Monday, August 29, 2005

North American reps to Africa

During the World Gathering, it was decided that
there would be a second gathering to follow,
predominantly for those who were not able
to acquire visas to get to the gathering in England.
Those that were denied their visas were from
Africa, Indian, and various countries in South
America. From each continent, two representatives
with one alternative were chosen to go to the
gathering in Kenya from October 20-24. The
role of these individuals is to relay to the others
what happened at the gathering in Lancaster.
Along with the group letters that were written
for the absent Friends, these representatives
are going to do their best to bring the Lancaster
gathering to Kenya, but also to learn from those
at the Kenyan gathering and then bring both of
those sets of experiences back to their yearly
meetings, monthly meetings and others.

Languages and cultures

At the Langauge Cafe workshop one afternoon
I learned some Bahasa (spoken by Indonesians
and Malaysians): Nama saya Jennifer; Russian: privet!;
Nepali: namaste; and

some Finnish: Ma on kveekari.

Also, I worked on my Spanish with Benny and Zaidee
(from Cuba), and a few others that knew
English: little bits or complete fluency. I have the
leading to learn a few languages that are not
native to me.

I watched dances from countries all over the world:
French waltz, New Zealand war dance, a Russian dance,
Irish jigs and reels, Nepalese dance, African dance and
so many more.
That was the same day that I learned how to play a diguredo.

Ah, the power of what you can learn from other Quakers.

Irish music, jigs, and the World Gathering

As I sit here at the computer listening to

Irish music,

a band I discovered over the
weekend at the American Folk Festival

called Danu,

I remember the worry free
and relaxed

of being in England
and at the World

The memories of the
multitude of experiences are dancing
through my mind like an
upbeat swift Irish jig or reel.

I want to be back in Lancaster with this great group of Quakers.

I want to experience the wonder of being with 225 others
every day for meeting for worship.

Hearing the sound of silent worship,
seeing people's prayers drift upwards.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

World Gathering of Young Friends

From around the world
many countries represented
Quakers come together for the World Gathering of Young Friends.
We meet on the campus of Lancaster University,
in Lancaster England to share with each other
our similarities and
differences in language,
culture, geography, and most

importantly, our forms of Quakerism

and how they influence our lives.
Lancaster sits in the heart of historic grounds of Quakerism.

Surrounding the area are Swarthmoor Hall
and meetinghouse, the Quaker tapestry, Firbank Fell,
Brigflatts meetinghouse, and Lancaster Castle and meetinghouse.
The castle is of historical significance
because that is where George Fox was jailed
repeatedly for his beliefs. Swarthmoor Hall was the host
of some of the first Quaker meetings and the home of a few of the founders of Quakerism.
Firbank Fell is where George fox often preached
the word of
and told others that there is that of God in everyone.