Meeting 4 Learning-Patrick Nugent

2018-02-11 @ 9:15 am – 10:45 am

Patrick Nugent- Ministers & Ministry in Quaker History
Unprogrammed Friends (indeed Friends of all varieties) have stories we tell ourselves about why we worship the way we do, the role of the spoken word in worship, and the (apparent) lack of presiding leadership in worship (what other Christian traditions might call a “minister.”)
But the stories we tell–and the ways we worship–are creations of the twentieth century. To be sure, they are made from raw material produced by Friends in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. Yet in every century the Society of Friends has reinvented itself, taking on new forms and practices to meet the challenges of the world around it–and sometimes leaving behind valuable old forms and practices. This presentation will examine how the role of the spoken word in Quaker worship has evolved and changed, and along with it, the understanding of *who* speaks in our meetings for worship and to the outside world. In short–ministry and ministers. We will also look more broadly at the origin, rise, and decline of the threefold New Testament ministry of elders, ministers, and overseers in the Society of Friends from the earliest days until today.

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