SOCIETY FRIENDS OFliberty for all men and
See also:women to state their opinions, and to serve on all committees and other appointments . The mode of conducting these meetings is noteworthy . A secretary or " clerk," as he is called, acts as chairman or
See also:president; there are no formal resolutions; and there is no voting or applause . The clerk ascertains what he considers to be the
See also:judgment of the
See also:assembly, and records it in a minute . The permanent
See also:committee of the Society is known as the "
See also:Meeting for Sufferings " (established in 1675), which took its rise in the days when the persecution of many Friends demanded the Christian care and material help of those who were able to give it . It is composed of representatives (men and women) sent by the quarterly meetings, and of all recorded Ministers and Elders . Its
See also:work is not confined to the interests of Friends; it is sensitive to the
See also:call of oppression and
See also:distress (e.g. a
See also:famine) in all parts of the
See also:world, it frequently raises large sums of
See also:money to alleviate the same, and intervenes, often successfully, and mostly without publicity, with. those in authority who have the power to bring about an amelioration . The offices known to the Quaker
See also:body are: (1) that of
See also:minister (the
See also:term "
See also:office " is not strictly applicable, see above as to " recording ") ; (2) of elder, whose
See also:duty it is " to encourage and help
See also:young ministers, and advise others as they, in the wisdom of
See also:God, see occasion "; (3) of overseer, to whom is especially entrusted that duty of Christian care for and
See also:interest in one another which
See also:Quakers recognize as obligatory in all the members of a
See also:church . In most Monthly Meetings the care of the poor is committed to the overseers . These
See also:officers hold, from
See also:time to time, meetings
See also:separate from the general assemblies of the members, but the
See also:special organization for many years known as the Meeting of Ministers and Elders, reconstituted in 1876 as the Meeting on
See also:Ministry and Oversight, came to an end in 1906-1907 . This
See also:form both of organization and of discipline has been reached only by a
See also:process of development . As early as 1652-1654 there is evidence of some slight organization for dealing with marriages, poor
See also:relief, " disorderly walkers," matters of arbitration, &c .
The Quarterly or " General " meetings of the different counties seem to have been the first unions of separate congregations . In 1666
See also:Fox established Monthly Meetings; in 1727 elders were first appointed; in 1752 overseers were added; and in 1737 the right of
See also:children of Quakers to be considered as members was fully recognized . Concerning the 18th century in general, see above . Of
See also:late years the stringency of the Quaker discipline has been relaxed : the peculiarities of
See also:dress and language have been abandoned;
See also:marriage with a non-member or between two non-members is now,possible at a Quaker meeting-
See also:house; add marriage elsewhere has ceased to involve exclusion from the body . Above all, many of its members have come to " the conviction, which is not new, but old, that the virtues which can be rewarded and the vices which can be punished by
See also:external discipline are not as a
See also:rule the virtues and the vices that make or
See also:mar the soul " (Hatch,
See also:Bampton Lectures, 8i) . A genuine vein of philanthropy has always existed in the Quaker body . In nothing has this been more conspicuous than in the
See also:matter of
See also:slavery .
See also:George Fox and
See also:William Penn laboured to secure the religious teaching of slaves . As thropic early as 1676 the assembly of
See also:Barbados passed "" An
See also:Act internsts, to prevent the
See also:people called Quakers from bringing negroes to their meetings." On the attitude of Friends in
See also:America to slavery, see the section " Quakerism in America " (above) . In 1783 the first petition to the House of
See also:Commons for the abolition of the slave
See also:trade and slavery went up from the Quakers; and in the long agitation which ensued the Society took a prominent
See also:part . In 1798
See also:Lancaster, himself a Friend, opened his first school for the
See also:education of the poor; and the cause of unsectarian- religious education found in the Quakers steady support . They also took an active part in
See also:Samuel Romilly's efforts to ameliorate the penal
See also:code, in prison reform, with which the name of
See also:Elizabeth Fry (a Friend) is especially connected, and in the efforts to ameliorate the
See also:condition of lunatics in England (the Friends' Retreat at
See also:York, founded in 1792, was the earliest example in England of kindly treatment of the insane) .
