Friends Center Tenant Newsletter, June 2022

Issue 79, June 2022


Although the office and event spaces are still low-key at Friends Center, we have two active construction projects on site. Friends Select School is on track to complete renovation of the 1520 Race Street building by the start of the school year.

Friends Center is moving full steam ahead to build out a new facility for Friends Child Care Center in the lower level of the 1501 Cherry Street building. Our general contractor, MJ Settelen, is working hard to deliver the space by the end of August, depending on various supply chain issues. The Child Care Center and their consultant, Becker & Frondorf, have been terrific partners in getting the project done.  

Once the new child care center is open, we will prep the rooms used as interim child care space (Jones Room, Mott Room, Cherry Street Room, and Room 21) and return them to service for tenant and outside events, we hope in September. Thanks to everyone for your patience during this milestone time at 15th and Cherry Streets!

—Chris Mohr, Executive Director  


Welcome (Back), Friends Publishing Corporation!

Friends Publishing Corporation became Friends Center’s newest (old) tenant in May. FPC is the publisher of Friends Journal, the leading North American Quaker magazine, and the producer of the QuakerSpeak video series. Often known simply as Friends Journal for their flagship publication, FPC was a tenant at Friends Center for decades before moving elsewhere for a spell. Welcome back, Friends!



Rise Up for Reparations

June 20, 2022, 2-4 pm

Co-Sponsored by Mayor’s Office of Interfaith and Faith-Based Affairs, POWER, The Truth Telling Project, and PYM

Save the Dates:

Looking Ahead to PYM Annual Sessions

  • Saturday June 25 for Workshops
  • Saturday July 23 for Affinity Groups
  • Tuesday July 26 to Sunday July 31 for spiritual formation, worship, business, and keynotes.


Community Safety Beyond Policing:
Gun Violence and Policing

Many communities across the country have experienced an uptick in gun violence over the last 2 years at the same time that we are having a robust debate around the role of policing in our society. How has or should the movement to divest from policing and invest in community been responding?


CPMM is happy to announce that childcare services are once again available during meeting for worship! Join us for worship at 11 AM every Sunday in the Race Street Meetinghouse at Friends Center.


Anna Crusis Women’s Choir:

Make Good Treble

6/18/22, 7:30 pm | 6/19/22, 2 pm

Tickets available here:




Saturday June 18, 11am-3pm

Green Street Friends Meeting

45 W Schoolhouse Lane, Philadelphia 19144

GSFM’s Reparations Committee will hold its last planned in-person legal clinic for Black Germantown homeowners and a Juneteenth celebration.
As you may know, fellowship over good food is a hallmark of GSFM, one thing which helps bind us together and draws people to us. We’ll have a great spread of food catered by Soul to Soul Philly (Doug and Noah White). 

You’re invited along with the 68 Black Germantown homeowners we’ve met through the legal clinic sign-ups and 3 in-person clinics, the 20 or so volunteers and partners who have engaged with these neighbors, and a host of people we hope will come that Saturday. No RSVP is needed, just come, and enjoy!


Brings Climate Activism to Vanguard’s Doorstep

Grid Magazine, June 2022

A five-day journey to the headquarters of Vanguard, organized by Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT) in collaboration with local communities and in partnership with a global campaign. Vanguard, which manages $8.1 trillion, is one of the largest global investors in coal, oil, and gas.

» Full story

Job Announcement: Facilities Assistant

Download the announcement here.

June 2022 | Open until filled

Friends Center, the Quaker hub for peace and justice in Center City Philadelphia, seeks a well-rounded, motivated Facilities Assistant to support the upkeep and maintenance of its facilities.

Friends Center includes the historic Race Street Quaker Meetinghouse and the office building at 1501 Cherry Street, which has nearly 30 nonprofit tenants working for a better community and city. Friends Center also hosts meetings and conferences for tenants and outside groups, and the local Quaker congregation worships in the Meetinghouse on Sundays. Friends Center’s front plaza and interior courtyard and gardens provide a place of peace in Center City for tenants and visitors alike.

The right candidate for Facilities Assistant will make sure that tenants, guests, and visitors have a pleasant experience at a well-maintained facility. Friends Center strives to be a friendly, supportive place to work, with competitive pay and excellent benefits.


Position Summary: The Facilities Assistant is responsible for maintaining the complex and its grounds and preparing the facility for events by tenants and outside groups.

Status: Full-time, 35 hours/week, Non-exempt.

Location: Philadelphia, PA

Application Deadline: Open until filled


  • Starting compensation: $18/hour
  • Benefits include: paid time off; paid sick leave; paid healthcare, dental, and vision insurance; 403(b) retirement plan with employer contribution and match; and paid life and disability insurance.


  • including carpentry, painting, electrical, plumbing
  • including setup and takedown of tables and chairs



  • Basic skills in the following building trades:
    • Electrical, Plumbing, Carpentry, Painting
    • Limited on-the-job training may be available for candidates with experience in some but not all of the above.


  • Basic skills in the following building trades:
    • Sheetrock
    • Masonry


  • Demonstrated punctuality: able to arrive on time for work every day.
  • Demonstrated ability to complete tasks within the assigned time.
  • Demonstrated ability to work with others to complete larger tasks.
  • Physically able to lift 50 pounds to chest level.
  • Physically able to carry, set up, and take down 8-foot long tables for meetings.
  • Physically able to stand on a six-foot ladder to carry out tasks such as painting or changing light bulbs and electrical ballasts.


