July and August 2020 Newsletter

For a list of upcoming events, see our Calendar. For the monthly Queries, July: Simplicity, and August: Integrity and Personal Conduct. (The red text on this page and within this web site contains embedded hypertext links. Double click on any red link to open the web page associated with that link.)


Reno Friends Meeting House is closed for now, but we are holding Silent Worship in the Garden at 9:30 am (details below). We are also offering other outdoor activities, as well as online meetings and discussions through the web app Zoom. For details on using Zoom, see our guidelines. The First Day School is closed.

July 2020 Reno Friends Modified Schedule

NOTE: Remember that any scheduled event could be cancelled due to bad weather, changes in Government and Health Department Guidelines, or availability of clerks. Watch your email for updates.

Every Sunday from May 24 – August, 2020:  Silent Worship in the Meeting House Garden, from 9:30 to 10:30 am.
There will be no Singing this summer.
Wed. July 1 – Gab & Garden, 9:30-10:30 am (details below).
Wed. July 8 – Embodying the Light, 9:30-10:30 am, at Lake Park, with Rhonda Ashurst (details below).
Thurs. July 9 – Zoom M&O Committee Meeting, 10 am.


Wed. July 15 – Gab & Garden, 9:30-10:30 am (details below).
Thurs. July 16 – Zoom Clerks’ Committee Meeting, 10 am.
Wed. July 22 – Embodying the Light, 9:30-10:30 am, at Lake Park, with Rhonda Ashurst (details below).
Thurs. July 30 – Zoom Spiritual Discussion, 7-8 pm,  Topic: “Love Thy Neighbor (No Exceptions)”; with Rhonda Ashurst.

August 2020 Reno Friends Modified Schedule

Every Sunday from May 24 – August, 2020:  Silent Worship in the Meeting House Garden, from 9:30 to 10:30 am.
Wed. Aug. 5 – Gab & Garden, 9:30-10:30 am (details below.)
Thurs. Aug 6 – Zoom M&O Committee Meeting, 10 am.
Sun. Aug 9 – Zoom Meeting for Business, 12 noon (note later time.)
Wed. Aug. 12 – Embodying the Light, 9:30-10:30 am, at Lake Park, with Rhonda Ashurst (details below).
Sat. Aug. 15 – RISE Dinner for the Homeless CANCELLED (details below on how you may contribute to RISE.)
Wed. Aug. 19 – Gab & Garden, 9:30-10:30 am (details below.)
Thurs. Aug. 20 – Zoom Clerks’ Committee Meeting, 10 am.
Wed. Aug. 26 – Embodying the Light, 9:30-10:30 am, at Lake Park, with Rhonda Ashurst (details below).
Thurs. Aug. 27 – Zoom Spiritual Discussion, 7-8 pm,  topic TBA; with Rhonda Ashurst.

Reno Friends Meeting Events & Notices               

Silent Worship in the Garden, Sundays 9:30-10:30 am

We are currently holding Silent Worship sitting outside in our Meeting House Garden. Please follow these guidelines to keep everyone safe.

If you would rather sit in silent worship from the comfort of your own home, we invite you to send after-thoughts, joys and concerns, and requests to hold people in the light to Rhonda at rhondalou14(at)gmail.com. Our worship clerk will read them at the next garden silent worship.

Gab and Garden: Fellowship in the Meeting House Garden, Weds. 9:30 – 10:30 am, July 1, July 15, Aug. 5 & Aug. 19

Bring your lawn chair and your icy-cold refreshment, and let’s catch up on each other’s lives in the shade of the cedar tree. Just anticipating seeing your smile lifts my spirits; talking together will be social nourishment! Lending a hand with garden chores is strictly optional, of course. Some find weeding and chatting go well together! I will have tools for light weeding and I expect it will be too warm for anything heftier. Please plan on wearing a face mask at least during your arrival and departure. We will see what the county’s recommendations are for outdoor mask use in advance of each Gab and Garden.

Please call or email Melanie if you have any questions, suggestions or concerns.

(The Meeting House will only be open for bathroom use only.)

Zoom Meeting for Business, Sun. Aug. 9, at 12 NOON

Business Meetings will be held on Zoom through the summer, but at a new time: 12 noon, so everyone has time to return home from Garden Worship. We will meet on second Sundays except for July, when we skip a month. A Zoom invite will be sent out to everyone in advance of each Meeting for Business.

Embodying the Light Class, at Lake Park, Wed. 9:30 – 10:30 am, July 8, July 22, Aug. 12 & Aug. 26

Rhonda Ashurst will lead the “Embodying the Light” class on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month, from 9:30 to 10:30 am at Lake Park, which is at the intersection of Wesley and Coleman Streets, off Keystone. There is adequate parking on both streets, on the park side. We will only do the standing part of our Tai Chi/qigong practice, but please bring a folding chair or mat for our brief meditation, and a mask. We will have adequate room to space out so wearing the mask is optional if it is difficult for you to breathe with one while exercising. There is no bathroom at this site, so plan accordingly. This class draws from eastern practices with the intention of embodying the Light in our physical bodies and our daily lives. Learn about becoming a clearer vessel for the Light, clearing blocks, releasing tension, being present in the moment, feeling the flow of inner energy, improving balance and breathing, and strengthening the muscles that carry us through physical life. Movements are gentle and easy so anyone can do them. We also take time for questions, discussion and reflection.

