Reproclaiming the Everlasting Gospel
An even cursory glance at the content on this site would suggest to a bystander that there is a great deal of dissatisfaction with Britain Yearly Meeting, and Quakerism generally in this country. Can this be remedied? I think not. One of the big debates within BYM at present concerns what will happen in the future. A couple of people with whom I have discussed this have gone as far as trying to predict "how long is left". The most generous of these sages suggested 20 years; the least optimistic, 15. No matter how one views this prognostication, it is clear that there is a sense of foreboding among many Quakers- a feeling that we are embarking on a huge closing down sale.
If this is the case, will a phoenix arise from the ashes? I hope so. The long history of Quaker involvement in social action cannot fade into a quaint aspect of history. But what is to happen to the spiritual aspect of Quakerism: the Everlasting Gospel. That will be a task to which we are called. The New Foundation organisation in Britain cannot remain in the role of a special interest group within BYM. We are the voice of Quakerism in Britain, and with this in mind we should consider whether we are called to establish our own Meetings. There are not many of us. But there are enough, and we might start by playing a more active role in those BYM Meetings which are worth saving - Meetings in which a solid Christian foundation and ethos survives.
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