Friends General Conference

Together we nurture the spiritual vitality of Friends

FGC Consultation: Spirit and Community in Online Gatherings

FGC Events
Date and Time: 
Saturday, April 17, 2021 - 10:30am to 5:00pm

In the past year we have learned a lot about how to gather online as a community. Our Yearly Meetings and other Quaker Organizations have been working to create community online and to find ways to allow Spirit to move us. As we transition from a virtual world to a mixed in-person and virtual world, it seems valuable to come together to share our learnings.

Save the Date! April 17, 2021

Format: Virtual

Time: 10:30-5:00pm Eastern


Please join us online for:

Panel: What Have We Learned? Spirit and Community-Building Online

In this dynamic session you will not only hear about best practices for building community and creating a worshipful environment for your meetings and gatherings on Zoom, you will also walk through examples facilitated by the panelists. We will explore what works, why it works, and how you can devise similar practices for your own virtual meetings.


Peterson Toscano, Moderator

Peterson promotes justice and equality through storytelling. Through his original theatre presentations, podcasts, and on-line Zoom workshops, Peterson opens up discussions about LGBTQ  issues, privilege, the Bible, justice, and climate change.




Jean-Marie Prestwidge Barch

Jean-Marie  is a member of Schuylkill Monthly Meeting of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. She has led committee meetings and groups over Zoom, phone and in hybrid situation for the last 10 years. She brings a wealth of experience helping to create spaces for Spirit to move.

Currently she serves Philadelphia Yearly Meeting as clerk of the Ministry and Nurture Committee: Quaker Life Council and as Co-Clerk of the Yearly Meeting. Service to FGC includes being one of the three co-clerks of the Campaign Steering Committee.


Cai Quirk

Cai (they or ey/em pronouns), a member of Ithaca Monthly Meeting and NYYM, worked as part of a group, designing NYYM's summer sessions which spanned 2 weeks and included over 200 events.  Cai has designed, facilitated, and teched many online workshops and gatherings for Quaker, arts, and queer organizations, and is continually learning and adapting new methods and techniques. Cai and Allison Kirkegaard visited many yearly meetings since the pandemic began. These journeys led em to write the article 'A Witness to Tethers and Transformation' for Friends Journal.


Kat Griffith

Kat is clerk of a worship group which has grown steadily during the pandemic, and co-clerk of Northern Yearly Meeting, which has held four sessions online since the start of the pandemic, with increasing attendance over time.  She believes part of the reason for this is careful attention to meeting people's spiritual, social, physical, and emotional needs during Zoom sessions. She is the author of "Dipped in God and Covered in Grace", a recent article in Friends Journal that explores the liturgy of welcome (or the lack of it) in our Meetings.




There will be two sessions of Roundtables. In each the moderator will offer a 5-7 minute presentation and then open it to sharing by the whole group. We have much to learn from one another.

Possible topics include: Online Clerking, Religious Education and Programing for Youth, Religious Education and Programing for Adults, Remote Pastoral Care, Hybrid or Blended Gatherings Social and Tech, Offline Community in an Online World, Zoom and Beyond, Spirit Led Work Online, Beyond Worship: Fellowship in our Meetings, Re-framing Annual Sessions/Large Gatherings.

Final Roundtable topics will be posted here.

New to Pay As Led?

Pay as led is a way of acknowledging that wealth is not distributed evenly among Quakers. We ask that you prayerfully consider your financial resources and the value you believe the Consultation will bring to your life and to Friends. Based on this personal reflection, we invite you to pay as led and to make any donation that feels appropriate to you.


we ask that you consider your circumstances and the Pay-as-Led structure in selecting what you will contribute. Below are some estimates of the costs. The actual costs per person are $35.00.

  • Abundant Sharing                $50 and up
  • Traditional (covers costs)      $35.00
  • Limited Resources               $0 - $25    
  • Other                                  Amount as Led       

 Registration form coming soon!