Meeting Community

“Our life is love, and peace, and tenderness; and bearing one with another, and forgiving one another, and not laying accusations one against another; but praying one for another, and helping one another up with a tender hand.”
Isaac Penington, 1667, Quoted in Faith and Practice, PYM 2002

(Read more Friends experiences with Concerns, Leadings, Testimonies in Faith and Practice)

The Yearly Meeting Community is comprised of over one hundred local Meeting communities and thirteen Quarterly (Regional) Meetings. We practice “unprogrammed” Quaker worship. That is we gather together in silent worship to wait on the word of God. We do not make use of a paid clergy or sacramental rituals. Rather we meet each other in a friendly atmosphere where anyone who feels strongly led to speak can do so.

Meeting communities are enhanced and enlivened by sharing with those closest to us our relationships and spiritual journeys. Here we have the opportunity to demonstrate our personal commitment to our testimonies. Our private lives and personal relationships can be nurtured and enriched by a shared experience of reliance upon God.

Lancaster-MM-photo-from-MM-websiteMonthly Meetings

Weekly worship at local congregations. These are referred to as “Monthly Meetings” because they usually meet at least once a month to make decisions about issues and concerns that affect the local group. There are usually committees in these groups that bring forward recommendations and take care of work that the Meeting is undertaking.

bucks-quarter-muralQuarterly Meetings

Gatherings several times a year (most four times thus the name “Quarter”) of members and attenders of local Meetings in a designated region. Some Quarters are more organized than others, having committees like local Meetings. Others gather simply for fellowship. Some have paid staff, some do not.

IMG_1061Yearly Meeting

Annual gathering of people from all the Quarters with in its region as well as visitors from other Yearly Meetings. This is includes a year round organization of volunteers and paid staff. Standing Committees and working groups of volunteers work with the staff to implement programs through out the year.