We meet for silent worship every Sunday at 11:00 AM, at the Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, MD. Since we are meeting in a dance studio, you have to take off your shoes before you come in. The building has heating and air conditioning, but it can be a little cool in the winter. (Bring a sweater. Warm socks are also popular.) If you have any questions about Quaker worship or our meeting in particular, there should be a greeter outside near a sign advertising the meeting. They should be able to answer any questions you have. Silent worship is ended when a designated Friend wishes the meeting a good morning, and the gathered Friends shake hands. After silent worship, we have time for worship sharing (for things that did not rise to the level of a message, or requests to hold people in the light) and announcements. See our Schedule page for more after-worship activities.
What is silent worship? Friends believe that each individual has an unmediated, direct connection to divine truth, often called the Inner Light. So we do not have a preacher or set sermon. We wait silently, listening for a message from God (or however we view the divine spirit). Some messages are for the individual, and some are for the meeting as a whole. If a Friend feels the message they have received is spirit lead and for the meeting as a whole, they stand up and share the message with the meeting.
What is worship sharing? If you are not sure your message was from the Inner Light, worship sharing is the time to share it. Friends are cautioned against bringing a message to meeting. However, if you have something spiritual from outside the meeting time, you can share it during worship sharing. In addition, worship sharing is a time for holding people in the Inner Light. This may be in sorrow and hope for change, because they are suffering from disease, loss, or other troubles. It may be in joy and thanks for change, because of a new birth, a new marriage, or other happiness.
Be aware that Friends have no creed, no set of beliefs that members must adhere to. Each Friend is expected to discern for themselves through the Inner Light what beliefs they will follow. This leads to disparate beliefs on almost everything, which requires a fair amount of tolerance. As you join us for worship, please receive any messages or worship sharing in that spirit of tolerance.