Quakerism was founded in 1652 by George Fox who preached a
very simple but radical Christian message - he encouraged people to listen to
the spirit in their hearts and obey its guidance in their daily lives.
They called themselves ‘Friends of the Light’ but became known by the nickname
Quakers, a name that was first conferred on George Fox by Justice Bennett in
1650 when Fox told him to tremble at the word of the Lord. This name is
now synonymous with our formal name - the Religious Society of Friends. Fox
taught that the spirit, which had inspired the writing of the scriptures, was
still working and living in the hearts of men and women, ready to reveal fresh
truths. A Different Approach
Friends' approach to religion was and still is very different
from that of other religious groups. Perhaps the three most noticeable
differences are that:
· Emphasis is not placed upon belief
(Quakers have no Creed), but upon what we are within and how we live our
lives. We rarely speak about our personal inner beliefs, preferring to
act on George Fox's words .....
"Let your lives speak." ·When we meet for worship we do so in
silence. There is no formal service with hymns, prayer, lessons or a
sermon from a minister. There is just silence, in which together as a
group we try to nurture the 'Light' or 'that of God' within us all. It is our
experience that silence brings peace, meaning and strength to our lives.
· We have no ministers, but in our meetings
someone may feel moved to share a deep inner thought - one that may appear
profound and timely to others.
seek it in books, some in learned men;but what they seek is in
themselves." William Penn 1694