Interchange – Fall 2010

The 2010 Blue Ridge Gathering, the get-together for southwest Virginia Quakers, met on May 23 at the new Blacksburg Meetinghouse. The weather was sunny and cool, with some clouds. Sixty-five Friends from Abingdon, Blacksburg, Floyd, Lynchburg, Maury River and Roanoke Meetings were present. Regrets that he couldn’t attend were also sent by Tony Lowe, pastor of the Fancy Gap Fellowship of Friends.

In the morning, Friends gathered for Meeting for Worship in the spacious Meeting Room that overlooks the Blue Ridge Mountains while young Friends, after joining us briefly, attended First Day School. A tasty potluck, then an enjoyable period of singing followed. In the afternoon, Roger Golden of Abingdon Meeting spoke about his leading for area Meetings to sponsor a Christian Peacemakers Team worker. Bob McGahey of Celo Meeting then delivered a talk on “Friends and the Environment: the southwest Virginia version”, ending with worship-sharing about our favorite places in the wild when we were young and what we can do to preserve them now. Child care was offered for young Friends.

It was a fun, relaxed day! To see folks from the various Meetings mixing at the potluck or in between events was memorable. A feeling of celebration for the beautiful new Meetinghouse was felt by attenders. Don’t miss the 2011 Gathering!

Blue Ridge Gathering Friends will meet next on February 26, 2011, at 11 AM at the Blacksburg Meetinghouse to plan the next Gathering. A convenor, that is, someone to remind people about the planning session, is still needed to begin this process. Please contact Gary Sandman at 540-989-0393 or garysandman@cox.net if this is something you are led to work on.

Gary Sandman, Roanoke

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