What to Expect at a Quaker Meeting
OUR MEETING FOR WORSHIP
Twin Cities Friends Meeting practices unprogrammed Quaker worship. This form of worship is based on silence, an expectant silence in which we invite “that of God” in ourselves, or “the Light Within,” to touch us and guide us. There are no set creeds, hymns, or prayers, and no minister or priest.
Attenders are encouraged to settle into the silence as we gather together. As individuals and as a fellowship, we “center down” into our deepest selves. We believe that God speaks and lives in this deepest, best part of ourselves. When individuals touch the place of Light within them, they are also in unity with each other. We invite the Spirit to enter our daily lives and bring us closer into the Light.
As the Spirit moves us, we may speak to the gathered meeting with divine leading, becoming again silent the moment inspiration subsides. We believe that such messages are inspired by the source of Light within us, while we realize that an individual’s own experiences, needs, feelings, and even inadequacies may shape their words. We surround these messages with deep silence to allow them to fully resonate in ourselves and the gathered meeting.
The privilege of speaking is available to all who attend the Meeting. No message represents an official Quaker position. If the message does not “speak to your condition,” try to reach the spirit behind the message. Friends cherish the diversity we can embrace in our fellowship. The meeting is in part a school for spiritual growth, and sometimes mistakes are a part of the process of learning.
On Sundays, meetings for worship at TCFM are held in a hybrid format, with attenders both in-person and online connected by a DTEN screen in the meetinghouse. In-person attenders who do not wish to appear onscreen may sit out of range of the camera. For more about attending online, click here.
FELLOWSHIP AFTER MEETING
An hour after it begins, meeting for worship ends with the shaking of hands. Then the person designated to close the meeting invites visitors to introduce themselves. At the rise of meeting, that person will be available to answer questions about Twin Cities Friends Meeting and Friends’ beliefs and practices, or to hear spiritual concerns or requests for support. There is often an opportunity to share fellowship and a meal after meeting for worship.
During the school year, First Day School (Sunday school) classes are held during 11:00 a.m. meeting for worship, along with a bimonthly teen program. Students and teachers rejoin the meeting for worship about fifteen minutes before it ends.