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Life Cycle of a Quaker Meeting The lessons we learn from accompanying people as they die can help inform our understanding of the care that Quaker meetings need as they change and age. While closure is an expected and important part of any life, including the life of a meeting, in our youth-focused culture, it can be hard to tend this part of our life cycle. We believe that Quakers are missing some important opportunities for deep spiritual experiences and growth when we don’t address these challenges. Here, we will consider what it might mean to tend the Spirit and the spiritual life of a meeting that is in the later stages of its life.

On Loss (May 2023)

The “Why” of What We Do I had an occasion recently to hear some young Friends talk about ministry services they are performing on behalf of Quakers. I have nothing but heartfelt compliments for their generous spirits and their hard work in pursuit of making the world a more humane, just, and merciful place. In light of the significant proportion of their cohort who are NOT volunteering in such efforts, I feel special appreciation that these young people are rising well above what seems to be the present norm of disengagement. For their good and faithful work, I am grateful.

On Loss (May 2023)

Bittersweet Wisdom We all have something to say about loss, because all of us have experienced it – yearning for what used to be, but is no more. And perhaps, as our years pass, we wrestle with the issue of loss even more, having chewed some of the gristle of life, as it were, not just the low-hanging fruit.

On Loss (May 2023)

Wellspring of Quaker Life Friends: In reviewing the work done by many of us, both teachers and students, across a wide variety of truly marvelous classes, none covered what I consider the heart and soul of Quakerism – and that is sitting in silence, either in a group or alone contemplating our self, seeking personal change.

On Dignity (July 2023)

God’s Part in Our Art (review) In her 2021 book, God’s Part in Our Art: Making Friends with the Creative Spirit, Linda Seger uses examples from numerous artistic professions, as well as her own personal stories, to show the process and joy of being an artist. I found this book to be deeply enjoyable and spirituality grounding, even though I don’t practice an art form myself. It spoke to me as a person who tries to approach life generally in a creative way.

On Dignity (July 2023)

On Healers By their nature, living creatures seek nourishment and try to avoid pain. Each one of us comes up with our own strategies here. Most of us start with “The Way of My People.” After that, each of us comes up with our own odd twists on how we do things.

On Healers (September 2023)

Healing Trauma in Community (abridged) This article is excerpted from an address to the 2023 Annual Sessions of Sierra Cascades Yearly Meeting of Friends. The original is published at: https://westernfriend.org/media/healing-trauma-community-unabridged

On Healers (September 2023)