We will stay the course, for now.

At this writing it has been nearly two months since Friends gathered for Meeting for Worship at New Garden Friends Meeting. Precautionary measures to limit the spread of coronavirus also closed our meetinghouse to its other regular functions, including meetings of committees, civic and support groups, and other social and recreational groups.

These actions were determined by the Meeting’s Covid-19 Prevention Group, an ad hoc committee including the meeting’s clerk, the clerk of the Meeting on Ministry and Counsel, physicians, the pastoral minister, and other New Gardeners. The foremost concern is to protect the health of the congregation, the staff, and the many members of the public who frequent the meetinghouse.

(Note: Updated details on the meeting’s closure policy are here.)

New Gardeners, like so many other Americans, have adapted to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our community. These changes have been hard on everyone.

Many of us gather online as Pastoral Minister Margaret Webb offers a prepared message via Facebook Live at 11 a.m. each First Day. She also delivers a midweek message on Facebook at 1 p.m. each Wednesday, also on the New Garden Facebook page. The pastoral care work of the Meeting continues in every way except in-person visits. Caring Friends, Religious Education, and other Meeting functions continue.

Gov. Cooper on May 8 announced the easing of some restrictions on public gatherings as the state’s coronavirus infection rate begins to plateau and decline. New rules allow faith communities to gather outdoors for worship, if socially distanced.

We realize that New Gardeners are anxious to return to Meeting for Worship, to sit with one another, and be in community as is our tradition dating back to 1754.

The Prevention Group discussed this option via a Zoom meeting. It was determined that it is not practical or prudent for New Garden Friends to alter its position at this time.

Many in our congregation are at heightened risk of infection because of age or other health issues. Attempting worship while separating children and young families from older persons seems contrary to the spirit of New Garden. Providing access to restrooms for outdoor worshipers raises additional issues of maintaining social distancing, traffic control, and sanitizing all surfaces between uses.

The Prevention Group believes the risks remain too great. The consensus it that New Garden should continue its conservative precautionary measures. The meetinghouse will remain closed for worship and other gatherings for a while longer.

The Covid-19 Prevention Group will regularly revisit these issues going forward. Everyone yearns to gather again, to see Friends and worship in community. And we will, when we are more certain that we can do so without undue risk.

Jane Foy
Clerk, Meeting on Ministry and Counsel

Tim Lindeman
Clerk, New Garden Friends Meeting

May 11, 2020

Online Worship / May 31, 2020 / Phil Gulley

Welcoming Friends since 1754

New Garden Friends Meeting is an inclusive, welcoming faith community in the tradition of the Religious Society of Friends. Our members and attenders represent a wide range of religious backgrounds and traditions. Grounded in more than 250 years of Quaker heritage, New Garden remains a vital Meeting for those who seek that of God in every person.

New Garden Friends Meeting Greensboro NC
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The Calendar

Upcoming at New Garden
Sun 07
Sun 07

Event Cancelled; Spiritual Disciplines

June 7 @ 10:00 am - 10:45 am
Sun 07

Online Meeting for Worship

June 7 @ 11:00 am - 11:30 am
Sun 07

Event Cancelled / Carry-In Meal

June 7 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Sun 07
Sun 07

Event Cancelled / Young Friends

June 7 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Mon 08

Looking Ahead

News you need to know

SOLAR+ENERGY Project Update / June 7 Monthly Meeting for Business

PROPOSAL: Install solar energy for New Garden Friends Meeting and provide energy relief for local low-income homeowners. STEWARDSHIP: Solar power generation to reduce fossil fuel use and energy costs. COMMUNITY: A donation to Community Housing Solutions for energy conservation projects for local low-income homeowners. Please join Meeting for Business on 6/7/20 @ 1pm to discuss…

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“The Human Element” / Free Online Screening June 8 – 17

Interfaith Power & Light is excited to kick off our summer film series with a return of a free online screening of The Human Element, followed by a webinar with renowned filmmaker James Balog. Over 7,000 people viewed The Human Element during Faith Climate Action Week earlier this year, and to meet the continued requests…

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Quaker Spring: Experiencing The Inward Christ Together / June 17 – 20

Wednesday – Saturday, June 17-20 / Virtual Gathering (via ZOOM) Our program will be shaped by God’s leading as the week unfolds. Each day will include: Bible Study, Worship, Small Groups, Evening Explorations and Fellowship. “The intent of all speaking [in meeting for worship] is to bring into the Life, and to walk in, and to…

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Wednesday Readings & Queries

Every Wednesday at 1 p.m. Pastor Margaret is doing a live video on the New Garden Friends Meeting Facebook page. Each week will include readings and queries to help center your week. You can join live at 1 p.m. or watch the video any time after.

