Quaker Religious Thought

Article Title

A Dangerous Theology


Emily Provance


Ministry is inherently risky. The existence of a call to ministry implies potential failure: failure to respond, failure to discern, failure to fulfill. Ministry also carries with it potential societal and personal consequences, ranging from outright persecution to subtler judgment for counter-cultural words and actions to loss or rearrangement of personal relationships. Perhaps for this reason, within the Quaker context, we can’t address a theology of ministry while only addressing the minister. Quakerism is not a faith of the individual but of the community. In theological and theoretical circles, Friends say that the community, not the individual, has the responsibility for empowering ministry. The individual may be called, but the community must respond faithfully.



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