WHIRLS

WHIRLS stands for:

Ways to stay connected

After-meeting gatherings

While the corona virus pandemic persists, we worship each Sunday in our own homes at our usual time – 10 a.m.  At the rise of meeting – around 11 a.m. – we join each other on-line via a Zoom connection. The specific sign-in and instructions for each Sunday are sent out each Friday to everyone who signed up to receive Silent Announcements.  At that time, we share vocal ministry that arose for us in our separate meetings for worship (“Afterwords”), and Joys and Concerns, and announcements.

Friendly eights

It’s important to keep in touch and support each other, even as we’re far apart. One of our experiments is to create virtual small groups—echoing the pot-luck style groups we’ve had from time to time at Adelphi.  You can sign up to participate in one of these groups by checking the group listing to find one that will be meeting at a time that works for you.  Send the convener a message, and the convener will take it from there.

Virtual worship for People of Color

Vanessa Julye, coordinator of Racism Ministries for Friends General Conference (with which we are affiliated) writes that the monthly virtual worships for People of Color hosted by FGC since 2018 will now be available weekly during the  pandemic. The virtual worships will be held on Wednesdays at 1:00 pm EDT/12:00 pm CDT/ 11:00 am MDT/10:00 am PDT. FGC established this practice in response to a request from Friends of Color who participated in a retreat in summer 2018. “During that weekend, Friends of Color expressed their pain of feeling oppressed in their meeting which caused them to stop attending. These Friends were clear that Quakerism and worship were core to their lives and wanted an opportunity to continue to worship in community. FGC agreed to support these Friends with providing monthly virtual worships on Zoom. These worships are provided as a place for Friends of Color to come together in community and worship in an environment with Friends who experience marginalization in their lives and Quaker meetings because they are a person of color.  If you identify as a person of color and would like to join the weekly worship, please register. More information is available in the April 1 silent announcements.

Quaker bookmobile

The library committee members will support Friends by selecting books and pamphlets from AFM’s library collection and deliver them in a bag at your doorstep or some other location agreed upon.  You can view the online card catalog and/or ask for suggestions from the library committee. Materials will not be returned until we are sharing worship at AFM together again. To request books or help in choosing one, please email Diana Rutherford who will coordinate with committee members to fulfill your spiritual reading needs. Library Committee members are Diana Rutherford, Judith Mulvey, David Castillo, Samantha Magrath.

Adelphi’s teens hang out

Teens interested in joining in Friday night virtual hangouts should send a message to Karen Armstrong with their email.

Baltimore Yearly Meeting

Baltimore Yearly Meeting has been providing weekly updates on closures, cancellations and postponing of events among meetings within the yearly meeting, and changes affecting yearly meeting committees and programs.

