Worship begins when we come into the circle of Friends and settle into the stillness and silence of the gathered meeting. There is no human leader and no planned program for the worship service. Quakers believe each of us can have direct communion with the Divine.
Quakers use various metaphors to describe the Divine. Some terms include: “the Inner Light” and “that of God in everyone”. It is through the inward experience of seeking this Divine presence in silent worship that we, as Quakers, believe we find a sense of wholeness in our lives, which calls us to outward actions that work for compassion, understanding, peace, and justice in the world.
During worship, individuals may speak out of the silence as the Spirit leads them.
There may be no words spoken, but the Spirit is still working and guiding us in our worship. Worship is concluded by greeting and shaking hands with the person nearest you.
Our Quaker fellowship is open to and affirming of all persons, regardless of race, age, perceived disability, gender, or sexual orientation.
Quakerism as a lived faith finds expression in our testimonies and our practices. Both spring from a belief that there is that of God in every person. Quaker practice is rooted in our traditional testimonies, guides to the living out of our faith. Friends are encouraged to seek a better understanding of the testimonies and to lovingly support each other in living them out.
Below is one interpretation of six testimonies that commonly shape Quaker experiences of the Light:
SIMPLICITY – Use financial and natural resources carefully. Value the spirit over material objects. Keep popular culture in perspective to avoid distraction from what is truly important. Keep life simple so we are free to live in harmony and alignment with the soul’s purpose.
PEACE – Build conflict resolution skills. See conflict as a springboard to moral growth. Seek elegant, simple solutions to problems or disagreements. Make decisions by consensus or the “sense of the meeting.”
INTEGRITY – Let your life speak: your outer life reflects your inner life. Treat others with respect and honesty. Acknowledge interconnectedness and essential oneness.
COMMUNITY – Connect with all members of the community. Be our authentic selves. Balance needs of the individual with needs of the group. Teach respect for everyone and the idea that everyone has a piece of the truth.
EQUALITY – Respect different people and different ideas. Honor all faiths. Celebrate a rich community made up of many cultures. Reflect a broad, inclusive spectrum of the global family.
STEWARDSHIP – Protect and care for the Earth in a sacred trust. Promote environmental, economic, and social sustainability. Teach social justice and the need for equal access to resources.