Fall Fellowship Registration is Now Open

Fall Fellowship

Back to Basics – The Roots and Fruits of Quakerism

at Temescal Canyon and on Zoom
November 3-5, 2023

Please Join Us


Dear Friends,

We are reminded that Friends have diverse identities, life experiences, and faith traditions. Some Friends come from generations of Quaker ancestors, other convinced Friends have Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, mono or polytheistic, or non-theist backgrounds. 

As an inclusive religion and community of seekers, we strive each day to live with integrity and to listen for and see that of God, the Divine, the Light in all.  

The centering theme for this fall’s quarterly gathering is “Back to Basics – The Roots and Fruits of Quaker Testimonies Then and Now.” 

Paul Buckley, a traveling Quaker minister and author will share with us his perspectives on the Quaker Testimonies in two presentations based on his recently published Pendle Hill pamphlet, Quaker Testimony: What We Witness to the World.   Paul’s presentations will look at early Quaker testimonies, what he considers the 5 essential characteristics of a testimony, how early Friends testified.

Contemporary Quakers have come to “package” our testimonies as the SPICES: Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community, Equality, Stewardship or Sustainability.  Yet we can ask, are these our only testimonies?  Are there others?  

Fall Fellowship is a wonderful opportunity to worship and share together, participate in interest and affinity groups, a meeting for healing, hiking, plenaries, community night, and lots of fellowship.

Families especially are encouraged to attend onsite (the cost for all those 18 and younger are covered by SCQM) as the children’s and teen program committees are planning a wonderful weekend of activities on the beautiful grounds of Temescal Gateway Park in the Pacific Palisades, just north of Santa Monica.  See below for a brief schedule outline and see the scqm.org website for full details.

In peace,
Jane Blount
SCQM Clerk

A Few Notes on Registration

  • There is a registration fee of $25/person for onsite attendance and $5/person for online participation.
  • Additional costs to attend either onsite or online is “pay-as-led”; suggested contribution amounts are on the registration form.
  • We encourage Friends to ask their Monthly Meeting or Worship Group for financial assistance if needed to cover the actual costs of attending.
  • Registration closes at midnight on October 22, 2023. 

Brief Schedule Outline

Friday evening – Zoom only:
         Interest Group – Radical Hospitality

Saturday morning:
         Worship, brief plenary, Keynote presentation, worship sharing 

Saturday afternoon:
         Lunch, Interest groups/workshops, FCNL and our Quaker Advocacy Community – Onsite and Online, The Seekers – Onsite only, “How Long Can I Wear my Sword” – Onsite and Online, affinity groups, free time.

Saturday evening:
         Dinner, community night, informal gathering

Sunday morning
         Breakfast, 2nd Keynote presentation, worship sharing

Sunday afternoon:
Lunch, brief plenary, closing worship


Interest Group Details

Friday Nov 3rd 6:30 – 8:30 PDT 

Radical Hospitality: Join Lloyd Lee Wilson in a discussion on “Radical Hospitality…a way of being in the world that helps to bring the Kingdom of God into full realization …through inclusiveness toward all people, through letting go of personal cravings for possessions and power, and through noncoercion.” See more about the pamphlet and where to purchase it at Radical Hospitality – Pendle Hill Quaker Books & Pamphlets.

This is an online program (those coming Friday afternoon to help set-up are welcome to join us in Stewart Hall).

*Please see information about the Pendle Hill Radical Hospitality reading group on October 18:  https://pendlehill.org/events/pendle-hills-reading-group-october-2023/ 

Lloyd Lee Wilson is a recorded minister of the gospel in West Grove Monthly Meeting, North Carolina Yearly Meeting (Conservative). His publications include Essays on the Quaker Vision of Gospel Order, Wrestling with Our Faith Tradition, Holy SurrenderChange and Preservation in the Same Current, and numerous contributions to Friends Journal, Quaker Life, Quaker Theology, and The Journal of North Carolina Yearly Meeting (Conservative). His message is that “Christ has come to teach his people himself.”

Being Violent While Being Quaker – How long can I wear my sword? – Onsite and Online 

Dan Strickland will share his perspective as a karate student of 50+ years’ standing, how that squares or conflicts with being a Quaker, and what violence is in our lives. Will have a rich discussion around questions like, Does our aversion to violence affect our honesty?  Where is the balance between fear and hospitality?

FCNL and our Quaker Advocacy Community – Onsite and Online 

Come learn first-hand from advocates who have led successful issue FCNL campaigns through building people power and taking action. In this workshop we’ll focus on different ways you can work with FCNL and our Quaker advocacy community to advance our shared vision and values. These ideas can help our meetings and worship groups prepare for deeper work towards the world we seek. 