Zoom Spiritual Discussions, 7-8 pm, Thurs. July 30 and Thurs. Aug. 27. Rhonda Ashurst will lead on various topics.

Join us on Zoom each month for a Spiritual Discussion on various Quaker topics, from 7-8 pm on third or fourth Thursdays. On Thurs. July 30, Rhonda Ashurst will lead a discussion on “Love Thy Neighbor (No Exceptions).” Queries for the session will be sent out ahead of time, along with the Zoom invite.

Pacific Yearly Meeting Annual Session on ZOOM: July 10-15 

As Quakers, most of us have been inspired and moved by the racial justice protests rocking the country, but these events also raise challenging questions for society and government. If you long for the opportunity to discuss and share with other Quakers, then check out the schedule for Pacific Yearly Meeting’s Annual Session, July 10-15, on Zoom. PYM’s summer gathering is the chance for Quakers from all over the west and Pacific region to share ideas and concerns, worship together, and seek out solutions to the problems we face as communities and a nation. This year, the event is being held online and the registration fee is “pay as you are led,” so it’s a great opportunity for anyone interested to tune-in.

The keynote speaker this year is Mica Estrada, who serves on the Pacific Yearly Meeting Racial Justice and the Eldering Subcommittees. Mica also serves on the Geneva Quaker United National Committee, so she is sure to have important insights and wisdom to share.

As for the other events, there are many different sessions to attend, so here’s the link: https://www.pacificyearlymeeting.org/annual-session-minutes-reports/2020-annual-session/ Click on “Schedules and Agendas” for details. You must register to be sent the zoom links. Please be advised that you need to register in advance (at least a few days), so that they can process everyone in time.

RISE Dinner Sat. Aug. 15 – CANCELLED

Reno Friends WILL NOT officially make and serve food for the homeless this summer, but the Meeting will be making a financial contribution to RISE for food costs, as we did in the Spring. If you would like to help by donating funds, please send a donation to the Meeting Co-Treasurer Katie Dwyer, at 40 Arbor Oak Court, Reno, NV  89509-6887. If you are under 65 and feel inspired to help RISE by bringing sandwiches or volunteering to pack pre-made food for the homeless, the East 4th St. yard (1905 East 4th St.) will open at 4 pm on Saturdays. Show up with a mask and gloves. For more information, go to www.renoinitiative.org.

COVID Financial Appeal from Reno Friends

At the May Business Meeting, the Reno Meeting Treasurer shared that – while the Meeting is in good financial shape – it faces several unique circumstances in the current COVID-19 environment. The outside groups that use the Meeting House for weekly meetings have not been able to do so since March, resulting in a loss of rental income. Cash donations in the Meeting’s donation box have also stopped during this shut-down period. And to avoid large groups in tight spaces while serving at RISE dinners for the homeless, we are donating to RISE monetarily instead. As a Meeting, we will continue to budget so that we are operating within our means; however, any extra small donations to meet these special circumstances will be appreciated. Because the Meeting House is temporarily closed, donations should be sent to our Meeting Co-Treasurer Katie Dwyer, at her home at 40 Arbor Oak Court, Reno, NV  89509-6887. Thank you from Reno Friends!

The Quaker Earthcare Witness Corner

BeFriending Creation, Earthcare’s newsletter, which is distributed quarterly, has an inspirational vision and mission statement.  RFM’s last newsletter carried the first section of it; here is the second: We work to integrate into the beliefs and practices of the Religious Society of Friends the Truth that God’s Creation is to be respected, protected, and help in reverence in its own right, and the Truth that human aspirations for peace and justice depend upon restoring the earth’s ecological integrity.

Next month the final section will be shared. Until then, you can learn more about QEW through their website: www.quakerearthcare.org

Donate New Stamps to the Homeless

Want to help those in need? Donate new FOREVER stamps to be distributed to the homeless through the Reno Family Resource Center. Put stamp donations in the little drawer under the bulletin board in the Meeting House.

Carson City Worship Group:  ON HIATUS

The Carson City worship group meets every Sunday of the month for unprogrammed worship from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm in the living room of the Rectory of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Carson City. St. Peter’s, located at 314 North Division Street, occupies a small city block in the heart of Carson City’s Historic District. The Rectory, an historic two-story brick house, sits just south of the church building.

Quaker Mission Stamp Project

The Quaker Stamp Project helps the poor in Africa and India through Right Sharing of World Resources, a Quaker organization that provides micro-grants to worthy women. To support the Stamp Project, save canceled foreign and domestic stamps, leaving a small rim around stamps when cutting them off. Send stamps to: Stamps for Right Sharing, c/o Indianapolis First Friends, 3030 Kessler Blvd East Drive, Indianapolis, IN 46220. You can help make a difference in the world – one stamp at a time!

