Chapter 12 » 12.22

Small groups

Meetings for clearness

In earlier times Friends saw the need for ‘clearness’ as part of the necessary preparation for marriage. Only after a group of Friends, appointed by the area meeting, had established that there was clearness from other conflicting obligations could they recommend the solemnisation of a marriage. In some North American yearly meetings this practice has been maintained and the concept has broadened. It has become a loving and caring exercise on behalf of the meeting. The couple are helped to explore their commitment to God, to one another and to the meeting, to look in depth at the outcome of previous relationships or marriages, to consider their attitudes towards the care of existing or future children and at how the couple can make decisions about their life together. (See also 16.3716.39 & 12.10.)

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