What Attracts Newcomers to Quaker Meeting?

Philadelphia Yearly Meeting and QuakerSpeak gathered a group of new Quakers and asked what led them to try being Quaker. Here’s what they said.

Find out about Quakers in PA, DE, NJ and MD.

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.

14 thoughts on “What Attracts Newcomers to Quaker Meeting?

  1. Full disclosure, I am an attender, not a member.

    I’m going back about 15 years, so my memory is fuzzy about exactly what called my attention to
    Quakerism, but I remember clearly that Friends’ support of women’s equality called me to learn more about Friends beliefs. I was raised in a fundamentalist family and community where women were confined to home life and always subservient to male family members. Religious leaders preached women’s subordination. I wanted to attend college but in high school I was told, “Nice women don’t go to college. We aren’t sending you to college because you’re to become a wife and mother, and nothing further.” This was in the late 1960s in a Philadelphia suburb.

    That gave me the push I needed to attend meeting. The moment I took my seat on the bench, I felt I’d arrived at my spiritual home. The simple surroundings, the stillness and quiet, the message that I didn’t need a go-between to bring Spirit to me–I could open myself to letting Spirit come directly to me, it felt right. Just right. Seeing women participating as equals felt just as right, as did the belief in continuing revelation.

  2. This one is a good piece for meetings intent on helping attenders become integrated into Meeting so they’ll want to stay.
    I would also encourage QuakerSpeak to create a video focused on Young Adult Friends. We need to better understand their spiritual needs and how they sustain their moral compass. It is often different for each generation, each era.

  3. This week’s video was billed as “How to Become a Member” but the actual video was
    “The Experience of Newcomers”. I would like to see the Member one.

  4. Thanks. This time it worked.
    One minor comment: The speakers might have pointed out that the only way to be formally a Quaker is to join a meeting. (Does FWCC provide another channel ?)

  5. When I click on your words “Find out about Quakers in PA, NJ, DE, and MD.” I cannot find our meeting–the Chatham-Summit Monthly Meeting–in NJ. The Princeton one is there, but not us. I also do not see the other NJ meetings. What can I do to help rectify this?

    By the way, I love your “Quaker Speak” series. Is there a way that I could be on a mailing list to see the latest one, whenever they are available?

    1. Hi Susan!

      Thanks for your feedback! I’m afraid the landing page for that link is administered by Philadelphia Yearly Meeting and not QuakerSpeak. I will pass this on to them.

      So glad that the series speaks to you! You can subscribe for free to our weekly emails at QuakerSpeak.com/Subscribe.


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