Helping in the Community

  • Ways to Support Racial Justice Now.  There are many ways to be supportive and involved.  Here’s one page of information (and links) to memorial funds, some local change organizations to support and join, and some recommended groups in North Minneapolis.
  • Couch Potato Activists.  We acknowledge that there are “couch potato activists” among us. We all care a lot about a lot of things, but it’s hard to know how to do something effective to make systemic change, within the time we have available.  Friends participating in the Couch Potato Activist program will commit to send two letters or e-mails per month, and two letters to the editor per year.  Several topics will be suggested each month; participants can select whatever matches their interest. Appropriate contact information for each will be provided.  By the end of the year, Couch Potato Activists will have sent  two dozen letters or e-mails giving their own personal views to people whose votes and actions will make a difference, and they will even have finally written two public letters to the editor that they always meant to write.  To sign up, contact Mosi Harrington.
  • Support for Women who are Returning Citizens.  Ruby Steigerwald is collecting the following items to donate to Who Speaks For Me, a nonprofit that works with female returning citizens (women returning from incarceration) and other women in very difficult circumstances. Ruby is collecting gently used towels and washcloths, shoes especially size 10 and 11 (they don’t have to be women’s shoes per se), and socks, plus size clothing. If you have anything to donate, call Ruby. Update:  On Sunday May 17th, The Washington Post ran a feature article on the importance and effectiveness of the “Who Speaks for Me” program.  Check it out.
  • Help St. Camillus Food Pantry with the significant in the number of people coming to get food.  The Pantry has set up a GoFundMe website where you can contribute directly.  Or you can search on the GoFundMe website for St. Camillus Food Pantry.  You can also take food to the Pantry when it is open:  Fridays 3-5 pm and Saturdays 10-noon. People outside doing registration will see that the food is carried inside.  St. Camillus Food Pantry is at 1600 St. Camillus Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20903. More information available on St. Camillus Food Pantry’s website.
  • Funds for Food – St. Matthews:  Adelphi Meeting is a member of the Prince Georges cluster of the Congregation Action Network. Together, the member congregations have raised more than $35,000 for its Covid19 Emergency Fund. The funds have been distributed to 5 congregations and projects that serve families – mostly immigrant families – who do not receive government assistance. St. Camillus in Silver Spring and St. Matthews in Hyattsville were included in the distribution.  St. Matthews is raising additional funds for bulk food purchases to help 40 families with no safety net.  Contributions for St. Matthews can be sent on line here.  Please type “pandemic assistance” in the space next to the amount.
  • Share food from your over-abundant garden with St. Camillus food pantry, through a volunteer who is collecting and washing the produce. See the Local column at the bottom of the Silent Announcement on April 14.
  • Food Assistance from Farmers’ Market.  Takoma Park residents and farmers, Michael Tabor and Esther Siegel, are seeking our help in identifying families that need food assistance.  They will make a weekly CSA share available at little or no cost to first responders, essential service providers and folks whose jobs cannot be done at home and may be without paychecks during this pandemic.  They are able to offer this to 25 families for $10 per week, rather than the usual $37.50.  The CSA starts in June.  If you know someone who fits the above description and needs assistance, please give them this form to fill out and submit to Esther and Michael.
  • Make masks for non-medical personnel.
    • Holy Cross Hospital would like to receive homemade masks.  They have published criteria for the masks they can accept (size, material, etc.) Masks can be left in blue bins in front of the hospital.
    • The best and simplest directions seem to be on LeahDay.com (Especially the video.) This site also includes (a massive number of) references on the science of masks, what they prevent and what they don’t.
    • The CDC also provides some very simple ways to make masks for yourself—without sewing at all!
    • Montgomery County has published information on more places to donate masks. Masks can be dropped off at the Dennis Avenue Health Care Center (2000 Dennis Avenue), in addition to Holy Cross Hospital, and at the Public Safety Headquarters, 100 Edison Park Drive, in Gaithersburg.
    • A local group called Neighbors Making Masks (on Facebook) has a network of about 150 mask makers, with people organizing access to materials and identifying places that need the masks.  You might want to join up with them.
    • NEW!  The Navajo Nation has put out a special call for cloth masks.  If you are able to send some, here is the address the nation provided: By FedEx or UPS to Window Rock Wellness Center Building 4496, State Highway 264, Window Rock, AZ 86515 OR by Mail to United States Postal Service, PO Box 3748, Window Rock, AZ 86515. Many Friends in Baltimore Yearly Meeting will remember supporting Pat Kutzner’s work with the Torreon Star Lake band, which is a part of the Navajo Nation.
  • Help with unemployment benefit applications through Local 23 UNITE/HERE.  Local 23 is still looking for volunteers, especially those who speak Amharic or Spanish. Contact Hannah Kane <[email protected]>
  • Learn about opportunities with Maryland Unites and Maryland Responds – volunteers who respond to large scare public health crises.  Contact Sam Broderick for details.
  • Military Draft to Encourage an Ethic of Service. There’s a live bill in Congress to continue draft registration and to expand it to apply to women. In addition to the military draft, the bill, HR 6415, addresses National Service and Public Service in a comprehensive way, describing various benefits that accrue to participants in each.  In November 2019, Friends Committee on National Legislation testified before the Commission on Military, National, and Public Service against the idea of continuing draft registration for anyone.  The bill has been referred to 14 committees and subcommittees — which is commonly known as a “burial” — but elements of the bill can emerge in unexpected places, as amendments to spending bills, for example.  Be sure your own representative knows that, rather than expanding registration for military service, we should end all compulsory service.

