Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Quakers As The Great "Middlers"

Over Thanksgiving I had the chance to peruse some books that I still need to get to. One of them is the new book The Great Emergence by Phyllis Tickle. This book has getting a wide read and is also sparking some conversations. Like other authors prior to Tickle, she sees new movements emerging approximately every 500 years and seems to indicate that we are right within the 400 to 500 year period now. That is to say, one of the reasons denominations, churches, church leaders, and denominational execs feel so much upheaval and even stress is that we are quite possibly living in a huge era of transition. Consequently, the "old maps" don't work anymore and are pretty useless in providing us guidance and direction. We are like explorers who need to write new maps and chart new territory. Unfortunately, if a person leans toward a leadership of high control and regulation, this will be a very frustating time. The leadership needed for times such as this is a leadership that is adaptable and flexible.

While perusing Tickles book I came across this quote near the end of her book. In it, she has some things to say about Quakers:

"Both by heritage and by virture of having always been middlers belonging in nobody's camp, the Quakers have from the beginning had a distinctly 'other' easiness with the paradoxical interplay of revelation, discernment, and Scripture in the life and governance of the body of Christ on earth. Not exactly a refusal to engage questions of authority, Quaker thought chooses rather to assume that quiet engagement with God and the faithful reveals authority from the center out to other centers of engagement. Network theory, in other words, or at the very least, proto-network theory."

Rather then having a center of authority, Tickle seems to indicate that Quakers have, as part of their heritage, the ability to "network" spiritually and to keep following the sense of Truth through their leadings and engagement with the Spirit at a very deep level. This gives Quakers the ability to connect with folks from various backgrounds as they seek to "network" with the leadings of others.

Part of this new emergence also is that we are more connected with narrative then proposition. Tickle goes on to add:

"Narrative...is the song of the vibrating network. It is the spider's web in its trembling, a single touch on one strand setting all the others to resonating. Narrative circumvents logic, speaking the truth of the people who have been and fo whom we are. Narrative speaks to the heart in order that the heart, so tutored, may direct and inform the mind."

The beauty in all of this is that Quakers have a real role they can play in the emergent movement. Rather then fearing it, we can joyfully engage it and add our own nuances to it as we seek to follow God's leadings through this time of transition.

Friday, November 21, 2008

How Fear Distorts our Perceptions

After the New Kind of Quaker conference, I mentioned two kinds of spiritual journeys - a spirituality based on fear or a spirituality based on love. One of my favorite writers and bloggers, Jim Palmer, writes about how fear distorts our perceptions of reality. I have included a quote from one of his posts. You can read more of what he has to say at www.divinenobodies.com.

"Our perception of reality is grossly distorted by fear. On an individual, family, community, city, country, hemispheric, global level we function with a fear-based mentality. We make fear-based decisions, we create and perpetuate fear-based institutions, we invest endless resources of every kind to fend off or neutralize things we fear. It’s always in the back of our mind…what if. It is so ingrained that we never question the notion that life is an endless number of people, outcomes, conditions, and circumstances to fear. We live in fear. It is the air that we breathe, and the undercurrent to everything that transpires. We fear lack, death, separation, condemnation, aloneness, loss, disease, and calamity. We feel it - nothing is safe, life is not safe. Every imagined fear is held to be an unquestioned certainty, it’s just the way it is. Only a blind idiot cannot see that fear is real and logical and a force that we must contend with in every moment and decision of our lives.
But what if there really isn’t anything to fear? You know, “there is nothing to fear but fear itself.” What if the entire system of fear is a house of cards, and the only thing propping it up is your, my, our belief in it. What if there is no fear apart from the fear we have created and empowered as a result of imagining and believing there is something to fear. What if there is really no lack, or no separation, or no condemnation, or no death, or no calamity?What would happen if each of us, one by one, began divesting ourselves from all fear? What if each of us began to call fear’s bluff? What if we took every fear-thought captive, and refused to live in fear. What if we totally ceased from giving our energies to fear? What if lived in this world and related to one another without fear? I don’t mean positive thinking or hoping there really isn’t anything to fear, but knowing confidently without any flinch that fear isn’t real. In other words, fear is always dialing up for us a response on what to think, what to do, what to choose, how to act, what to feel, etc. But what if we didn’t follow the response that fear dialed up? We ignored it, didn’t listen, and instead followed through with knowing there is nothing to fear?
What might this involve or look like if you, me, we…tomorrow morning…began collapsing the illusion of fear in our own lives? What would that look like for you?"

