Paid Religious Education (RE) Staff in Quaker Meetings
Conversation Circles: February 21 & 23, 2023
Quaker religious education (RE) is entering a new phase as Friends meetings rebuild ministry to children, youth and families or start anew. We’ve heard that during the covid-19 pandemic, yearly and monthly meetings with paid RE staff were more likely to maintain programming for children and youth than meetings relying solely on volunteers. Yet unprogrammed Quaker meetings, with their emphasis on the ministry of every Friend, may hesitate to create roles that place responsibility for vital aspects of the meeting on paid staff.
Committee members, religious educators and youth workers (paid and volunteer), meeting clerks and interested Friends are invited to this online conversation to explore why, whether and how to invest in paid staff to support ministry to children, youth and families. You will come away with principles, considerations, and connections to move forward in your meeting.
- What models of paid support for child and youth programs are used by unprogrammed Friends meetings at the monthly, quarterly or yearly meeting level?
- How do meetings benefit (or not) from having paid staff for education and ministry to children, youth, and families?
- What roles do RE staff play in education and pastoral care of families? What roles do RE committees play?
- How can we help our Meeting community gather around children’s religious education?
- How can QREC support Friends who feel called to RE ministry in monthly meetings?
- Melinda Wenner Bradley, Director of programs, Philadelphia YM
- Elizabeth Freyman, Curricuulm Coordinator, Abuquerque Friends Meeting
- Keenan Lorenzato, Youth Program Coordinator, Pacific Yearly Meeting
- Andrew Wright, Youth and Children’s Ministries Coordinator, Durham Friends Meeting, NCYMC
- How to Retain Young Families in Quaker Meeting, by Ami Corleto-Bales, Christine Barnaby, David Corleto-Bales, David Keiser-Clark, Janaki Spickard Keeler, Kat Griffith, and Maya Wright, Friends Journal, February 1,2022
- What Quaker Parents Say They Need, Emily Provance, Friends United Meeting Journal, 2022
- Children’s Ministry Norms, Ministry Architects