  • Monday – Friday, 11 am – 7 pm, with 1 hour of break time per day

The schedule may change because of the covid-19 pandemic. When making schedule changes, Friends Center works to fairly balance the needs of all of its staff.


Send application with resume or employment history

  • By email to; or
  • By mail to Facilities Assistant, c/o Friends Center, 1501 Cherry Street, Philadelphia PA, 19102.
  • No phone calls please.


  • Candidates of interest will have either a phone interview, an in-person interview, or both.
  • Finalists may be asked to work one or two trial half-day shifts to assess skills and productivity, and will be paid $18/hour for their time.

Friends Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women, minorities, and other underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply. Friends Center is a smoke-free workplace.

Tenant News: Friends Child Care Center update, Earth Day = E-Waste & Shredding Collection, and more

Issue 78, March – April2022

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter


As you may know, Friends Center is working on plans to convert the Lower Level of the 1501 Cherry Street building into a new facility for the Friends Child Care Center. FCCC, Friends Center, and our design team have been hard at work to plan this exciting project. Friends Child Care Center has been an important part of the Friends Center community for over 40 years, and this facility will serve them for decades to come. We look forward to providing a more detailed update soon!

—Chris Mohr, Executive Director


In recognition of EARTH DAY on April 22:

E-Waste and Shredding Collection

After taking time off for the pandemic, Friends Center will once again collect your e-waste for recycling and paper files for shredding and recycling from Monday, April 18, to Friday, April 22. Items from home are acceptable, provided we have enough room to store everything. We will provide bins to drop off materials in the main lobby.



Quaker College Fair – through April 10

Register Here


The City of Philadelphia’s Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE) presents Harriet Tubman: 200 Years of Hope, Strength and Inspiration. Cultural leaders, program partners, and descendants of Harriet Tubman’s family were invited to share messages celebrating Harriet Tubman’s 200th birthday and their thoughts on what Tubman’s message would be to sustain her legacy for the next 200 years.

AFSC General Secretary Joyce Ajlouny contributed to the “Video Wall” for the City of Philadelphia’s Celebration of Harriet Tubman.

Celebration page:


CPMM announcement on environmental justice grant funding:

The Grandom Institution places a priority on clean, affordable energy solutions for low income households. The Institution has funds available to increase energy self-sufficiency of low income households and permanently reduce their energy burden.

Examples of the types of projects that meet this priority include: 

  • Solar installations
  • Decarbonization projects for low income households
  • Self-help weatherization workshops including the distribution of simple and inexpensive material that low income people can install in their own homes
  • Energy efficiency improvements
  • Fuel switching from fossil fuel to electric heat pumps

Eligible applicants must be local, nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organizations.

Deadline for Applications:  July 1, 2022 no later than 5 pm.  Applications must be submitted by email. 

For more information:


CAIR Philadelphia: 


4/10/2022 @ 7:30-9:30pm

Co-Sponsored by The Shalom Center, Sisterhood of Salaam-Shalom, Masjidullah, CAIR-Philadelphia, Interfaith Peace Walk

Live on Zoom & Facebook. Register at

What is an Iftar? From sunrise till sunset each day during the month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from food and water and contemplate the wisdom of Quran and reflect on how to live more fully by the Word and Will of God. Each evening they eat Iftar – the meal-of-consciously-breaking-the-fast that begins with the eating of a date.

What is a Seder? The Seder is a Jewish sacred meal in which the foods themselves embody the story of liberation from oppression. A bitter herb embodies the bitterness of racism, oppression, and war. Matzah, the bread whose baking was so urgent that its bakers could not take time to let it rise, embodies what Reverend Martin Luther King called “the fierce urgency of Now.” Charoset, a sweet mix of chopped fruit, nuts, and spices, embodies the joyful world we work to create.

And why an “Iftar-Seder”? Because this year the Muslim lunar month of Ramadan and the Jewish lunar month of Nisan, with its eight-day festival of Passover, coincide. Joining the two meals is a spiritually moving way of bringing the American Muslim and American Jewish communities together in a historical moment when come in each community have defined the other as an Other. On Iftar-Seder evening, not only for the night but for our lives.

Inshallah! Keyn yehi ratzon!

May it be God’s will that our sharing continues!


Ben Lomond Quaker Center (near Santa Cruz, Calif.) seeks a full-time, on-site Director and Associate Director or Co-Directors to provide spiritual and practical leadership to West Coast Friends.
These individuals need to be familiar and supportive of Friends’ beliefs, values, and practices. They must be experienced in program development and be well able to manage staff, finances, and fundraising efforts for the Center. Strong computer proficiency is essential. Management and/or experience in developing and supporting a non-profit organization are highly desirable.
                The ideal candidates will have a Friendly and hospitable personality to welcome Friends and the public and have a passion for program development using themes consistent with Quaker values. They will be able to interact effectively and collaboratively with the Board.
                Compensation includes salary, housing in the beautiful Santa Cruz redwoods, utilities, and other benefits. We are accepting applications from individuals and couples. Persons of color and LGBTQ are encouraged.
                The Quaker Center website will soon include job descriptions and application requirements. Direct inquiries & questions to:


GIRLS INC. (former tenant)

Reimagining Workplace Equality

Register Here.

February’s Newsletter: The War on Ukraine, Dedicating a Historical Marker, Continuing Sessions And SO MUCH MORE

Issue 77, February 2022


Greetings and best wishes for midwinter. We have some wonderful news from the Friends Center community to share with you below.

            Sadly, with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine this week, we also mourn the outbreak of a new “hot war” on the European continent. As I was writing this, a convoy of cars with Ukrainian flags was on its way down 15th Street to a demonstration at City Hall.

