zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
[personal profile] zana16
This is pissing me off more than it should...

Background: FUM has a policy not to hire queer people. At all. Ever. If they find out you are queer, they fire you.

So even if God were "calling me to deeper relationship and bolder service," they would ignore that.

Usually, I can ignore those parts of Quakerism that hate me. For some reason, today I can't.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-06 11:54 pm (UTC)
the_shoshanna: my boy kitty (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_shoshanna
Good lord, I rally thought (without ever having investigated) that Quakers were (that institutional Quakerism was) better than that. I'm shocked and saddened.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-07 01:34 am (UTC)
the_shoshanna: my boy kitty (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_shoshanna
I'm reassured that it's not denomination-wide, at least!

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-07 03:32 am (UTC)
bee: (Morals)
From: [personal profile] bee
'the liberal branch of Quakerism' sounds so redundant. I thought Quakerism was the liberal branch, fullstop??? This is like, augh! this is illegal except relgious stuff like this can get away with it but like AUGH. I feel you.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-07 08:02 pm (UTC)
bee: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bee
I can't really do religions that a) hate and b) are all like 'this is the ONE TRUE religion'.

But seriously 'fundie' quakers shouldn't exist like the whole founding point of the religion was liberal??? Right???? I'm more bewildered as to how Quakers could stray so far from point.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-07 01:57 pm (UTC)
twistedchick: General Leia in The Force Awakens (Default)
From: [personal profile] twistedchick
Apologies for hijacking, to clarify a little (I hope):

In the course of an historical project for a Quaker committee, I have read back through about 70 years of the Yearly Meeting minutes and reports -- the official record of what has been said and done in my (and Zana's) branch of Quakerism. The argument between different branches of Quakerism over who is to be acknowledged as called to service, and what might (in the eyes of some) disqualify them from it, goes back to the 1960s and earlier. It is not a recent thing. It is tied into identity issues in terms of both gender/sexuality and identification or not with traditional Christianity (in Quaker terms for that). The same arguments go back that far (perhaps farther; I only read back as far as the local archive's available books), and often are repeated over time by the same people.

The separate congregations to which Zana and I both belong were among the founders of two of the larger Quaker organizations that are at odds over this. The congregations themselves were split by what might be described as different doctrinal views for nearly a century, during the time these organizations were founded, and then came back together only within the last 50-60 years. They are 'consolidated' but not 'united'. And to be plainspoken about it, FUM has shot itself in the foot repeatedly with this policy in recent years, refusing to allow excellent, experienced people to serve in positions for which they are fully and abundantly qualified because they don't fit into the restrictive little box that FUM wants to push them into. One man I know (married, with children, hetero) had accepted a very good position with them, and was in the process of selling his house when he was informed that if he would not sign the required statement of institutionalized homophobia (the kindest way I can say it) he would not have the job. He did not sign. He did not get the job. Another, who has been in a loving and committed same-sex relationship for 30 years, was first invited to and then disinvited from being the keynote speaker at an international conference.

The congregation that Zana and I shared before she moved to her current job is welcoming and affirming of everyone, regardless of pretty much anything. The larger regional organization is welcoming and affirming. I do not believe FUM's stance will hold in the long run; there are many other things working against it. But I do wish they'd look at the quality of the people they are refusing or that will not apply because of FUM's known prejudices, and really *think* instead of continuing to react with historical bias.

This issue with FUM has been the subject of huge discussions and a lot of writing and argument within my regional (Yearly) Meeting for more than a decade -- to the point that for many years the annual funding they would have received from the YM was not sent, because of the anger over FUM treatment of people. It has been said in my hearing that the major problem is the hierarchy within FUM, and that the group at large is less militant and less hostile. Since that time there has been a continuing effort made to try to talk to the local people within FUM-member congregations, by sending visitors to simply be there for a while (which is a Quaker tradition) to share themselves and to learn. This has been a slow but growing personal touch that I think, over time, will have a great effect.

Quakers are no more monolithic than any other group, no more than fandom. We have no written creed to acknowledge; we do not ordinarily have a hierarchy (on purpose.) And there have been differences of opinion from the start, more than 300 years ago, because we are human and we have opinion. Some of the differences have gone away, some have not. But there is a tradition of respect for people standing up for what they believe is right, and that respect resulting in change even if the change is not instant. I could say a lot more, but I will stop at this point. Apologies again for hijacking.
Edited Date: 2014-09-07 02:10 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-07 08:04 pm (UTC)
bee: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bee
Wow this is really interesting. I don't mind the hijacking. Thanks for being kind about your explanation.

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-07 10:44 pm (UTC)
twistedchick: General Leia in The Force Awakens (Default)
From: [personal profile] twistedchick
*hugs*

I have not been at Olney in that way, but I have walked in similar shoes at other times (different label, same style) and I do not always have the strength to do more than stand still and let the waves break over my head. It is never easy.

FUM, overall, has been in serious financial trouble for years; it has cut back in many ways. I have been told by FUM employees in Africa that they have to fundraise (here) to pay their own salaries there; if they don't bring in the money, they don't have any. I do not think you would like that at all.
Edited Date: 2014-09-07 10:45 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2014-09-08 02:17 am (UTC)
zlabya: color art of a dark-haired young woman holding a scrawny Russian Blue cat (Default)
From: [personal profile] zlabya
Being rejected for something that's part of who you are, and treated as "less than" is simply awful. I'm sorry you are put through this, and the "unworthiness" crap is so destructive. I can empathize having gone through 40 years of being a Catholic woman (with what I still consider a vocation to the priesthood) and being considered "less than" and "unworthy" because of something I felt was a gift and a natural variation, not a disqualifying defect.

edit: That "invitation" did not piss you off "too much," IMHO. I remember mentally raging each "Vocation Sunday" and each time I saw a poster or flyer about vocations to the priesthood. It's an affront to the equality and giftedness of each human!

I'm sorry you've had to deal with such [expletive deleted] and have had your personal sexuality politicized. It's meant for you and your partners, not to be an exhibit or a punching bag!
Edited Date: 2014-09-08 02:20 am (UTC)

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