Friends General Conference

Nurturing faith and Quaker practice

Naming Spiritual Gifts within the Meeting

photo by Joya Manasseh
Meeting Resource

What are spiritual gifts?

Spiritual gifts are given to an individual by the Spirit to carry on behalf of a community. Some examples of spiritual gifts from the Christian New Testament are wisdom, discernment, faith, healing, miracles, and prophecy (I Corinthians 12: 7-11).

Spiritual gifts may not be the same as an individual’s skills or talents; they are essentially on loan from the Spirit.  They are for the benefit of the community rather than the individual.

Why should spiritual gifts be named?

Gifts are usually named by the community rather than by the individual who carries them.
It is important for the community to recognize gifts of the Spirit in its members in a loving and supportive manner. When gifts are not named, spiritual jealousy can occur and cause upset and dissatisfaction within the community.

The work of the meeting may depend upon the naming of gifts. If no gifts are named then those who are ill-equipped may feel empowered to take on the work.
Friends who try to exercise a gift that they do not carry can exhaust themselves and complicate the work that they try to achieve. Unnamed gifts may be misused if the Friend carrying them is not supported and held accountable.

How do we name gifts in our meeting?

Read about how individuals discover their particular gifts here: Paradigms-of-Calls-Discoveries-of-Gifts

Learn about the practice of naming the gifts of an individual through worship here: Seeing-Drawing-Out-Gifts

Read about how a group can draw out the gifts of an individual by having the Friend name what gives him or her joy here: Exercise-on-Drawing-Out-Gifts