Attended First Quaker Meeting

Well, I finally did it. I was going to try to go last weekend but got caught up with domestic stuff. So this Sunday, I made my pilgrimage over to the 15th Street Friends Meeting House. It was a beautiful couple of building built in 1860. I entered the building where the meeting was being held and was greeted by some of the nicest people I have ever met. I entered the main room where the service was being held and it was quite interested how all of the pews faced the center. Everyone was silent and "waiting". It was amazing. I took a seat and noticed a real calmness that I haven't felt really in NYC before. You could hear the birds outside the window in the blooming dogwood trees singing.

I sat and prayed and around 20 minutes into it, someone stood up and spoke. They talked about life and about being quaker for a few minutes then sat down. Another person stood 10 minutes or so later and talked about a verse from Luke. All in all around 6 people stood and spoke during the hour, otherwise it was just peaceful "waiting". At the end someone stood up and shook their neighbors hand to signify that the service was over. Announcements were made and then afterwards everyone gathered for an hour's social with coffee and snacks.

The group afterwards was amazing and everyone introduced themselves to me. We talked and I was asked to work on the arts committee since I'm a doc filmmaker. That was great! Not only did I find a place that feels very comfortable to me, but also a community to be a part of that is positive and has similar intests. I'm going to have lunch this week with the arts director. Pretty cool actually because I wanted not just a church, but a new community. I think I may have found it.

A funny thing. I also found out that I am directly related to Elizabeth Hooten, the first Quaker convert. I guess it's in my genes to be a Quaker.

So there you have it, my review of my first day at a Quaker Meeting.

Silent Quakers

well silent until they are moved to say something..lol.

lol...yes but they are refered to as Silent Quakers

again there are 21 different types of Quakers.

yeah i know..just making a joke. the one that I am starting to attend is "unprogrammed".

"unprogrammed". ...as in...silent

:-)

anyway...glad you had a good experience. I find the Silent Quakers to be very fasinating.

I know....I know...jeesh! lol. Your place of worship is an Evangelical Quaker Meeting House, correct?

yes Lynn, we share the Society Of Friends stance on pacifism and not taking vows(such as in court, we do not have to swear to tell the truth). But the church I attend has a pastor...something the society of friends do not. We also have music. But we do have 10 minutes of silent reflection and open worship at the start.

anymore info on silent quakers lynn? i am facinated that that is how their meetings go....sounds kinda cool....you reflect until you feel the urge or are moved to say something....very interesting

That sounds great. Rev...I've tried a ton of faiths and various churches within each and really never found like I found a community that I felt comfortable in, much less one that I truly agreed with their beliefs. This time, I can say that I'm actually feeling quite comfortable and would be willing to go as far as to say quite happy. I'll stick with it and give regular reports if people are interested. I talked with my mother about her attending one similar to yours in Texas. They are a bit far from where she lives though. I'll keep looking for her. She and I have similar beliefs but I think she may like yours better than the one that I attend.

thats cool Lynn, when people ask about Quakers..I always ask which one? Some are not even Christian....the Society Of Friends however is certainly a Christian denomination. We have a Silent Quaker meeting house here as well. We work very closely with them. They are good people..one thing you find amongst all the different Christian Quakers is their friendliness. and genuine care and concern for our fellow man.

When I was considering leaving my pastorship We had to decide wether to continue attending the church I was pastoring(very bad idea) or finding another church. We decided that when I was not out of town speaking we would attend the Quaker Church. Because we were made to feel truly welcome there. You know when somebody is really sincere in welcoming you and when they are just going through the motions. With the Quakers...you know they are sincere...and really want nothing from you in return.

Rev...You are more than correct on their sincerity. Are you familiar with the one in NYC?

Why did you consider leaving your pastorship?

Lynn, no I am not familiar with that one...but I'm sure it's like most Silent Quaker meeting Houses. I have been to two meeting....very very peacful...tranquil even.

I already left it

various reasons....I took on the role of my denoms evengelitic rep for my region...I still preach just not every sunday...and it's refshing to preach infront of different people every time. Pastoring a church is a big job, one I was not cut out to do. I love preaching...and I love people...so I still get to do that...as a pastor you are pretty much on call 24/7 just ask John. Now I have time to spend with my wife and children...and of course all you fine folks here :)

Rev. I didn't know you left. I guess I'm not as active on this forum as I would like to be. I'll try to be more so. I understand what you mean regarding your need for more time with family etc. Great about being a "traveling preacher". I'm sure it's rewarding in a complete different way.

Keep us updated on your experiences and journey into Quakerism.

George Fox was an amazing man...did you know he was once beaten with Bibles for preaching outside a church in England? wonder if thats where the term "Bible thumping" came from?

Rev....

Cool. I'll do it. Did you see where my great great great....aunt was Elizabeth Hooten, the first Quaker convert? Crazy!

Bludhall...who's to say we didn't eat oatmeal?

very very  cool Lynn...and please do not discuss the oatmeal eating ritual with non Quakers...I'm sure they'll fill you in about that at the next meeting...rule #3248: Never discuss the eating of the oatmeal with pagan infidels

:)

I am really happy that I found this thread! I am a Christian and I believe
that God died for us to pay for our sins. I really have not found a
Church to call my own and my wife is very interested in going to a Quaker
meeting. I have been doing some research but could you guys please tell
me a little more? Thanks!

Justin

Just checking in, I'm trying to learn more about the Religious Group of Friends.