            How to respond? I found hope in yesterday’s statement from the American Friends Service Committee, one of Friends Center’s equity partners: “The invasion of Ukraine must be stopped – but U.S. military aid is not the answer.

            Quakers are one of the traditional “peace churches.” As a key founder of Quakerism, George Fox, wrote in 1650, we strive to “live in the virtue of that life and power that takes away the occasion for all wars.” While most of you working at Friends Center are not members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), I know you share this vision for a better, more peaceful world, because of the work you do.

            Let us keep working for that change here at home—to increase every Philadelphian’s access to health, education, housing, and the arts, to end gun violence, to support civil rights—even as we support peace in the wider world, too. And if you’d like to learn more, the Friends Historical Library at Swarthmore College has a list of resources on the Quaker Peace Testimony.

—Chris Mohr, Executive Director  


Wednesday, March 23, 4:00 p.m.

Race Street Meetinghouse

1501 Cherry Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102

This event is free and open to the public, but RSVP is required.

In honor of Women’s History Month, the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission and Friends Select School cordially invite you to the dedication of an official state historical marker commemorating Anna Elizabeth Dickinson (1842-1932). We will gather at the Race Street Meetinghouse for a dedication ceremony. Following the ceremony, we will walk to Broad and Arch Streets, where we will unveil a marker at the site of a home where Dickinson frequently stayed in the 1870s and 1880s.



Friends are invited to come together for worship, fellowship, and business! Join our wider Yearly Meeting community for events in Philadelphia, online, and at your home meeting. Details of Continuing Sessions available here.


On the Issues: Using love to #FreeThemAll this Valentine’s Day – YouTube


FYI: Marriage Under the Care of the Meeting

Friends conduct a meeting for marriage—the wedding ceremony—as a meeting for worship. The meeting appoints a clerk for the meeting and the couple chooses two witnesses, who will sign the certificate of marriage. The couple chooses their own vows, in consultation with the committee appointed to arrange the meeting for marriage. In the meeting itself, the couple sits together and their guests and the members of the meeting sit as they would in a normal meeting for worship. The clerk opens the meeting by explaining how things will go, mostly for the benefit of family and friends of the couple, who may not be familiar with our way of worship. The meeting begins with worship. After a time of worship, the clerk invites the couple to exchange vows and rings, and the couple and their witnesses sign the wedding certificate. The certificate is then read aloud. Then worship continues, with spoken messages if persons are so moved. When it seems to the clerk that the meeting is fully gathered and the messages have all been given, she or he closes the meeting and the couple and wedding party withdraw. All present are invited to sign the wedding certificate as witnesses themselves after the meeting.

The process

If you seek to be married after the manner of Friends and under the care of the meeting, contact the committee (, or 215-241-7260) to get started. The committee will arrange a clearness committee that works much like a clearness committee for membership. It will meet with you and you will talk together until both you and the committee are clear that the marriage should go forward as requested, or not.

If yes, the clearness committee brings a recommendation to Membership Care Committee, and then after committee’s discernment, the committee brings a recommendation to the meeting for business in worship. If the meeting approves, then Membership Care appoints a committee to help you arrange the meeting for marriage.


This past week Rob Marcus, founder of Coaching Corps Racial Equity and Access in Youth Sports Task Force, met with members from the Collaborative, Eric Worley from Philadelphia Youth Basketballand Valencia Peterson from Open Door Abuse Awareness & Prevention, to gain insight on the impact sport has on Philadelphia’s community.

Valencia “Coach V” Peterson, Founder & CEO of ODAAP Open Door Abuse Awareness & Prevention provided unique insight into her organization’s mission and how she uses football to connect with young men. She describes how inequity in access to sports during the pandemic negatively impacted her violence prevention efforts. Coach V also discusses working together with other local leaders and organizations in the Collaborative to overcome these barriers.

Eric Worley, Co-founder & Program Director of Philadelphia Youth Basketball discusses the rich basketball tradition of his organization and the role it plays in building his kids as students, athletes, and positive leaders in the community. While some of the barriers have historically pertained to systemic issues like lack of access to out-of-school programs and recreation centers, his organization, Philadelphia Youth Basketball, and the Collaborative, are educating city leaders on the principles of sports-based youth development and making great strides in growing their support.

Click here to watch their full interviews

Singing City

Winter Concert–Learn to Walk Together

Saturday, March 5, 2022, 7 pm 
Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral, 13 N. 38th Street, Philadelphia, PA

Tickets available here:

Presenting the world premiere of A New Day is Rising by Ethan Haman set to poetry by Philadelphia’s Youth Poet Laureate Cydney Brown

Michael Brown. Trayvon Martin. Oscar Grant. Eric Garner. Kenneth Chamberlain. Amadou Diallo. John Crawford. These African-American men are the subjects of Seven Last Words of the Unarmed, a powerful multi-movement choral work by Atlanta-based composer Joel Thompson. Seven movements represent the last words from seven lost lives. Using the text structure of the Joseph Haydn’s Seven Last Words of Christ, each victim’s last words are set in a different musical style and Thompson incorporates the L’homme armé (The armed man) Renaissance French secular tune throughout.

With works by Moses Hogan, William Dawson, Matthew Emery, Undine Smith Moore, and Jake Runestad.

Art-Reach’s John Orr quoted in Inquirer article 2/25/22:

Arts venues learn to make their spaces welcoming with sensory-friendly shows.
How one theater is making it happen.

