Is Red Cedar Friends a welcoming community?
Yes. Red Cedar Friends strives to be fully inclusive and to welcome everyone.
What is RCF’s attitude toward people coming from different religious backgrounds or experiences such as Christian, Earth Centered, Buddhist, and so on?
We welcome spiritual seekers whatever their previous experience. Whatever your background, there are likely to be others who share it.
What if I really need help understanding something about RCF?
Ask anybody. If they don’t know the answer, they can direct you to someone from the Membership and Outreach Committee, or another knowledgeable individual. The Clerk would also be happy to answer questions or help you find someone who can.
What if I do something accidentally that offends or bothers someone?
Sometimes newcomers break the “rules” just because they’re new and haven’t learned all our ways; we’re pretty tolerant of that and simply expect that our ways will become clearer with experience. If you say or do something that disturbs an individual, that person will probably approach you for a gentle conversation. Rarely, the Worship and Pastoral Care Committee is asked to intervene with a person whose behavior is consistently inappropriate or combative.
What if someone says or does something that upsets or confuses me?
You can approach the person, if you feel comfortable doing that. If not, we hope you would feel comfortable speaking to the Clerk about what happened and how you’re feeling. She can give you guidance about how to proceed. To connect with the Clerk, ask for help from someone in the meeting with whom you feel comfortable, or watch for the clerk to introduce herself at the rise of Meeting.
What if I need an accommodation?
Our meetings for worship are in an accessible building. There is reserved barrier-free parking in the small lot north of the meetinghouse and a door opener at the door on the east side of the meetinghouse. To avoid triggering allergies, we avoid wearing fragrance or perfumed lotion in the Meeting House. We make accommodations for members, attenders, and children with visible or invisible disabilities. Let us know about any needed accommodations. Speak to a member of Worship and Pastoral Care or the Hospitality Committee if there is an accommodation or an arrangement that would better suit you.
What if I’m uncertain about some of the Quaker Testimonies?
Join the club! Most Friends are uncertain about some of the testimonies at least some of the time; we work both individually and as a community to discern what they mean and how they work in our lives, and this understanding is always open to change. We welcome discussion of any questions you have. The Adult Religious Education committee regularly offers programs that focus on these discussions. Such conversations are welcome across the table during potluck as well. If you are really troubled or want an opportunity to explore your questions further, the Worship and Pastoral Care Committee can help you find an individual or a clearness committee to talk with.
How do I become a member?
Regular attenders of our meeting who are committed to Quaker testimonies and practices and who are involved in meeting activities are considered members. When people feel moved to record their membership, they write a letter to the Clerk of the meeting requesting clearness for membership. The Membership and Outreach Committee will then convene a clearness committee; that committee reports its recommendation to the business meeting, which records membership.
This is a highly individual process. Some people are “regular attenders” for many years before they decide to become recorded members, some become recorded members shortly after they begin attending, and some continue as non recorded members without ever seeking formal membership. We do not generally distinguish between recorded and non recorded members and regular attenders. Red Cedar Friends bylaws do require the Clerk to be a recorded member of the Meeting.