Judy Leasure…Faithful Servant

For many years Judy Leasure has served as the Editor of the Traveling Friend. She recently decided to step down from this position, which saddened many of us. Judy produced a newsletter that went far beyond the regular announcement of upcoming events, and a summary of past events. Under Judy's editorship, the TF became a tool for spiritual growth, with articles written by Judy and by members and attenders that were woven into a beautiful fabric of spirituality. The newsletter became more than a newsletter. It became one of the ways that our community at CFM has become a beloved community. Here is how some in the Meeting have expressed their gratitude and love for Judy:

"I am always struck by the loving heart with which Judy writes memorials of our friends who have passed. It is clear that she cares deeply about conveying the fullness of their lives and their unique places in the life of our community. Judy's diligence in capturing and recording events in the life of CFM has created a rich written history for future Friends." -Carole Barnhart

"I recall reading her memorial message on Greg Keairns at Monthly Meeting for Business. She has a gift of bringing to life a person and community in her writing. It was so important to hear her words about Greg, as she captured what so many of us felt and knew about him. I recall her so eloquently presenting her concerns and position on the Spiritual Nurture position at the Called meeting last summer. She calmly, and articulately presented her position. When the community began going in a different direction than hers, she accepted it and told us that it would not affect her relationship within community, and was willing to step aside. Writers such as Judy are a gift to our community." -Michael Ramos

"As a writer, Judy Leasure has a distinctive voice. In it I hear the rhythms and cadence of the hymns and gospel music that she loves so much. She excels at making simple stories and facts come alive. Beyond style, though, Judy has a passion for the Quaker Testimonies, particularly the Peace Testimony. Her recognition that there is that of God in all people comes across in every article she writes, whether she's welcoming a new member, memorializing a departed one, celebrating a person's accomplishments, or advocating for social justice. She may be stepping down as Editor of the printed Traveling Friend, but I know that Judy will continue to speak out whenever the Spirit prompts her to do so." -Sabrina Darnowsky

"Judy impresses me as someone who gets things done behind the scenes. No fanfare. During the more than half dozen years I've been at CFM, she has solicited and generated content for TF, organized, edited and gotten it together in time for publication. Without much recognition. She just kept getting the job done. I've heard Judy speak only once in Meeting for Worship. She spoke of her distress concerning public education. I have forgotten the specifics; what I do recall is that she was impassioned and well-informed. I was so impacted by what she said that I approached her after Meeting to learn more. Although Judy is quiet, she is an anchor in the Meeting. Week after week she is there on the benches with her family. And what a storyteller she is! Judy writes those warm, heartfelt articles (including one about me and the Airstream). It is as if writing opens up something in her that I rarely get to see. Her style is a blend of prose and poetry. Very readable. She sees into the heart of a person, weaves together various aspects of their story, and captures the essence of who they are. I will miss reading her." -Kathy Stewart

"I always looked forward to the arrival of our Traveling Friend because I knew that it would be filled with interesting information. Judy Leasure, our long time editor has a 'nose' for news and an expert in the use of the English language, including our Quaker jargon. Judy has used her "way with words" in many ways and for many years at Cincinnati Friends. She had taken minutes, written epistles and letters and shared eloquently in discussions and outreach. Judy now serves as the WYM recording clerk and the recording clerk of the Yearly Meeting Executive Committee. Her careful recording of Minutes has been admired by many Friends. Thank you, Judy, for your commitment of time and talent to provide us with the Traveling Friend." -Mary Ellen Krisher

"I love Judy Leasure. Over the past few years I have been so very grateful for her presence at CFM and for her presence in my life. When we are together we can laugh until we cry, and we can also cry in sadness over the injustices in the world, especially the injustices in the immigrant community. Her concern for justice issued in the gathering she arranged at our Meeting called, "Voices for Valeria." Judy's heart was broken by the story of a little girl and her father who had drowned in the Rio Grande River trying reach America. Her heart wept over such a tragedy, and she decided that voices needed to raised in their behalf. Judy, you will be missed as the gifted and much loved editor of the Traveling Friend, but I look forward to being the recipient of other gifts you will be sharing with the Meeting and with me." -Elizabeth Salinas Newby

And so, Judy, we say good-bye to you as our beloved Editor. We will miss you.

Print This Post Print This Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.