Today was a warm day that flew in the face of recent rains. We once again shared our Meeting with Friends from Harpenden. Silent worship is seldom entirely silent. The welcome sounds of nature via wind in the trees and the blackbird song is punctuated by airport traffic overhead and distant police car sirens. It reminds us that life is all around us and Meeting isn’t about shutting these things out.
During Meeting a Harpenden Friend was moved to speak.
Sharing worship with Luton Friends had reminded them of their time in Auckland, New Zealand and an invitation to speak about their experience of being Quakers in another, different yearly meeting in Britain. It was a challenging thing to do however the similarities between New Zealand yearly meeting and Britain YM were not as great than perhaps those differences between some other countries.
They felt that sitting here today reminded them of how they felt part of Britain Meeting & strongly attached to their home Meeting.
They were reminded of this Advices & Queries 8:
icon-quote-left Worship is our response to an awareness of God. We can worship alone, but when we join with others in expectant waiting we may discover a deeper sense of God’s presence. We seek a gathered stillness in our meetings for worship so that all may feel the power of God’s love drawing us together and leading us. icon-quote-right
Something Itinerant About Being A Quaker…
Later another Harpenden Friend reflected on this and said that they were struck by the notion that there is often something quite itinerant about being a Quaker in that the progression of places you go through and the Meeting Houses that you may attend that become local to those places can feel quite meaningful.
They also reflected on attending Quaker camp where one or two Meeting Houses are visited and that this was a very positive experience. In the same way that welcoming visitors to Harpenden Meeting is often energising it was nice to be welcomed into Meeting houses and that perhaps Quakers make more fuss of this via visitors books etc.
They also felt that there was something always very special about your 1st Meeting house and so too the memories and experiences associated with it.
They were reminded that Luton was their first Meeting and felt quite emotional at how welcomed they and later their children were here and so they felt it was very positive to be here at Luton Meeting.
Meeting gave way to notices then tea,coffee and chat.