Harry Potter To Become A Quaker?

Emily and I had a nice weekend (and our last here in the UK) with some friends near Norfolk and we couldn’t help but pick up the latest Harry Potter installment. Not only have we too been impatiently waiting for it like the rest of the world, but we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to get a British edition of it. Turning to the epigraphs we laughed with happiness at what we saw. Nothing short of a quote from the famous Quaker politician and theologian William Penn.

What does this all mean for the future of Harry Potter quoting Quakers like William Penn? We haven’t finished the book but an early prediction has Potter laying down his wand and becoming a peacemaker. Okay, while that’s probably not how the spellbinding series ends, it is pretty cool that a Quaker made it into this popular “Children’s” novel. I know many other quakers have already made note of the quote, and we’ll hear more about it for a while. It’s also important to note that the quote is used in the Britain Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice. It really is a moving quote:

Death is but crossing the world, as friends do the seas; they live in one another still. For they must needs be present, that love and live in that which is omnipresent. In this divine glass they see face to face; and their converse is free, as well as pure. This is the comfort of friends, that though they may be said to die, yet their friendship and society are, in the best sense, ever present, because immortal.

Published by Wess Daniels

Teacher, author, Quaker, ​and public theologian. Director of Friends Center and Quaker Studies at Guilford College.

One thought on “Harry Potter To Become A Quaker?

  1. I went to get my copy with my (Quaker) pastor’s daughter. She and I pretty much got shrill with excitement when we saw the Will Penn quote!

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