New England Yearly Meeting

A community of Quakers and Quaker meetings across New England.

Working Party for LGBTQ Concerns of CRSEJ

Sessions Announcements:

A Conversation among the Ls, Gs, Bs, Ts and Qs (Queer, Questioning and Qurious)
With Christine Pattee
Workshop :  Sunday Evening 9-10 pm, Monday Evening 9-10 pm, Tuesday Afternoon 3-4 pm
 Diana, a recent transgender activist, and Christine, a longtime lesbian feminist activist, will hold A Conversation among the Ls, Gs, Bs, Ts and Qs (Queer, Questioning and Qurious) that is open to all. A Quaker meeting is one of the few places where both speakers and audience can feel safe sharing honestly about very personal issues, where answers tend to be complex and gray rather than simple and clear. The presenters will start the conversation with personal experiences, then open it up to the audience. Our watchwords are ‘respect’ and ‘understanding’; ‘political correctness’ is not in our vocabulary. 

 LGBTQ and allies Worship   -With Diane Dicranian
 Tuesday Afternoon 3-4 pm
Worship, worship sharing and connecting those in the LGBTQ communities, allies and other friends. Join us, share, hear what's new and connect. LGBTQ community has just been welcomed as a working party of the Racial, Social and Economic Justice Committee, come talk.


Summer 2016

From Diane Dicranian:

Thank you for welcoming LGBTQ Quakers in NEYM to the Racial, Social and Economic Justice Committee, we have a home finally at it feels great.

The extent of our organising is often emails I have to promise not to share, people who are only "out" at Sessions because their home Meetings are not safe places, and the few that attend LGBTQ worship at Sessions after passing the door repeatedly making sure it's safe inside. There are some LGBTQ people that have moved on, usually because we have nothing to offer, no voice. And then the emails and anonymous notes asking for support that are heartbreaking because our yearly meeting has not cared.  For all of us, I thank you.
 

  Some of you know I travel for Friends Ugandan Safe Transport Fund, I do this in hopes of ending the genocide against my LGBTQ friends in Uganda. I would like to tell you a short story. 

The night following the Pulse in Orlando shooting we met in Augusta for a prayer vigil. Driving to Augusta my partner and I followed a rainbow, I felt led. The Director of Maine Council of Churches spoke and apologized for herself, and for her church for every slight to the LGBTQ community. After 45 minutes 150 people turned around and watched a perfect, double rainbow in the sky that lasted an hour. This is all well documented, was it a sign that G-d is with us, I believe so. 

The following Sunday at Meeting we all shared and it became clearer to me that I cannot see one more person die, by a shooter, a policeperson, or by their own hand because they are LGBTQ, no more.  Exclusion and discrimination leads to violence and hate which too often result in violence and death.  No more. We want to be equal, not be fixed and not be excluded especially from the Quaker community and all Quaker organizations and groups without exception. At first I wanted an apology but in thinking further what good is an apology not freely given but given in response to a demand, it is worthless if not from the heart.
 
  We preach love, let's mean it and show action.  Enough silence and praying that too often is gone until the topic presents itself once more. Our Clerk has called us to put our hands to work, I've had enough talk and am ready to work, sometimes you just can't say no and for me this is that time

Let's "follow the rainbow of love". If you have any questions or concerns please contact me. Thank you.

~Diane

New England Yearly Meeting of Friends

901 Pleasant Street, Worcester, MA 01602

(508) 754-6760 - [email protected]