What Does A "New Kind of Quaker" Look Like?

Since the weekend "New Kind of Quaker" conference in North Carolina (November 14-15), I have been giving some thought to the question, "Exactly what does a 'new kind of Quaker' look like?" Do they look like they always did but just behave differently? Do they wear different clothes? Worship differently? If they are 'new', what does 'old'? mean? I don't know if I can answer all of these - or even if they are the right questions. But, as I have tried to picture a "new kind of Quaker", this is what he/she might look like to me.

1) The old kind of Quaker relies on geographical locations and Yearly Meeting designations to inform their perception and understanding of another Quaker. (ie, "You're from Indiana, you must be an evanglical" or "You're from Baltimore, you must be liberal" or "You're a programmed Friend, you must be evangelical" or "You're an unprogrammed Friend, you must be liberal" )

The new kind of Quaker looks past the geographical locations and Yearly Meeting designations and seeks to truly understand and hear the story, spiritual journey, and heart of the other person. They don't put them in any kind of theological container or file. Rather, they seek to see and hear that of God in the other.

2) The old kind of Quaker is pretty sure that pastoral programmed evangelical Friends meetings focus on evangelism and non-pastoral unprogrammed liberal Friends meetings focus on issues of peace and social justice.

The new kind of Quaker doesnt see this as either/or but both/and. They see the need for a proclamation of the good news (evangelism) as well as a demonstration of the good news (issuesof peace and social justice). One is not more important the the other but both are necessary expressions of God active work.

3) The old kind of Quaker works very hard at making sure the institutional form of Quakerism keeps going and stays propped up because if the "central agencies" and "committee structures" and "central offices" cease to exist then Quakerism as we know it would cease to exist.

The new kind of Quaker is not as focused on the "institution of Quakerism" as they are the "spirit of Quakerism" and they realize that the Quaker vision and calling can be lived out whether or not you have buildings, committees, a central office, or even a menu or programs.

4) The old kind of Quaker tends to focus on the past and seeks to replicate the past as a way to bring life to the present and the future.

The new kind of Quaker appreciates the past but seeks to live in the present because the Living Christ is in the present and is providing leadings, direction, and guidance as to who we are to become in the future.

5) The old kind of Quaker feels that the future of Quakerism will look an awfully lot like the past of Quakerism. The only difference is that we will have somehow convinced more people to get involved and help in making sure this version of Quakerism survives.

The new kind of Quaker feels pretty sure that the future of Quakerism will not look anything like the past of Quakerism and is both scared but excited as to how the future will unfold for Quakers and what Quakers in the future will look like.

6) The old kind of Quaker wants to make sure we pass on buildings, property, and programs to the next generation.

The new kind of Quaker wants to make sure we pass on a living faith, a demonstration of faithfulness, and a heart of integrity to the next generation.

7) The old kind of Quaker secretly believes that their version of Quakerism is the true version and that all the others are not yet enlightened.

The new kind of Quaker believes that Quakerism cannot be contained within a methodology and that their is no one true version but that all "versions" have something to offer and gifts to share.

8) The old kind of Quaker believes that Quakerism can best be defined propositionally and relies on "belief statements" and "declarations of faith" to fully describe the living experience of Quakers.

The new kind of Quaker believes that a propositional faith is not adequate to sustain the Quaker experience and believes wholeheartedly that the world "relationship" best describes what it means to live as a Quaker - to be in relationship with God, Jesus, and one another.

9) The old kind of Quaker sees business meetings as a "necessary evil" and something that must be put up with until we get to the good stuff.

The new kind of Quaker seeks to see the Living Christ moving and leading amidst the business and truly sees it as a meeting for worship with the purpose of conducting business.

10) The old kind of Quaker gets ticked off when they see a list like this because they feel threatnend and live out of a spirituality of fear.

The new kind of Quaker chooses to not fear but chooses to love and live out a spirituality of love and is willing to hear what truth, if any, might reside in a list like this.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"New Kind of Quaker" Gathering - Greensboro / High Point,North Carolina

This past weekend, I had the privilege and opportunity of being part of a very special gathering of Friends. It was the "New Kind of Quaker" sponsored by the Friends Center of Guilford College and hosted by Deep River Friends Meeting in High Point, NC. As the pastoral minister at Deep River Friends, I had the opportunity to be there for the whole experience as a workshop leader, participant, and even dishwasher! I was blessed in all my roles.

