Who are the Friends?
Friends or Quakers -either name will do...Friends are a distinct group within Christian tradition. We are people from all walks of life who have found that the Spirit of God is the heritage of everyone. We have experienced the love of God, and want to share it with the world. We have found that Christ is alive in us all; in the words of one of our early leaders, George Fox ďChrist has come to teach his people himself.
How do Friends worship?
Our response to God is worship: prayer, thanksgiving, praise and joy. Quakers have found that worship is made deeper and more powerful by including times of silence. At Adirondack Friends Meeting, our hymns, readings prayers, and sermon are punctuated and given room by times of quiet worship. Out of the silence, all who are present-members, children and visitors-are free to speak from the heart. Words which rise out of reverent silence are often more helpful than any prepared message.
How are Friends Different?
Quakers donít have a formal creed or require adherence to specific beliefs as a condition of membership. The truth is always larger than any one attempt to state it. Friends do encourage a life-long search for truth and the sharing of what each has found.
Quakers donít baptize or hold communion services; Friends do insist that all of living is sacramental, and that by living sacramentally God becomes more real to us all. Friends do experience the inwardly cleansing power of the Holy Spirit, and so testify to our inward sense of communion with God and each other.
Quakers donít ordain ministers or elders; Friends do recognize Godís call to all of us to minister in daily life, in the community, at work and in the home as well as in worship.A Quaker pastor is a Friend who has been freed by the Meeting for study, outreach, visitation, and leadership.
Arenít Quakers Pacifist?
Love and unity are more than ideals; they are something we try to practice, despite the odds, in obedience to God and following the example of Christ. Friends not only hope and pray for peace, we work for it. Friends support a mission at the UN, a lobbying group in Washington, and a broad range of peace, educational and relief activities. Friends encourage a deep and careful search of conscience by each person to see where he or she is led. Some Quakers have served in the armed forces; others have declared their conscientious objection to all war and have done alternative service or gone to prison rather than fight. All are supported by their meetings, if they have shared their search and are sincere in the courage of action.
How do Quakers live today?
There are Quakers of all ages, religious backgrounds, races and ethnicities, education, sexual orientations, gender identities, abilities, and classes. Modern Quakers generally ďblend inĒ with the larger culture, rather than adopting the distinctive dress and patterns of speech associated with Quakers of earlier centuries.
Quakers try to live and act in ways that are consistent with the divine harmony that we seek in worship. Through this effort come our testimonies of peace, integrity, equality, community, simplicity, and care for the environment
Begin by getting to know the people in the Meeting. Join us for worship; take part in our educational programs. Talk with the pastor. Join us for a meal. Sit in on our business sessions, which are one the first Sunday of the month, immediately following worship. Books and literature are available in the Meeting library as well; Friends have a rich history that goes back for over 300 years. Weíre glad to take time to talk with you, listen to you, and welcome you!
A Welcoming and Affirming Meeting
We affirm and welcome all persons whatever their race,
religious affiliation, age, socio-economic status, nationality,
ethnic background, gender, sexual orientation or
mental/physical ability. We offer individuals and families, with
or without children, our spiritual and practical support.
In an effort to be clear as to the meaning of “affirming” and
“welcoming” we offer the following examples:
Members and attendees of Adirondack Friends Meeting are
welcomed and encouraged to:
Attend and participate fully in meeting for worship
Take an active part in the life and activities of our meeting
Contribute their time, talents, spiritual gifts and resources to
God through our meeting
Apply for and serve in positions of paid public ministry or
other positions of leadership in our meeting
Test and shape their personal beliefs and daily practices and
help others to do the same
Invest themselves in our common efforts to improve and heal
Help our meeting to discern God’s will in our meeting and
We are willing to engage in open discussion on these issues
with others, and we respect the Christian beliefs and spiritual
integrity of those who may not fully agree with us.