Rekindling Our Radical Faith: Penn, Mead and Justice Today

Monday 11 November
19:00-20:30 (UK time)

Rekindling Our Radical Faith

With increasing repression in the courts, this session offers an inspiring example from our history of how we advocated for freedom of conscience within the legal system in alignment with our core Quaker values.

The 1670 trial of William Penn and William Mead established the right of a jury to convict or acquit according to their consciences. This case, known as ‘Bushel’s Case’ after one of the jurors, was a legal landmark vastly improving our legal system. A re-enactment was held by friends at Gracechurch street on April 7th 2024.

Recent decisions by judges not to allow defendants to explain the reasons for their actions in their defense has severely eroded this right, as they are not being given evidence that allows them to exercise the right. Embracing our heritage as a spiritual community, friends asked themselves what the relevance was for us today, and were creatively inspired to act and stand by these values.

This session will begin with an overview of the Penn and Mead case and the theological underpinnings for these actions. We will then move into the contemporary resonance of these historical events, sharing information about the Defend Our Juries campaign and the recent Penn and Mead re-enactment

We will hear directly from friends who are going through the legal system, and the spiritual conflict and tough decisions to be made when they wish to speak truth to power in court, but have been prevented from doing so. This session will be enlightening and motivating if you are concerned about climate, peace and social justice issues, and wish to uphold the right to peaceful protest – whether or not you can act yourself.

Click here to discover other courses and sessions linked to the theme of supporting witness.

This course will involve:

DiscussionSpeakerZoom Session

Accessibility info:

On the booking form, there is a chance for you to let us know about any accessibility or communication adjustments that will enable you to participate more fully in the course. Automated Zoom closed captions are available for all live sessions but if you feel you require more accurate closed captioning please email us directly in addition to booking.

See more courses in this category: Climate Crisis


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