That of God in everyone

UQM update

Friendship Lunch 2019-2020

Dear Friends

Welcome to the September 2019 edition of the Ulster Quarterly Meeting Central Committee newsletter.  Below you will find some events and information that Ulster Friends have shared for circulation around Meetings. This newsletter will be circulated at the beginning of each month. If your Meeting is planning any events that would be of interest to Ulster Quakers and that Friends from other meetings could attend or you have any information to share, please send it to me and I will include it. The deadline for the October 2019 edition is
Friday 27 September 2019.

Ulster Quarterly Meeting to be held on Saturday 21 September 2019 at 10:30am in Bessbrook Friends Meeting House
Please see attached programme for details.

EcoQuakers Ireland Event on Saturday 19th October 
Attached is the poster for the EcoQuakers Ireland event on 
Saturday 19th October to be held in South Belfast Meeting House. All are welcome to attend - just email the email address to let EcoQuakers know you are planning on attending. Feel free to distribute this poster further. 

European Heritage Open Days 2019
Frederick Street Meeting House will be open on
Saturday 14th September from 11.00am-1.00pm for the European Heritage Open weekend.  They are coordinating their opening times with seven of the other buildings in the North Belfast Heritage Cluster, which means Friends will also be able to visit Clifton House, the Indian Community Centre, Carlisle Memorial Church, St Malachy’s College Chapel and Library, North Belfast Working Mens Club, Carnegie Old Park Library and St Anne’s Cathedral on that Saturday morning.  Most of these buildings are within walking distance of the Meeting House. Refreshments will be served during the morning, with donations going to Quaker Service. More information on the individual properties can be found in the EHOD brochure, available from your local Visitor Information Centre, library or council office, or visit the website      

War School Film at South Belfast Meeting House
War School is a new film about the battle for the hearts and minds of British children. The film was made by an independent director with financial support from Britain Yearly Meeting. Set against the backdrop of remembrance of previous conflicts, this is a controversial and challenging documentary. It reveals how, faced with unprecedented opposition to its wars and a severe shortage of military recruits, the British government is using a series of new and targeted strategies to promote support for the military. This film is being shown on Wednesday 11 September 2019 at 7.30pm in South Belfast Meeting House, 22 Marlborough Park North, Belfast. Tea and biscuits available from 7.00pm. The film is 85 minutes long. Please share this event.

Friendship Lunches at South Belfast
The dates for the upcoming Friendship Lunches at South Belfast Meeting are below.  Meeting for Worship starts at 12:15pm with lunch at 12:45pm. Everyone welcome!  Please also see the attached flyer.


Kind regards

Karen Nicholson
Ulster Quarterly Meeting

Quaker Jargon Buster - NI Edition


Some time ago, for the old SBQM website we produced a Northern Ireland version of the Quaker Jargon Buster. We thought it would be helpful to re-post it to the new site as many may not have seen it. You can download it

September's Monthly Readings


The Bible is worthy of regular and searching study in private, in family and in other groups. There we learn of God’s relationship with man and of Christ’s redemptive love and find guidance and inspiration for our lives today. Encourage the reading of literature which may reveal the ways of God.

IYM General Christian Counsel

In worship we enter with reverence into communion with God and respond to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Come to meeting for worship with heart and mind prepared. Yield yourself and all your outward concerns to God’s guidance so that you may find ‘the evil weakening in you and the good raised up’.

BYM Advices & Queries 9

Friends Old Burial Ground in Hillsborough


As part of the restoration of the Hillsborough Castle, attention has been paid to the old Quaker Burial Ground there. After discussion with Quakers, it was agreed that paving stones with some of the history of the Quakers in the area and other Quaker Quotes would be installed in that section of the Castle Gardens. Above is one of the stones. Visit the castle to see the burial ground and the rest of the stones. We are advised that future development may possibly include the addition of a seating area within the burial ground itself, and permission was sought from and approved by Monthly Meeting to remove a few of the trees to enable this.