We will hear from young friends about their experience in the FCNL “Ambassadors” program; our regional FCNL Advocacy Coordinator, Jessica Bahena; and the FCNL Quaker Engagement Program Manager, Bobby Trice. Online and onsite attenders are welcome (onsite participants will meet in Stewart Hall).

Call to Fall Fellowship

Fall Fellowship

Nov 3-5, 2023

The Roots and Fruits of Quaker Testimonies

In Person at Temescal Canyon & via Zoom

Dear Friends,

Many Friends expressed how nourished they felt by attending, either in person or by Zoom, Pacific Yearly Meeting’s annual session this past July.  I encourage you to read the epistle that came from the 77th annual session, which Centered the Voices of the Next Generation.  I hope Friends from Southern CA will feel nourished when we gather this November for our Quarter’s Fall Fellowship.

We are reminded that Friends have diverse identities, life experiences, and faith traditions. Some Friends come from generations of Quaker ancestors, other convinced Friends have Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, mono or polytheistic, or non-theist backgrounds.  As an inclusive religion and community of seekers, we strive each day to live with integrity and to listen for and see that of God, the Divine, the Light in all.  

Foundational to our experiential faith community are the Quaker Testimonies which we contemporary Quakers have come to “package” as the SPICES: Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community, Equality, Stewardship or Sustainability.  Yet we can ask, are these our only testimonies?  Are there others?  What is a testimony?

The centering theme for this fall’s quarterly gathering is “Back to Basics – The Roots and Fruits of Quaker Testimonies Then and Now.”  Paul Buckley, a traveling Quaker minister and author will share with us his perspectives on the Quaker Testimonies in two presentations based on his recently published Pendle Hill pamphlet, Quaker Testimony: What We Witness to the World.   Paul’s presentations will look at early Quaker testimonies, what he considers the 5 essential characteristics of a testimony, how early Friends testified, and the more contemporary evolution of the Quaker “SPICES”.

In addition to our keynote presentations and worship sharing on Saturday and Sunday mornings we will have interest and affinity groups, wonderful children’s and teen’s programs, a meeting for healing, time for fellowship, hiking, possibly singing, plenaries, community night, and worship.

Please mark your calendars and SAVE THE DATE for SCQM’s Fall Fellowship to attend either in person on the beautiful grounds of Temescal Gateway Park in the Pacific Palisades, just north of Santa Monica, or via Zoom.  Full schedule and details to come soon.

In peace,

Jane Blount
SCQM Clerk

Registration for Annual Session is Now Open!

Pacific Yearly Meeting’s Annual Session will be held in person July 21-26, 2023 at Mount Madonna Center (near Watsonville, CA). It will also be possible to attend remotely via Zoom. This year’s theme will be Beloved Community Part II: Centering the Voices of the Next Generation.

Click here for more information, including the Clerk’s Call, bios of the keynote panel members, the schedule, and a link to registration.

Invitation to Friends General Conference 2023 Gathering

When: July 2-8, 2023
Where: Monmouth Oregon
Registration begins: April 23, 2023

Clerk’s Welcome

Greetings Friends,

Gather: One small word with many meanings.

Gather can mean to collect, especially from far-flung locations: They visited gardens, libraries, Meetings, and websites to gather materials to share in this workshop. Or it can mean to come together: Friends of all ages are gathering in Oregon in 2023 for an annual event. It can also mean to increase speed: Quaker witness is gathering momentum around criminal justice. Gather can mean gaining understanding: From the looks on the children’s faces, the performers gathered that their art was what the audience needed that night.

We expect that the 2023 FGC Gathering will be special, in part due to the location. It will be in the Pacific Northwest for the first time in a generation. It will be in Oregon for the first time ever. Some offerings will be online, but mostly, it will be an all-generations in-person experience for the first time since 2019.

We understand that it is a heavy lift for most people to come to the Gathering. It’s a big expense for ever-tightening budgets and those of us who don’t have much disposable income. It’s a large amount of time away from work for shrinking vacation benefits if we are so fortunate to even have a job with benefits. We may be apprehensive about the location.  It costs a large carbon footprint to travel no matter what the offsets. Plus, there are all those roommates who snore and long cafeteria lines. Ah, the travails of travel. 🙂

We are convinced, however, that to gather, in and of itself, with all that word’s meanings, is deeply important. We cannot truly be a society, let alone a religious society, without gathering. Societies must have gathering spaces and places to exchange ideas, to share common experiences and to coalesce as a community. We must gather corporately and corporally to worship. Otherwise, we just dissipate into an unholy mess. 

