The committee invites you to bring new light to the issues of women’s safety and transgender inclusion. We invite your personal testimony, to then test and discern in meetings together, whether on Zoom or face to face.
GSD Quakers have a role to play together in this. Can we reframe the differences in opinion in Quaker terms? We all recognise this has become two-sided; each of us may feel strongly aligned – but can we soften the side-taking in order to approach clearness?
Of course we uphold all trans and non-binary Friends, but let us acknowledge the truth in all we hear, without fear. This is complex; we need to sift the fundamental from the mundane and the anecdote, and move away from slogans.
We seek some steps forward, but we are not laying claim to ‘a Quaker view’. As GSD Quakers, we have the experience and insight of coming out, living truthfully and seeing discrimination. We all understand the oppression of the establishment, which is quite content to see women and LGBT+ people fighting.
Women Quakers and Friends within QGSDC have experienced all kinds of discrimination throughout their lives; this leads us to look to people still suffering disprivilege and discrimination and do something about it. We encourage Friends to speak from experience. We invite your personal testimonies, in writing, video or sound to be held on the website.
Information about gatherings for worship sharing and minuting will be notified through the newsletter. We will not use social media for this, because it is not the right place for ministry, or personal testimony.
We have put two articles on the website to provide context:
- A long article that acknowledging all the Quaker work and discernment that has taken place already – we do not want to reinvent the wheel, just oil the axle. We will amend this where there are omissions.
- A brief introduction to gender diversity, seeking to set out information that might help discernment – also able to be corrected.
As Quakers, we do not need ground rules if we abide by our faith and discipline. However we will use plain speaking and avoid terms that we know irritate or offend some Friends. Humour will be welcome.
We will work on who we are and what we need in love, alongside QLCC, YFGM, QPSW and AMs. It can feel irreconcilable, this will be uncomfortable, so we will wait for the sense of the meeting. We want all GSD Friends and allies to contribute and uphold each other. Our community can be a resilient framework to move forward, trusting the process, having discordant voices within. In this way the light in everybody can be recognized. Something that affects one of us affects all of us.
Please give your name and your Quaker meeting, and whether you wish us to use a different name.