We are a community of faith endeavoring to live in love for one another as we are led by God. We invite you to join us in Meeting for Worship and other Meeting activities as we seek direct experience of the Divine.
10:30 – 11:30 a.m. Meeting for Worship
Worship begins when we sit down and center on God. Out of the worshipful silence some may be guided by the Holy Spirit to share a message in prayer, words, or song. It is highly beneficial to allow deep periods of silence between messages, for reflection and centering. Children are led from the Meeting for Worship for separate activities, usually 15 or 20 minutes after Meeting begins. Parents may go with their children; children are welcome to remain in Meeting. The meeting closes when a designated Friend shakes hands with their neighbor.
11:30 – noon Welcoming, Announcements, and Sharing
Those present in person and on Zoom are invited to share joys or concerns to be held in prayer by the meeting. Visitors are then welcomed and announcements made.
12:00 – 12:15 p.m. Snacks and Fellowship
All are welcome to share in the snacks.
12:15 – 1:30 p.m. After-Meeting
All are welcome to after-meeting activities, which include monthly potluck covered dish lunch (currently on-hold because of the COVID pandemic), focusing The Light (our version of a prayer group), Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business, and various Second Hour presentations scheduled as they come up.
We Welcome Children to Our Meeting
We value the presence of children in Meeting for Worship. Quakers believe that God is present in everyone, regardless of age. We realize that bringing children to Meeting can be challenging for parents. The quietness of the room seems to magnify their sounds and movement. It was that way when we brought our children for the first time, too. It is usually the child’s parents who are most concerned about this! Having your children in meeting, whether they’re quiet and still or restless, brings a unique vitality to our worship and helps us feel closer to God. The Tallahassee Friends Meeting wants its children to be as much a part of this religious community as are the adults.
Because we want the children to learn about silent worship, all ages of Friends worship together for part of the Meeting, starting at 10:30. At 15 or 20 minutes into Meeting a Friend will rise and lead the children out for First Day (Sunday) school. Children may simply follow the leader out. Parents are always welcome in First Day School. Young children who are new to our meeting may especially wish to have a parent attend with them at first.
Faith & Practice
Friends’ Experience of the Meeting for Worship Over the Years
Be still and cool in thy own mind and spirit from thy own thoughts, and then thou wilt feel the principle of God to turn thy mind to the Lord God, whereby thou wilt receive his strength and power from whence life comes, to allay all tempests, against blusterings and storms. That is it which molds into patience, into innocency, into soberness, into stillness, into stayedness, into quietness, up to God, with his power.
George Fox, 1658
On one never-to-be-forgotten Sunday morning, I found myself one of a small company of silent worshippers, who were content to sit down together without words, that each one might feel after and draw near to the Divine Presence, unhindered at least, if not helped, by any human utterance. … My whole soul was filled with the unutterable peace of the undisturbed opportunity for communion with God, with the sense that at last I had found a place where I might, without the faintest suspicion of insincerity, join with others in simply seeking His presence. To sit down in silence could at least pledge me to nothing; it might open to me (as it did that morning) the very gate of heaven.
Caroline E. Stephen, 1890
Our worship is a deep exercise of our spirits before the Lord, which doth not consist in exercising the natural part or natural mind, either to hear or speak words, or in praying according to what we, of ourselves, can apprehend or comprehend concerning our needs; but we wait, in silence of the fleshly part, to hear with the new ear what God shall please to speak inwardly in our own hearts, or outwardly through others, who speak with the new tongue which he unlooseth and teacheth to speak; and we pray in the spirit, and with a new understanding, as God pleaseth to quicken, draw forth, and open our hearts towards himself.
Isaac Penington, 1661
How does a Quaker Meeting work? Its foundation is the conviction that God is not a distant remote being but a living presence to be discovered in the deep centre of every human being. … The Quaker experience is that, in the silence, as we are open to one another in love, we help each other by sharing our strengths and weaknesses. The Quaker conviction is that as we go deeper into ourselves we shall eventually reach a still, quiet centre. At this point two things happen simultaneously. Each of us is aware of our unique value as an individual human being, and each of us is aware of our utter interdependence on one another.
George Gorman, 1982
I have never lost the enjoyment of sitting in silence at the beginning of meeting, knowing that everything can happen, knowing the joy of utmost surprise; feeling that nothing is preordained, nothing is set, all is open. The Light can come from all sides. The joy of experiencing the Light in a completely different way than one has thought it would come is one of the greatest gifts that Friends’ meeting for worship has brought me.
Ursula Franklin, 1979
As I silence myself I become more sensitive to the sounds around me, and I do not block them out. The songs of the birds, the rustle of the wind, children in the playground, the roar of an airplane overhead are all taken into my worship. … I think of myself like the tree planted by the “rivers of water…” in Psalm 1, sucking up God’s gift of life and being restored. Sometimes I come to meeting for worship tired and weary, and I hear the words of Jesus, “Come unto me, all that labour and are weary, and I will give you rest.” And having laid down my burden, I feel refreshed both physically and spiritually. This leads me on to whole-hearted adoration and thanksgiving for all God’s blessings…