Swarthmore Lecture 2019 at Britain Yearly Meeting 2019

25 May 2019

 “On Earth as it is in Heaven: the Kingdom of God and the yearning of Creation”

The Swarthmore Lecture takes place each year during Britain Yearly Meeting, the annual gathering of Quakers in Britain.  This year’s lecture was given by Eden Grace on Saturday 25th May at 19:15 (BST) at Friends House London.

Audio and video recordings will be available afterwards and a book relating to the lecture will be published in the autumn.  To pre-order the book, please email quakercentre@quaker.org.uk with ‘Swarthmore Lecture 2019’ in the subject line and you will be contacted for payment and delivery details when the book is available.

Eden will reflect on the theological, spiritual and biblical grounding of Friend’s witness on climate breakdown and relate experiences of people whose lives are impacted by the climate crisis. Eden will ask how Quakers can act in solidarity with them, as we respond to climate emergency. She will draw on our Christian tradition, the Bible and Eco Theology.

‘Quakers had a spiritual experience that led them to the understanding that the Kingdom of God is breaking through into creation, into history, into our lives and communities right here right now, that there is a layering of realities such that we can participate in the Kingdom of God even in this present moment in our current lives as we experience a global climate crisis.’

In this time of Climate Breakdown, we hope Friends will welcome an opportunity to re-root ourselves in the spiritual imperative of our work and ministry.

The Swarthmore Lecture Committee were strongly led in their discernment, and trust in the Friend they were led to ask; Eden Grace.

Martina Weitsch, clerk of the Swarthmore Lecture Committee said “We recognize both the gift and challenge of being part of a world family of Friends and the learning we can receive from across our community, with our corporate commitment to a low carbon future”.

Martina added “Our Swarthmore Lecturer has flown to be with us. This is not something they or we take lightly. We have chosen to make a financial contribution towards a biosand water filter project in order to invest in a project supporting more sustainable lifestyles. This is a project supported by Friends United Meeting, and Eden knows the positive impact it has had well.”

  • Biosand water filters use an entirely organic process, with no chemicals. They are made from concrete and sand, not plastic and are made locally.
  • The water has been tested by Government labs in Kenya and the water has been found to be safer than bottled water.
  • Friends United Meeting’s role is to train East African Quaker community based organisations how to manufacture, sell and maintain the biosand water filters. As the group makes and sells filters they earn a living wage.



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