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Wanted: News of Quaker Anti-Racism

Tommee Carlisle
On Cliques (September 2021)

Dear Friends: In their monthly, quarterly, and yearly meetings, Friends in the West are rising to the challenge of taking actions that enact equality and justice. We are reaching out to one another to learn what our various Quaker meetings are doing to support Black, brown, and Indigenous lives and to bring down the systems and structures that support White supremacy, within us and without us.

Many Friends meetings have been learning about White supremacy and anti-racism through books and films, discussions and worship-sharing groups for several years now. Some have taken their study into action; others may be feeling inspired to act. 

What direct, people-of-color-centered actions have Friends felt, or currently feel, led to undertake? We want to hear stories from your meeting.

I write on behalf of the Friends of Racial Justice (FRJ) planning group of Multnomah Monthly Meeting in Portland, OR. We recently asked Western Friend if the magazine would provide a place for meetings to publish descriptions and stories about what they have done / are doing for racial justice, and a place to share resources. Western Friend has agreed. Now we need to provide the magazine with six articles in the year ahead. 

The Friends of Racial Justice planning group is looking for more people to join us in organizing this project. I am willing to serve; I am passionate about the possibilities, and I have the time to coordinate. I am looking for several more Friends to join me in finding stories to publish. Maybe some members of this group will be BIPOC Friends. As a White Friend, I am learning what to do to make this an experience that meets BIPOC Friends’ needs in racial justice work without taking their labor for granted. 

Through this project, we will build relationships with others who are doing anti-racism work; we’ll share ideas about what has worked and what hasn’t; and we’ll share how our work has created material or spiritual changes. Please direct inquiries and volunteer offers to me by the end of October. I will organize an online gathering in early November, when we can make our plans for collecting six articles for 2022. 

You can contact me at 928-499-9023 (voicemail or text) or [email protected]. Please write “Western Friend Racial Justice” in the subject box.

– Tommee Carlisle, Multnomah Monthly Meeting (NPYM)

Racial Justice Quakers and race anti-racism

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