In the Quaker tradition of Midweek (Wednesday) worship, we at the Friends House are excited to bring you MIDWEEK: Experiments in Faithfulness. This is a weekly, one-hour, facilitated spiritual practice with Quaker flavor and an experimental ethos. Each week, a guest facilitator will engage us in a unique spiritual practice. Check out our line up to see details about our facilitators and the practices they offer.
** This program is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC ** If you’d like to support this initiative and all of our work, you can do so here.
ACCESSIBILITY: We are now offering closed captioning for these events!
Questions? Contact our Program Manager, Jen, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for this soul-stretching series and the delightful geography-defying opportunity to be among Friends.
– Martha Penzer, Burlington, VT
In addition to these live events, we’re also offering shorter recordings of these spiritual practices. Each video is about 10-20 minutes long, and includes the entire explanation of the practice! So join us live or join us later!Take me to the videos
We all inherit and are formed by a variety of spiritual, cultural, and relational values, and we all must reconfigure these ingredients of morals and traditions for our current life and times. In this introduction to the practice of moral bricolage, I will offer an invitation to reflect on how we may fashion creative and ethical beauty out of the bits of our own unique stories so as to create a mosaic of spiritual grounding for our future journeys.
Emily Ling (she/her) lives and works in the intersection of spirituality, social justice, ecology, and creativity. She holds masters degrees in Public Affairs and Divinity, and worked for years in the field of criminal justice policy reform before embarking on her current job as a full-time farmer who engages regenerative agriculture to empower marginalized communities.
Lilia will invite us along for an exploration of the practice of gratitude and how that practice has evolved along the way for Lilia.
Lilia Fick (she/they/ey) lives on the unceded territory of the Algonquin People in a place commonly known as Ottawa, ON, Canada. She/ey have been a lifelong Quaker and try to “let her/eir life speak.” She/ey are a member of Ottawa MM, Canadian YM and Canadian Young Friends YM. Since the pandemic hit, she/ey have felt incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to travel to many Yearly Meetings; Quaker conferences, gatherings and workshops; and to attend Pendle Hill’s daily Meeting for Worship, all from the comfort of her own home.
By their very nature, texts that are meaningful or sacred to us will never fully answer the questions we might have for them or completely portray all the perspectives and possibilities of their characters. Using the Bible and some of her own poems, Megan will lead us in how we might write poetry as a way of exploring what’s left unsaid or given little attention in a text; she will also direct us towards the opportunity to read poetry that explores those silences as well!
Megan McDermott is a poet and Episcopal priest living in Western Massachusetts. Her first poetry chapbook (a small collection of poems), Prayer Book for Contemporary Dating, will be published by Ethel micro-press later this year, and her work has been in a variety of journals, including The Christian Century, Relief: A Journal of Art + Faith, The Cresset, and Rock & Sling – a journal of witness. She is a graduate of Yale Divinity School and the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, an interdisciplinary program dedicated to religion and the arts.
Last year, worship and other experiences of community and connection went online. For some, online connection and spirituality has been difficult — feeling distanced or distracted. The good news is that there are ways that you can use technology differently to help deepen your experience. This session is MIDWEEK is an experiment in trying different practices that might change the way you feel interacting with others online.
David is a dad, a retired software engineer, a singer, a runner, a sexuality educator in training, a member of a Quaker-inspired cooperative household in Arlington, Mass., an amateur cheesemaker, and the CTO of a cannabis startup, among other things. David is experimenting with “tech ministry” as a way to learn compassion and empathy in a context that is especially vital in this particular moment. You can learn more about David’s ministry at: http://techministry.info
Participants can expect a semi-programmed session of songs and stories intended to provoke minds and center hearts. Our session will culminate in a reflective songwriting activity.
A middle school history teacher by day, Daniel Ayers moonlights as an award-winning songwriter, bringing his arresting voice and razor-sharp wit to audiences across North Carolina and beyond. You can learn more about Daniel’s music at https://danielayers.net/listen.
When you start to think about it, the “four seasons” we all learned in preschool probably don’t really match the cycle of the natural world where you live. And having them as a default framework can keep us from observing what’s actually happening around us.
We’ll spend some time contemplating our current season, reflecting on the natural and personal events that characterize this time in your life where you live. We’ll share our observations with each other (one of my favorite parts), and we’ll go home with fresh ideas on how to celebrate and fully live into this season.
You may wish to register in advance in order to download and print the worksheet we’ll be using. If this isn’t possible, don’t worry! But please do bring a blank sheet of paper or two. All participants will benefit from having a pencil and eraser, along with their favorite writing utensils, and some scrap paper to jot down notes and ideas.
With a passion for creating community in every form she can think of, Rachel was active in community development in Woodstock, VT, most recently ran a coworking space in Portland, OR, and is currently taking time off to do creative exploration and incubation of whatever beautiful thing is next. She lives in Milwaukee, WI. This session is based on Rachel’s workbook, The Magic of Seasons, available for purchase here.
“And in this he showed me a little thing, the quantity of a hazel nut, lying in the palm of my hand, as it seemed. And it was as round as any ball. I looked upon it with the eye of my understanding, and thought, ‘What may this be?’ And it was answered generally thus, ‘It is all that is made.'”
In this practice, Jen will offer some meditations and embodied practices to ground and challenge us, based on mystic Julian of Norwich’s life and thought. Participants should bring a piece of paper, and a hazelnut (if possible).
Jen Higgins-Newman is a Quaker, mystic, theologian, writer, activist and currently the Program Manager at Beacon Hill Friends House. She is a member of Beacon Hill Friends Meeting, New England Yearly Meeting, and she holds a Master of Theological Studies from Vanderbilt Divinity School. Jen writes for the Barclay Press Illuminate series, serves on the NEYM host committee for gatherings of spiritual life and ministry, and is looking forward to sharing a spiritual practice dear to her heart.
Hazel enjoys seeing the world through travel, eating spicy food and laughing heartily. She received her BA from Willamette University and her M.Div from Boston University. She is a proud aunt, skilled in the art of word searches, loves to sing and is a huge fan of orca whales.
While this event is free and open to the public, your donation today will help us continue putting these events on, paying our facilitators for their excellent work, and support all of our other work!CHIP IN TODAY