Quakers Integrating Spirituality and Sexuality


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Collection and Synthesis of
Queries and Advices from Various Sources,
Including Bible Verses and Other Quotations

This page provides a sort of sketch pad for watching our network's discernment on spirituality and sexuality take shape. If you would like to suggest additions or revisions to this page, please consider joining our email list and entering into discussion about it there. You may also share your thoughts with the webservant. Also be sure to look over our page of excerpts from the Faith and Practice editions of various yearly meetings. Implicitly, this page of alternative queries and advices explores whether revisions to Faith and Practice would be desirable.

On Queries and Advices: Historically, Quakers have been highly resistant to using creeds to describe our faith since many feel that individuals must ultimately discern truth for themselves, ideally in the context of a mutually supportive community of faith. Still, Quakers have attempted to give form to their faith communities, in particular through books of discipline, or Faith and Practice, as many yearly meetings now call them. For more than 300 years, such efforts have often turned to using queries instead of issuing declarations, especially among unprogrammed Friends. Describing a faith perspective with questions instead of answers profoundly places responsibilty back on individuals for their own discernment and actions. In addition, "advices" share the experiences and insights of weighty Quakers and others over many years. They are not prescriptions; they are simply advice.

Synthesis of Queries
Queries Collected from Various Sources

Bible Verses
Other Quotations

Synthesis of Queries

... forthcoming

Queries Collected from Various Sources

From Elizabeth Watson's Sexuality: a Part of Wholeness.

... forthcoming

From the Young Adult Friends Epistle on Sexual Boundaries :

1. How did we get here? What in our Quaker experience has trained us to ignore, suppress or deny the pervasive sexual abuse in our midst?

2. What are sources of strength? Do Friends' testimonies, history, process and scripture offer us models or new ways? Have we integrated our sexuality with our spirituality? Do we apply our spiritual commitment to resolving issues of sexuality?

3. Do we stand up to violence in personal relationships as we stand up to other forms of violence in our society?

4. Do we love those who have been hurt by sexual violation, support them and respond to their needs?

5. Do we love our perpetrators as well as we should?

6. Are we willing to do the hard work of changing ourselves, or do we just want to change others?


Bible Verses

James 4:1 From whence come wars and fightings among you? Do they not come even from your lusts that war in your members? 2 Ye lust, and have not; ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain. Ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. 3 Ye ask and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

21st Century King James Version (KJ21)

Commentary: This passage draws a clear connection, to my thinking, between our concern regarding sexuality and the peace testimony. Perhaps "lust" in this passage is meant more broadly than just sexual lust. Even so, the focus on satisfying our own wills at the expense of God's will applies to both sexual and non-sexual lusts, and either can result in violence towards each other and alienation from God. Moreover, should we not consider how our sexual and non-sexual lusts might be related to each other?

Ken Stockbridge, 5/13/2002


Other Quotations


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