Back in the game again

Hello, again – I haven’t posted anything at arewefriends for over 6 weeks. The reasons are partly personal, and partly political.

Back in September, I had to go to the Emergency Room with heart palpitations. I wound up needing to have a pacemaker installed. Stress over what’s been happening with Friends may have been a contributing factor. In any case, my doctor, my wife and my support committee all urged me to take a break from anything to do with Indiana Yearly Meeting.

Also, I haven’t wanted to do or say anything which might contribute to the problem during the last few weeks when there might have been a willingness to pull back from the edge of the Quaker cliff and try to keep the yearly meeting together. Many Friends deserve our thanks for trying to keep Indiana Yearly Meeting from dividing, right up until the last minute. Other faithful Friends deserve our thanks for insisting on a fairer division of financial assets.

Now the decision is made, and there is no use trying to undo it. I still think it was a mistake, and if I pray for anything, it will be that some day Friends in our area will find a way to unite again.

I think that it is enormously to the credit of the Indiana Yearly Meeting United Society of Friends Women International that they have refused to divide, and that they plan to continue to worship, work and remain in fellowship together.

I deeply appreciate the many e-mails, letters, phone calls and visits from Friends who have supported me personally throughout this difficult and painful time. Virtually all of them have come from outside Indiana Yearly Meeting, or from individuals in meetings which are being “encouraged” to leave the Yearly Meeting.

I have spent close to 20 years working in and for Indiana Yearly Meeting – serving on committees, raising money for missions, mentoring new ministers and leading workshops. I represented Indiana Friends on the General Board of Friends United Meeting, helped revise our book of Faith and Practice, hosted missionaries and traveling ministers, created new guidelines for financial support of pastors, served on the Vision committee, and did everything I could to support the yearly meeting.

Now I have to leave all that behind me – not by my own choice. I remain convinced that God doesn’t want Friends to divide, and I think that both groups will be weaker as a result.

If the way ever opens for Friends in Indiana to re-unite, I will welcome it. However, I will now turn my time, prayers, energies and creative thought and ministry to building up the new group to which my monthly meeting will belong.

In the coming weeks and months, look for more ideas on how our new group can make the most of its resources, work together, and reach out to a new generation of Friends. 


6 Responses to “Back in the game again”

  1. 1 Howard Brod November 26, 2012 at 3:37 pm

    I wish you and other Friends the best as way opens for you. Your patience, love, and attention to the Light have been an inspiration to me.

  2. 2 Matt Hisrich November 26, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    Glad to have you back, Josh!

  3. 3 Diane Dicranian November 26, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    You have been an inspiration to me since this all started. I have felt like you have been true to yourself and others throughout this ordeal and am sorry it has contributed to your not being well. You may feel there could have been more you could have done but you did your best. Please take care of yourself, you are always in my prayers.

  4. 6 Steven Davison November 29, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    God bless you, Josh, in both physical and spiritual health. I haven’t responded very often, but I have been following your comments and I’ve been saddened and heartened at the same time. Saddened at not only what’s happened to IYM but for the sin against the Spirit that this division represents. But heartened, to read your sane and spirit-led voice and know that many Friends still enjoy the true unity that Christ offers. Thank you. I’ll keep following to see how this exciting new project of rebuilding the body of Christ comes along.

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All of the posts on this blog are my own personal opinion. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the members and attenders of the meeting where I belong or any organization of Friends. For more information, click on the "About Me" tab above.



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