It is noteworthy that Quaker efforts for the education of the poor and philanthropy in general, though they have always been Christian incharacter, have not been undertaken primarily for the purpose of bringing proselytes within the body, and have not done so to any
See also:great extent . By means of the Adult
See also:Schools, Friends have been able to exercise a religious influence beyond the
See also:borders of their own Society . The
See also:movement began in
See also:Birmingham in 1845, in an attempt Educa to help the loungers at street corners;
See also:reading and writing were the chief inducements offered . The schools are unsectarian in character and mainly democratic in
See also:government: the aim is to draw out what is best in men and to induce them to act for the help of their
See also:fellows . Whilst the work is essentially religious in character, a well-equipped school also caters for the social, intellectual and
See also:physical parts of a man's nature . Bible teaching is the central part of the school session: the lessons are mainly concerned with
See also:practical problems . The spirit of brotherliness which prevails is largely the secret of the success of the movement . At the end of 1909 there were in connexion with the "
See also:National Council of Adult-School Associations " 1818 " schools " for men with organization, disuse of the outward ordinances (this point is subject to some slight exception, principally in
See also:Ohio), and women's ministry, they do not differ from
See also:English Friends . The yearly meetings of Baltimore and
See also:Philadelphia have not adopted the pastoral
See also:system; the latter contains a very strong conservative
See also:element, and, contrary to the practice of
See also:London and the other " orthodox " yearly meetings, it officially regards the meetings of " the smaller body " (see above) as meetings of the Society of Friends . In 1902 the " orthodox " yearly meetings in the
See also:United States established a "Five Years' Meeting," a representative body meeting once every five years to consider matters affecting the welfare of all, and to further such philanthropic and religious work as may be undertaken in
See also:common, e.g. matters concerning
See also:temperance and peace, and the welfare of negroes and
See also:Indians . Two yearly meetings remain outside the organization, that of Ohio on ultra-evangelical grounds, while that of Philadelphia has not taken the matter into
See also:consideration .
See also:Canada joined at the first, and having withdrawn, again joined in 1907 .
See Jaynes Bowden,
See also:History of the Society of Friends in America (1850-1854); Allan C. and
See also:Richard H .
See also:Thomas, The History of Friends in America (4th edition, 1905); Isaac Sharpless, History of Quaker Government in Pennsylvania (1898, 189 ); R . P . Hallowell, The Quaker Invasion of Massachusetts (1887), and The
See also:Pioneer Quakers (1887) . Organization and Discipline.—The duty of watching over one another for
See also:good was insisted on by the early Friends, and has been embodied in a system of discipline . Its
See also:objects embrace (a) admonition to those who fail in the payment of their just debts, or otherwise walk contrary to the standard of Quaker ethics, and the exclusion of obstinate or
See also:gross offenders from the body, and, as incident to this, the
See also:hearing of appeals from individuals or meetings considering themselves aggrieved; (b) the care and
See also:maintenance of the poor and
See also:provision for the Christian education of their children, for which purpose the Society has established boarding schools in different parts of the
See also:country; (c) the amicable settlement of " all differences about outward things," either by the parties in controversy or by the submission of the dispute to arbitration, and the restraint of all proceedings at
See also:law between members except by leave; (d) the " recording " of ministers (see above); (e) the cognizance of all steps preceding marriage according to Quaker forms; (f) the
See also:registration of births, deaths and marriages and the
See also:admission of members; (g) the issuing of certificates or letters of approval granted to ministers travelling away from their homes, or to members removing from one meeting to another; and (h) the management of the
See also:property belonging to the Society . The meetings for business further concern themselves with arrangements for spreading the Quaker
See also:doctrine, and for carrying out various religious, philanthropic and social activities not necessarily confined to the Society of Friends . The present organization of the Quaker church is essentially democratic; every
See also:born of Quaker parents is a member, and, Periodic together with those who have been admitted on their own "meet- ofgany
See also:request, meeting entitle of d twh }r he ror theibus ainessmemasseber.mblies The inv." Society is organized as a series of subordinated meetings which recall to the mind the Presbyterian
See also:model . The " Preparative Meeting " usually consists of a single
See also:congregation; next in
See also:order comes the " Monthly Meeting," the executive body, usually embracing several Preparative Meetings called together, as its name indicates, monthly (in some cases less often) ; then the " Quarterly Meeting," embracing several Monthly Meetings; and lastly the " Yearly Meeting,' embracing the whole of Great Britain (but not
See also:Ireland) . After several yearly or " general " meetings had been held in different places at irregular intervals as need arose, the first of an uninterrupted series met in 1668 . From that date until 1904 it was held in London . In 1905 it met in Leeds, and in 1908 in Birmingham .
Itsofficial title is " London Yearly Meeting." It is the legislative body of Friends in Great Britain . It considers questions of policy, and some of its sittings are conferences for the consideration of reports on religious, philanthropic, educational and social work which is carried on . Its sessions occupy a week in May of each
See also:year . Representatives are sent from each inferior to each
See also:superior meeting, but they have no precedence over others, and all Friends may attend any meeting and take part in any of which they are members . Formerly the system was
See also:double, the men and women meeting separately for their own appointed business . Of late years the meetings have been, for the most part, held jointly, with equal a membership of about 113,789 ; and 402 for women with a member-
See also:ship of about 27,000 . The movement, which is no longer exclusively under the
See also:control of Friends, is rapidly becoming one of the chief means of bringing about a religious fellowship among a class which the organized churches have largely failed to reach . The effect of the work upon the Society itself may be summarized thus: some addition to membership; the creation of a sphere of usefulness for the younger and more active members; a general stirring of interest in social questions.' A strong interest in
See also:Sunday schools for children preceded the Adult School movement . The earliest schools which are still existing were formed at
See also:Bristol, for boys in 1810 and for girls in the following year . Several isolated efforts were made earlier than this; it is evident that there was a school at Lothersdale near
See also:Skipton in 1800 " for the preservation of the youth of both sexes, and for their instruction in useful learning"; and another at Nottingham . Even earlier still were the Sunday and
See also:day schools in Rossendale,
See also:Lancashire, dating from 1793 . At the end of 1909 there were in connexion with the Friends' First-Day School Association 240 schools with 2722 teachers and 25,215 scholars, very few of whom were the children of Friends .
