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What is a Christian Quaker?

Updated on November 17, 2009

A Christian Quaker is part of the religious group also known as any of the following : Children of the Light, Friends, Friends Among Friends, Friends of the Truth, Publishers of Truth, Quiet Helpers, Religious Society of Friends, Saints, Seekers of Truth and Society of Friends. Not many people associate the word Quaker with Christian, simply because in the sea of terminology related to religious group "Quaker" seems to get lost, bringing up the image of the oatmeal guy instead of a subset of Christianity. Lets start with a history lesson - Quaker movement started in the mid 1600s. The original members protested the conformity of the Puritan religion, and as all religious groups that protest another group, they were persecuted for it. The most well known persecution was WIlliam Penn, founder of Pennsylvania. He was accused of 'preaching Quakerism to an unlawful assembly'. He chose to plead guilty and challenge the righteousness of the law. The judge denied the jury basic human rights for several days when he disagreed with their verdict of not guilty. Thankfully, the jury stuck to their morals and William Penn walked away free of charges to create the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania - a safe place for Quakers to live free of persecution. Now before I get into the deeper stuff, here is my Disclaimer: my college professor Ms. Schaffer would kick my butt If I made any generalised statements like "all Quakers believe" or "My Church believes" because well, no two people have the exact same beliefs, so this hub, along with any insider view religious written documents, is written from the point of view from this particular Quaker, who attends a particular church, whose views may differ from my own. I am also a "Convinced Quaker", meaning my parents were *not* Quakers. As a Quaker, I believe that Christ is an inner-light that shows your true human condition. I believe that because the inner-light is within all man, we are all capable of good. I also believe that clergy is not needed, and that more profound meaning can be found among others in quite places instead. Questioning and clarifying is encouraged in the meetings within the Friend's Church. Fox, a writer of one of the books on Quaker beliefs stated "(Clergy are not required because) Christ has come to teach His people Himself." It is a common goal of Quakers to seek a closer connection to God, reading the Bible is not enough you have to seek him in yourself and in others. The Bible is seen as a way to learn about God, but not mandatory to have a relationship with Him. Some churches choose to label the Bible as a book about God and not the word of God. To some groups of Quakers, Christ is seen as the Lord and Savior, others view him as a Lord and Teacher. Many forms of the church do not accept religious symbolism such as baptism and the Eucharist. Sunday is not always viewed as the day of worship and it is frequently voted upon as to what day the members will congregate. Weddings are rarely overseen by any clergyman - A marriage is a contract between the husband, wife, and God. So Quaker weddings usually involve the man and woman (or man and man or woman and woman, many churches will celebrate Civil Unions) speaking vows to each other and asking the blessings of God. Members of the church are usually there, but only to witness the moment not to be involved in it. Babies are welcomed into the church but are not christened or baptised in any way. In the event of a death a "Memorial Meeting" is held. The spirit of the person is mourned without the body being present. As far as religious holidays, there are two views - Social Celebration and Abstaining. Quakers believe that Christs life should be celebrated daily, as thus do not celebrate calender holidays in a religious manner.

I think that gets the gist of it. Have a great evening!


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    • calpol25 profile image

      Callum 7 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      Thank you for this hub!! I have always been interested in the quaker religion and was wanting to go to their church with my friend who is quaker but was unsure if I would be accepted because of my gender. But I can tell from this hub that they will not judge me and that has made my day. Thankyou very much for this i can go to the church and not be afraid.