Quaker Blog

Check out videos from last year’s annual gathering

Several sessions were recorded from Canadian Yearly Meeting 2020, which was held completely online due the coronavirus pandemic. You can finally watch three of them here – Videos from CYM 2020.

They are also available as a vimeo playlist.

The three talks are:

  • “Quaker Leadings & Our Calling in these Time” by Alastair McIntosh (Glasgow Meeting)
  • “Defunding Criminal Justice: Transforming, Abolishing, and What Comes Next?” by Quakers Fostering Justice

  • “Two Row on the Grand: A Learning & Reconciliation Journey” by Daniel Allen (Kitchener Area MM)

“Uh-oh, was that a leading?” Online Quaker Course

Please note: This course is now full. We are taking names on our waitlist, which will be closed on April 9, 2021. The demand for this course was very high, and we had to limit enrollments so that people are able to connect closely in community.

Quaker facilitator Jackie Bonner will be leading an online 6-week session called “Uh-oh, was that a leading?” Sponsored by the Education and Outreach Committee of Canadian Yearly Meeting, the course will run on Saturdays from April 10 to May 15, 2021.

Who is it for?

We recommend that participants have taken the Quaker 101 course, or have been attending Meetings or participating in Quakers life for at least a year.

What will the course cover?

What does it mean to be led by the Spirit? As Quakers we need to root ourselves in tradition but also be open to continuing guidance in changing circumstances. We need to remain open to the promptings of love, truth and commitment to discernment – as led by the Spirit.

Early Friends believed in leadings of the Spirit but their writings only give a general sense of what that might mean. What is a leading? How do we know when we’re being led? And how can we know when we are definitely not being led? Although there are no simple answers to these questions, the very least we can do is put our heads and hearts together and share our experience as we live our lives.

Topics will include:

  • Exploration of the concept of “leadings”
  • Readings and discussion on how early Friends and Friends throughout history have understood “leadings”
  • Quaker Humour
  • Opportunity to Discern what is and what is not a “leading
  • Exploration of what participants are experiencing and learning during the course

There are readings, activities, and homework for each session. The course includes worship, storytelling, reflections from readings, and the experiential application to one’s own life of what is learned. Central to the course is the chance to share our experience of Spirit in our lives.

How much does it cost?

The course costs $30 per participant. Payment details are on the course’s Registration page. There’s also an option to waive the fee due to financial hardship.

When, exactly, will it run?

The course will run for 1.5-2.0 hours each Saturday, from April 10 to May 15, 2021, beginning at the following times:

  • 2:00pm Newfoundland/Labrador
  • 1:30pm Atlantic
  • 12:30pm Eastern
  • 11:30am Central
  • 10:30am Mountain
  • 9:30am Pacific

How do you join?

Register using this google form. Registration closes April 9, 2021!

More Questions?

Please contact and our staff will forward emails to the appropriate people.

Appeal for Donations

Epistle of Western Half-Yearly Meeting

Here is a message from the Friends who attended Western Half-Yearly Meeting, the second gathering this year for Quakers in Western Canada that has been conducted online.

To Friends Everywhere:

Greetings from Canadian Western Half-Yearly Meeting.

Friends met online for the Fall Western Half-Yearly session in the midst of a second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in Canada. By now more people have become familiar with how to navigate Zoom videoconferencing, and Friends enjoyed being together once again. While it goes without saying that we would much rather be together in person, for the time being, this is the best option. The upside is that Friends that can’t usually join us in person were able to. One Western Friend even joined us from the United Kingdom.

Friday evening, we participated in an intergenerational event. We played an online variation of ‘The Big Wind Blows‘ and joined an online drawing activity. On Saturday and Sunday, Friends were spiritually nourished in Worship Sharing Groups to begin each day.

Friends participated in Special Interest Groups on the following topics:

  • Drawing Together: Meeting for Worship with Attention to Making
  • Canadian Yearly Meeting’s Change and Sustainable Transformation Working Group
  • On Care for End of Life
  • Care for Youth in an Online World
  • Genealogy and Quaker Ancestors

Saturday evening, a Friend now living in St. Paul, Minnesota gave a powerful presentation while he shared his experience of the protests just after the death of George Floyd.

There was much discussion during Meeting for Worship with attention to Business about how we might meet at both Spring and Fall WHYM. Friends wondered if it would be possible to have a mix of in-person and online attendance. We also asked Nominating Committee to seek volunteers for a committee to aid us with technology.

There were some 45 Friends at Meeting for Worship on Sunday, including two young babies. The unusually silent online environment led a few of us to ‘unmute’ ourselves so Friends could hear fidgeting, coughing and baby sounds. We were reminded of the important role embodiment plays in our well-being; we miss the presence of each other at a deep level.

We shared our talent and love of being together at Family Night.

May you be as blessed as we are to gather among Friends.

Come to online Western Half-Yearly Meeting

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Fall Western Half-Yearly Meeting will be held online on the Thanksgiving long-weekend (from Friday, October 9th to Sunday, October 11th).

Western Half-Yearly Meeting (WHYM) is a much-loved, twice-yearly gathering for Quakers in Western Canada. This online version will run instead of our in person gathering, which would otherwise have been held at Camp Valaqua near Calgary.

We encourage Friends to join us.

  • To see the updated schedule and find the Zoom link, which will be posted before October 9,  please visit viquakers.ca/whym.

No registration is required, with the important exception of those Friends who wish to participate in Worship Sharing. Friends who wish to be part of a worship sharing group must email Elizabeth Curry with their name and Monthly Meeting by October 5th at .

Rick Juliusson, a member of Cowichan Valley Monthly Meeting currently living in Minnesota, has agreed to deliver a Saturday evening presentation titled “Say His Name: How are we using our voice and privilege in the wake of the murder of George Floyd and BLM?”

For more regular updates, please join the WHYM facebook group at facebook.com/groups/206099916092376. If you have any questions please feel free to contact Andrew Gage, Clerk of WHYM, at .