The six themes each describe a future where...
Meeting for worship is the bedrock of living as a Quaker
In worship we become one with the Spirit, with each other and with our true selves. The Spirit is the source of strength and guidance for all we are and do. Our way of worship is open to all, and we are making it more widely known.
Quaker communities are loving, inclusive and all-age
All are heard, valued and supported both in our needs and our leadings. Everyone's contribution is accepted according to their gifts and resources. All are welcomed and included. There are clear and effective ways of working together on shared concerns. Fellowship and fun strengthen the bonds between us, enhancing a loving community.
All Friends understand and live by Quaker discipline
Our discipline is actually 'Letting go and letting God': not 'Thou shalt' nor 'I will' but 'What does Love require of us?' It works when we understand it and practise it. Because we understand it, we can share it with others. Our testimony guides us, but we have to work on what it means for each of us personally.
Quaker values are active in the world
Our lives speak peace, equality, respect for the earth and all its inhabitants. We offer friendship to all and solidarity to the marginalised. We speak truth to power with love. We hold those in power in the Light. We find creative and nonviolent ways to get our message across. We are in this for the long haul; we're not afraid to take risks. We are called to live in the place where our 'deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet'.
Quakers work collaboratively
We are well aware that we can't put the world to rights all by ourselves. We value the important work of others. By engaging with them we are already changing the world. We want to break down barriers; we refuse to prejudge who is or is not an ally.
Quakers are well known and widely understood
We are active in our local communities, reaching out in friendship, making more use of our meeting houses for events and for renting or lending out. All members are ready and equipped to explain our Quaker way confidently and clearly to anyone who asks, as well as to speak publicly on issues of concern. We share our practices as appropriate and make full use of relevant media to reach out widely. In an increasingly divided world, we try to offer 'patterns and examples' of a caring community.
Answers to some questions
What materials are available?
- Our faith in the future English leaflet (PDF)
- Our faith in the future Welsh leaflet (PDF)
- Our faith in the future A4 cards “What and why" and “The six themes"
These can all be obtained from the Quaker Centre Bookshop in hard copy as well as an A4 flip-open display poster.
The English leaflet looks different to my original version?
- The leaflet was revised in May 2016 with an improved layout, following feedback from Friends. The text of the themes has not changed.
Why is there no date, or date range like the five year plan we used previously?
- There is no date range for Our faith in the future so that the text may continue to help Quakers, until Meeting for Sufferings discerns it is no longer serviceable and that a revision or new document is needed. The progress we make and the way that the world changes will be key in deciding when we need to work on a successor document.
Shouldn't the text specify work or prioritise key tasks?
- There is no list of work tasks as that is the responsibility of other groups, meetings or central committees to discern, in the context of their changing challenges and leadings. Instead of a list of tasks, the text focuses on shared aims to give direction to our work.
Who will be taking this work forward?
- Our faith in the future is for all Quakers in Britain. Each of us can use it as a simple and clear point of reference. We can consider how our leadings relate to the themes and use them as a touchstone when reviewing Quaker work for ourselves, in our meetings and in our committees.
Images © 2015 Judith Bromley