I'm looking forward to Patrick Nugent's project, What Quakers Believe: Easy Essays. Here's an excerpt from his Introduction that explains what he's about to do, and why:
I am writing these essays because I believe the early Quakers had it right, and because I would like to see large sections of the Religious Society of Friends take those ideas seriously again—not just the ideas they already agree with, but the ones that may be new and challenging to them. I am writing this book because I believe that the Holy Spirit can bring a period of renewal and revival to Friends, if we open ourselves to the transforming power which he gave to the early Friends. As John Punshon taught us in his book, Reasons for Hope: The Faith and Future of the Friends Church, the key to renewal and revival among Friends is to become more Quaker, not less Quaker. I am very worried that many Quakers today have been blown away by various winds of fashion: superficial pentecostalism; mass-market, high-tech evangelicalism; new age fads; political movements without spiritual grounding; rural community religion.I share Patrick's worry and his belief that the way out of the prediciment is to become more authentically who we say we are, to reclaim our birthright instead of selling it cheap.
(Thanks, as usual, to Quaker Ranter for making the link.)
I also look forward to getting on the train tomorrow night for the trip to Tacoma and the Gathering. The name of the train is the Empire Builder. The irony isn't lost on me.
I hope to meet many of you there.