond presented the State of Abington Quarter annual report for 2015; both those reports were approved.  Amelia also expressed appreciation for the work of Quarterly committees and mentioned with thanks the "care quilt" crafted by young Friends, which is now at Abington Meeting. Another Friend stressed the importance of visiting other meetings, as has been requested by the Yearly Meeting General Secretary.

The new head of The Quaker School at Horsham, Alex Brosowsky, was introduced. He said that all of the 56 children (capacity is 68) enrolled in the K through 8 school have disabilities, and the school program is designed to help them to find their gifts and succeed. Most have more than one diagnosed disability. Visitors are welcome. The faculty has once-a-week training on how to meet the children’s needs. There is a 9th grade year which is preparation for high school for children who aren’t quite ready. Some go on to vocational schools, some to other schools that can give them special help, and some to regular high schools. The Quaker School is under the care of Abington and Bucks Quarters. Friends approved inviting Alex back for annual reports about the School.

Jim Fitzgerald brought a travel minute forwarded from Abington Monthly Meeting, endorsing his projected travel to monthly meetings to ask for “wealth, work and wisdom” in support of the refugee effort, possibly by sponsoring one family. Janet Panning, of Lutheran Children and Family Services in Philadelphia, described that agency’s work with refugees, currently from Syria, assisting about 500 individuals yearly. Its program is directed toward helping them become self-sufficient, and it seeks families to sponsor refugees. James Slater, from Abington Meeting, described the Syrian situation as the worst humanitarian catastrophe since World War II. He has worked in the Middle East, is fluent in Arabic, and his wife is from Morocco. He referred us to a short video (click - if hesitation occurs pause video for a few seconds) showing the devastation of the city of Homs. He said that helping refugees poses many difficulties, even for well qualified ones. A Friend asked whether supporting the agency would be more effective than supporting one family. Janet Panning replied that there is something about hands-on involvement with one family that engages people. Friends approved Jim's travel minute. He may be contacted at Jimmyfitz8@aol.com, 215-680-7443.

Tom Dwyer, clerk of Abington MM spoke about his all-clerks support group proposal, to meet twice a year for spiritual support and for the sharing of thoughts and ideas. He proposes March 5, 10:00 AM at Abington Meeting for the first gathering. Friends heartily approved initiating this support group.

Karen Shanoski, director of the Junior and Middle School Friends Conferences, spoke to the need for the Quarter to adopt a child safety policy. She reported that six AQ meetings were represented at a workshop offered by the Family Support Alliance at Gwynedd Meeting on January 9, on recognizing and reporting child abuse. The policy Karen presented will request that staff and volunteers age 14 and over who work with children have references and state mandated clearances. Each monthly meeting is responsible to adopt a policy, which may be modeled on the one decided upon by the Quarter. One Friend reminded us that a policy should also include consideration for any (alleged) perpetrator. Another Friend commented that there seems to be little interest in certification at his Meeting. Karen Gallagher pointed out that getting certification may seem intimidating, but it is an easy process to do through Yearly Meeting. Yet another Friend expressed the opinion that the policy is not only for the safety of the children, but also for the protection of the Meeting sponsoring the activity. Clearances are only good for three years and then have to be renewed. Karen Shanoski needs to have a policy approved before she can hire staff for the 2016 JFC & MSFC Conferences. Friends approved the suggested policy. The clerk thanked Karen Shanoski, Karen Gallagher and Rebecca Cratin for all the work they have done on this subject. Additional information is available through Family Support Alliance, www.pa-fsa.org, 800-448-4906.

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Our next Quarterly Meeting is
at Plymouth MM
May 1st

Next Representative Meeting is   March 6th  - at Byberry
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      click below for photos of:
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   Worship with Us
    (Meeting for Worship times
 - on Sundays, except as noted
) 
All are welcome. 
   
    9:30-10:30 AM
    Gwynedd  
    Abington (summer only - outdoors)

    10:00-11:00 AM
    Byberry (summer only)
    Norristown      
    
    10:30-11:30 AM
    Horsham  
    Richland
        
    11:00-12:00 Noon
   
Byberry (except summer)
        (Meets 2nd & 4th Sundays)
     Unami 
 
    11:15 AM-12:15 PM  
    Abington (also has mid-wk MFW
      on Wednesdays, 7 to 7:45pm and
      two 1st day meetings in summer:
      one at 9:30, the other at 11:15)
    Plymouth (also has mid-wk MFW
         on Wednesdays, 7pm)
      
QUARTERLY
MEETINGS  
    Meetings for Worship to attend to business are held four times a year. These
gatherings include worship, business, programs, & multi-generational fellowship.

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Amelia Diamond, Clerk of the Quarter
email contact:  aediamond7@gmail.com
phone:  215 677-2868

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