Whether organizing a virtual or online worship in response to a pandemic, or considering starting a new group that is entirely online, this section has reflections on spirituality during virtual worship, lists existing opportunities, and shares guidance and suggestions for creating meaningful online worship.
Resources for Organizing Worship Online
- Gathering in Worship…when we don’t physically gather by Emily Provance, New York Yearly Meeting
- Being the Church Online by Kathleen Wooten, New England Yearly Meeting
- Virtual Clerking and Discernment by New England Yearly Meeting (Text and Video)
- Pendle Hill’s Hybrid Worship Experiment by Pendle Hill Staff
- Planning Religious Education Programming for Children During COVID-19 by Melinda Wenner Bradley, Faith and Play™ Stories
- Quakers respond to Coronavirus in Friends Journal with links to resources from Quaker monthly meetings
- Community with Communing: Resources for Virtual Church an article from Sojourners
- Increase Church: Cease In-Person Gatherings (for now) by Anna Woofenden
- COVID-19 Inspired-Quaker Meeting Online with Babies, Dogs & a Moving Car by Christine Green about participating in virtual worship
Coronavirus/COVID Pandemic Responses and Guidance
Quaker Spirituality in Virtual Spaces: Reflections and Resources
Virtual Meeting for Worship Opportunities
When you’re the only Friend in town, the nearest meetinghouse is too far away, or physical limitations prevent participation in the life of your Quaker community in-person, opportunities for virtual Meeting for Worship and Spiritual Deepening eRetreats can be a lifeline to faith.
FGC Worships for People of Color
To encourage community and a stronger connection to Spirit in a safe space, Friends General Conference began hosting virtual worships for People of Color in 2018. FGC established this practice as a result of a request by Friends of Color who participated in a retreat that summer. During that weekend Friends of Color expressed their pain of feeling oppressed in their meeting which caused them to stop attending. These Friends were clear that Quakerism and worship was core to their lives and wanted an opportunity to continue to worship in community. FGC agreed to support these Friends with providing monthly virtual worships on Zoom. These worships are provided as a place for Friends of Color to come together in community and worship in an environment with Friends who experience marginalization in their lives and Quaker meetings because they are a Person of Color.
For more information or to sign up for any of these offerings for Friends of Color please click on the worships below:
- Virtual Worship for Friends of Color (Weekly)- Midday Wednesdays at 1 PM ET. Evening Wednesdays at 8 PM ET. Third Sunday of the month at 8 PM ET.
- Virtual BIPOC Womens Space (Twice-Monthly)- First Monday of the Month at 3:00 PM ET. First Thursday of the Month at 8:00 PM ET
- Virtual Open House for Friends of Color (Every other Friday)- every other Friday from 7-9 PM ET.
- Virtual Worship Sharing for Friends of Color (Weekly)- Tuesdays at 5 PM ET
Meeting for Worship Open to All Friends and Spiritual SeekersNOTE: FGC has now turned the weekly Saturday meetings for worship over to an independent group of volunteers.
The FGC-inspired Saturday meeting for worship at 8 pm Eastern/5 pm Pacific Time by Zoom continues on a volunteer-led basis for Friends, Quaker newcomers, and spiritual seekers who want to worship online with Friends during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. By registering and participating in this virtual opportunity, you agree to help foster a loving worship community for all participants. The coordinator will follow up within a week of receiving your registration. You’ll be able to join with the Zoom app on a computer, tablet, or smartphone, or you can call in for audio-only.
To join us for weekly worship open to all, please register here.
Additionally, Friends and spiritual seekers looking for open online worship are encouraged to check out:
- The Ben Lomond Quaker Center Online Meeting for Worship, which is held daily 7:30 to 8:00 AM Pacific Time.
- Pendle Hill Online for Worship in the Barn, held daily at 8:30 AM Eastern Time
- Cloud Quakers, who hold Virtual Meeting for Worship every Sunday at 6:00 PM Mountain Time.
- Western Friend’s Quaker Worship and Fellowship Online resource, which organizes virtual worship opportunities from Quaker communities and conference centers by frequency and day of the week.
- NEW, organized during the COVID-19 pandemic: Friends working recovery programs are invited to join Meeting for Worship with Attention to Recovery via Zoom on Sundays at noon Eastern/9a Pacific. Think Friends’ meeting for 12-Steppers or 12-Step meeting for Friends. Semi-programmed worship with attention to the miracle and challenge of recovery. Open to those in any recovery fellowship.Meeting can be joined via phone call or video conference. For the Zoom Meeting ID, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spiritual Deepening eRetreats
An FGC Spiritual Deepening eRetreat is an online opportunity to build spiritual community with Friends and seekers while learning about Quaker thought and practice from the comfort of your own home. Friends and newcomers complete exercises, explore multimedia materials, and participate in weekly group check-ins during each 4 to 8-week eRetreat. Our schedule of Spiritual Deepening eRetreat offerings can be found here.
Gathering Plenary Livestreaming and Recordings
When possible, FGC will livestream evening plenary presentations as they happen during the FGC Gathering, which takes place each summer. Evening plenaries open with a period of worship before the presentation. Explore available recordings from past editions of the FGC Gathering here.
Though these groups are not organized or moderated by FGC, you’ll find many Friends that are part of groups on Facebook. We suggest checking out Quakers Engage to End Racism, Young Adult Friends (Quakers), and Quaker Communications and Outreach. And for the Friends who are good at being bad, the Association of Bad Friends (Quakers) is an enjoyable source of Friendly comic relief.