I want to say how struck I was by the sincere spiritual depth of those attending. I have to say that I was probably one of the older ones at 46 years old. At the risk of sounding patronizing (which I hope I don't!) these were very spiritual sensitive young adults who seemed to have a much deeper awareness and grasp of a spiritually powerful Quakerism then I did. The first night, I walked a few minutes late into the meeting room and already there was a deep silence covering the room. They had already gathered and were sitting in silence to prepare for the evening session. No musical Prelude was necessary. No tacky religious emcee. Just sitting in deep centering prayer and making room for the Divine Presence. It had been a long time since I had been part of something like that and these young adults were leading the way.

All the workshops and main sessions were filled with a deep sense of F/friends seeking greater understanding of truth as well as a greater understanding of one another. There were hard questions as well as hard answers. There was also deep sharing in the Worship Sharing groups and a desire to get to know one another in deeper ways. Personally, I was excited to witness a group of Quakers gathering to see how they could come to a deeper understanding of the Living Christ and how to live in the way of Jesus rather then trying to figure out who was the real Quaker and whether or not my God can beat up your God.

The conference was designed to connect up with the ongoing emergent movement and come to a greater understanding of the movement called Convergent (Quakers exploring the emergent movement and made up of Conservative Quaker leanings and Emergent leanings). I'm not that sure we adequately covered that and addressed that but I felt that what we experienced on Friday and Saturday was itself a living example of what it would mean to live out a Convergent experience.

What I also witnessed were young adults with a deep desire to follow the leadings and callings of the Living Christ but to live them out in ways that addressed social issues and justice issues. This was not a group looking for just a "personal salvation" experience or how they could add more information to their spiritual seeking. This was a group that was desiring to be faithful to the calling of Christ to open up their hearts to the many offices of Christ (Prophet, Priest, King, and Savior) as well and bring justice and righteousness to this earth. As one who was certainly older then most of the participants, I felt challenged and convicted by their passion and desire to live out an authentic spiritual journey.

Most of all, I was touched by the graciousness of everyone I met. I am sure there were those in attendance that believed differently then I did or saw life differently then I did. But, there was a deep graciousness that covered the whole experience. This was so refreshing and different from other gatherings - even within my own Yearly Meeting - where folks gather and seem tense because of fear of the other.

Ultimately, I discovered this past weekend that our spirituality can either be based on love or fear. If its based on fear, you will always be suspect of the other and even manifest anger, cynicism, and sarcasm. If its based on love, there will be graciousness, kindness, hospitality, and even patience. I, for one, long to live out a spirituality of love rather then a spirituality of fear. Fear always loses and is a loss for the world. Love always wins and is a victory for the world. And what our world needs is a love based spirituality and not a fear based one.

I certainly do not see this conference as the end but a beginning. The beginning of a conversation that will invite us to consider more of what the Convergent Movement can bring to Friends. Those who are leading the Convergent Movement I encourge them to keep on going and listening to the Living Christ. It is a much needed experience and is finding openings in many hearts.

Monday, October 27, 2008

"A New Kind of Quakerism" Conference - November 14-15, 2008

Some have inquired through email and other sources regarding the status of the conference entitled "A New Kind of Quakerism". Apparently, there is a buzz out there and some excitement about this event. That's great! Here is some pertinent information that might be helpful in your planning.

1) The conference is scheduled for November 14-15 (Friday / /Saturday) at Deep River Friends Meeting in High Point, North Carolina. We are located at 5300 West Wendover Avenue, High Point, NC 27265. Our phone number is 336-454-1928. Our email address is deepriver@northstate.net. I want to just make sure that everyone is aware that the Friends Center of Guilford College and the Quaker Renewal Program gets the credit for planning this conference. We are just the site it is being held...but we wholeheartedly support it and welcome the opportunity to provide hospitality.

2) Max Carter is Director of the Friends Center and can be contacted at 336-316-2445. You can also go to the Friends Center page at http://www.guilford.edu.