There is nothing like living together for a week. An event like the FGC Gathering creates life-changing opportunities – both scheduled and spontaneous – to worship, eat, sing, play, pray, explore, and learn together. The Gathering Committee is working diligently to welcome you just as you are and however you are, and we will do our best to make it work for you. We are preparing a unique opportunity to experience “gather” in all its meanings and for all to do a lot of learning, healing, sharing, inspiring, and creating together across our Religious Society of Friends..

The theme this year is “Listen, so that we may live.” We ask you to listen to this invitation prayerfully and see if there is life in it for you and your family. Come to The Gathering, enjoy Oregon’s Willamette Valley, gather for a while.

With Love and In the Light,

Jessica & Kate

Jessica Bucciarelli and Kate Jaramillo

2023 Friends General Conference Gathering Co-Clerks

Friends World Committee for Consultation Southwest Regional Gathering

Listening to God Online (Bilingual)

When: Saturday, May 6, 2023, 10AM-Noon, Pacific Time
Where: online (via Zoom)

Join us online for the FWCC Southwest Regional Gathering, a fully bilingual gathering of Friends from Intermountain Yearly Meeting, Pacific Yearly Meeting, and the Western Association of the Religious Society of Friends.

Travelling Quaker minister Emily Proance will help us explore the challenges of meeting via computer. Can we sense the “presence of the Room” when the room has no walls? How do we maintain unity? The meeting will be conducted in both English and Spanish. All Friends are welcome.

Registration for Spring Gathering is now open!

Spring Gathering at Orange County Friends Meeting

April 28th and 29th, 2023


Dear Friends,

EVERYONE is warmly invited to attend Spring Gathering at the end of April to enjoy fellowship with Friends from across our Quarter. 

Are you curious about how other Friends Meetings and Worship Groups are navigating life as a spiritual community in these shifting times now that the pandemic is not so intense?  We’ll hear excerpts from Meetings’ Spiritual State of the Society Reports and have worship sharing opportunities together.

The Children’s Committee is planning lots of fun activities including candle-making. In addition, children will have an opportunity to fold-form a copper bowl with metalsmith Marne Ryan.

Get to know other Teens in Southern California! Junior Friends aged 12-20 are invited to attend Spring Gathering on Saturday for fun, fellowship, and community building led by Linus Hartigan (co-clerk of PacYM’s Jr. Yearly Meeting).

The Peace & Social Concerns Committee is hosting an online interest group Friday evening at 7 PM, exploring where we are and what is next for us as individuals, within our meetings, and our Quarter, on the journey towards “radical transformation” and a fully welcoming and inclusive, beloved community.  

Saturday’s schedule is from 9:00 – 3:15 (Pacific time). All program activities will be available for those joining us in person and via Zoom, except the children’s program, which will be in-person only. 

Orange County Friends Meeting in Costa Mesa will be hosting the in-person gathering at their campus  2845 Mesa Verde Drive East, Costa Mesa, CA in the larger space where the Orange Coast Unitarian Universalist neighbors have their sanctuary (Daniels Hall).  There will be ample space for everyone who would like to attend in person,

Covid-19 Safety Policy: Everyone is expected to wear high-quality masks when inside and maintain social distancing between members of different households.  If you are sick please stay home.  All are welcome regardless of vaccination status.

Lunch: OCFM will be providing a simple lunch and refreshments during the day on Saturday and will be asking for donations to cover the cost of hospitality. 

There is an outside courtyard area where we can enjoy refreshments and lunch together.

Friends joining us online will be able to join in our shared virtual space with everyone gathered in Costa Mesa as well as online (except for when we are in smaller breakout groups and at lunch). 

May we gather with openness, humility, and a spirit of loving-kindness and gratitude.  May we come together to listen, share, and learn from each other and look towards the future of the Quarter.  

In peace and with gratitude,

Jane Blount, SCQM Clerk

2023 Spring Gathering Schedule

Friday, April 28:

7:00 – 9:00 pm Toward an Inclusive Community

Saturday, April 29:

9:00 – 9:30 am Arrival, coffee and tea, Greet Friends

9:30 – 12:00 pm Worship, Plenary 1, State of Society Reports Part 1

12:00 – 1:00 Lunch Break – optional fellowship 

1:00 – 2:45 pm Plenary 2, State of Society Reports Part 2, 

2:45 – 3:15 Closing Worship

Upcoming Events at Ben Lomond Quaker Center

Quaker Center, a retreat and conference center located in Ben Lomond, California, offers annual calendar of both online and in-person programs that explore spiritual growth and deepening, the faith and practice of Quakerism, peace and social justice, environmentalism, and much more. Here are some ongoing and upcoming programs in March, April, and May.