            “You see [programming for neuro-diverse audiences] growing. It’s really encouraging to see places embracing it,” said John Orr, Art-Reach’s executive director. He now describes Philadelphia as a leader. “This can rewrite the book on what arts interaction looks like.”

» See full article (paywalled)


African American Children’s Book Fair

Sat., 2/26/2022, 1-4 pm

The 30th Annual African American Children’s Book Fair – LIVE and IN PERSON will be held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, 12th Arch Street on Saturday, February 26, 2022, from 1:00 to 4 p.m. Hosted by the African American Children’s Book Project, the book fair is one of the oldest and largest single-day events for children’s books in the country. Games, prizes and promotional giveaways will highlight the afternoon. A wide selection of affordable Black children’s books will be available for purchase.

Surgical mask are required at all times.

There is also a Covid-19 protocol in place.

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter

October Tenant Newsletter: Renovation & Parking Updates, Famous African American Quaker, FCNL is Hiring

Issue 75, October 2021


Greetings and best wishes for fall!

With changes in climate, our local autumn season seems to come later than ever. One bonus is that the native plants in the front garden and the courtyard oval are still blooming—and attracting pollinators. The gardens have filled in nicely over the years. I like to see it as a metaphor for the millions of people working in communities for positive change, including the few hundred based here at Friends Center. Through your steady, persistent work, through your showing up again and again, may the systems in which we are embedded also evolve, just like the gardens have grown—even if it’s hard to see the change at any given moment.

Take care and stay safe,

Chris Mohr, Executive Director 


Renovation of 1520 Race Street

The renovation of the 1520 Race Street building by Friends Select School began this week, starting with interior demolition.

                While most of the work will not have an impact on users of the Friends Center, there will be some temporary changes in the courtyard. The contractor will put fencing and barriers in place to provide a safe distance from the building. This will impact Friends Child Care Center the most, and so we will be in frequent communication with them.

                Note that the loading zone is being used by contractors for both Friends Center and Friends Select. The loading zone is only for deliveries, pickups, and dropoffs. There is no tenant parking until further notice. See the updated LOADING ZONE GUIDELINES (right).

                We will be in close touch with the contractor, so that we may do our best to alert the Friends Center community to any significant changes before they occur. Our priority is to maintain safety for everyone. Please reach out to Erick Emerick with any concerns and we will do our best to address them.



Famous Quaker: Benjamin Banneker, an Astronomer and Mathematician

Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806) was a self-educated African American mathematician, astronomer, surveyor, compiler of almanacs, and writer. He was also a regular attender at Quaker meetings and an abolitionist who gained fame and recognition for his contributions to science and his prescient correspondence on multiple subjects, including race, with key intellectuals of the time. Click link above to read the full article.


On the Issues: 50 Years Since the Attica Uprising

On Sept. 9, 1971, over 1200 people incarcerated at the Attica Correctional Facility in New York took control of the prison to demand better living conditions and human rights. After four tense days, law enforcement retook the prison by force, leading to the deaths of at least 43 people. In the 50 years since, organizations like AFSC have been entrenched in the work to advocate with incarcerated people for improvements to the system that respect basic human dignity, as well as the growing movement to #FreeThemAll and abolish the prison system as we know it.

Join AFSC staff from our Healing Justice program as they discuss how our work was catalyzed by the events of the Attica Uprising, and hear from campers from the Liberation Summer Camp, which had a focus on this moment in history. Speakers include Healing Justice program coordinator Lewis Webb, Jr., filmmaker and advocate Kharon Benson, Liberation Camp intern Akira Rose, Joeli Valerio, and others.


Author Reading by Pamela Haines

Pamela Haines will speak via Zoom on her book of poetry, ALIVE IN THIS WORLD, on October 30th at 11:00 AM.

The collection of poetry is organized into three sections. The first, A HOME WITH THE TREES, explores a relationship with trees with a growing understanding and gratitude. In COMMUTER ENCOUNTERS, intimate contact with strangers on a trolley or bus invites reflection on humanity, connection and justice. In the final section, A HOME WITH THE EARTH, the soil is a medium for meditation on nourishment and how living in small green city spaces can bring big gifts.  The poems are a call to pay attention to Life and to not let the world go by unnoticed.

Please log in using the Zoom platform listed below:

                Meeting ID: 818 4086 3719

                Password: 979529


“On the anniversary of Sept. 11, local Muslims contemplate what they’ve endured the last 20 years”
From the Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/11/2021:

                …In general… Philadelphia is a “hospitable place for American Muslims, both African American and immigrants,” said Jacob Bender, executive director of CAIR Philadelphia, the Council on American Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil liberties and advocacy group. “Perhaps it’s the city’s Quaker background, opening it to different religious minorities.”…

                Bender estimates that close to 200,000 Muslims live in Philadelphia, 80% of whom he identified as African Americans. The Pennsylvania suburbs are home to another 200,000, mostly Arab immigrants and their children….

                Another unfortunate aftermath of Sept. 11 was that many young Muslim Americans wanted to disassociate themselves from their religious background, said Ahmet Selim Tekelioglu,education and outreach director for CAIR-Philadelphia.

Full Article Here


Please join us for PHAN’s 13th annual health conference

WHEN: Thursday October 21st, 10am – 3pm and Friday October 22nd from 10am-1:30pmWHERE: We’re going virtual again this year!QUESTIONS?: Contact Jennifer at or 267-908-9100 x704

As the only conference of its kind, PHAN brings together health care policy experts, advocates, industry representatives, enrollment assisters, and government leaders to discuss key health policy issues directly affecting the Commonwealth.

