Peace & Social Concerns Committee
According to Faith and Practice, a committee is a group of individuals who meet under appointment and out of a calling or concern with the responsibility for being particularly aware of some aspect of the life of the meeting. One of the ways Morningside Monthly Meeting participates in the work of the Spirit in the world is through the Peace and Social Concerns Committee.
The function of the Committee is to engage with the Meeting in understanding and implementing Friends’ testimonies and principles as they bear upon public issues. While this function includes overseeing the Meeting’s relationship with national and international Quaker organizations concerned with these matters, most of the Committee’s work derives from the passions and concerns—the leadings—of individual Morningside members and attenders, who bring these to the Committee for discernment. To facilitate this, all meetings of the Committee are open to all.
After discernment on an issue, the Committee may bring information and recommendations for action to the Meeting. The committee also considers concerns that arise from Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business. It may, with the Meeting’s approval, act in the name of the Meeting on specific matters. The committee may assign areas of concern to subcommittees, which may be formed or laid down as appropriate.
The Meeting assigns a substantial portion of our annual budget to support local hands-on organizations, the wider Quaker fellowship, national/international political/social action groups, and special projects identified as concerns of the Meeting. Discernment as to the assignment and distribution of these funds is part of the work of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee.
Any Morningside member or attender can bring a concern to the committee for consideration for support. The discernment of proposals for funding through our budget of projects in any category involves one or more of the following four criteria:
- Active Morningside members and attenders are directly involved.
- The contribution represents seed money for a new endeavor.
- The contribution will provide critical funds for the activity—will make a difference.
- Political/social action groups we support are those of which we have direct knowledge.
As a rule, Friends who bring forward a concern that is approved for support become the Meeting’s liaison with the organization carrying out the work. Liaisons are responsible for maintaining contact with the organization, keeping the Committee and the Meeting as a whole informed about its activities, and, not least, informing their contact(s) at the organization when funds from Morningside are being sent. While most liaisons are members of the standing P&SC Committee, they need not be.