Are We Giving Enough of Ourselves?
Greg Woods with a great piece on giving time and listening to God:
How are we responding to these calls? Are we using our gift of time towards working for racial justice? Are we giving enough of ourselves?… Some [Quakers] find this theology of continuing revelations distressing, but I find comfort in that because it honors Friends’ longtime witness that God is still speaking to our condition today, both as a corporate body and as individuals. We should always be listening for how God wants to use us and our abilities as disciples of God’s grace within today’s ever-changing world.
Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?
Deborah Suess writes a guest post about troubles among North Carolina Friends:
Many of you have heard rumblings that our state denomination is in trouble. And you have asked, “What the heck is going on? What are we arguing about?” Well… it’s complicated. Of course.
Reddit AMA thread on Quakers
A new Reddit comment thread on Quakers will keep you reading for hours.
The Golden Rule protest boat restoration
Jane Braxton Little writes about the restoration of one of the most storied protest boats of the twentieth century:
The Golden Rule project is an improbable accomplishment by unlikely volunteers. Members of Veterans For Peace, they are a motley bunch that might have appalled the original crew, all conscientious Quakers. They smoke, drink and swear like the sailors, though most of them are not. Aging and perpetually strapped for money, the mostly retired men sought to banish their war-related demons as they ripped out rotten wood and replaced it plank by purpleheart plank.
Planet Money on Quakers’ fixed pricing innovation
The finance podcast talked about this “fringy, radical thing” Friends did:
Having one price for each item, that was the Quakers’ radical thing. They thought haggling was just fundamentally unfair. They thought charging different people different prices for the same thing was morally wrong.
A Fantastic, Participatory, Quaker Meeting?
Wess Daniels is back with a participatory vision for our meetings:
This is what it means to be a participatory church. You are all co-creators. There is not master/servant scenario, there is no one exercising control over you, you are invited as friends of Jesus to be faithful to the living out of your faith through love in this time and place.
Control, Resilience, Leadership and the Fantastic Mr. Fox — Nursery of Truth
Wess Daniels on our cultures of leadership:
Many of our religious institutions, including, but not limited to Quaker Yearly Meetings, are operating much more like the farmers than like Mr. Fox and the animals. Higher and higher anxiety and reactivity highlight the terrain within our religious communities, leading to more and more brittleness of our organizations.
The pitfalls of incremental change and failed reforms
On the AFSC blog, Laura Magnani looks at well-intentioned but failed Quaker reform movements at the past as a caution to current movement building:
Quakers are often blamed for the invention of the penitentiary… They were trying to do something “good,” more humane, whose primary purpose would be rehabilitation. They were trying to address overcrowding and abusive prison practices [but] it quickly deteriorated as prisons became more crowded, more chaotic and ineffective. Today many of us are promoting “community-based programs” as a way of shrinking the prison population, only to discover that private prison corporations have swooped in to the re-entry business as a lucrative new market.
What Draws You to Quakerism?
Reno Friends held a day-long spirituality workshop and asked “What is Compelling about Quakerism?”
Many said they are attracted by the communal quality of Silent Worship; there is something powerful about sitting together in what Quakers call “expectant silence.” … At the same time, Reno Friends said they are drawn to Quakerism just as much by the outward expression of Quaker principles as they are by the inner quest.
Spiritual Nurture & Advancement
Steven Davison continues is “Quaker-pocalpyse” series with a piece on naming the spiritual gifts of those in our meetings.
I fear, however, that most of our meetings do not try to name our members’ spiritual gifts or nurture them in any proactive way. Too often we are left to our own devices when it comes to maturing in the life of the spirit. As a result, the collective life of the spirit, the spiritual maturity of the meeting, suffers.