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Religious Diversity Minute

Published: July 30, 2021


Minute on Diversity of Faith
Summer Montana Gathering of Friends (8/14/202)

At the 2020 Winter MGOF gathering, we came together with the intention of starting to bridge the divide Montana Friends have felt over the years about the beliefs we hold and the language we use to express our deepest spiritual experiences. We heard stories of those wounded by Christian churches in the past and stories of people who have felt judged for their Christian beliefs.

This minute is an assertion of commitment to become more mindful of our communications about faith. We are a community of faith within the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). We share a common history and traditional testimonies. We acknowledge that each of us brings our unique experience and perspective to MGOF. In the highest and best expression of our shared values, each of us longs to offer acceptance, honor, belonging, and love. By the same token each of us longs to be accepted, honored, and loved. Sometimes, when we fall short, members of our community feel unheard, misunderstood, and excluded especially with respect to our personal expressions of spiritual experience.

We want to live in a way that puts our values into practice. We need to examine how we hurt each other. The language we choose to use is sometimes understood as judgmental, disdainful, and dismissive. By this minute, we commit to an ongoing process of communication, discernment, and action in hopes of broadening the embrace of our community.

Summer Montana Gathering of Friends, 8/14/2021

from Tina Visscher, Montana Gathering of Friends