This fall, join us as we discuss such critical healthcare issues as: lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic (thus far); the federal and state landscape for healthcare policy; lowering the cost of prescription drugs; health equity & the role of Medicaid; hospital consolidation & the changing healthcare landscape; and much more!

» Register Here


Haddonfield Quarterly Meeting

“The Underground Railroad in South Jersey
and Its Importance Today”

Linda Shockley, Executive Board President,
Lawnside Historical Society

“Oral history identifies Peter Mott as an agent and conductor for the Underground Railroad, working from his home and Mt. Pisgah A.M.E. Church in present day Lawnside.  Freedom seekers would continue their journey north via Evesham, Haddonfield, and Pennsauken.  The Lawnside Historical Society has restored Mott’s home for use as a museum of the Underground Railroad and the Lawnside community, the only historically African-American incorporated municipality in the northern USA.:  (

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Worship – 10 AM; Program – 11 AM

At Medford Meeting and via Zoom.

Email for more information.

Now Hiring:
Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) is searching for their next General Secretary.

Friends Committee On National Legislation (

The new General Secretary will be a courageous Quaker leader with a commitment to justice, peace, and environmental sustainability; to expanding diversity, equity and inclusion within the FCNL community and beyond; and to building and nurturing relationships across political and organizational divides.

We Seek a World Free of War and the Threat of War
We seek a Society with Equity and Justice for All
We seek Community where Every Person’s Potential Can be Fulfilled
We Seek an Earth Restored

For more information, contact DeAnne Butterfield, Clerk, Search Committee

September Tenant Newsletter: End of Summer Vacation, 9/11, Celebrating 90 years & Quaker Trivia

Issue 74, September 2021

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter


Vacation called and I had to answer! I hope you’ll do the same when the same when the opportunity comes.

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director


  • Please continue to be diligent in wearing your facemask in common areas of the building and practice handwashing regularly.



Morning sessions are also available from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm. Click here for more details


The lasting impact of U.S. decisions in the aftermath of 9/11By Mary Zerkel

Twenty years ago, on Sept. 11, 2001, the world was shocked at the coordinated attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, resulting in the deaths of nearly 3,000 people.  

Expressions of sympathy and grief came from throughout the world. But rather than use the moment to forge global cooperation, the United States embarked on a disastrous course driven by narratives of fear and retribution. Continue reading here.


Quakerism 101 – Quaker Discernment, Decision Making, and the Meeting for Business


Our second session will explore the Quaker understanding of spiritual discernment and the Quaker processes for making decisions, including the meeting for worship with attention to business and the life of the meeting.

Date: October 24, 1:00-3:00 pm

Zoom: The Zoom link is the same as the link for meeting for worship. The worship meeting will simply be extended.

Facilitators: Barry Scott and Jennifer Walker


The Center For Healing & Justice Through Sport (CHJS)

 Launch Tour Recap 

Last week The Collaborative partnered with the Center for Healing and Justice Through Sport to introduce their work and vision of CHJS, highlight some of the amazing work happening in Philadelphia, and continue the conversation around how the Philadelphia SBYD community can continue to push our field forward. 

The mission of CHJS is to make sport healing for all youth, everywhere, through training, consulting, and movement building. They believe that underneath the fun and camaraderie, sport can be used as a vehicle to provide creative and accessible solutions to some of society’s biggest issues.  Click Here to stay up to date with CHJS and their upcoming events!


Join Friends Council on Education for an evening of Light — poetry, music, thought — to uplift and sustain us on this next stretch of the road we are traveling.

When: September 22nd, 2021

Time: 7-8:30 pm EDT

Location: Event held via Zoom

Register Here

We hope that you will join us for this and other activities throughout the year in celebration of Friends Council’s 90th Anniversary!


Quaker Speak is a bi-weekly video series that highlights a variety of relevant topics and how they tie into Quakerism.

This particular video touches on the difference between a welcoming space and an inclusive space. Click here to watch!

Quaker Trivia

Four of the five women who convened the 1848 convention on women’s rights at Seneca Falls were Quakers.  It is presumed that the reason Quaker women played a large part in the struggle for women’s suffrage was due to the leadership skills acquired throughout two centuries of women’s experience speaking publicly and adopting administrative leadership roles within the Quaker community—opportunities unmatched for women in any other western religion at that time.

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter: Going Once, Going Twice, SOLD!, Upgrades, Job Openings and more!

Issue 73, August 2021 


As announced in February, we have now completed the sale of the 1520 Race Street building to Friends Select School, effective today! 

Thank you to everyone involved, including former tenants of 1520, who collaborated with us on plans for relocation of workplaces and storage; the advisors & board of directors of Friends Center, who thoroughly reviewed every aspect of the deal; and especially the staff and contractors of Friends Center. In particular, a big shout-out to Erick Emerick for managing our side of the move-out.   

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director 


We’ve upgraded! That’s right, our Historical Quaker Meetinghouse has been updated with some modern-day technology. The Race Street Room now features a built in PC, camera and microphones giving super hosts the ability to hold Zoom meetings. 

What’s that??? Over having zoom meeting you say?!!? No problem! You can now invite up to 300 in person guests to meetings in the worship room. And the room now has air conditioning for hot weather! (Masks required.) 



Philadelphia Yearly Meeting recently completed their 341st Annual Sessions, which was virtual again this year.  You may review all of Annual Sessions or focus on the parts that speak to you the most: 



Knowing what you own is the first step to aligning your investments with your values. You be invested in state violence through companies involved in mass incarceration, immigrant detention and surveillance, military occupation, or the border industry. 

