In her autobiography, Life on Two Levels (1978), Quaker dynamo Josephine Duveneck tells of a year when she provided a foster home in Los Altos Hills, CA, to a seven-year-old Jewish boy from Germany, while Hitler was rising to power in Europe. “What a sweet little personality he was . . .
In the Puritan and Calvinist cultures prevalent in 17th century Britain and America, children were believed to be born corrupted by “original sin”. Quakers rejected this doctrine, and Robert Barclay called it “an invented and unscriptural barbarism”. . .
Last summer I sat in circle of Friends at the annual retreat of the Quaker Religious Education Collaborative (QREC) and felt profoundly that I had come home to my people. It is gratifying to be with Friends who, like me, want to dedicate their time and energy to the religious education of our youngest Friends, starting from infancy.