Friends General Conference

Together we nurture the spiritual vitality of Friends

Why I Initiated the 40 Gifts from 40 Young Adults Challenge

Photo by Mike Goren

This year I want to make a donation to FGC that goes as far as possible, so I'm offering a challenge to other young adults to give too.  If 40 young adults make a donation to FGC before the end of July, I’ll give $1500 Our gifts will be used for the young adult and high school clerks training in 2019.  And if we raise enough money, the balance will be used to expand young adults scholarships for the 2019 Gathering. DONATE TODAY.

I would be a completely different person if it weren't for FGC.

I came to Gathering the first time when I was twelve, and I was shy and awkward and absolutely sure no one would like me. I had no experience of Quaker community outside my monthly meeting. But looking back now, many years on, there are threads that connect me to people I met that very first night: people my age, the parents of people my age, and the staff who cared for the Gathering community. The FGC Gathering was for me an experience of radical welcome.

Participating in FGC committee work was the first place I truly understood the power of intergenerational Quaker community. So much of what I know about Spirit-led decision-making comes from having labored with FGC Friends on issues great and small, patiently and tearfully and sometimes with overwhelming joy, in Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business.

As an adult, I've tried to support FGC in welcoming and embracing others the way that I was welcomed and embraced, through Gathering but also through other programs and services. I've served on committees, attended conferences and trainings--including the clerks training offered to High School and AYF clerks--visited multiple yearly meetings, and traveled thousands of miles for FGC over the years.

I hope that my work has helped strengthen the web of connection that makes up FGC and encouraged others to seek Quaker community. But I also recognize that it is privilege that's allowed me to take on that work, financial privilege to get me in the door and white privilege to seat me easily at the table, and I don't want to see other younger Friends tripped up by barriers I was able to sail right over without noticing.

I want to help FGC create more opportunities for younger Friends to serve without financial burden, and I especially want to do it now, when FGC is explicitly looking at the ways to build an anti-racist community that empowers Friends without my privileges. So I'm offering up some money and hoping if you have the means you'll join me in contributing to opportunities for younger Friends at FGC.

Please donate today.

--A grateful and anonymous young adult Friend