Issue 06-01-2017

Featured story

Thought for the Week: Don’t complain!

FREE 5 Jan 2017 | by John Lampen

I learnt recently that Rabia Basri, the female Sufi saint of the eighth century, warned us not to complain. This advice spoke to my heart, but I had to think carefully about it. Did she want to stop us challenging injustice and disrespect? No. Judging by other sayings she did...

Read more

Top stories

Structures and the Spirit

5 Jan 2017 | by Beth Allen

L: Brentford and Isleworth Meeting House, built in 1785, is the oldest Meeting house in London. Right: Part of Kingston Quaker Centre opened in 2014. | Photo: L: Courtesy of LQPT. R: Lyndon Douglas.

My small Local Meeting, like most others, gathers a varied collection of worshippers: a peace campaigner, a financier, a physiotherapist, a street pastor, the chair of a local housing association, a teacher and others. Each Sunday the living depth of our stillness gathers, lightens and heals our concerns, our failures...

Read more

A factor unknown

5 Jan 2017 | by Laurie Andrews

'...who or what is this taken for granted God? And who decides?' | Photo: Stirling Council / flickr CC.

When our daughter was a little girl she asked me: ‘Daddy, is there a God?’ ‘Of course,’ I said, ‘otherwise there would be no word for it.’ But as the philosopher Cyril E M Joad used to say on the radio programme The Brains Trust, it all depends what you...

Read more

Being mortal

5 Jan 2017 | by Alistair Heslop and Elizabeth Redfern

Medicine Lake. | Photo: Uli Harder / fickr CC.

Anyone who has a parent, or hopefully two, who are, let us say, getting on a bit, or are themselves in their later years, should find Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End, written by American doctor Atul Gawande, compulsory reading.

Read more

Ministry on death

5 Jan 2017 | by Jeffery Smith

'It occurs to me we could try to prepare our minds for death sooner than the last few days...' | Photo: Jim / flickr CC.

Last year my friend, a Quaker, was admitted to hospital and it soon seemed likely that he would die. I visited him hoping, at best, to give comfort. Unlike others, I do not have any detailed idea of an afterlife or how it might happen. Even if we had such...

Read more

Quakers and Brexit

FREE 5 Jan 2017 | by Antonia Swinson

Heard the one about the bishop, the Turner Prize winner and the Quaker? The Church of England has ‘jumped on a middle class bandwagon of horror at the Brexit vote’. So thunders Philip North, the bishop of Burnley, writing recently in the Church Times. There had been ‘an almighty cry...

Read more

All articles

Prison, ecology and stewardship

5 Jan 2017 | by Mark Humphries

What image do you have of prison and the prison community? Perhaps you see high walls and ‘razor’ topped fences? You might imagine groups of thugs and villains moping around not doing anything useful.

Read more

Quaker renewal: Spiritual generosity

FREE 5 Jan 2017 | by Craig Barnett

For many years, Quakers in Britain have been deeply reluctant to share the riches of the Quaker way with others. We have labelled any attempt to welcome potential new Friends as ‘proselytising’, but as Paul Parker, recording clerk of Britain Yearly Meeting, has pointed out: ‘There is a big difference...

Read more

Letters - 06 January 2017

5 Jan 2017 | by The Friend

Peace and beauty This is an account of Quaker outreach in Lincoln. At last, we were ready to take a small table and chairs to the High Street where we were going to make and distribute origami ‘Peace Cranes’ – a Japanese symbol of peace. When the atomic bomb was dropped...

Read more