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New Garden Friends Meeting Greensboro NC

Steps to keep our community safe from Covid-19

June 1, 2020 Dear Friends, NGFM’s COVID-19 Prevention Group has advised that we continue to keep the meetinghouse closed until further notice. NC’s Phase 2, which the Governor is calling “Safer-at-Home,” allows more businesses to reopen and permits outdoor gatherings of up to 25 people (with social distancing); however, the risk of coronavirus transmission remains…

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If You Want to Vote by Absentee Ballot in the Fall

The NC Board of Elections is expecting way more requests this year because of the uncertainty of the virus situation. Guilford County is expecting an increase of about 733% over normal requests for absentee ballots. People involved in elections are suggesting that you send your absentee ballot request in now to avoid the crunch. When…

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Let Your Life Speak / Planned Giving Virtual Session / June 4

Join us for a virtual educational session about planned giving on Thursday, June 4, 2020 at 10:30 am. This virtual ZOOM meeting will feature Mimi Blackwell, Planned Giving Program Manager for Friends Fiduciary Corporation. Planned Giving is an effective and meaningful way to leave your legacy for causes you are passionate about. Some planned giving…

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Virtual Food Drive Exceeds Goal

Thank you, New Gardeners, for generously supporting our virtual food drive that was in place of the usual Spring Food Drive for Greensboro Urban Ministries. Filling pantry shelves at GUM is increasingly urgent now as the number of families needing assistance has grown due to loss of jobs and more meals are being eaten at…

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Guardian ad Litem Volunteers Needed

The (GAL) Guardian ad Litem Mission: Be A Voice For the Children in Our Community • GAL Volunteers are trained as child advocates for abused and neglected children. • Child advocates and attorneys work together to champion children’s needs in court. • Child advocates promote a safe and permanent home for children. During these challenging…

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AmeriCorps Positions Open / Apply ASAP

Greensboro AmeriCorps Positions Available for September 2020 – August 2021. The AmeriCorps Partnership to End Homelessness, located in Greensboro, is recruiting 4 full-time and 24 part-time AmeriCorps members to serve at agencies in the community who serve individuals currently experiencing homelessness or who are at-risk for becoming homeless. Our sites include The Servant Center, YWCA,…

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Graveyard Tour Update / May 25

For many years, it has been a custom at New Garden to have an “alternative” Memorial Day graveyard tour to highlight the many different ways Quakers have served and sacrificed in the cause of peace and justice. This year, owing to the coronavirus restrictions, there won’t be a group tour, but from 10:00 to 11:00…

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New Garden Friends Meeting Interest Groups

Finance & Stewardship Update / May 24

We continue to meet all the Meeting’s obligations including payroll, utilities, building care and our outreach to help other organizations and people in need. I was gratified to see the response to the request for support of the Urban Ministry Food Bank. We doubled our goal. However, contributions to the general budget are down this…

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Let Your Life Speak / Planned Giving Session / RSVP by May 28

10:30 a.m. / Virtual Meeting June 4, 2020 / Planned giving is an effective and meaningful way to leave your legacy for causes you are passionate about. Some planed giving vehicles provide options for life-long income or ways to support your loved ones. Mimi Blackwell, J.D. is a veteran planned giving professional with Friends Fiduciary…

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Changing Systems, Changing Ourselves / May 26

8:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. / Online / Are You Interested in Exploring Anti-racism and Confronting Racist Systems? American Friends Service Committee is offering a five-session monthly online course, “Changing Systems, Changing Ourselves” starting January 28 and ending March 24, with interactive sessions running from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m. each night. January 28, Intro session…

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Freedom Forum Series / Leadership in a Multi-Faith Democracy / May 20

1 – 2 p.m. Eastern / Wednesday, May 20, 2020 / You are invited to join a series of virtual events featuring diverse stories of faith and freedom in action,  with relevance to today’s pandemic, conducted by The Religious Freedom Center. The free webinar will be hosted on the Zoom platform. Zoom is easy to use…

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Nominating Committee Focus

This week we present the final committee for consideration, our Nominating Committee with a re-cap of the complete committee list. Nominating Committee is who we are and what we do is recommend Meeting officers, representatives and committee members to Monthly Meeting for consideration at the June Monthly Meeting. The committee is composed of nine members…

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We Began to Sing; Film Debut Featuring the Work of Pete Seeger

The film, “We Began to Sing,” premiered on Sunday, May 3. It features the work of Pete Seeger and that of Annie Patterson and Peter Blood, who published the books, “Rise Up Singing” and “Rise Again.” If anyone would like to see this fine presentation, go to: https://tinyurl.com/yde26ekr.

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First Day Events

Next Sunday’s schedule