What We Do

Meetings for Worship

All are welcome at our weekly meetings for worship. 

A Quaker meeting differs from many other religious services. Friends gather in silence with the intention of connecting to that of the divine within. We enter the Meeting room, find seats, and wait quietly. When meeting for worship first begins, there may be some rustling as Friends settle in and center down. 

In time, a deeper, more powerful silence emerges. In this profound state of prayerful contemplation, which both produces such silence and is made possible by the silence, messages inspired by the Divine spirit may be spoken. 

We leave space between messages so they can be fully heard, received and reflected upon. At the end of worship many meetings have a time to share “afterthoughts,” requests to be “held in the Light,” and the sharing of other messages that may not have felt important enough to be shared during silent worship. Most meetings follow this “unprogrammed” format; Manhattan Meeting has an ordained minister that prepares a message for friends to contemplate.

Meetings for Business

The Quarterly Meeting holds four Meetings for worship with a concern for Business each year. Its members approve major decisions involving the Quarter’s finances. The Quarterly Meeting hears reports of its committees and constituent meetings, approves nominations, approves new or restructured programs of the Quarterly Meeting, and discerns and approves minutes brought by concerned members. Concerns are ordinarily to be laid before the Quarterly meeting only after proper seasoning and discernment by a monthly meeting or a committee, and may be sent for further discussion even when Friends are in unity that the concern is properly the burden of the entire Quarter rather than an individual leading. The committees of the New York Quarterly Meeting follow the procedures set forth in New York Yearly Meeting Faith and Practice. The Corporation owns and administers its real property and financial assets, hires its employees, and coordinates some aspects of its spiritual life.