3) This November 14-15 retreat / conference is being described as a time of "...intergenerational workshops on the theme 'A New Kind of Quakerism' and drawing on the energy and vision of young adult Friends as well as the new 'convergent' Friends movement. The "convergent Friends" are described as Friends that are "...seeking a deeper understanding of our Quaker heritage and a more authentic life in the kingdom of God on earth, and are radially inclusive of everyone who shares this wish." This is a quote by Robin Mohr from the Friends Journal (October 2006)

4) Practically speaking there are plenty of hotels / motels around Deep River Friends if anyone wishes to stay there. Please contact us and we'll provide information on these places. Also, please be aware, Friends are welcome to stay at our meetinghouse overnight. We do have places that folks can thrown down a sleeping bag and pillow and be comfortable. We do not have shower facilities but have more than adequate bathroom and kitchen facilities.

I hope this is helpful to those that are thinking of attending. We're looking forwards to an exciting time!

Scott Wagoner
Pastoral Minister
Deep River Friends Meeting

Friday, July 25, 2008

"New Kind of Quaker" Conference Update

Hello Everyone ~
A few of you have expressed an interest in attending the conference scheduled for November 14-15 in North Carolina. This is being sponored by the Friends Center of Guilford College of which Max Carter directs. As more information comes my way (ie, cost, etc), I can get the word out. In the meantime, I will talk to Max about publishing possible housing options. Since we have been getting the word out on the internet, this is the first time we have received interest from folks outside the Yearly Meeting - and North Carolina- for that matter. But, that is good. It's an important topic and one that needs all who feel led to be present and in attendance. So, more info is to come. If you are interested, please just post your interest level on the blog. Thanks!

Monday, July 14, 2008

A Christianity...and Quakerism...Worth Believing and Embracing

Right now, I'm working my way through Doug Pagitt's recent book, A Christianity Worth Believing. In it, he has some great thoughts worth mulling over. Early on, he describes the kind of Christianity that is his desire and vision. Pagitt longs for a Christianity that:

"...makes sense in the world in which we live, a Christianity that is not afraid of questions and will not resist answers, regardless of where they lead. It is my attempt to embrace a faith that is expansive, growing, and beautiful on in which God is active and alive involved in all of life. Because I believe in a Christianity where nothing is left out and no one is left behind, where humanity participates with God in the redemption of the world; where sin is more than a legal problem to be judged but a relational problem that can be healed; where we pursue harmony, centered on Jesus the Messiah, the Jew, whose life, death, and resurrection allow us to live well with God; there the Bible draws us into a story of life and healing; where we find hope for this life and life ever after; where love is alive, where love drives out fear, where love propels us towards lives lived for the betterment of the world."

I guess when I read this, it is very easy for me to also plug in the identification of "Quakerism" when I see the name "Christianity." For not only do I long for this type of Chrisianity, I long for this kind of expression of Christianity..a Quakerism that is not afraid to ask questions or resist answers regardless of where they lead...a Quakerism that is expansive, growing, and beautiful and one where God is active and alive and involved in all of life...a Quakerism where nothing or no one is left behind and all of humanity participates with God in the redemption and mending of the world...a Quakerism where love is alive, love drives out fear, and love propels us towards lives lived for the betterment of our world...and our communities!

Monday, July 7, 2008

New Kind of Quaker Conference - November 2008

Hey Everyone,
Just letting you know that Max Carter is planning a Quaker Renewal conference in November to be held at Deep River Friends Meeting in High Point, NC. It's theme will be "A New Kind of Quaker" and is intended to bring together young adults, seasoned (old) adults, and others that have an interest in what a "new kind of Quaker" looks like for the 21st century. The following is a "teaser" of what to expect in terms of interest groups, speakers, etc:

"A New Kind of Quakerism?"
A Quaker Renewal Program Workshop

November 14-15, 2008
Deep River Friends Meeting

Sponsored by Friends Center at Guilford College (Preceded by a three-week book study of Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw's "Jesus for President")

Friday, November 14
6:45 pm Registration and refreshments
7:15 pm "A New Kind of Quakerism? Convergent Friends and Young Adult
Friends' Concerns" - Betsy Blake (tentative "yes," pending
8:15 pm Worship-sharing groups, with word exercises and discussion
9:00 pm Closing worship

Saturday, November 15
9:00 am Pastries and drinks
9:15 am First workshop offerings