Not included in these figures are classes for children of members and " attenders," which are usually held before or during a portion of the time of the
See also:morning meeting for worship; in these distinctly denominational teaching is given . Monthly
See also:organ, Teachers and Taught . A " orovisional committee " of members of the Society of Friends was formed in 1865 to
See also:deal with offers of service in foreign lands . In 1868 this
See also:developed into the Friends' Foreign
See also:Mission Association, which now undertakes Missionary work in India (begun 1866),
See also:Madagascar (1867),
See also:Syria (1869),
See also:China (1886),
See also:Ceylon (1896) . In 1909 the number of missionaries (including wives) was 113; organized churches, 194; members and adherents, 21,085; schools, 135; pupils, 7042; hospitals and dispensaries, 17; patients treated, 6865; subscriptions raised from Friends in Great Britain and Ireland, £26,689, besides £3245 received in the
See also:fields of work . Quarterly organ, Our Missions .
See also:Statistics of Quakerism.—At the close of 1909 there were 18,686 Quakers (the number includes children) in Great Britain; and " associates " and habitual "attenders " not in membership, 8586; number of congregations regularly meeting, 390 . Ireland—members, 2528; habitual attenders not in membership, 402 . The central offices and reference library of the Society of Friends are situate at Devonshire House, Bishopsgate Without, London . Bibliography.—The writings of the early Friends are very numerous: the most noteworthy are the
See also:Journals of George Fox and of Thomas
See also:Ellwood, both autobiographies, the
See also:Apology and other
See also:works of Robert
See also:Barclay, and the works of Penn and
See also:Penington . Early in the 18th century William Sewel, a Dutch Quaker, wrote a history of the Society and published an English
See also:modern (small) histories have been written by T . Edmund
See also:Harvey (The Rise of the Quakers) and by Mrs Emmott (The
See also:Story of Quakerism) .
The Sufferings of the Quakers by Joseph Besse (1753) gives a detailedaccount of the persecution of the early Friends in England and America . An excellent
See also:portraiture of early Quakerism is given in William Tanner's Lectures on Friends in Bristol and
See also:Somersetshire . The
See also:Book of Discipline in its successive printed
See also:editions from 1783 to 1906 contains the working rules of the organization, and also a compilation of testimonies
See also:borne by the Society at different periods, to important points of Christian truth, and often called forth by the special circumstances of the time . The Inner Life of the Religious
See also:Societies of the
See also:Commonwealth (London, 1876) by Robert Barclay, a descendant of the Apologist, contains much curious information about the Quakers . See also Quaker " in the
See also:index to lS/Iasson's Life of Milton . Joseph
See also:Smith's Descriptive
See also:Catalogue of Friends' Books (London, 1867) gives the information which its title promises; the same author has also published a catalogue of works hostile to Quakerism . For an exposition of Quakerism on its spiritual side many of the poems by
See also:Whittier may be referred to, also Quaker Strongholds and
See also:Light Arising by Caroline E .
See also:Stephen; The Society of Friends, its Faith and Practice, and other works by
See also:John Stephenson Rowntree, A Dynamic Faith and other works by Rufus M .
See also:Jones; Authority and the Light Within and other works by Edw . Grubb, and the series of " Swarthmore Lectures " as well as the histories above mentioned . Much valuable information will be found in John Stephenson Rowntree: His Life and Work (1908) . The history of the modern forward movement may be studied in Essays and Addresses by John Wilhelm Rowntree, and in Present Day Papers edited by him .
The social life of the 18th century and the first
See also:half of the 19th is portrayed in Records of a Quaker
See also:Family, the Richardsons of
See also:Cleveland, by Mrs
See also:Boyce, and The Diaries of
See also:Pease, the
See also:Father of English
See also:Railways, edited by Sir A . E . Pease . Other works which may usefully he consulted are the Journals of John
See also:Woolman, Stephen Grellet and Elizabeth Fry; also The First Publishers of Truth, a reprint of
See also:con-temporary accounts of the rise of Quakerism in various districts . The
See also:periodicals issued (not officially) in connexion with the Quaker body are The Friend (weekly), The
See also:British Friend (monthly), The ' See A History of the Adult School Movement by J . W . Rowntree and H . B . Binns . The organ of the movement is One and All, published monthly . See also The Adult School Year Book . Friends' Witness, The Friendly Messenger, The Friends' Fellowship Papers, The Friends' Quarterly Examiner, Journal of the Friends'
See also:Historical Society .
Officially issued : The Book of Meetings and The Friends' Year Book . See also works mentioned at the close of sections on Adult Schools and on Quakerism in America,Scotland and Ireland, and elsewhere in this article; also Fox, GEORGE . (A . N .
SOCIETY OF FRIENDS
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