Outside Non-Profits That Meet at the Quaker Meeting House

NOTE:  These groups are currently meeting online, as the Quaker Meeting House is closed.

Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families meets every Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm, and every Saturday from 5 pm to 6 pm. ACA is a world service 12-step program for those struggling with the legacy of growing up in an alcoholic or dysfunctional home. NOTE:  The Tuesday night group meets in the Sunday School building on the 4th Tuesday of the month. These groups are open to all.

Citizens Climate Lobby of Northern Nevada is a group working with local and national legislators to pass a carbon tax and dividend to help stop global warming. CCL meets in the Quaker Meeting House every 4th Tuesday of the month, from 6:30 pm to 8 pm (except for December). For more information, email Betsy Fadali at bfadali(at)sbcglobal.net. Feel free to bring friends and neighbors, if they’re interested. For more on CCL, go to www.citizensclimatelobby.org.

Art of Living meets on Monday evenings at 5:30 pm, except for holidays and bad weather days. This meditation group, founded by the spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, “provides breathing techniques, meditation, yoga, and practical wisdom for daily living.” If you are interested in attending, please contact Alison Pratte at amepratte(at)gmail.com.

Other Non-Profits Affiliated with Reno Friends

Sierra Interfaith Action for Peace (SIAP) has been “holding a space” for peace for over 16 years. The group gathers for a peace vigil in Reno every Monday from 5:30-6:00 pm in front of the Federal Building at Virginia and Liberty Streets. Members take turns leading the group with relevant articles and discussions. Everyone is welcome to attend!


“There is a hard truth to be told: before spring becomes beautiful, it is plug ugly, nothing but mud and muck…But in that muddy mess, the conditions for rebirth are being created.”

Parker Palmer

Do you want to share a poem, prayer, verse, quote or message that inspires you? Send it to Reno Friends newsletter editor Wendy Swallow at wswallow54 (at) gmail.com.

Hold Them in the Light

Please hold the following in the Light: All who those who have lost loved ones or who have suffered illness during the pandemic; those who have lost jobs or businesses; everyone hurt and challenged by racism, war and terrorism; those who struggle with loneliness, sadness or privation; all those grieving over the epidemic of gun violence in our country, and all the people and leaders of our nation and all countries experiencing war or oppression, so that we may find peaceful resolutions to all our economic and political troubles. In particular, please hold in the Light the Brune family and their son Len, who recently lost his partner and is struggling with health issues.

To request prayers, please leave a message at the Meeting House or contact the Clerk at clerk(at)renofriends.org.

Quaker Activities & Announcements

Attend Silent Worship Online with Other Quaker Meetings – Links

Ben Lomond’s Quaker Center offers an online meeting for worship from 7:30 am to 8:00 am Pacific time every day. Folks from all over the U.S, Canada and gather together for silent worship. To find it, go to: http://www.quakercenter.org/ then scroll down and click on ‘online meeting for worship’

Quaker worship and fellowship online through Western Friend Magazine:  https://westernfriend.org/quaker-worship-and-fellowship-online

British Yearly Meeting Shares a Daily Feed of Advices and Queries

Go to http://quakerthoughtfortheday.com/

Write for What Canst Thou Say?

Tell us your stories! What Canst Thou Say? (WCTS) is an independent publication co-operatively produced by Friends with an interest in mystical experience and contemplative practice. WCTS is a worship-sharing group in print. We hope to help Friends be tender and open to the Spirit. Articles that best communicate to our readers are those that focus on specific events and are written in the first person. We welcome submissions of articles less than 1500 words and artwork suitable for black and white reproduction. It is published in February, May, August, and November. The editorial and production team is Muriel Dimock, Lissa Field, Mariellen Gilpin, Judy Lumb, Grayce Mesner, Mike Resman, Earl Smith, Eleanor Warnock, and Rhonda Ashurst.

Reno Friends are welcome to email submissions to Rhonda Ashurst at rhondalou14(at)gmail.com. Please send your text submissions in Word or generic text format, and artwork in high resolution jpeg files. Photocopied art and typed submissions are also accepted. All authors and artists retain copyright to their articles and artwork published in WCTS. WCTS retains the right to publish initially and to reprint in WCTS anthologies.

American Friends Service Committee, West Region

AFSC West has a robust schedule of events in California concerning the Wage Peace Program, Urban Shield events, Responses and Resistance to Militarism, etc.  For more information, go to http://afsc.org/office/san-francisco-ca.

– Submitted by Peter Lin, AFSC West Region

Reno Friends Newsletter: How To Contribute

Submissions: Please submit your items for the newsletter by the Second Sunday of the month for inclusion in the following month’s newsletter. Send Friends Calendar events and information to Reno Friends newsletter editor Wendy Swallow, wswallow54 (at) gmail.com, or leave a message on the Meeting phone, (775) 329-9400.

Getting the newsletter in the mail: If you need to receive your newsletter by postal mail, please notify RFM newsletter editor Wendy Swallow at: wswallow54 (at) gmail.com or call at 775-473-5559.

Go to Newsletter Archive for prior months’ news.