Friends General Conference

Nurturing faith and Quaker practice

Energized by Truth: Rachel Ernst's Journey to Quakers

Quaker Quest Blog

I like to joke that I attended my first Quaker meeting because the Belief-O-Matic told me to; but now, ten years later, I am certain that that silly internet quiz was really just the first of many divine nudges guiding me on my spiritual journey...

I came to Quakers as a young adult, fresh from college, seeking community, rootedness, and a spiritual home. 

The beauty in the silence I found in Quaker waiting worship is how it holds me in a safe space for exploring, deepening, and connecting, no matter my stage of life or location on the spiritual path. 

As a young adult, I relished the silence as I healed the part of my soul that had been wounded by previous religious experiences.  Sitting with others in sacred quiet allowed me to rediscover God and open my heart to the idea of religion.  I left Meeting on Sundays energized by Truth and more grounded in living with intention and love. 

Silent Quaker meeting became my safe haven and a gift I gave myself every week. 

As my Quaker practice has evolved, I’ve also been inspired and challenged by the rootedness of Quaker theology.  I love to read, research, imagine, pray, and listen deeply to the insights of other Friends.  Knowing that our practice is grounded in a rich spiritual tradition prompts me to seek answers both in the silence and in the collection of tested Quaker wisdom.

As a Quaker, I am engaged in a shared quest to discover what is true and divine about our human experience.  Together we ask:

What does it mean to receive the Light of God? 

How can we discern leadings and share the faith of Jesus?

What was the revolutionary truth that set early Quakers on fire and how can we rekindle those flames within our own communities? 

What does it looks like to “recognize that of God in everyone”?

I no longer seek safety in the silence.  Nowadays, I’m ready to be challenged, to be energized, to be led.  What I love about the Quaker experience is that it is vast enough to hold the entirety of my journey.

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