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Quaker Hill Pamphlet No. 2
Excerpt: "The objective pursued in these pages has been to produce for elders and overseers in Friends meetings a body of literature which 'is problem centered. The swiftly moving historical scene during the last generation has been the cause of immense and widespread confusion about the important spiritual testimonies which characterize the Christian life. The automobile. the radio, the motion picture-to mention only a few of the products of the last quarter-century-have had revolutionary effects upon society. The older Quaker communities have been rooted out of their former isolationism from the rest of the world where the Christian life as envisioned by Friends could be taught the young without interruption from the outside world. The vast population movements in the last twenty-five years have affected Friends as they have everyone else and have made us now veritable children of the dispersion in this modern world. Our homes suffer the shock and strain of modern life, as other homes do with the economic arrangements of our time that bring varying hours of employment during the night and day and split apart the activities of the members of the family who work, and, in addition, the multitudinous claims of present day society from outside the home that constantly intrude upon our families and tend to break them down. The two world wars in our generation have been successively more totalitarian 'in their effects upon the life of the people. All these circumstances and more have shaken us to the foundations , and the bewilderment and confusion which beset the people in our churches is not of itself to be mistaken for any less earnest Christian desire on their part. The persons who occupy the positions of elders and overseers in our meetings are almost certainly as devoted and in many cases, as courageous-as any who have exercised these responsibilities in the past. But in the light of the present situation these people are in need of help by way of defining their responsibilities as elders and overseers in the light of contemporary situations, and illuminating their imagination with the momentous possibilities which their positions offer for meeting the human need in this present hour."
Christianity | Practical Theology
Binford, Raymond et al., "A Handbook for Elders and Overseers" (1944). Historical Quaker Books. 59.