1. Building intergenerational community in the RSoF: initiatives of FGC's youth ministries committee - Maia Hallward
2. A new technology for a new Quakerism - Scott Wagoner?
3. The experience of YAF gatherings at Lancaster, Burlington, and Richmond - Rebecca Sullivan (yes); Megan Fair? Nathan Sebens? Betsy Blake?
10:30 am Break

11:00 am Second workshop offerings
1. So what are we afraid of? - Dave Mercadante?
2. Sharing the experience of QLSP alumni and current students - Evelyn Jadin, et. al.?
3. Panel of YAFs from different branches - Megan Fair, et. al.
12:15 pm Lunch break.
1:00 pm "A Spiritual Journey from Unprogrammed Friends through QLSP
into Programmed Friends" - Evelyn Jadin?
2:00 pm Worship-sharing groups.
3:00 pm Break

3:30 pm Third workshop offerings
1. What's our place as YAFs in the RSoF/ What are YAFs doing now? - Erin Wagoner and Stephen Dotson (yes)
2. "Emergent" and "Convergent": the broader Christian context for a new Quaker movement - Tony Lowe and April Baker
3. The making of "Can We All be Friends?" - Betsy Blake (yes,
pending discernment)
4:45 pm Closing semi-programmed worship.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Open Source Spirituality
In his most recent book, "Finding Our Way Again", Brian Mclaren writes about our spiritual lives as being "open sources." Here's what he has to say:

"The term 'open source' draws from the world of technology where in 1998, some software developers in Palo Alto, California, instead of keeping their codes secret as propietary information under their control, offered them to the general public and invited willing volunteers to participate in their ongoing development and adaptation. A similiar process (using the term 'request for comments' instead of 'open source' ) was used to develop the Internet in the late 1960's, and open-source methodology has played an expanding role in the development of the Internet in the years since, especially in projects like Wikipedia and YouTube."

Then, Mclaren makes this connection with our spiritual journeys:

"As more and more of us open our lives to be sources of inspiration and examples for one another, we being to seize the unfulfilled promises of the Reformation with it's open-source concept of 'the priesthood of all believers'....It's true that not everyone can go to seminary. Not everyone can go live in a monastery. But all of us can wake up to the people around us, whose lives embody - not perfectly but authentically - practices of the spiritual life. And each of us can aspire to become an open source of embodied spiritual practices for the benefit of others."I like this idea - of being an "open source" of inspiration. It puts a nice, contemporary spin on the whole idea of the "priesthood of all believers." I think most people can connect with the terminology of being an "open source" rather then the "priesthood of all believers."

Going into my day with the vision of being an "open source" of inspiration invites me to think about how I have sometimes been a "closed source" - how I have cut off myself from being an open source of inspiration.For Quakers, it also becomes important that we see others as "open sources" of inspiration - ones that can embody to us the presence of God. We may not even agree completely with their theology but they can still be those "open sources" of light and love to us.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

New Kind of Quakerism and Convergent Friends - Mutations of Hope

The following quote is taken a Pendle Hill Pamphlet entitled Rethinking Quaker Principles. It's written by Rufus Jones. I share it because it offers an interesting look at what it means to be "new" and how this connects with the idea of "emergent".

"It is not often that something wholly new comes to our world. We can probably say that something absolutely new never happens. The newest form always bears some marks of the old out of which it sprung."

Quick thought: that's how I envision a "new kind of Quaker". We're not necessarily seeing something "brand new" that is so against what has come before. A new kind of Quaker more or less bears some marks of the old. We are not creating something completely different but springing out of what has come before. Okay, here is some more of Rufus Jones:

"The new, like the new moon, is born in the arms of the old. We have a new word for the breaking in of the new out of the existent old. We call it a mutation. A mutation is a unique and unpredictable variation in the process of life. It is the unexpected appearance of a new type in an old order. It is a leap and not a mere dull recurrence of the past. Something emerges that was not here before. something that is not just the sum of the preceding events."

This previous quote helps me to further understand a "new kind of Quaker" as well as Convergent Friends. I'm not so sure the word "mutation" works for me but the definition certainly does. In fact, if we were to use the term "Convergent Friends" or even "New kind of Quaker" in place of "mutation", we may have something. For example:

A "new kind of Quaker" is a unique and unpredictable variation in the process of life. It is the unexpected appearance of a new type in an old order. It is a leap and not a mere dull recurrence of the past.

