Monthly Archives: November 2013

Lis Sutherland and Paul Campion receive the Stonewall Community Group of the Year award

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Said Lis, receiving the award,

The Religious Society of Friends, better known as Quakers, don’t have a creed; we have as a guiding principle the belief that the presence of God is consistently revealed in the lives of women and men. This belief led the Society of Friends, in 1963 – 50 years ago – to produce a booklet entitled ‘Towards A Quaker View of Sex’ which declared:

“Surely it is the nature and quality of a relationship that matters; one must not judge by its outward appearance but by its inner worth”.

Later in July 1995 the first British Quaker gay celebration of commitment took place in Oxford Meeting House, and then in July 2009 it was decided by the British Quakers as a whole for religious marriage to be offered to same sex couples.

And Paul said,

Following the publication of ‘Towards a Quaker View of Sex’ in 1963, an
eminent Quaker, David Blamires, wrote about his own life experience in
‘Homosexuality from the Inside’. This led directly to the formation in 1973
of one of the first religious fellowships for gay women and men in this
country.

Now celebrating its fortieth year,, our Quaker Lesbian and Gay Fellowship
continues to bear witness and offer friendship within our Quaker
Community.

Thank you, on behalf of all Quakers, who for so many years, have
supported equality for everyone, regardless of sexual orientation.

The award comes with a cheque for £5,000, provided by the Inclusive Foundation and supported by Square Peg Media.

We join with Lis and Paul in thanking Stonewall and its partners for this recognition.

 

QLGF named as Stonewall Community Group of the Year

The Quaker Lesbian & Gay Fellowship (QLGF) is delighted to be named Community Group of the Year at tonight’s Stonewall Awards ceremony.  The award crowns a year in which same-sex marriage, which Quakers have long campaigned for, became law in England and Wales.

Paul Campion, a long-standing campaigner who received the award on behalf of QLGF, said,

“This generous award acknowledges the efforts that not only QLGF but also Quakers in Britain have been making over many years to obtain equal rights for all, irrespective of sexual orientation. It is so fitting that the award is presented exactly 40 years after the courageous inaugural meeting of our Fellowship. We must remember with gratitude those first members who spoke out, and came out, for the sake of equality and freedom from fear.

QLGF feels it is especially apt that this award should be made, not only in the year that same-sex marriage became legal in England and Wales, but exactly fifty years since the publication of Towards a Quaker View of Sex, which challenged traditional Christian views of homosexuality.  Quakers consider that they should be able to follow the insights of their membership in celebrating life-long committed relationships between a man and a man, or a woman and a woman, in exactly the same way as they currently recognise the marriage of opposite sex couples.

Quakers in Britain accepted same-sex marriage in principle at their 2009 gathering.

QLGF acknowledges the work of Quakers in Britain, and in particular the Young Friends General Meeting, in working for true equality for all before God.

ENDS