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Advices on Participation in Meeting for Business

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(Part 1 of 2) from ILYM Faith and Practice

  • Hold the meeting prayerfully in the Light; hold each speaker and the clerks in the Light.
  • Pay attention to the process, as well as to the issues. Quaker practice in meeting for business is best learned by first-hand observation and participation.
  • Seek the good of the meeting as a whole, the will of God, the mind of Christ; be prepared to let go your personal preferences, individual comfort, and ego.
  • Stay centered, or return if you find you have strayed.
  • Give your full attention to the person speaking, and to the Spirit within. This kind of attention is incompatible with formulating your own responses while someone else is speaking.
  • Allow others to complete what they are saying, and then allow some silence for reflection before you begin to speak.
  • Consider before you speak if your message will bring the group closer to a sense of the meeting or if you are only repeating what another Friend has already said.
  • Are we mindful of our limits, individually and as a meeting, in supporting a person who is seriously ill, dying, or grieving? What resources can we turn to when those limits are exceeded?
  • Does the meeting have a process that ensures spiritual and practical support for those who are ill or dying?