Quakers for Europe

Quakers have supported a European union of some form for over 300 years:

“Now if the sovereign princes of Europe, who represent that society or independent state of men that was previous to the obligations of society, would for the same reason that engaged men first into society, viz, love of peace and order, agree to meet by their stated deputies in a general diet, estates, or parliament, and there establish rules of justice for sovereign princes to observe one to another…”

An essay towards the present and future peace of Europe

Enlivening and Enriching our Meetings: June 11th, York

Enlivening and Enriching Our Meetings
11th June 2016
Friargate Meeting House, York 10am – 4pm

You are warmly invited to this day workshop presented by the Kindlers and Quaker Life Network, open to all Yorkshire Quakers and attenders. This day invites Friends to explore what it is that works in our Meetings – in our worship and our activities beyond it – and how this can be strengthened.

See attached for more details and booking form.

Peace Museum Bradford

Why not pay a visit to the Peace Museum in Bradford?
Located in Piece Hall Yard, Bradford , West Yorkshire, UK. The Museum galleries occupy the top floor of one of Bradford’s many spectacular 19th century city centre buildings and may be found just off Hustlergate, opposite Waterstones Bookshop and the City Vaults.

Visit http://www.peacemuseum.org.uk for more details

The Museum is open every Wednesday and Thursday 10am till 4pm. Please check with Museum staff if you wish to visit on a Wednesday by emailing info@peacemuseum.org.uk or telephoning 01274 780241.

Walking in Sheffield: Mayfield in May; Sat. 7th May 10.30am-1pm

Join me and Oscar the dog (who is staying with us while his ‘owners’ are away on holiday) on a walk around the beautiful Mayfield valley in the west of Sheffield. This is a remnant of classic northern hill farming country on the western edge of Sheffield.

We will meet at the 83a bus stop at the top of Brooklands Avenue, Fulwood, at 10.30am. The 83a 10.01 service from Leopold Street arrives at 10.23, bus stop 37027483. I will be on the bus from Hunters Bar at the Spar shop from 10.13. You can also get the 120 bus to Fulwood shops and walk up Brooklands Avenue, 9.50am from Leopold Street.

Would you like to own a painting by the Quaker artist Ron Waddams ?

The trustees of Larren Art have responsibility for most of the artwork produced by Ron Waddams. We now wish to find suitable homes for 70 remaining paintings and are offering them to Friends in return for a small donation to the Larren Art Trust.

The work of Quaker artist Ron Waddams is increasingly well-known in the publishing world. The first exhibition of work by Ron Waddams was held at Jordans Meeting House in May 1997, when he displayed work dating back to 1967; after a career as a graphic designer, he had begun to make artwork about the values and concerns shared among Friends. After the 1997 exhibition, the Larren Art Trust was established to enable others to benefit from the success of his work, and Ron generously donated most of his work to the Trust. The works are reflections on the Quaker faith and practice of caring and living without conflict, and refer to the aims of the United Nations Charter; income from the sale of the works and reproduction is distributed to assist the peace testimony of the Society of Friends and the United Nations Association UK Trust.

By using elements from the near and distant past and fusing them into his individualistic style, Ron Waddams has created a contemporary expression of spiritual and humanitarian concerns. Also evident is his physical pleasure in using few, bold colours and in imposing the discipline of applying them in precisely drawn areas. The artwork lends itself well to reproduction, and in recent years Ron’s work has been included in the prestigious Bridgeman Art Library, a leading source of fine art for image users. This has resulted in use by publishers in Europe and USA to illustrate a wide range of educational and inspirational books.

The trustees of Larren Art have responsibility for most of the artwork produced by Ron Waddams. We now wish to find suitable homes for 70 remaining paintings and are offering them to Friends in return for a small donation to the Larren Art Trust. All our money goes to Quaker Peace Work or to the United Nations Trust, in accordance with Ron’s wishes.

The paintings are in acrylic on hardboard and come in a range of sizes from 61 × 61 cm to 122 × 122cm, square, rectangular, or circular. They are easy to hang. Most are stored at High Wycombe Meeting and can be posted or delivered to the Sheffield area.


