Cincinnati Friends Meeting (CFM) Public Friend Jim Newby and Beulah Missionary Baptist Pastor John Ivey met as members of EquaSion, a greater Cincinnati non-partisan, interfaith dialogue to foster understanding. They shared a vision to gather their congregations.
Pastor Ivey reached out to Jim just as Cathy Barney, our new nurturer for spiritual growth & outreach, came on board. Along with Lynn Davis, director of Beulah’s women’s and children’s ministries, they met for lunch and hatched a plan. Beulah hosted first at its cavernous, store-front Mount Healthy location Feb. 18. Lynn and Cathy collaborated on sharing a meal, each congregation learning about the other in a raucous Jeopardy game and feeling at home – together.
Almost 50, about equally split between congregations, attended. CFM members felt warmly welcomed and the Beulah congregation was grateful for the instant rapport. In fact, some of them wrote:
- "Friends were willing to be at home and comfortable in our fellowship. We swapped stories. Also the silence activity was very calming and peaceful"
- "I love the practice of silence"
- "The food was healthy and tasty all in one"
- "Kids played together like they were schoolmates”
- "God's presence was felt with our gathering together. A day He was pleased"
- "I enjoyed meeting the couple and their children at table #7.. WOW, WOW, AMAZING! I enjoyed the atmosphere of Friends and Beulah fellowshipping together they were not strangers or shy (smile face, thumbs up.)”
- "I enjoyed the friendship with the Quakers. I knew of them, but I had never intertwined with that type of group of people. It was like we knew them all the time. And the way they just came in friendly and excited as if they knew us all the time. I had a great time."
CFM responded with a giant thank-you card that looked like a Jeopardy square. Judy Froehlich gave Beulah a beautiful set of silk orchids as a friendship gift.
There is a joint picnic, scheduled for Saturday, June 17, 1-3. at CFM.