Our database includes original research and lists over 150 company and industry profiles. Learn how companies profit from and support state violence. Then use this knowledge to create change.


Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting is now hosting in person and virtual Meeting for Worship. Meeting for Worship will begin at 11a.m., and unfortunately is no longer followed by coffee hour. The building will close at 1 pm. If you wish to attend CPMM’s virtual Worship, please email the meeting office at to get the meeting ID and password. 


Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance 

The Conference 

What does the future of energy efficiency look like? A difficult year has given us new appreciation for “business-as-usual” conditions. But as the industry recovers, we’re facing a unique opportunity to look beyond the old “normal” and shape the future. KEEA and EEA-NJ’s first in-person event of 2021, Forging the Future for Energy Efficiency, presents two days of forward-looking programming examining the policies, technologies, and companies pushing our industry into a new period of growth and innovation. 

When: September 22-23rd at the Philadelphia Navy Yard; act by August 13th for early bird pricing! 

» Register here. 

Community Ventures 

 Job Opening: Assistant Rental Manager 

Community Ventures is a non-profit, mission-driven developer and property manager of affordable housing in Philadelphia. 

Seeking a career-minded and energetic Assistant Rental Manager to join the team managing a group of affordable residential properties in North Philadelphia. Click here for responsibilities, requirements and benefits.


Do you know a Quaker leader?   

FCNL is searching for a new General Secretary. 

The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) seeks a Spirit-led, seasoned, and strategic leader who brings vision, inspiration, and executive experience to the role of General Secretary. The new General Secretary will be a courageous Quaker leader with a commitment to justice, peace, and environmental stewardship; to expanding diversity, equity, and inclusion within the FCNL community and beyond; and to building and nurturing relationships across political and organizational divides that promote healing of divisions in the Congress and the country. 

A position profile is posted on the FCNL website at  

A Fond Farewell, 11 years LEED Platinum, Local Rollin’ Fun!

Issue 72, May-June 2021

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter


Although Friends Center remains relatively quiet a fair amount of the time, a lot of change is happening below the surface, in some respects, quite literally.

            As of now, we plan to close on the sale of our 1520 Race Street building to Friends Select School on August 3.

            We appreciate all the staff from the equity partners and the tenants with storage in that building who have worked so hard to reduce and move over their materials. As you have heard, our remaining storage is quite limited.

            Stay tuned for future updates.

            Meanwhile, stay safe, be healthy, act for justice, and find time for peaceful reflection as you are able.

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director


→→→ FC Furniture GIVEAWAY ←←←

June 21-25, 2021

Sending a big thank you all of the tenants who moved out of the 1520 building and chose to leave furniture and office supplies behind. We would like to pay their kindness forward by opening the doors and offering our entire community the chance to browse what’s there and take what you like.

Stop by the 1520 Race Street building

the week of June 21-25

for our office furnishings giveaway!

  • First-come, first-served!
  • You are responsible for hauling away items you want. Friends Center staff is not able to assist.
  • Please mark claim larger items by taping a sign or post-it to the item your name, organization, and phone number.
  • Other questions? Contact Erick.


also known as the Worship Room

Friends Center has two exciting changes to announce for the Race Street Room, betteer known as the Worship Room of the Meetinghouse:

Our contractor Spinnaker Multimedia Solutions recently upgraded the AV system in the Race Street Room. We can now host hybrid meetings with participants who are both in person and online through Zoom!! Please contact Shakirah Holloway in our office if you would like to know more.

Our facility manager John Gibson and our building controls contractor Carrier Systems recently upgraded the HVAC system in the Race Street Room to provide cooled air! While it will probably never be truly cool on a hot day, this solution will make the space bearable in summer. All powered by our path-breaking geothermal heating and cooling system, of course!


Friends Child Care Center is moving out of the 1520 Race Street building and is now occupying the Cherry Street Room and Rufus Jones Room for the foreseeable future. We are in the process of developing a new facility for them in the Lower Level of the 1501 Cherry Street building.

            Our hope is to have the new facility available in early 2022. Stay tuned as more details become available!



Reflections on the Light and Languages of Pentecost: Fire. Light. The Holy Spirit.

Reflections by Melinda Wenner Bradley, Youth Religious Life Coordinator for PYM

“While Friends did not traditionally celebrate religious holidays aligned with the liturgical calendar of the Christian church, Pentecost feels to me like a story our children should hear…. How can seeking the Light, receiving gifts of the Spirit, and sharing a message of God’s love for all people across the boundaries of place and language be part of all of our days as Friends?”

» Read more


AFSC Calls for Pathway to Citizenship

Every person without permanent immigration status deserves a lasting solution to keep families and communities together. But today, there are about 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. without a viable pathway to permanent residency and citizenship.

»   Read AFSC’s call for a pathway to citizenship.

AFSC Opposes Weapons Sales

The Biden administration has approved a new sale of $735 million in weapons to Israel, despite objections in Congress. At the same time, the Biden administration also announced it would commit just $5 million to support reconstruction in Gaza—a fraction of what the U.S. is providing in weapons. AFSC is working to change U.S. policy to support those pushing for nonviolent change. Everyone deserves to live in safety and peace.

»   AFSC’s position against weapons sales and in support of reconstruction

»   Learn more about AFSC’s global peace policy: Shared Security



Saturday, June 5th, 11:00 AM

George Lakey of Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting will read from one of his newest books. Facilitating Group Learning is an essential resource designed to help educators, trainers, workshop leaders, and anyone who assists groups to learn. George Lakey will discuss the core principles and proven techniques of direct education, an approach he developed for effectively teaching adults in groups. The author emphasizes critical issues related to diversity, as well as authenticity and emotions. Please log in on the Zoom platform.
Login info and other details here.

