Whether or not you have attended Friends' Meeting for Worship in the past, you are most cordially welcome. HFM worship is unprogrammed, the type that is sometimes called 'silent meeting,' although there may be vocal ministry as individuals are moved to speak.
Believing that the Divine Spirit dwells in every person, Friends hold that awareness of the Spirit is nourished and quickened by sharing in group worship. Quaker Meeting for Worship is based on reverent silence, a silence of waiting or expectancy. When hearts are lifted up to God, common worship is continued, as is Friends' renewal. There is no minister, for all may minister. No one specifically chosen, no officer, will start the meeting or conduct it. It is in our hands corporately. Everyone present shares the responsibility for worship and can share in its blessing.
There may be distractions within the unfamiliar silence, by noises outside, or by one's own roving thoughts. Do not worry about this, but return again and again to the still center of your being where God is, allowing yourself to be quiet in body, mind and soul. Out of this quiet, this yielding to the Spirit, may come vocal prayers or messages. Allow time after each message to reflect on its meaning. It may not speak to you, but refrain from debating or discussing it. Through the silence and these messages may come help in gaining strength and direction for daily living under the guidance of the Spirit.
ON SPEAKING IN QUAKER MEETING FOR WORSHIP
Allow yourself to settle into the silence. Friends usually refrain from speaking for the first portion of Meeting - say the first twenty minutes.
Refrain from preparing messages in advance. Messages should come from the Spirit. Listen carefully.
If a message comes to you, ask if it is for you alone, or a message to be shared with others.
Speak briefly and from your personal spiritual experience.
When you speak, stand and speak clearly so that all may hear.
Meeting for Worship is not a forum or discussion; refrain from answering another's message. However, themes do sometimes emerge in Meeting for Worship.
If you speak, do so only once.
Before you offer vocal ministry, allow time for the previous message to speak to the Light in others.
Meeting for Worship is closed when the clerk makes the announcement and welcomes everyone.