Readings from Quaker Faith and Practice.

You may well be aware that from October 2015, Quakers in Britain are invited to read and reflect on one or two chapters a month of Quaker Faith and Practice, either by themselves or in groups, face to face or online, so that as a Religious Society we can better know our tradition and journey as a people of faith.

There is more information about how and why Quakers in Britain are engaging in this process here: http://qfp.quaker.org.uk/reading/ And a calendar to follow here: http://qfp.quaker.org.uk/reading/calendar/

You may want to do this on your own, following the suggested calendar. Or if you would like to reflect with other Friends, you can join the reading group which meets on the 2nd Sunday of each month. A number of Spiritual Friendship groups are also following the reading calendar in their meetings.

The suggested chapters for May 2016:

Chapter 16: Quaker marriage procedure

Chapter 22: Close relationships


A report from the Sheffield and Balby Area Meeting attended the Quakers in Yorkshire event at Huddersfield on 16th April.

We had a morning and afternoon filled with interest making us realise how dangerous is the way in which the military is infiltrating our schools and our whole way of life. It started with a presentation of a play performed by Lynn and Dave Morris, called “Over the Top” – a deliberate double meaning referring back to the trenches of WW1 and to the way a school head teacher could be over enthusiastic about setting up an army cadet corps in his school. We were reminded that the former education minister Michael Gove had expressed his wish, supported, in fact amplified by his successor Nicky Morgan, to see a military ethos in every school, encouraging arms manufacturers and the armed forces to give strong financial backing to the project. In the play the Quaker mother of one of the schoolboys resisted the policy by addressing the school governors in spite of the undermining tactics of the head. This was both entertaining and thought provoking.

The afternoon started with three short talks which became the subjects for later discussions in groups. Sam Walton, the Peace and Disarmament Manager of Quaker Peace and Social Witness (QPSW) from Britain Yearly Meeting showed that the key strand of current policy is the militarisation of education by fostering public support. Isabel Cartwright, Peace Education Progamme Manager for QPSW showed how schemes such as ‘Troops to Teachers’ and the spread of cadet corps in state schools and colleges is happening now. John Bourton of ‘Veterans for Peace’ told how his organisation of people who have served in the forces witnesses to the actual way the military operates, unlike its propaganda.

We then saw a short film titled “The Unseen March” showing how militarism is creeping into our lives generally. This was followed by the discussion sessions led by each of the three speakers. John Bourton and a colleague related how one of them had been trying to study dentistry but was coming to a halt for lack of money. He discovered there was an Army Dentistry course where he would be actually paid for studying, so he signed up for it. It led him into more things than dentistry – unfortunately, and encountered the doctrine of obeying orders from above without question. They showed how the Army is well resourced for the school programme and for recruiting, often presented as peace keeping and healthy activity. This appeals to young people especially those with a poor background or those who have failed in the job market. Poverty was noted as the best recruiter.

The war years, especially around 1940, are often presented as a time of national glory forgetting that half the male population in Europe was killed in WW2 with a greater number of civilian casualties. This happens in all conflicts. We are made to accept this military creep by phrases like “Help for Heroes” and a new “Armed Forces Day”. British Aerospace finances all the red poppy making and the British Legion is increasingly changing its strategy from Remembrance to “Support the Troops” Even Remembrance Sunday has become a much expanded event for military display. We need to resist and object to this military creep wherever we detect it by contacting our MPs or the organisations concerned.

We ended with a jolly good tea! Thank you Huddersfield Meeting.

Nurturing Teh Soul: Sat. May 14th; 9.30am-1pm

Our friend Linda Hoy will be leading a workshop on Nurturing the Soul at Whirlow Ecumenical centre, Ecclesall Road South on Saturday, May 14th : 9.30-1pm.

Please see enclosed flier for more details.

All welcome. Do please circulate to anyone else who might be interested.

A work out for the soul reflecting on Thoreau’s
insistence that our souls can thrive on silence,
simplicity and harmony with Nature.

Cost £18
Refreshments served from 9am