Illustration of George Fox, courtesy of the Settle Quaker Meeting

Quaker Dialogues was originally offered as a discussion series, designed for seekers of all levels of the Quaker experience from the “Newcomer through to the “Weighty Friend”. The course materials remain available here for those who wish to study them on their own.

Each of the following topics are presented in a stand alone format and can be found by clicking on the links at the bottom of this page.

1. The Experience of Early Friends

Many of the first Friends sought a spiritual home for years before they found what they were seeking, in Friends. What did they discover? What galvanized their worship and witness in the face of persecution and hardship? What does their experience say today?

2. The Light Within

This is by far the most often mentioned and the most confusing aspect of Quakerism. What do Friends mean by the inner Light? What is that of God in everyone? How do you experience the Light in your own life?

3. Quaker Universalism

What do Friends believe about Jesus Christ? Can Quakers be both Christian and universalist? How do Friends respond to traditional Church teachings on salvation, atonement, etc? How do you relate to Jesus?

4. Worship and Ministry

What do you do in Meeting for Worship? How do you know if you are being led to speak? What is a gathered Meeting? How can Friends help (or hurt) the Meeting for Worship?

5. Gospel Order

Coined by George Fox, Gospel Order was the model for the structure and discipline adopted by early Friends. What were Fox’s incentives for developing this order? How have Friends used it in their lives? Do Quakers today resonate with the concept?

6. Living in the Light

What is a concern? Have you ever felt a need to take action? What did you do? What is a clearness committee? What is a testimony? How do you understand Friends’ testimonies today?

7. Getting Down to Business

How does a Friends Meeting for Business work? Why do some Friends call it Meeting for Worship for the Purpose of Conducting Business? What is Quaker unity? How does a sense of the Meeting differ from consensus? What are the roles of clerk and recording clerk? What can you do to nurture (or undermine) Meeting for Business?

Course materials can be downloaded below. They are offered as Adobe PDF files. To read them you will need Adobe Reader, a free software program. If your computer doesn’t have Adobe Reader installed (most do) you can download this software from the Adobe website.

Friends for 350 Years Book Cover Image

Many of the readings are from Howard Brinton’s Friends for 350 Years. Full text source of the readings are available from the FGC Bookstore,

Reading the materials and their sources at sometime in your Quaker Career is recommended. If you would like a beginning Friendly Library, there is a book list and course outline as a part of the first session download.

Course Materials

Topic List Session 1 Session 2 Session 3
Session 4 Session 5 Session 6 Session 7

Download zip file of all materials (9.6mb)