Amazon Petition To Sign


Hi Friends
Can you please consider signing this urgent campaign. Apologies if you have already signed.

The Amazon rainforest is on fire.

If the fires continue to rage, it’s not just the rainforest that’s at stake - it’s our very survival. Because if the Amazon dies, our chances of avoiding total climate breakdown will be seriously under threat.

I’ve just signed this petition calling on the UK government to suspend its trade deal with Brazil until the fires are out. Can you add your name too? This is an emergency.

Follow this link to sign the petition >>

It’s hard to convey just how important the Amazon rainforest is, but I’ll give it a shot. The Amazon provides 20% of the earth’s oxygen, it’s home to more species than any other habitat on this planet, and it’s absolutely crucial in the fight against climate change because its trees soak up so much of the CO2 we emit.

The fires that are raging there right now aren’t natural - they’re part of the Brazilian president Bolsonaro’s war on the Amazon. Since coming into office, he’s encouraged farmers and illegal loggers to loot the rainforest. These fires were set by his supporters to show their support for him.

The Brazilian president isn’t the type of politician to pay attention to international outrage. But he does care about his economy. And that’s where we in the UK can have a real impact. We can do our bit to stop the Amazon fires that threaten the rainforest, the people who call it home - and the climate upon which we all depend.

A UK trade mission is in Brazil right now for talks. Let’s call on them to suspend any trade talks with Brazil until the Amazon rainforest is protected.

Follow this link to sign the petition

Thank you for your support in this emergency.


Finding hope in today’s world

Screenshot 2019-08-22 at 16.54.24

Finding hope in today’s world
Megan Corrigan, South Belfast Meeting

Following recent ministry in Meeting, and conversations with my teenage daughter, I have been thinking a lot about hope. In the current climate it can be very difficult to feel hopeful, the problems in our societies and across the world can feel overwhelming. However, if we have no hope and feel that the future is bleak, how do we engage with our children and young people about their future? If they feel there is no hope in the future then we are in a dangerous place.

Over the summer I happened to take on holiday a book that has been on my reading pile for a long time – a book by Rabbi Lionel Blue on everyday Jewish spirituality (1). Despite all the horrors and failings in Jewish history (from accounts in the Hebrew Scriptures right up to the current day) Rabbi Blue feels that what keeps Judaism going is ‘its essential hopefulness about time’ (pg91). Hope is written into the liturgy of Jewish worship and prayer.

This made me start to think about what Quakers say about hope so I looked up the word in the index of both Quaker and Faith and Practice (BYM) and Quaker Life and Practice (IYM) and it is not there (maybe it should be). I turned to the internet and on the Quakers in Britain website came across an interesting blog by
Clare Bonetree (2). It ends by saying ‘Yes, these are very troubled times. This also means they are the time to come together, and step into our collective courage to 'do' hope, over and over again’. She points to a book Active Hope by Joanna Macy and Chris Johnstone (3).

Central to the book is the idea that ‘active hope’ is something we can do: it’s about knowing what we hope for and then playing an active part in working towards it. The authors contrast ‘pa
ssive hope’, the ‘waiting for external agencies to bring about what we desire’, with this ‘active hope’, which ‘is about becoming active participants in bringing about what we hope for.’ They describe the three key steps involved in practising ‘active hope’, the guiding impetus of which is intention rather than optimism. As such ‘we can apply it even in areas where we feel hopeless’.

Active hope is a challenge, a way to do hope in today’s world.
It is something that is probably already taking place at grass root levels but we need to talk more about it. We need to minister hope and find ways to inspire our young people about the world they are growing up in. However hard this may seem, it is our responsibility. Maybe ‘hope’ is partly what faith is and doing something about it is faith in action.

(1) Rabbi Lionel Blue (1975) ‘To heaven with Scribes and Pharisees,’ London: Darton, Longman and Todd.

(2) Clare Bonetree (2019)

(3) Joanne Macy & Chris Johnstone (2012) ‘Active Hope’, California: New World Library.