Quaker project

I have written 7 pages of my Quaker project. I have started it today and am now taking a quick break.
The entire introduction takes up all I have written so far, but I guess for a 70 page paper an Introduction can be 7 pages…right?

here is the intro paragraph.

The Terrible danger of our time consist in the fact tat ours is a cut-flower civilization. Beautiful as cut flowers ma be, and much as we use our ingenuity to keep them look fresh for a while, they eventually die. And they die because they are severed from their sustaining roots.
Elton Trueblood 20th Century Quaker

This is a story about the modern world, its growing pangs, failures and its achievements. This story has been told many times and in many ways, but there is one group of people that have for the most part been overlooked as an important part of this story, these people are called Quakers, sometimes known more favorably as “The Society of Friends.” The Friends movement began in the 1640’s and was birthed out of the honest seeking for genuine Christian faith and its expressions, in the 19th century the movement was crippled by multiple divisions and dissension over questions of ecclesiology, methodology and identity and today the Friends find themselves standing on the brink of extinction or renewal. The emerging church and post-modern theology offer paradigms that reach to the very heart of Quakerism, if we discover how to re-envision the tradition, using these discoveries (and age-old reminders) we will survive this post-modern shift, if we do not Quakerism will become nothing more than a historical reference.

Any comments?

Published by

Wess

...is the William R. Rogers Director of Friends Center and Quaker Studies at Guilford College in Greensboro, NC., PhD in Intercultural Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary, served as a "released minister" at Camas Friends Church, and father of three. He enjoys sketchnoting, sharing conversation over coffee with a friend, listening to vinyl and writing creative nonfiction.

3 thoughts on “Quaker project”

  1. Here are my editorial two cents:

    I think 7 pages is fine, but still, the first (or in this case, the second) paragraph ought to give a clearer sense of the point of the paper. Is your Quaker project supposed to be a history of Friends? A comparison of Quakers and emergent churches? A proclamation of your personal theology? Mostly I agreed with what you said, but I was confused and curious at the end.

    I would formally call my denomination “The Religious Society of Friends,” wouldn’t you?

  2. “The emerging church and post-modern theology offer paradigms that reach to the very heart of Quakerism, if we discover how to re-envision the tradition, using these discoveries (and age-old reminders) we will survive this post-modern shift, if we do not Quakerism will become nothing more than a historical reference.”

    Yes! Follow that thought!

  3. Wess wrote: As far are your question about the “Society of Friends” versus Quakers and or just Friends. I actually like the peculiar looks and feelings the word Quaker invokes in people, a lot don’t really know what Quakers really are or what they believe, and so it often opens up discussion.

    Secondly I find that “Society of Friends” is too complicated, its has even less familiarity to it. The other thing about it (what it brings up in me) is that is sounds too official, too big, and orchestrated. I’m not saying I don’t like it, one thing I do like about it is that is more community focused because of the word “society” and “friends” (there is more of a tradition or heritage feeling behind it), but on the other hand I think for today’s postmoderns it too much, its too official, its seems somewhat binding. But again, I am not against the use of it, I just prefer Friend or Quaker as the regular term I use. What are your thoughts about this?”

    Hi Wess, I thought maybe I should try to continue this conversation over here, is that okay?

    I was actually trying to make the distinction between “Society of Friends” and “Religious Society of Friends.” I like to remind folks that Quakerism is a religion, not just a club. I agree that Friend or Quaker are both easier to type, less complicated to say, and get to the point a lot quicker in frequent usage. I just meant that when I want to be formal, I say, for example, I am a member of San Francisco Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends. But mostly I just say I’m a Quaker. That’s usually enough to get the conversation moving. I have some of my best conversations with people when I tell them this.

    And double ditto on what llw said. This was the most interesting part of your introduction: I am eager to read more about it.

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