Inspiration & calm

  • Places: The Friends Wilderness Center is a 1400-acre wilderness site, minimally developed, and now open for day hikes and rustic overnights. If you’d like to get out and re-acquaint yourself with nature, you might consider the Wilderness Center.
  • Places:  BYM’s Camping Program is offering cabins for rent by families and small groups at Camp Catoctin.  Rentals are for up to five days at a time and conditions are truly rustic.  While the bathhouse will be open, the kitchen and lodge will not. Contact the coordinator here: bymcamps.org/summer-cabin-rentals/
  • Lainie Duncan’s video of vision and hope:  As part of a fundraising event for Joe’s Movement Emporium, Lainie Duncan recorded a video about the “possibilities before us to create a new America.” The video radiates calm, vision, and hope.
  • Mackenzie Morgan was asked to speak at West Hills Friends Church in Oregon in early June. This meeting has both waiting worship and a prepared message. Mackenzie brought a prepared message entited “A Vision of Racism and the Cross.” An audio recording is available here: https://soundcloud.com/westhillsfriends/a-vision-of-racism-and-the-cross-by-mackenzie-morgan, and a manuscript is available here: http://mackenzie.morgan.name/writing/racism-and-the-cross.html
  • Phil Callahan shares “A Hymn to Freedom” with Friends. The song was composed in the 60’s by one of the great jazz pianists, Oscar Peterson; it reflects his background growing up in the African American Church in Montreal, Canada. The lyrics were added by a friend of Peterson’s and the song was picked up and used by the civil rights movement. Listen here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YTAzDaAOtmI .
  • In “An Awkward Pause,” published in Friends Journal, Debby Ramsey reflects on her leading to visit the meetinghouse at Stony Run at the meeting’s usual gathering time of 11:00…and on what she found there.
  • Spiritual practices to calm, strengthen, and support our lives during the pandemic, by Mathilda Navias, featured in Friends Journal.
  • An excerpt from Howard Thurman’s book Meditations of the Heart – an interpretation of “I will fear no evil.”
  • Part of a message from Sherri Mitchell (Penobscot Nation, Maine) seeking guidance of Mother Earth.
  • A prayer/song, “Sending You Light”  by Melanie DeMore, with Julie Wolf. (Lyrics here.)
  • Andrea Bocelli’s Easter performance of “Music for Hope,” presented live in Milan, Italy.
  • Guided meditation, courtesy of Kaiser Permanente (you don’t have to be a member.) Scroll down to find meditations that address anxiety.

Resources

For kids & families

  • At Home Activities and Art Events: Maryland National Capitol Park and Planning Commission is sending out a weekly Arts Newsletter (signup is at the bottom of the page), each of which will feature an at-home arts activity for all ages.  Heather Carter is behind this!
  • Annie Patterson and Peter Blood—the folks who brought us Rise up Singing—have produced a webpage of fun for (cooped up) families, offering music, games, activities, and self-care for parents.
  • Explaining the Pandemic to Children: Alaine Duncan recommends Ana Gomez’s book “Coronavirus and Me” for helping children with concerns about the the many changes the virus brings us.

For all of us

The Guardian published lists of cultural activities you can enjoy from home, in an article by Emily Holden. Local 23 has provided a very useful community resource guide focused on the needs of low income workers. Richard Renner offers information about the protections workers have (in federal employment or the private sector) when they raise concerns about health and safety issues.  Richard’s law firm offers additional resources related to employment rights during the pandemic.

Love & Support

Adelphi Cares

If you or your family need to have groceries delivered, need a ride to medical or other appointments, or need other practical assistance, please contact Wendy Eck, clerk of Pastoral Care Committee. The committee has set up a team of people who are able to go out and assist others in our community.  The team is called “Adelphi Cares.”  If you are a person who can offer such help, please contact Wendy as well.

Sharing joys & concerns

After our home-style meetings for worship, when we gather online for ministry, joys and concerns, and announcements, we give ourselves an opportunity to hold one another in the Light. If you would like someone to convey a personal joy or concern on your behalf, with or without your name, you can contact Wendy Eck, who will bring a message of joys and concerns to each meeting.

Free mental health support

Crossings is facilitating connections between volunteer mental health professionals and people who are regularly exposed to COVID-19 in their work or home life, such as those who work in front-line services like grocery stores, ancillary and clinical health care, postal service, etc.  Here is a flyer with info for front line service workers in need of some mental health support.  Please print this out and tape to your mailbox for your letter carrier, or bring it to your grocery store for the workers there, or let clinical or ancillary medical workers in your life know. If you are a mental health professional, wanting to volunteer tele-health sessions for front line service workers, you can find info here to register.

Financial assistance

In this time of possible need, Friends might consider Adelphi’s Aid Fund.

The purposes of the AFM aid fund are to provide financial assistance:

  1. so recipients can attend camps, conferences, and workshops they would otherwise be unable to afford
  2. so recipients can meet basic living expenses (Sharing fund)
  3. for hardship occasioned by obedience to the leadings of God’s spirit or to conscience consistent with Quaker testimonies (Sufferings fund).

The aid fund is overseen by an ad hoc committee consisting of the meeting clerk, the finance committee clerk, and the pastoral care committee clerk, or their designees.  The treasurer administers the fund and serves as an ex-officio member of the oversight committee.

The oversight committee of the Aid Fund meets whenever there is a request. More information about the Aid Fund is available. To apply for one of the above purposes, contact the Treasurer or the contact for Pastoral Care, currently Anna Sommers. Recent editions of Silent Announcements are listed on the meeting’s website. An archive of earlier Silent Announcements is also available, if you’d like to hunt for older details.