Newcomers to Quaker worship may find it a different experience from a traditional church service.
Midlothian Meeting has no paid staff, nor do we have a paid, formal position occupied by a member of the clergy. However, we have ministers; each one of us is a minister. We minister to each other.
Our worship is simple and plain. We are an "unprogrammed" meeting. Instead of a program, we sit, mostly in silence, in rows of chairs formed in a rough semi-circle. Attenders enter, find a seat of their liking, and begin worship.
For the first 15 minutes, children are with their parents. At the quarter hour (11:15), the children leave and join religious education class for the remainder of the hour.
After worship ends with handshakes at 12:00, we have about 30-45 minutes of social time with refreshments.
How we worship as Quakers
©Sandi Wiggins 2014
The silence is not total. We worship in "expectant" silence, broken only by messages from those who feel themselves called to share an experience or thought that they believe is divinely inspired and will deepen and enrich the worship.