How I Came to Quakers from Evangelical Christianity

For years, Eric Baker was the music director at an evangelical christian church with over 6,000 members. Now he belongs to the local Friends Meeting. What drew him to Quakers?

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Jon Watts

Jon Watts

Jon Watts launched and directed the QuakerSpeak project for its first 6 seasons. Keep up to date with Jon’s work at his website.

17 thoughts on “How I Came to Quakers from Evangelical Christianity

  1. I am so disappointed to read this headline that implies that Quakers are not part of Evangelical Christianity or that Evangelical Quakers don’t actually exist.

    Such a fine interview. Such a painful headline.

    1. As you point out, Robin, it’s true that a great many Quakers and Quaker meetings and churches are firmly and proudly part of Evangelical Christianity. It’s always a challenge to capture big themes in titles and headlines, where brevity is required. A more precise title might have been “How I Came to a Semiprogrammed Friends Meeting from a Conservative Nondenominational Evangelical Church.” We did not intend the erasure of Evangelical Friends. We have explored the rich diversity of Quaker beliefs and practices in other QuakerSpeak videos, such as this series in 2016, “Seeing the Tapestry.” Another good basic resource on the diversity of Friends, from evangelical to universalist, can be found here on the Friends World Committee for Consultation Section of the Americas site.

  2. Bravo Eric…you nailed it!
    You’ve switched teams and found the truth in our Creator’s purpose for each and every one of us!

    1. the Church is dying because of hierarchies adapted since the early church, and these are everywhere, even in organizations that say they don’t have hierarchies. it mimics worldly business and contrary to how the apostles taught.

  3. Knowing Eric, I am deeply moved by sensing his new joy not at finding a better or more correct place of worship but finding freedom and acceptance to walk with our Savior. As he becomes a weightier Friend, I find myself entering a new lightness thus maintaining the harmony of creation waiting there to bless us.

  4. Although I can appreciate the change which Friend Eric experienced, my experience with a Quaker church was quite different. Not too long ago, my husband and I attended the Quaker church of a college friend of his, a man who was devoted to his church and eager to share his experience. The “service” was so programmed that it was not at all spiritual for me. There was a period of silence, supposedly, in which several people stood and shared what were obviously previously prepared statements. I was raised in an unprogrammed Meeting, and this is where I find my spirituality. I appreciate Friend Eric’s thoughts, but they certainly don’t resonate with me.

  5. The Quaker church is at odds with the real church. Their identity is to involved with political movements now. I find it very fake and programed. Hopefully they will return to the real Christian Church.

  6. Wow for that reasons a lot of churches in central america dont like the quakerism and prefer to be an evangelical church trying to be like the others and not like a Quakers…

  7. What about a Title like “How I Came to Quakers from Exclusive Christianity.” This is the real difference are we exclusive or inclusive. Everyone is created in the image of God and Jesus as portrayed in NT an example of this personification of this image . There have been others who also show this image to different degrees.

  8. I think he captures what’s so open serene and spiritual in Friends Christianity. Geo. Fox was very deliberately moving away from over-programmed worship of his time.

  9. Eric is my choir director at First Friends. He is a joy- talented, sincere, thoughtful, genuine. Best interview I’ve seen in many a moon.

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