The Top Five Videos of 2023

The Top 5 QuakerSpeak Videos of 2023

In 2023, QuakerSpeak said farewell to Rebecca Hamilton-Levi and welcomed our new producer/videographer, Christopher Cuthrell, who brought a new look and feel to our tenth season of conversations with Friends. It was a year of substantial milestones, as we passed five million views on our YouTube channel—as well as 30,000-plus subscribers. As the year comes to a close, let’s look back at some of the videos you visited most frequently this year.


Lauren Brownlee, the Associate General Secretary for Community and Culture at Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL), spoke about the ways basic Quaker testimonies—including peace, integrity, community, equity, and even stewardship—can reinforce one another in the development of antiracism practices for individual Friends and meetings.

“I continue to be in the Quaker community because of the values and ideals you mention,” Ray Regan said after watching this interview. “We all have been conditioned by centuries of harmful white supremacy and, in many cases, don’t know it. In the future, I pray that we open our minds, hearts, and doors to welcome and worship with people who don’t look like us.”


Though Paula Palmer’s discussion of 19th-century Friends’ role in the forced indoctrination of Indigenous peoples into “Christian” American society was the last new video of 2023, it quickly resonated with viewers.

“The words in this video are the most moving Quaker comment on the subject I have seen,” Peter Harkness responded. “The wrongness of our participation and the difficulty we have in accepting that ‘following our Light’ could be so misguided is hard to accept.”


After surviving domestic violence within her Quaker community, Windy Cooler recalled, “I thought at first it was just me, and then I thought it was just my monthly meeting, and then I thought it was just my yearly meeting, and then as I kept trying to find a community to find wisdom from I realized it was all of the Religious Society of Friends.”

That realization drove Wendy toward public ministry, encouraging Quaker meetings to work at becoming “a safer space for survivors… a space in which there is no anxiety about telling the truth about your experience of the world, whatever it is.”


Rashid Darden, associate secretary for communications and outreach at Friends General Conference (FGC), told us how an encounter with Quakerism halted his drift away from faith and freed him to be his authentic self in a religious community—and shared his vision of all Quaker meetings could become similarly liberating spaces for other spiritual seekers

“Amen! to this,” Carl Abbott reacted. “We grow when we are open to new light. We wither when we hide our light under a bushel, where no light comes in. We have something to offer to the world.”


In the top video in our tenth season, Christopher Sammond shared his thoughts on the difficulty of putting the experience of encountering Spirit into words. “It wasn’t just a little leading or a hearing or giving some vocal ministry that felt like it had some power to it,” he says of one such moment. “It was really experiencing that, what we talk about in Friends, as everyone has that of God within them.”

It was a message that touched many viewers, who wrote in to share their thanks. And while it’s great to build a large audience and get plenty of views, it’s hearing about how QuakerSpeak videos help Friends and their meetings—and anyone who’s curious about Quaker faith and practice—that matters most to us. We’re grateful for your support, and we hope you’ll stay with us as we prepare for our eleventh season in 2024!

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