Issue 30-09-2016

Featured story

Thought for the Week: Being encouragers

FREE 29 Sep 2016 | by Ian Kirk-Smith

‘Therefore encourage one another and build one another up just as you are doing’ 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Many people have been attracted to the Religious Society of Friends because of its engagement with the world – taking practical action on concerns such as slavery, criminal justice, poverty, peace, housing, equality and human rights....

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Valuing people

FREE 29 Sep 2016 | by The Friend

Ann Limb. | Photo: Courtesy of The Scout Association.

The Scout Association is the largest youth movement in the world, with some forty-four million scouts, and the largest mixed youth charity in Britain. It has a waiting list of 45,000. A recent, ambitious venture reflects the changing nature of the organisation – A Million Hands. It seems to be based on...

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Simplicity: Complex simplicity

FREE 29 Sep 2016 | by Anne de Gruchy

What is meant by simplicity? A close-up - see end of article for full image. | Photo: Anne de Gruchy.

Why is simplicity so complicated and how do we define it? This question arose repeatedly during my 2016 Eva Koch scholarship at the Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre. For my research I was privileged to conduct one-to-one interviews with twenty-six people – mainly Friends, aged from their twenties to seventies, from a variety...

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Ekta Parishad

29 Sep 2016 | by Rajagopal PV and Steve Whiting

Rajagopal speaking at the beginning of Janadesh 2007, a 350km walk from Gwalior to Delhi by 25,000 people, India. | Photo: Ekta Parishad.

Ekta Parishad began by advocating for land, forest and water rights for poor rural communities and is now a significant nonviolent movement for change in India. Steve Whiting, of Quaker Peace & Social Witness, talked to Rajagopal about his vision, Ekta Parishad and nonviolent action. What is the background to...

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See what the Quakers have done!

29 Sep 2016 | by Peter Speirs

(Left to right) Wolfgang Dietrich, Tom Woodhouse, Jenny Pearce, John Paul Lederach, Irene Santiago, and Caroline Hughes (extreme right). | Photo: Courtesy of the University of Bradford.

I am as much concerned with the human condition in general as with specific conflicts, which represent only the tip of a pyramid of violence and anguish… I am concerned with all pain and confusion that impede our unfolding and fulfilment. Often, of course, circumstances force us to focus on...

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Maggie Glover: Painter of honest portraits

29 Sep 2016 | by David Griffiths

Left: ‘Nuclear Free Air, Land & Sea’ scene from a CND rally in 1989. | Photo: Right: Drawing of Paul Oestreicher speaking at a Quaker Peace Service regional gathering in 1990.

Through her art, the late Margaret Glover interpreted and celebrated a lifelong commitment to peace. This exhibition includes some newly acquired pieces, and leads you to become aware of the considerable historical and political experience of her witness and engagement with the peace movement during her lifetime.

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A ring of song

29 Sep 2016 | by Susan Bennet

The debate on the renewal of our weapons of mass destruction delivery system, Trident, took place on Monday 18 July. I received a letter inviting me to take part in a protest demonstration sent by two members of the women’s peace action group, the Gareloch Horticulturists. I have had the...

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God and spirituality

29 Sep 2016 | by Ken Orchard

I experience ‘God’, mostly, in three different places. I experience it in other people, I experience it in myself and I experience it in the wonder of the universe. But of these three places, I experience it most commonly in other people and in my relationships with other people.

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‘Coming out’ is testimony

29 Sep 2016 | by Harvey Gillman

I was recently asked by Friends in Somerset to speak on the theme of Quakers, sexuality and the need for equality. My first reaction was to refuse. It was as if I had to prove that the Earth was not flat or that evolution did not contradict the idea of...

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Finding our sphere of usefulness

29 Sep 2016 | by Laurel Townhead

‘Rich countries must not become gated communities, their people averting their eyes from the bloodstains in the driveway,’ said Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, the UN high commissioner for human rights, in reference to the refugee and migrant situation. He went on to ask: ‘What can we do?’

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Our radical adventure

29 Sep 2016 | by T Roger S Wilson

As Friends, we are part of a worshipping community that is embedded within the much wider secular community. We are necessarily influenced by the changes in society generally, and this brings forward a continuing tension, as it always has. What do we accept and what do we reject? As Saint...

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Is a radical church possible?

29 Sep 2016 | by Michael Wright

Adrian Alker, now retired from full-time Anglican ministry and chair of the Progressive Christianity Network in Britain, challenges the churches to radically reexamine their understanding of the Bible, and their theology in general, in his new book Is a Radical Church Possible?: Reshaping its Life for Jesus’ Sake. It could...

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From the archive: The Friends’ Ambulance Unit

29 Sep 2016 | by Janet Scott

In 1916 T Edmund Harvey, a prominent Quaker MP, was asked to visit the Friends’ Ambulance Unit (FAU) in France and Belgium and to take a message of goodwill from Friends to members of the Unit. His account of the trip was published in the Friend on 6 October. These extracts are...

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29 Sep 2016 | by Howard Grace

Many people have had experiences that transform their lives. Some are stirred to action by seeing the plight of people in need. Others are inspired by music, or maybe by a walk in the beauty of nature. Those of a religious persuasion usually link the inspiration or transformation to their...

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