Ann Arbor Friends Meeting
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Readings for Reflection: August 2006
from the Committee on Ministry and Counsel

This month’s Reading is the Epistle from the Middle School Group of Lake Erie Yearly Meeting, composed and read aloud at the 2006 Annual Meeting, June 15-18 in Bluffton, Ohio.

Dear Young Friends Everywhere,

Greetings from Lake Erie Yearly Meeting at Bluffton University, Ohio. The Yearly Meeting theme was "Moved by Faith within Community." While here, we were moved by the spirit by jumping forward and running backwards at the track field. While at the track, we discovered faith in that we could win and found a competitive community in our mini-Olympic events.  It felt good to go swimming at Twin Lakes with the fish after being hot and sweaty. Speaking of fish, some of us felt like fish out of water when we were folk dancing. During the dancing, we found a strong sense of community with everybody working together.

We were also moved by listening to David Bucura talk to us about Rwanda and life there for students. We learned that many poor people don't have water, and how in Africa and most of the world, school is a privilege, not a right. We thought it was sad, and some of us felt selfish by comparison. We now are more appreciative of all the things that we have that others don't have because we took them for granted and now we are more aware of what we use. While learning about Quaker schools, in Rwanda, El Salvador, and Bolivia, we found out that most school uniforms are blue, except in El Salvador where they are red. Outside, the schools did not have much playground equipment.

We took joy in strawberry picking. We picked about 2½ buckets of strawberries to share with the community surrounding us. We liked worship sharing. It was a good way to relax and interesting things were shared, but we did not like waking up early.  We played some cooperative games including a blind game, teaching us to trust and have faith in the people/person leading in front of us as we moved about our community. We found community at dancing, at mini-Olympics (that was a competitive community), in picking strawberries together, and in cooperative games. We found faith at the track, and also we had faith in many various games. Throughout the weekend, we found faith and community here at Lake Erie Yearly Meeting.

[Signed by Middle School leaders and youth] 

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