At the AGM on Sunday one topic we discussed was whether we should set up a Facebook group for the Non-theist Friends Network (UK). There were pros and cons discussed.
The cons were that:
- Many of our members (and many people interested in the work and ideas of our network) do not use Facebook (for a variety of reasons)
- It would be yet another place to have to check for interesting posts or discussions, adding to the sense that we may miss things.
The pros were that:
- Many people are used to following groups or pages on Facebook and so regularly check to see if there is anything new, even on their phones through the day
- Lots of young people use Facebook. I’m 51 and it is a little alarming that I’m referred to as young at some NFN meetings so it would be good to encourage some actual young people to engage in (or with) the network
Rhiannon sent us a couple of vibrant Quaker Facebook places she is involved with that may illustrate what ours might be like:
- Quaker Renewal UK group (here). (You do NOT have to sign up to facebook to read this – just close their pop-up window with ‘Not now’ or cross in top right corner. You WILL have to be signed up to facebook if you wish to join the group and join in the discussion – Trevor)
- Reading QF&P page (here) (much the same as comment above)
And the Quaker LGBT Fellowship UK also has a Facebook group (here). (N.B. That’s a closed group so you cannot see the activity there without joining first – and being signed up to facebook.)
It would be great to hear your thoughts – just add a comment below this post. (‘Dumbledad’ who posted this is our Steering Group member Tim Regan)
By an oversight (or lack of it?) the newsletters for December, January and February have only been added to the website today.
The December newsletter is near the foot of the ‘Articles’ page (with earlier newsletters) but for 2017, the January and February newsletters have been added to a separate page in the ‘Articles’ sub-menu.
I have not (as yet) put them as a sub-page to ‘News’ which currently carries ‘posts’ to the website for technical reasons. I hope some posts by other members of our steering group may appear soon.
The next newsletter will probably be ‘April’ with further reports of our March conference. In the meantime see the text of Rhiannon’s talk in the previous post.
Talk given by Rhiannon Grant
Brigid, Fox, and Buddha
This talk was given at the Nontheist Friends Network conference at Woodbrooke, 24-26th March 2017.
This is a talk with two halves. In the first half I want to talk about talking about God, and in the second half I want to talk about God. In the first half I’m going to ask: can we say anything about God, and if we can, what are we doing when we say things about God? In the second half I’m going to ask: what kinds of things do Quakers typically say about God, and what should we, as a community, do about talking about God.
Before I start, I want to say two things about the way I’m going to talk. Firstly, I’m going to use the word God a lot. I’m going to use the word God because it’s in the title of my talk, but also because it’s a…
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In preparation for our annual conference this weekend I thought I would try to start a series of quick reviews of the articles we have accumulated on the website over the last five years.
I will try to add about one review every 6 days or so which would mean about 3 months to review all existing articles – we’ll have to see how that goes! I hope this will encourage members of NFN and visitors to the website to themselves ‘review’ this old material and reflect on where we have been and where we have got to over 5-6 years.
Let’s start then with the ‘Minute and Epistle’ from the first annual conference in March 2012. (All the articles can also be found under the ‘Articles’ link in the menu at top of page so you can also read ahead and anticipate!)
Our 3 speakers then were Philip Gross, Quaker poet from Wales; Don Cupitt from the ‘Sea of Faith’ and James Riemermann from Twin Cities Friends Meeting, St. Paul, Minnesota. I remember this conference very well and how James’ presentation of ‘coming out’ as a ‘non-theist’ in his meeting moved me to tears. A search for ‘Riemermann’ on the Twin Cities’ website reveals a multitude of papers including this interesting piece on Theological Diversity from 2009.
The minute was signed off by the then steering group of just 5:
Frank Bonner, David Boulton, Maureen Tinsley, Miriam Yagud and Michael Yates. Four of these have since left the steering group after giving ‘yeoman’ (and ‘yeowomen’) service to start the NFN ball rolling, leaving only David on the present steering group of 11.
Do have a look at the original articles referred to and add your comments below. If anyone would like to help out by writing some of these proposed reviews or indeed book reviews or anything else of interest then please let me know via the ‘leave a reply’ box below or in a comment on the ‘Contacts’ page. I look forward to seeing you at conference and taking any questions you might have about the website.