Becoming a Member

It is our experience that membership in the Religious Society of Friends signifies an intentional, living relationship between the individual, the meeting and God, rather than a status granted to the individual. Membership is an indication of this relationship rather than of correct beliefs or a correct lifestyle.

The membership relationship arises from the continuing experience of God's love gathering us as a community during regular times of collective worship, business and our lives together. It is a covenant for mutual nurture, support and guidance as we seek a more perfect harmony with the desires and intent of Spirit. The individuals and meeting who have made this commitment are members one of another.

Our desire is to be inclusive of all who are drawn to this relationship and who are willing to make the personal commitments that are inherent in this relationship. As a practice of hospitality we welcome all persons who are nurtured by participation in the activities of meeting at any level of involvement.

For Those Seeking Membership

A person may be accepted into membership who is willing to listen for and give expression in their life to the promptings of the Inner Spirit in all areas of personal discipline and service to others. Some individuals may not claim all Quaker teachings and testimonies as their own at the time they become members. What is vital is a readiness and commitment to wait upon Spirit and seek Divine Guidance in all areas of life and to remain open to the understanding and witness of one’s Quaker community.

Application

  1. When a person feels ready to join the Meeting, they write a letter requesting membership addressed to the Clerk of the meeting
  2. The letter of application will be read in Meeting for Business at which time a committee for clearness is appointed by the Meeting to meet with the applicant. The committee will meet with the applicant for the purpose of interpreting the beliefs and procedures of the Religious Society of Friends, to provide support and mentoring to the applicant and to determine the applicant's readiness for membership. The committee also provides ongoing support and mentoring to the applicant/member.
  3. The committee's recommendation will be presented to the meeting for business for consideration.

Transfer Of Membership

When a person desires to transfer to VBFM from another meeting in the Religious Society of Friends, a letter approving the transfer is forwarded from the other meeting. Upon receipt of this letter the meeting appoints a clearness committee to explore the nature of their mutual expectations of membership in the VBFM and the distinctive characteristics of our meeting. The clearness committee will make a recommendation to the meeting for business for consideration.

 


Maintained By: Ministers, Elders and Overseers
Last Revision Date: 06-2016