This page has videos and documents from the Simpler Meetings Project and explains how your meeting can benefit.

The Simpler Meetings project has been finding and sharing ways that Quaker meetings can be easier to run, and less of a burden for Quaker role holders. The aim is to spend less time on 'doing' Quakers, releasing more time for 'being' Quakers – for our witness in the world, spiritual nurture, outreach and building our Quaker communities.

Learning from Quakers across Britain, we've gathered a wide range of ideas you can use. There are many possibilities to chose from. Meetings have much more permission to do things differently than people sometimes think. Our project worker Jonathan Carmichael worked with us for three years until 18 June 2021, funded by legacies to Britain Yearly Meeting.

Ways you can simplify

    How can I explore simplifying?

    You can:

    • watch short videos of the eight talks in the Simpler Meetings series, run in conjunction with Woodbrooke, or read the text of the talks below. There are four more topics too. It is good to cover the Fundamentals and Roles topics first, and then move on to the others. The links to videos will take you to YouTube's own site.
    • discuss them in a group of role-holders, watching them together, or sending links in advance,
    • ask role-holders in other meetings what they do,
    • have a session for your area or local meeting using some of the videos and a facilitator,
    • join with neighbouring area meetings or local meetings to consider questions together,
    • talk with your local development worker or email supportmeetings@quaker.org.uk
    • have a Woodbrooke Where You Are session - e-mail learning@woodbrooke.org.uk
    • share your ideas, changes and successes with the Quaker Life team at supportmeetings@quaker.org.uk
    • let other Quaker meetings know what is working well for you.

    Fundamentals

    Roles

    Area meeting trustees, treasurers and property

    Small meetings

    Simpler ways without a meeting house

    Areas working together and structural changes

    Here are resources prepared by groups in different parts of Britain on how area meetings can work together, including structural changes:

    Changes in Wales and the Marches

    The four area meetings in Wales and the Marches agreed in principle in autumn 2020 to form a new single charity, together with Meeting of Friends in Wales. The area meetings will continue to meet, without being separate registered charities. The aim is to simplify structures and strengthen Quaker life and witness in Wales and the Marches. As an interim step, the area meetings have each appointed at least three trustees from their own membership, plus one from each of the other area meetings. So all four areas are only needing 12 trustees in total. To find out more, here are resources produced by the Symud Ymlaen / Moving Forwards group:

    Changes in London

    The seven area meetings in London are considering a proposal to create a single charity, while their area meetings continue:

    In Yorkshire the GRASP group have produced this report:

    Imagining ways with Zoom

    Moving forwards


    Here are four more topics, not covered in the Simpler Meetings Series sessions:

    Area meetings

    Grouping meetings differently

    Local meetings changing

    A poem about simpler meetings

    Model policies

    You can find model policies on the area meeting trustees page.

    Contact us

    Alistair Fuller

    Team Leader (Quaker Community)

    supportmeetings@quaker.org.uk