I was just perusing the site tonight and I noticed that when a subject comes
up and people jump in and discuss it, they are all coming from being in COBU
at different time periods and they seem to be missing each other's point.
Could it be that the arguments are just misunderstandings stemming from that?

The discussion on racism was an example.  So was the discussion on Lent.

In the early 70's, we started out witnessing to young people in little towns
in PA. where there were all upper and middle class white kids.  By the
mid-80's, however, it seemed that we started focusing our efforts on young
people mainly in the inner cities, who happened to be black or Hispanic.
Personally, I never witnessed any racial tension in COBU; we were oblivious to
it.

But COBU went through a lot of major changes in its structure and its focus
between 1971 and now.

How about we take a harmless poll (oh no I hear groaning already) of how many
that participate in the website are from certain milestone years in COBU...not
in any order to signify importance, but in order to clarify what was being
taught in those days so that those who lived through it can make their point,
be heard, understood and validated by those who lived in "those times"....

Example: 1971-1973 were the earliest years.  The only ones I can see so far
who write from those years are Rob Machelle, (Gerri Machell is on the list),
Neil Pendry, Patti Seif (on mailing list), Jeff Seif, Herman Weiss...

Then the second generation, so to speak, or the years when the FF really
spread out into centers, right before we were lassoed into the MTC,
1974-1976.  I think a few more brethren write to the website from this group
of years than the first group, don't you?

The next group, in my opinion, would be those who lived in the MTC from 1976
(Stewart's remarriage) to about 1980, but I am fuzzy on how many years this
third wave should last.  Probably because I was so fuzzy at the time.  I
wonder if a lot more write from these years?

The whole Lamb Course thing, the Philly house was instituted in the early
80's, true?

Then we had a big proposition thing, and it was the mid 80's.  I left in 1984.
Those who lived in COBU beyond 1984 could probably attest to the changes in
those years (for instance, the Grace Meeting years).

I'm not saying we should break up in groups.  Perish the thought.  But I'm
trying to figure out as I'm reading why everyone is making sense in totally
different manners of writing!  Most are PROVOKED into defending themselves to
make themselves understood, because they are playing to a full house, so to
speak.

You know how you can mention something that your dog did in the house to gour
brother or sister and you laugh about it because he/she grew up in your house,
he immediately can understand what you are saying.  You get validated.

We are individuals with our own minds and viewpoints, to varying degrees of
healing.  So we will not all come off the same.  We are not all well-spoken.
Heck, some can't even type.

But I wonder if our COBU experiences will be more understood, appreciated and
replied to with more compassion, if we can send them to a particular group of
people who were there, instead of the whole gang.

It's just a suggestion.  It could be an alternative group to e-mail.  Instead
of just onelisting everyone, you would reply to those in your "era".....does
that sound too exclusive?

I am thinking about the feelings of those so fragile who have just gathered up
the gumption to write, and I would hate to see those scared off the screen by
others who mean well, but can't figure out why they feel the way they do.

Any thoughts?  This can be posted, but I can't attest for the typos.  It's
late.  Love In Him, Nancy (White) Walijeski