Mindfulness In Meeting For Worship

Prior to arriving at Meeting, Friends can prepare for worship by Spiritual reading and silent prayer. Meeting for Worship begins when the first worshiper enters the Meeting Room and sits down quietly. Conversation stops at the doorway as each member enters the room. We leave seats at the back so latecomers will not disturb the Meeting. We begin a process of what we call "centering." An attitude of reverence for the Presence among us develops!

Friends believe God speaks directly to humans. Each worshiper becomes a listener ready to receive God's message. So too, prayer is talking to God in the silence of our thoughts. Some might call this meditation or contemplation. At first you may be easily distracted by the traffic outside, or even the song of a bird may makes it more difficult to "settle in." A child may whisper, or others could be turning pages. You are encouraged to weave these unintentional sounds into your worship. Perhaps a look around the room at the other worshipers will help you to focus on the Light within each one of us.

While most of what we hear is a message for each of us alone, after some time in silence, something may come through more strongly that may be intended for all those gathered. The call to such vocal ministry may come to any worshiper and the sensitive person will know when to share a message. Friends have the responsibility to listen tenderly to all messages. A respectful silence follows each, so that all present may absorb it.

Sometimes messages may follow one another that are closely related. The group may find itself drawn more and more together in the Silence. A feeling of unity with the Spirit may occur among the worshipers referred to as a "gathered" meeting, but this is not a routine happening.

It is the clerk's job to sense when the Meeting is over. The rise of meeting occurs when the clerk gets up and begins to shake hands with nearby worshipers.

 


Maintained By: Ministers, Elders and Overseers
Last Revision Date: 04-2014