.O on Transforming Love Ministry

Sunday, June 6th, 1:00 pm

CPMM member .O will talk about her transforming love ministry on June 6, 2021 at 1 pm.

            .O invites participants to bring a seed of their liking, and to watch ahead of time this 6-minute video showing the lived experience of inseparable oneness:

This is part of a series, Meeting for Worship with Attention to Ministry, sponsored by the Committee on Gifts and Leadings.

» Calendar Listing


A Fond Farewell to

Girls Inc.

of Greater Philadelphia & Southern N.J.

After six dynamic years at Friends Center, Girls Inc. of Greater Philadelphia & Southern N.J. is moving to the Bok Building in mid-June. While we are sorry to see them go, we recognize they have outgrown the available space at Friends Center.

            Executive Director Dena Herrin was new in her job when she contacted us in 2015 about leasing space for four staff and some interns. Their work of “inspiring all girls to be strong, smart, and bold” was a great fit with the Quaker testimony of equality, and the long history of women in leadership roles in the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

            Since 2015, thanks to the efforts of Dena, Natasha Andrews, Cherice Arrington, and the rest of the team, Girls Inc. has nearly doubled in size! No doubt, they have also increased their impact on the girls and young women they serve by even more than that. They also did a lively and informative podcast with us.

            Many people at Friends Center also benefited from Girls Inc. sharing their resources with the community, especially the many seasonal craft supplies.

            Good luck, Girls Inc.! We look forward to hearing reports of how your programs continue to flourish and grow in your new home.

And welcome back to

Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance

This month we welcome back Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance—better known as KEEA—to Friends Center. Their work to advance energy efficiency in the Mid-Atlantic through energy education and awareness is an excellent fit with our mission to promote Quaker values such as stewardship of the environment. It also fits extremely well with our 1501 Cherry Street building, which was renovated to LEED Platinum certification level 11 years ago now.

            KEEA had been a tenant from 2013 to 2018, so it is nice to welcome them back to our tenant community now.


Local Rollin’ Fun!

Lace up your skates and get ready to roll back in time as live DJs spin throwback tunes at the Rothman Orthopaedics Roller Rink, including hits from the 80s, 90s and early 2000s! Now in place at Dilworth Park next to City Hall.

Friends Center Newsletter 4/2021: Shredding Day II, Chauvin Verdict Responses, Tenants in the News

Issue 71, April 2021


Although this newsletter is going out late in April, it has plenty of interesting information. Send us your updates, so we can share more news again in just a few weeks. Happy spring!

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director


Shredding Day II – First week of May

Shredding Day was so successful, we’re making a sequel!

Please drop off paper for shredding inside the loading dock entrance in the Meetinghouse basement, Monday, May 3—Thursday May 6. (The vendor will be here very early that Friday, so Friday is too late to drop material off.)



Runway to Annual Sessions 2021

May 4—July 24, 2021

The Runway to Annual Sessions is filled with virtual workshops, gatherings, Business Q&As, an All Ages Gathering, and a Collaborative Fair!

            During the week of Annual Sessions, July 27 through August 1, we will gather to begin our week with the 4th Annual Spiritual Formation retreat. Following the virtual retreat, we will connect as a yearly meeting in All Ages Worship, Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business, five fantastic keynotes, an awesome Artist in Residence, Youth programs, Young Adult programs, Fellowship, worship sharing, Affinity Spaces, epistle writing, and Bible studies.

            This year’s Annual Sessions theme is “Uproot Injustice, Root Justice” and is present and woven into all aspects of our work together including Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business, our keynote presentations, the Collaborative Fair, and the workshops. 

            To receive the latest schedule of events, registration details, upcoming events and stories, please check the Annual Sessions page and sign up for our weekly News & Events newsletter.


Despite Chauvin conviction, trauma of police violence continues

Young Black and Brown people in the Twin Cities need accountability and healing

SAINT PAUL, MN (April 20, 2021) A Minneapolis jury found Derek Chauvin—a white police officer—guilty for the murder of George Floyd. George Floyd—a Black 46-year-old Minneapolis resident—was killed by Chauvin and three other officers on May 25 of last year. Floyd’s murder sparked widespread condemnation and protests across the Twin Cities and across the country. The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)—a Quaker social justice organization—organized against this killing and police violence nationwide.

»   Read the full statement from Shanene Herbert, director of AFSC’s Healing Justice program in Saint Paul.


CPMM member .O will talk about her transforming love ministry on June 6, 2021. This is part of a series, Meeting for Worship with Attention to Ministry, sponsored by the Committee on Gifts and Leadings.

