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It’s been important for us to be in virtual community with Friends this past year. We have been virtually visiting meetings and churches around the country over the last year, sharing the work and ministry of FCNL with Friends far and wide, and encouraging Spirit-led witness and advocacy. We are so looking forward to continuing our sharing and connecting with Friends.   

FCNL’s ministry of Quaker engagement is a crucial part of grounding the organization in the Religious Society of Friends and supporting Friends’ participation in Quaker advocacy. 

Visit Offerings: Workshops and Presentations

Here are just some of the ministries we offer Quaker communities and ways we can be a resource for your witness. Request a visitor to lead a program or contact us at Quakers@fcnl.org to learn more. 

Setting FCNL’s Quaker Lobbying Priorities (60 minutes – staff or volunteer. Jan-Apr 2022 only)

There are countless urgent problems in our country and the world. It’s overwhelming. Many of us hold values that lead us to believe change is necessary to bring our society in alignment with the better world we know is possible. One impactful vehicle to drive that change is working to influence what the US government does at the federal level. Quakers have a national lobbying organization—the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)—that advocates for the better world we seek through policy change. FCNL advocates on issues and policies identified as concerns by Quakers around the country. For each session of Congress, FCNL facilitates a priorities process to seek Friends’ input—through your meetings, churches, and other Quaker-affiliated communities—as to what policy areas are most pressing for FCNL to focus on. You can be a part of setting that change agenda.

This staff or volunteer-led workshop provides a structured container for your community’s discernment of which policy areas in The World We Seek: Statement of Legislative Policy should be high priorities for FCNL to focus on in the 118th Congress (2023-2024).

The Roots and Branches of Quaker Advocacy (60 minutes – staff)

Explore the intersections of Quaker theology, history, and advocacy through the lens of A Theological Perspective on Quaker Lobbying by Margery Post Abbott and the work of other Quaker scholar-activists. Discuss and share your experiences of Quaker changemaking traditions and learn how FCNL’s work fits into the broader landscape of Quaker civic engagement today.

Speaking Truth to Power: The Role of Storytelling in Quaker Advocacy (60 minutes – staff)

Learn how to frame and tell your story as an impactful advocacy tactic. We all have stories to tell and ministry to share about the change we want to see in our society. The content of this workshop is applicable to any communication with Congress, including media advocacy and virtual lobbying. Your meeting/church can specify a policy area focus for the workshop by sharing what issue you are led to learn and act on in your request (e.g., peace, economic justice, policing, climate). If you do not have an issue focus in mind, FCNL will suggest an issue of strategic importance based on your legislators.

Sharing Quaker Ministry with Congress (from Home): Virtual Lobby Training (60-90 minutes – staff) 

Learn how to lobby Congress from home! Learn the ins and outs of preparing for and conducting a remote lobby visit. This training prepares you or your group to lobby elected officials in the manner of Friends in our virtual era. Your meeting/church can specify a policy area focus for the workshop by sharing what issue you are led to learn and act on in your request (e.g., peace, economic justice, policing, climate). If you do not have an issue focus in mind, FCNL will suggest an issue of strategic importance based on your legislators.

F/friends in Unlikely Places: Engaging Those Who Disagree (60-90 minutes – staff) 

Does talking to legislators who don’t agree with you feel like an exercise in futility? In this workshop, we’ll make the case for engaging legislators with differing views and discuss how to have those conversations faithfully and effectively. Drawing on theoretical, strategic, and spiritual frameworks from Quaker tradition, this workshop will equip F/friends with new skills for communicating across political divides, practicing seeing that of God in people we disagree with, and building relationships to make change in Congress.

Policy Update: Look Towards 2022 with FCNL’s Lobbyists (staff)

Why does our advocacy matter now? Hear from any of our lobbyists about the highlights of their program issue area in the last year and ask questions. Talk with the experts about why your advocacy is important in their program area as we look towards the 2022 elections!

Plenary or Keynote Address (staff)

An FCNL staff member shares remarks during a session at your (virtual) gathering. These talks can range from addresses given by our policy experts to stories of staff spiritual journeys and remarks on how Quakers engage in the political process in ways that are both faithful and effective. 

Visiting Friends: Stories of Faith in Action (60 minutes – volunteer; after Apr. 2022 only) 

Quakers have a centuries-long history of intervisitation—seeking fellowship and deepening ties with Friends by way of personal human-to-human connection and relationships. Rooted in this practice, FCNL volunteer Visiting Friends travel in the ministry to bring messages, presentations, and workshops about the core components of FCNL’s work through personal stories that nurture and energize Friends. Visiting Friends share, listen, build community, and invite Friends to take Spirit-led action in meaningful ways.