Tidings from Friends: Issue No. 15

Tidings from Friends

The Weekly Newsletter of Guilford College Friends Center

Welcome to Tidings from Friends, the weekly newsletter published by Guilford College’s Friends Center. In this time where we are more disconnected than usual and trying to find ways to connect and support the campus, we offer this as a means of lifting up our campus community with a brief thought and other reflective pieces for you.

Each week this newsletter will contain a list of upcoming events, a selection of local and/or student artwork or poetry, some resources for navigating religious life on campus, and a “mindful moment.” This mindful moment might be a passage of scripture, a written meditation, a link to a video, or something else. If you are interested in submitting artwork, poetry, or a mindful moment, please contact perkinsja1@guilford.edu.

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This photo provided by Jacob Perkins, Guilford College.

Mindful Moment

The Practice
“The Hospitality of Discomfort”
Seth Godin

  • My Colleague Marie Schacht differentiates between hospitality (welcoming people, seeing them, understanding what they need) and comfort (which involves reassurance, soft edges, and an elimination of tension).
  • Art doesn’t seek to create comfort. It creates change.And change requires tension. 
  • The same is true for learning. True learning (as opposed to education) is a voluntary experience that requires tension and discomfort (the persistent feeling of incompetence as we get better at a skill).
  • The practice, then, is to not only cause temporary discomfort for those whom you lead, serve, and teach, but to embrace your own discomfort as you venture into territories unknown. Artists actively work to create a sense of discomfort in their audience. Discomfort engages people, keeps them on their toes, makes them curious. Discomfort is the feeling we all get just before change happens. But this new form of hospitality – of helping people change by taking them somewhere new – can make us personally uncomfortable as well. It might feel easier to simply ask people what they want and do that instead. 
  • Choosing to offer only comfort undermines the work of the artist and the leader. Ultimately, it creates less impact and less hospitality as well. 
  • Your discomfort is no excuse for being inhospitable. Our practice is to bring a practical empathy to the work, to realize that in our journey to create change, we’re also creating discomfort. 
  • For our audience. For ourselves.
  • And that’s okay. 
This Mindful Moment provided by: Wess Daniels.

Upcoming Events

Wednesday1.20.20218:30 AMMeeting for Centering Silence (staff/faculty focus)Friends Center
Wednesday1.20.20217:24 PMGCM Weekly FellowshipGuilford Christian Ministry
Friday1.22.20211:00 PMMeeting for Centering Silence (open to all)Friends Center
Saturday1.23.20217:00 PMTriad Hillel HavdalahChavurah/Hillel
Monday1.25.20211:00 PMMeeting for Centering Silence (student focus)Friends Center
Wednesday1.27.20218:30 AMMeeting for Centering Silence (staff/faculty focus)Friends Center
Wednesday1.27.20211:00 – 2:00 PMConnecting Conversations: Judson Van WykFriends Center
Wednesday1.27.20216:00 PMCelebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Link coming soon)Guilford College, UNCG, A&T, & International Civil Rights Museum
To find more information about these events, please click on the event. This will direct you to the event registration if required, or directly to a zoom link. If you notice events missing here, please let us know.
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Opportunity that may interest some students:

New Garden Friends Meeting is searching for a Young Friends leader for the 2020-2021 academic year. This position is for a leader who will work with both Middle School and High School students. The leader will collaborate with another Young Friends leader as well as the New Garden Friends Meeting Religious Education Coordinator. At present, all programming is virtual due to the pandemic but will transition to in-person activities when conditions allow. Applicants should have a background in Quakerism and experience working with pre-teens and teenagers.

To apply, please send a letter of interest and a resume to Sharon Burton at (office@ngfm.org). 

Click here for more info and to register!
For the safety of our students, a registration is required for this virtual event.
Applications for the Jewish Learning Fellowship (JLF) are now open!  Join Hillel staff and a diverse group of Jewish students from across North Carolina for 10 weeks of community, connection and content. Receive a $250 stipend for your time and commitment.
More info and application here: nchillel.org/jlf
Please reach out to Vicki Cathcart, Director of Jewish Student Life, vcathcart@guilford.edu if you have any questions.

Visit esr.earlham.edu for more information.
Visit esr.earlham.edu for more information.


To find information about the Interfaith Leadership Council, faith leaders who work with students on campus, or to see a full calendar of all campus faith-related events, visit our Multifaith page.

The Friends Center Prayer Room is available to students of all faiths and spiritual journeys. Ideal for prayer, meditation, or reflection, we encourage folks to make use of this space. See our flyer for more information.

To contact Friends Center Director, email danielscw@guilford.edu.

For a variety of self-care resources, visit our Self-Care page.

To provide feedback or suggestions, submissions for artwork or Mindful Moments, or questions about this newsletter, contact perkinsja1@guilford.edu.

About Friends Center:

Friends Center is a collaborative project between the Religious Society of Friends and Guilford College. Friends Center is responsible for nurturing Quaker life and renewal on campus, building and sustaining interfaith cooperation on campus, and building relationships with the global Quaker community. To read more about Friends Center, visit the homepage of our website.