» Calendar Listing




Statement on Derek Chauvin Trial Verdict

(PHILADELPHIA, PA, 04/21/21) — The Philadelphia Chapter of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Philadelphia) welcomes the conviction of Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd….
            CAIR-Philadelphia Civil Rights Attorney Timothy Welbeck said, “A guilty verdict, while satisfying in that it brings a measure of justice to Derek Chauvin’s heinous actions, is still an incomplete measure. It will never bring back George Floyd and it is just the first step in addressing unchecked police violence against people of color.”
            He continued, “The criminal justice system that we have is broken at its very foundation. The murder of George Floyd is one of the most grotesque illustrations of that. I’m glad to see a guilty verdict. This is what we were hoping for and anticipating. Just as the prosecution said in its closing arguments, ‘you saw what you saw,’ America saw what it saw. And I am relieved that at the very least, we have some semblance of accountability in this moment.” Welbeck concluded by saying, “This conviction is a start, but there is much work to do…”
            Said Mohammed Zubairu, President of the Executive Committee of CAIR-Philadelphia, “The Muslim community of the Greater Delaware Valley must continue to speak out on issues of justice in our locality and our country. As Americans, this is our First Amendment right. As Muslims, this is our obligation, to correct wrongs when we see them, and certainly not be part to them by action or inaction.”
» Read the full statement


Trust-based philanthropy offers us a path to power sharing, beyond the pandemic

“By lifting restrictions on the use of funds and relying on grantees to tell us what they needed, we made seismic shifts in the distribution of power in our sector,” says guest columnist Farrah Parkes.

» Read the full piece


PA Pardon System:

Join The Scattergood Foundation & Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity for a conversation about the PA Pardon System. Held on 5/17 at 9am with DA Larry Krasner, Jeffery Brown and a host of others. Register here

Aligning policy & practice through local grantmaking efforts
by Caitlin O’Brien & Alyson Ferguson for Generocity:

The Scattergood Foundation will award four $20,000 grants to grassroots orgs as part of its new grant program, Policy Meets Practice: Think Bigger Do Good Support Local.

» Read more

American Rescue Plan Act and Philadelphia Behavioral Health, by Joe Pyle forGenerocity:
Part 1

» Part 2


Featured on WRTI’s Friday Choral Connection!

This Friday, April 30, 1:30 pm

WRTI-FM, on the radio at 90.7 FM and online, presents Friday Choral Connection, which airs every Friday at 1:30 PM. This program, which started last September, has been extended through June 2021. Singing City will be featured on April 30.



Center City Fit
Mondays & Tuesdays, April 12-October 12, 6 p.m.-7 p.m.

Get ready to get moving! Professional instructors and trainers from Optimal Sport 1315 Walnut will host free outdoor fitness classes for participants of all skill levels. Monday evenings will be dedicated to Zumba, and Tuesdays in April will focus on Boot Camp before transitioning to HIIT classes in May. 

The Arts on Center Stage
Wednesdays, May 5—August 25, 5 p.m.-7:30 p.m.

Philadelphia’s robust network of arts & culture organizations, large and small, will be celebrated every week as they showcase their talent in the center of the city at Dilworth Park. Performances will range from orchestral serenades and ballet ensembles to jazz instrumentals and beyond. In support of local restaurants, guests are encouraged to dine al fresco with takeout meals from nearby eateries. Cocktails to-go will be offered to guests 21 and older, and a special menu will be available at the Air Grille. CCD and the park’s café operators have implemented increased health safety procedures throughout the park and visitors will be reminded to adhere to all CDC guidelines, including wearing masks at all times. All programs are weather permitting and subject to change. Dilworth Park is located at 1 S. 15th St., on the west side of City Hall. Visit to learn more.

Mourning Together, Shredding Day, Innocence on Death Row and more

Issue 70, March 2021

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter


Today in the U.S. we have yet another reason for mourning. The horrific mass shooting of Asian American women in Atlanta is just the latest sign of a wave of anti-Asian violence in the US. And other forms of structural and interpersonal violence continue to occur here in Philadelphia, in the US, and in other countries (many of whom are supplied with weapons from this country).

                Fortunately, many organizations at Friends Center organize communities and offer resources to counter these trends. Here are just a few samples:

  • CAIR:
    TONIGHT (3/17):

    Vigil for Victims of Anti-Asian Violence 10th & Vine St Plaza, 7-8 PM for all those who are grieving those who have suffered. At 6 PM, we also welcome those who want to help make posters for the vigil.
  • AFSC:
    Standing up to Anti-Asian Racism, Feb. 2021
  • Gender Justice Fund:
    Tweet: “White supremacy and patriarchy are inextricably linked. We must fight them both on every front. Our hearts are with those affected by the shooting in #Atlanta.”
  • Friends Center’s Twitter list of the organizations here is a great way to find out what your colleagues are doing:   

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director


Shredding Day: March 19th

Our Preferred company will be visiting Friends Center to shred sensitive documents onsite. You can leave your shredding down by the loading area on the cart that is set up. What is collected will be locked up at night until it is picked up Friday.



Spring Continuing Sessions

March 23, 7:00pm – 8:30pm

March 26, 6:00pm – 7:30pm

March 27, 9:00am – 4:00pm

Register Here


Employment Opportunities

The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker Organization which includes people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace, and humanitarian service.  Its work is based on the Quaker belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Read more about AFSC’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.

For a complete list of open positions, please click here.


Fair Trade Ministry

This is a video recording of Yoko Koike Barnes’s presentation on her Fair Trade Ministry, offered during the meeting for worship with attention to ministry via Zoom on March 4, 2021.



Gender Justice Fund & Scattergood Foundation featured: “Does the local nonprofit sector have the collective agency to make change and move us toward just recovery?”

“It is hard to find balance between doing the work and finding the energy and resources to argue at City Hall,” says Farrah Parkes of Gender Justice Fund.

» Continue Reading Here

Witness to Innocence

Featured in National Geographic Magazine:

“Sentenced to death, but innocent:
These are stories of justice gone wrong.”

Since 1973, more than 8,700 people in the U.S. have been sent to death row. At least 182 weren’t guilty—their lives upended by a system that nearly killed them.

» Articles and Photos Here (paywall)