Spring 2022 Town Hall
Inspiration, Information, and Community
On a beautiful Boston Spring evening, at Father Peter’s kind invitation, more than two dozen A Faith That Does Justice (AFTDJ) volunteers, friends, and donors came together in person at 300 Newbury Street. We were excited to participate in a wonderful Town Hall presentation, to greet each other and enjoy refreshments, and to dialogue, inquire, and learn about AFTDJ’s critically important work. It was a most inspiring time for all!
Father Peter offered his thanks to all AFTDJ volunteers and spoke strongly about the intrinsic value of volunteer expertise, the range of meaningful commitments, and his deep appreciation of each person’s time and support. We were then offered powerful information, perspectives, and examples. The conversations that followed Father Peter’s presentation focused upon action, and reflect AFTDJ’s immediate, promising opportunities regarding scale, partnerships, and volunteer engagement.
Scale is key. Father Peter described the impact and potential of virtual participation in AFTDJ’s English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes, community meetings, and workshops. The number of participants in the life of AFTDJ is growing exponentially, as is the number of those requesting ESOL instruction. Event attendees now come from across the nation and even beyond. ESOL students participate virtually from as far away as California. AFTDJ must capitalize on the promise of this rapidly growing community filled with those who hear our message, and those who need our help.
Partnerships are sought. Father Peter described AFTDJ’s desire to engage leaders from a variety of faith communities and philanthropic organizations serving those in need, to deepen connection with members of every community, and to diversify the organization’s volunteer community. Specific action steps to achieve these goals include the appointment of a talented new Director of Community Engagement, a recent virtual interview with Rabbi Elaine Zecher of Temple Israel, Boston, and collaborations with Jewish Vocational Service and the Anti-Defamation League. AFTDJ must continue to mindfully, strategically, and energetically reach out and diversify its constituency.
Volunteer engagement is prized. As Father Peter described, people of good will are most heartily welcomed, honestly needed, and deeply cared for at AFTDJ. All of us at Town Hall were then treated to an insightful and witty description by an ESOL teacher, including experiences and insights into his work and students. Questions and commentary ensued, and Father Peter again commended all volunteers, thanking everyone, present and beyond, for their gifts of time, talent, and treasure which bring help to so many people in need.
… And Community!
Those of us who attended our wonderful Town Hall – long-standing volunteers, brand new ones, returning friends, kind donors, key administrators, ESOL teachers, and all – understand that we represent everyone who contributes to AFTDJ! Thank you! You were certainly with us in spirit!
– Susan Fugliese, Director of Advancement, A Faith That Does Justice