Guide to Quaker Practice

Guide to Quaker Practice

by Howard H. Brinton

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For more than sixty years, Friends have used A Guide to Quaker Practice to demystify Friends' activities. Howard Brinton wrote the guide assuming that somebody would improve on his work as the Religious Society of Friends grew and changed in the second half of the twentieth century. His guide proved more durable than he anticipated. It saw three printings during the 1940s. Following a thorough revision in 1950, it was reprinted ten times before its next revision in 1993.

One explanation for its durability can be found in Brinton's own writing. Analyzing the sense of the meeting in the lecture, "Creative Worship," Brinton described Quaker business practice as an evolutionary one. He argued that Friends' communities tend to adapt slowly to changing conditions rather than revolutionizing themselves constantly. In this light, the gradual revision of Brinton's guide makes more sense than its wholesale replacement.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940161930755
Publisher: Pendle Hill Publications
Publication date: 07/16/2018
Series: Pendle Hill Pamphlets , #20
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 127 KB

About the Author

Howard Brinton taught at half a dozen institutions, including such Quaker centers as Haverford, Guilford, Earlham and Woodbrooke. The last of these four provided a model for Pendle Hill. He also worked overseas in Japan and Europe for the American Friends Service Committee. Between 1936 and 1950, he served as director of Pendle Hill, sharing that job with his wife, Anna Brinton.

The Brintons first came to Pendle Hill in 1936, where they faced the contingencies of a pioneer school-community. All sorts of odd jobs, which a maintenance crew might later handle, fell to the Director of Studies. Howard Brinton was frequently seen traipsing across campus on his way to negotiate the latest crisis, pursued by his rabbit Tibbar and the family dog Nuto. Gerald Heard, then a member of the Pendle Hill staff, watched this peaceable kingdom on the march with delight and saw in it a practical illustration of the philosophy of survival by reconciliation.

In addition to writing more than a dozen Pendle Hill pamphlets, Howard Brinton wrote Friends for Three Hundred Years, a classic work of Quaker faith and history. Howard Brinton died in 1973.

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