have we amongst us, people who have been delegated by their YM or regional meetings to attend any of the FWCC Section meetings?
I am interested in hearing positive and not so positives experiences & themes that worked (or didn't work).
I was a delegate for German YM to FWCC-EMES from 2009 to 2012.
- 2009, was in Moyallon in Co. Armagh (Northern Ireland), the Theme "Was being Martha and Mary" I was a bit of an EMES sceptic of the opinion, it was a Quaker-funded travel agency. Although the networking was helpful and I enjoyed the social aspect, the content and way business was done really did not speak to me, ....until the very last day. I loved the early morning at Sunrise, as I wandered the fields, it was "Easter Sunday". Our final Meeting for Worship was moving, I quaked and was moved to minister.
- 2010, we met in Bonn, Germany, the theme was "Eldership: being midwives of the spirit". This meeting really spoke to me, and convinced me of the need for FWCC EMES. It was deep, funny and definitely spirit-led, I nearly quaked for the 1st time on ""German soil" (in Germany since 2003).
- 2011, we met at Herzberg, near Aarau in Switzerland, the theme was "Life journeys - celebrating our diversity". We were also joined by several young Friends and the World Gathering of Friends organising committee. I talked about my faith journey and time with Christian Peacemaker Teams. Again I enjoyed this coming together, of sharing especially within an international setting.
In hindsight, this meeting in Herzberg coupled with my recent time on team with CPT had laid the way for my coming identity as a convergent Friend.
In 2012, my last meeting was Kabarak, Kenya. It was overall a positive experience, but I also realised that how privileged I was having English as a mother tongue, a UK Passport and being a convinced Friend / Quaking Quaker.
As their delegate, I am still not sure what I bought back to German & Austrian Friends and it was difficult to take their wishes/thoughts to FWCC EMES meetings.
The diversity of Friends with the EMES section can be a challenge, and trying to find what binds us can be confusing. My greatest challenge remains being amongst fFriends that do not believe in Gospel Order or being led by the light/spirit of Christ, but that is why I realise I needed to be part of FWCC.
If nothing else I learnt so much about myself, my spiritual development and where I fit in the bigger Quaker family. I will be forever grateful that German YM delegated me and allowed me this growth.