with Bob and Kathy Runyan
Bring Quaker Center to your meeting to get people talking about how to live as radical Quakers-from our roots, through the shoots of spiritual transformation, to the fruits of living in the life and power of the Light Within.
We’ll facilitate large group, small group, and one-on-one interactions with challenging ideas and provocative questions. We request that your meeting provide hospitality and a program fee on the sliding scale of $100-$600.
“Some of us will have to enter upon a vow of renunciation and of dedication to the ‘Eternal Internal’ which is as complete and as irrevocable as was the vow of the monk of the middle ages. Little groups of such utterly dedicated souls, knowing one another in Divine Fellowship, must take an irrevocable vow to live in this world yet not of this world, and if it be His will, kindle again the embers of faith in the midst of a secular world…
Our meetings were meant to be such groups, but now too many of them are dulled and cooled and flooded by the secular. But within our meetings such inner bands of men and women, internally set apart, living by a vow of perpetual obedience to the Inner Voice, in the world yet not of the world, ready to go the second half, obedient as a shadow—such bands of humble prophets can recreate the Society of Friends and the Christian church and shake the countryside for ten miles around.”
~Testament of Devotion, Thomas Kelly, 1941”
Friend and clerk of the Reno Friends Meeting, Wendy Swallow wrote:
…What is Radical Quakerism, and what does it have to do with roots, shoots and fruits? Early Friends preached and lived a message based on a direct relationship with God, experienced inwardly; that was Radical Quakerism. This message transformed the early Quakers’ personal lives, and it attracted more than one of every one hundred English people into the Society of Friends by 1680, despite the risk to Quakers of persecution and death.
The workshop will give Reno Friends an opportunity to explore their Quakers roots, particularly the concept of the Light Within and the role of expectant communal worship, which allows Quakers to recognize and pay attention to the Light Within. “A pure, quiet, profound place can be found at the center of our being, if we wait in humility and turn our attention within, below our thoughts, emotions, fears, desires and expectations.”
When we yield to the Light Within, we are transformed and brought into unity with one another. But it isn’t easy. This part of the workshop – the shoots –focuses on yielding to the Light, allowing the Light to transform us, and the mutual accountability and support that the Meeting provides us in discerning and being faithful to the Light Within. Discernment in understanding God’s will is done best in the context of the larger Meeting, where questions can be raised and support offered.
Transformation sends up shoots, but to nurture those and produce fruits – spirit-led action – Friends must come together in unity. The Light Within will gradually bring those in a Meeting into unity with one another. That can transform our relationships if we stay connected to its source. “From this Unity, we can act with the guidance of the Light Within as a corporate body to support one another’s leadings to bring about change in personal lives, the Meeting community, and beyond.”…
In the Light,
Wendy Swallow, Clerk of Reno Friends Meeting
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (831)336-8333 to get more information and set a date.