PORT TOWNSEND FRIENDS MEETING: STATE OF THE SOCIETY REPORT 2003

In April of 2003 we began our second year as a Monthly Meeting. As we
find our way as a new Meeting, a feeling of understanding, deep care,
and Quaker process is evident.


This year has brought trying times for many in our world. In reaction, we have
searched for ways to take action and to give comfort to others and to
ourselves. We have reflected upon our Quaker Testimonies and
Advices. Our Meeting as a whole and individuals in our Meeting have
been led to participate in national, state and community programs.
We have also experienced a great amount of inward care, love, and
dedication to each other.


Our interest in the world has led us to participate in a variety of activities. The
Meeting has donated time and funds to FCWPP (Friends Committee on
Washington State Public Policy) and to FCNL (Friends Committee on
National Legislation). Two members of our Meeting are on committees
of FCNL. We wrote letters to our local newspapers opposing U.S.
military intervention in Iraq. We also participated in a garage sale
to raise funds for the Palestine Children’s Welfare Fund.


We have also been active in our local community. We prepared sack lunches for the
homeless. Individuals from our Meeting have participated in peace
work through Women in Black and the Port Townsend Peace Movement.
A Friend has facilitated dialog with our U.S. Congressional
Representative by arranging several meetings with small groups of
community members as well as a town-hall meeting in Port Townsend.
Another Friend in our Meeting has been instrumental in beginning a
local chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) in our
county.


Many events within our Meeting have nurtured our growth. We have started worshiping in
song before meeting, twice a month. We are inspired by our continued
association with Whidbey Island Worship Group. Because of the
increase in our numbers, we have moved our monthly potlucks from
members’ homes to a rented hall. We have held smaller "friendly
eight" gatherings and are evaluating this as an added way to
share fellowship with one another. For six weeks we held classes
teaching the basic principles of Quakerism ("Quakerism 101").
We were blessed by visits from Eric Moon, the Brinton Visitor; and
Alan Mountjoy-Venning, our lobbyist for FCWPP. Our Meeting recorded
a letter from a young attender stating his position of conscientious
objection to the military. Two members requested care committees
this year. Both those who received care and those who gave it feel
blessed by the experience. We accepted one new member and two
transfers into our Meeting this year. As of the end of 2003, Port
Townsend Friends Meeting had seventeen members. Twenty to thirty
people gather for worship each week. We have a program for children
and we are beginning a serious dialog about ways we can more
effectively expand the content of our religious education. We feel a
deep respect and love for that of God in the world around us. As we
approach the coming year we desire to deepen our understanding, care,
and Quaker process.

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