Unprogrammed worship is silent worship. We enter the meeting room silently. Our first task when worship begins is to center down, to still the clamor of the world, to turn our attention to the inner voice. This process may take 20 minutes or even longer.
You will find that there is no program, no prepared prayers, sermons, or readings and no one “in charge” to tell us what to do next. Instead we listen as attentively as we can for leadings of the Spirit. If a leading comes, we speak the message into the silence.
One way to know that a leading is from the Spirit is to query any message you feel an urge to deliver. Is it meant for yourself alone? Would it be better as an announcement at the close of meeting? Should it be seasoned just a little longer? Only if it passes those tests, should the message be spoken. Sometimes the leading of the Spirit is very clear and there is a real push to speak. You may feel such a leading as well.
After each message we return to the silence. It is essential to allow a space of at least a few minutes to open up between messages. Re-centering after each message maintains the spirit of worship and allows each message an unhurried, thoughtful hearing.
Meeting ends when the Clerk signals that the hour is accomplished. Then we share handshakes, our names, and a few announcements. At the rise of meeting we always linger a bit to enjoy each other’s company.
Worship is a special time in the midst of our worldly concerns to seek together, often in unbroken silence, for God’s will and guidance. Each meeting is an adventure. We hope you will find with us a deeper awareness of what Friends for three hundred years have called the Inner Light, the Light of Christ, the Seed, and that of God in everyone.