Both the "new kind of Quaker" and "Convergent Friends" are "unique and unpredictable" variations in the process of life. We're not sure where they will end up, but they are "in process" and we trust God is leading that process. They are also unexpected appearances of a new type - in an old order! I am reminded of the words of God in the book if Isaiah, "Behold, I am doing a new thing. Do you not perceive it?" We don't just want to remake the past. That's succumbing to romantic nostalgia and turning it into an idol. We want to take a "leap of faith" into the new that God has called us as Quakers - this new order growing out of the old.

If you want to find more on these wonderful pamphlets, just go to www.pendlehill.org

Friday, April 4, 2008

Connected Rather Then Separate - New Kinds of Quakers

The following quote is from a post by Jim Palmer on his website / blog www.divinenobodies.com
Jim is an excellent writer ("Divine Nobodies" and "Wide Open Spaces" are his two books). He is a former pastor and also one who grew up in the evangelical world. Recently, his spiriual journey has taken him down a much wider road spiritually. As I read him, I can't help but think of we could be as "new kinds of Quakers" as we digest his thinking and understanding of the spiritual life. Read what he has to say about how we tend to view each other as separate from us rather then connected. What would it be like if we saw other Quakers as connected to us rather then separate.

"do we have to override the sensory data fed to us through our physical senses to process spiritual truth as we go about life? for example, sensory data is continuously telling me that all people are separate and independent beings. i am separate from you. Jesus used metaphors like a tree and a human body to emphasize our connectedness. the same divine life is the sap of the tree running through all the branches. there are many different body parts, but it’s all one body. you and i both share in the same divine image. you and i are drawing life from the same and one and only life support system. we derive true love and peace from the same source.
whether you think of this oneness as only existing among certain people, or you feel it applies to all people, i have a question.
what would be different if you stopped seeing others as separate from you, and began seeing others as part of you? again, maybe your field of application would be other Christians you go to church with, fine. maybe your field of application is everyone you come in contact with, fine. i’m not interested on this post of debating who we may or may not be one with. i am purely interested in the following:
if you saw yourself and others as one, rather than two totally separate beings what would be different. if this is where you are, describe what is the difference you experience. if you’re not quite there in practice, what do you imagine might be different. how would that awareness of your oneness with others manifest in your life?"

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Welcome To A New Kind of Quaker

Welcome to a "New Kind of Quaker". For those of you familar with Brian McLaren, you will notice the obvious "title stealing." With my apologies to Brian McLaren, I did this because I felt this notion of a "new kind" speaks to my condition and what I seek to live into. In reading McLaren's work, I appreciate his invitation to think about Christianity that is less "either / or" and more "both /and". In in his work, he seeks to bring hope and energy to folks that are weary and tired of the "left vs right" arguments or the "liberal vs conservative" attacks. To that end, he seeks to envision a "new kind of Christian" that is essentially an invitation to truly follow the way of Jesus. It's not "new" in the sense of improving on what Jesus has already given us. It's "new" in the sense of trying something we may have not actually have even attempted - to do exactly what Jesus invited us to do and be.

As I envision a "new kind of Quaker", I envision someone who not only seeks to follow authentically in the way of Jesus but one who also seeks to live into that original vision of the Society of Friends. Even more, I envision one who is no longer interested in investing time in "who is right and who is wrong" but is more interested in seeing how God is at work in the variety of folks we have among Friends. A "new kind of Quaker" is less concerned about "theological purity" and is more concerned about making sure we are "doing theology" by seeing our our faith is put into action. A "new kind of Quaker" isnt going to spend alot of time coming up with resolution after resolution in order to pull the drawstrings of exlcusivity tighter and tighter. Rather, a "new kind of Christian" will seek a more inclusive vision of God's presence and reign in this world so that all of God's gifts - and children - are celebrated. A "new kind of Quaker" doesnt separate the "spiritual from the secular" but seeks to bring together in a holistic way their faith with other aspects of creation. In other words, it matters to our faith how we treat the enviroment, how we consume, and how we treat the poor and the disadvantaged. A "new kind of Quaker" is going to look down on certain Quaker acronyms ("They are from EFI, or FUM, or FGC") but a "new kind of Quaker" seeks to enjoy all the Quaker alphabet has to offer. In other words, a "new kind of Quaker" sees the value in both the person from EFI and FCNL, from FUM and AFSC, from FUM and FGC.

What is your vision of a "new kind of Quaker?"