The Iowa Yearly Meeting Christian Social Concerns committee desires to help connect the local churches of the yearly meeting to a better minister to the needs of their communities. To that end we have begun work on a short questionnaire that one day we would like to challenge each of our churches to take out into their neighborhoods. College Avenue will be trying this out in the coming weeks, and scheduling a follow up meeting to put the information gathered to practical use and wrestle with more effective ways of reaching out. As we create these resources, and challenge the YM to use them, our hope is that the church is better aware of the social concerns and needs of those surrounding it.
We ordered 500 blog promo cards to hand out at yearly meeting, and they turned out very nice. We also secured WIngs of Refuge, an anti-trafficking organization, to host a yearly meeting workshop on our theme of loving our captive neighbor and how that looks in Iowa. We wholeheartedly desire you will take advantage of the opportunity to listen for ways you might respond in Christian love to efforts to engage the issue of human trafficking. Our committee has a real need for fundraising, as we must raise our own budget. We will partner with other boards, such as the Youth and Young Adult in sending out a fundraising letter later this year. We have begun our efforts at communication in earnest faith that God will bless us and help us as we try to bring the rich Christian theology and historic legacy of Quaker witness through social action back together for the needs of our time.
One event we would like to highlight is an opportunity for continued conversation and education on the issue of immigration, called Welcoming the Stranger, will be put on by Erica Palmer of AFSC Saturday, Sept. 23, 10AM – 3PM, at Sugar Creek Mennonite Church in Wayland, IA. Also, a man named Timothy Lovell from LaGrand Friends approached the Yearly Meeting with an opportunity to write about this issue in a piece to be published at some point, if anyone is interested in finding out more (and is interested in writing from a PERSONAL perspective and not purporting to speak on behalf of the yearly meeting), Timothy’s email is firstname.lastname@example.org. His invitation is extended to all Friends from all perspectives who might feel led to write a 250 word response.
Expenses so far include:
Promotional cards from VistaPrint $71.97
Wings of Refuge Workshop speaking fees $359
Total budget left (because of the generous donations of one of our committee members)
We continue to seek writers and resources. We plan to reassess and listen for where God is calling us to go next. We ask you would support us financially, and also prayerfully, as our newly reformed committee gets its bearings and attempts to minister in some new ways. Thank you for listening.