Thought for the Week: Oversight and eldership
I was looking around for something to counter my drift towards despair about the present political landscape when a friend, who works at the Bradford School of Peace Studies, sent me a copy of a lecture given last year on the theme of caring. In it James Thompson argued for...
Quakers and youth hostels
The practical nature of youth hostel work and the simplicity of youth hostels both reflect values and concerns associated with Friends and were part of the reason so many were attracted to the movement in its early days. Those involved hoped that by bringing together people from different communities and...
At the end of 2015 I went to Calais to offer support to the estimated 6,000-8,000 refugees who were camped out on sand dunes. I subsequently returned several times, teaching English to the young people there, such was the overwhelming need for help.
Leaveners’ final act
After forty years, the final curtain has come down on the Leaveners, the Quaker performing arts charity. An extraordinary general meeting held on 4 March in Birmingham, attended by twenty-three people, made the decision after hearing that the organisation was no longer financially viable.
Thoughts on adoption
I read ‘Dave’s Story’ (10 February), of a Friend’s experience of adopting children, with great interest, as much of it echoed my own experience with my adopted son: the sense of loss, the visits to the cranial osteopath, the infectious laugh, the rages, the pit of misery, the poor...
Peacemaking in a troubled world
At this time, when tensions within and between many countries and communities in the Western world have been rising, we need to remain grounded in that ‘Spirit which… delights to do no evil’, to quote James Nayler, and should not allow ourselves to become contaminated by hatred and fear.
Quaker MEP welcomes new directive
Green Quaker MEP Molly Scott-Cato has welcomed a new EU directive that addresses the problem of money laundering. The economic and legal committees in the European Parliament jointly voted to support the strengthening of the anti-money-laundering directive on 28 February.
Disabled Friend takes legal action
Esther Leighton, a disabled Friend living in Cambridge, has taken legal action against several businesses in the Mill Road area of the city after they repeatedly ignored requests to install ramps or other facilities to allow her to access them.
QUNO briefing paper on refugees and migrants
The Quaker United Nations Office (QUNO) has launched a new briefing paper for Friends: Protecting refugees and migrants under the New York Declaration: challenges and opportunities at the UN level.
We love conflict!
Ajoint initiative between Quaker Life, the recording clerk’s office, the Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre and the Living with Conflict project brought together twelve people for two days at Woodbrooke for a ‘Conflict Consultation’. We came with a variety of experiences in conflict resolution: the Alternatives to Violence Project, Community...
Knowing what to do
In my view, one of the greatest strengths of our Quaker way is how our processes, in particular our business method, can embrace our individual ‘unknowing’ about being in a world. By unknowing, in this instance, I am connecting with the definition proposed by the educational philosopher Michalinos Zembylas: a...
Eye - 10 March 2017
Vast Ocean of Light Vast Ocean of light, whose rayes surround The Universe, who know’st nor ebb, nor shore, Who lend’st the Sun his sparkling drop, to store With overflowing beams Heav’n, ayer, ground, Whose depths beneath the Centre none can sound, Whose heights ‘bove heav’n,...
Letters - 10 March 2017
The Leaveners I agree with Penelope Putz (3 March) that the end of the Leaveners is unutterably sad. I was a new Quaker when Jo Farrow invited me to the ‘Equipping for Ministry’ conference in 1991. I sat next to Alec Davison, founder of the Leaveners, at the first meal. He invited...