An exploration of how and why people became associated with Quakers in Britain today. Is it a case of ‘coming home’ or of continuing to travel with oneself and others? The research is primarily seeking to explore the reasons that led contemporary members and attenders to become associated with Quaker Meetings. The aim is to explore written and oral accounts of contemporary Quaker lives/spiritual journeys. Within these accounts it is possible to recognize similarities of experience. Searching these out will give access to answer the research question.
TopicsQuaker attendance; Quaker life/spiritual journeys; Quaker identity.
About Richard BainbridgeThe area of research is concerned with why individual Quakers are attracted to the movement and what they bring to the movement from their own past. A large percentage of members and attenders come to Quakerism in their middle years so it is important to take account of these people. Some come with particular backgrounds. Some are moving away from certainty and looking for a place to explore. This has implications for Quaker identity. The study builds upon Congregational studies. It is significant because it monitors the views of members of declining faith communities. In Congregational studies it is the ordinary faith member who is given a voice. The present study of people attending Quaker Meetings examines the thinking of members and attenders at ground level. Without this recording the voices of many Quakers would be lost. If anyone is interested in participating or knows someone who would I am happy to make contact to interview or receive a written account of their life/spiritual journey. Some Meetings already have collection of accounts from members and attenders. If you know of any in your area I would be delighted to hear of them. It is always good to double check. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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For a good example of the sort of material I am aiming for see Smith, Judith Fullard (ed.). Explorations discovering a spiritual way. Oxford: The Kinders, 2015.