Wednesday Morning Online Worship sharing
each Wednesday at 10:00 AM Pacific Time

Many of us are over-scheduled. Even the lives of our children are over-scheduled. When we can allow ourselves to rest and relax, healing becomes possible. There is no healing without relaxation. In the Plum Village Tradition, we learn the art of being lazy, at least one day a week.

We think that when we are not doing anything we are wasting our time, that is not true. Our time is first of all for us to be. To be, to be what? to be alive, to be peace, to be joy, to be loving. And that is what the world needs the most. So we train ourself in order to be. And if you know the art of being peace, of being solid, then you have the ground for every action… because the ground for action is to be. And the quality of being determines the quality of doing. Action must be based on non-action.

Thich Nhat Hanh

Queries: Is meditation part of your life? Do you take time out to do nothing?


Dancing with History: a life for peace and justice
In-Person
Friday, March 3rd-Sunday, March 5th, 2023

George Lakey returns to Quaker Center to talk about his new memoir Dancing with History and the growing anxiety around polarization in our country. With lessons he learned as a young man facing violence in the streets and risking his life for human rights, Lakey shows readers how to find hope in even the most challenging times through strategic, joyful activism.


Racial Wealth Gap Learning SImulation
Online Workshop
Tuesdays, April 18, 25, 2023 at 4-5:30 PM Pacific Time

This simulation helps people understand the connections between racial equity, hunger, poverty, and wealth. Participants learn how federal policies created structural inequalities—property ownership and education are just two of many areas affected—and how these policies increase poverty in communities of color.

Facilitator Beverly Ward is the field secretary for Earthcare, Southeastern Yearly Meeting and co-clerk of Quaker Earthcare Witness.


Writing Mental Illness
Online Workshop with Ben Brazil
Wednesdays, May 3, 10, 17, and 24 at 6:30-8:00 PM Pacific Time

Mental illness affects roughly one in four American adults—or about 61.5 million people—in a given year. Yet despite its prevalence, mental illness carries a social stigma, and our mental health “system” offers scant, spotty support for those who suffer. This class asks us, as writers, to engage with the personal, moral, social—and spiritual—dimensions of mental illness. Note: this course involves pre-reading and space is limited.

Ben Brazil directs the Ministry of Writing program at the Earlham School of Religion, a Quaker seminary in Richmond, Indiana.

News from Quaker Center (updated 1/7/2023)

Quaker Center, a retreat and conference center located in Ben Lomond, California, offers annual calendar of in-person programs that explore spiritual growth and deepening, the faith and practice of Quakerism, peace and social justice, environmentalism, and much more. Here’s what’s coming in January, February, and March:


Quaker Mystical Experience: Science, Sharing, and Vision
Weekend In-person Retreat
January 27-29th, 2023

This highly interactive program explores Quaker mysticism and offers a broad, inclusive understanding of all types of mystical experience. It draws on the Quaker mystical tradition, as well as the broader study of mystical experience that comes from the psychology of religion, neuroscience, and philosophy of religion.

Facilitator Don McCormick is a member of Grass Valley Friends Meeting. His interests include Quakerism & mystical experience, minfulness & Quakerism, and Quaker spiritual autobiography. He also trains mindfulness teachers for Unified Mindfulness, which he co-founded. As a professor, he taught psychology of religion (among other things). He is a regular contributor to Friends Journal. His articles include “The Mystical Experience:Reclaiming a Neglected Quaker Tradition” and “Mystical Experience: What the Psychological Research has to Say.”


Embodying the Light Within
Online, pay-as-led
Tuesdays, Feb 7,14,21,28, Mar 7 5:30-7:30PM Pacific

Take a deep dive into Thomas Kelly’s essay “The Light Within” in order to grasp and embody its mystical message using Brother Lawrence’s practice of the presence, sacred reading and writing, Centering Prayer, discursive meditation, and sharing reflections.

Barbara Birch is a member of Strawberry Creek Meeting, a board member at Ben Lomond Quaker Center, and the author of a forthcoming book called Eating with Christ: Feasting, Fasting, Food, Fun and Friends from Barclay Press. She is married and has three daughters.


Dancing with History: a life for peace and justice
In-person
Friday March 3rd-Sunday March 5th

George Lakey return to Quaker Center to talk about his new memoir Dancing with History and the growing anxiety around polarization in our country. With lessons he learned as a young man facing violence in the streets and risking his life for human rights, Lakey shows readers how to find hope in even the most challenging times through strategic, joyful activism.



For more information about Quaker Center and its programs, visit its website.