Chapter 27 » 27.18

Friends and the Christian church

For the Church … is really the people – the children and followers of God. Manses and moderators, sermons and synods are the mere packaging of this people, perhaps inevitable, anyway historical, but not to be mistaken for the thing itself. The thing itself, the believing and worshipping people, has two important characteristics which the individual Christian must never forget. The Church is a community, and it is a continuity… Quakers may be an experimental sect – both in the modern sense of pushing forward the frontiers of faith, and in the older sense of insisting upon experience as the basis of their faith – but if we are honest we must admit that we build upon the foundations laid for us over many centuries by the Church.

Gerald Priestland, 1982

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