Spiritual State of the Meeting – 2009

Midlothian Friends came together for our annual Gathering for Clearness on May 1. During this day of reflection, Friends expressed a strong sense of belonging to this supportive community of spiritual seekers. Our meeting strives to create a safe sense of home for all who attend. We warmly welcome members and newcomers to Meeting for Worship. We are strengthened and enriched by our community, finding comfort and support in sharing our lives with one another. Our exuberant children are a special source of joy. They are a gift to meeting and our hope for the future.

Over the last year, Friends have come together to help renovate the Meetinghouse. The love and care that has gone into the renovations is evident in improvements to the flooring, lighting and kitchen. The renovation process has been handled very smoothly and successfully, led by Quaker Process and the capable leadership of the Buildings and Grounds committee. It is hoped that our good stewardship of the meetinghouse may eventually draw others in the surrounding community who are seeking the use of our building.

The peaceful quality of Quaker worship continues to be sustaining and nourishing to our community. When members speak, there is silence between contributions, allowing messages to be fully absorbed. Messages that are shared while children are in the room have particular resonance for many in our community. We recognize that the spiritual health and well being of meeting is the responsibility of each and every person. We welcome visitors to worship, providing them with pamphlets and information about Quakerism. As a spiritual home, Meeting for worship affords a safe opportunity to share deeply from the heart.

Business meeting is guided by careful attention and commitment to the Quaker process. Participation has been stronger this year, with representatives attending from most of our committees. There seems to be closer attention to the Quaker process. Our meeting is also considering the possibility of moving Business Meeting to a consistent day and time in the future, which may increase participation.

Committees are the very heart of our Meeting. As mentioned above, Buildings and Grounds have coordinated the building renovations. The Religious Education committee has evolved as older children are more actively involved in helping to facilitate what is most important to them. RE organized a weeklong summer camp for young friends and also helped meeting go greener with a worm farm. They have also taken on a projects including caring for a meditation area, planting flowers, and organizing a relief effort for people in Haiti following the devastating earthquake. Spiritual nurture arranged for a series of adult education meetings on a variety of topics, and organized a series of topics referred to as Quakerism 101. Care and Counsel continues to offer meeting for clearness for personal reasons.

Our Meeting continues to reach out to the larger community together through the efforts of Peace and Social Action Concerns and the Thrifty Quaker. Although we are a small meeting, we desire to take the gifts and love we receive and share them with the world, putting our Quaker beliefs into practice. As each of us develops a passion for deepening our spirituality, we believe a way will open, giving us opportunities to put our Quaker beliefs into practice everyday.

Midlothian Friends continue to follow the leadings of the Spirit, listening to the still voice within, building a deep sense of spiritual community, and seeking ways to see “that of God in everyone.”

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