Marriage equality referendum – a letter from Quakers in Dublin

This letter was sent on behalf of Dublin Monthly Meeting. We, Eustace Street Meeting – formally known as ‘Dublin Preparative Meeting (PM)’ are a constituent meeting of Dublin Monthly Meeting*.

“Dublin Quakers met on 15 April 2015 and discussed the forthcoming referendum on marriage equality. There was a diversity of views in the meeting as there is among Irish Quakers generally.

At the heart of Friends’ Christian practice is the freedom to think and express opinions and to speak or vote in seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

The founder of Quakerism, George Fox, said as early as 1697 ‘marriage is the work of the Lord only … for it is in God’s ordinance and not man’s … we marry none; it is the Lord’s work and we are but witnesses.’ Since the introduction of civil partnerships, Quakers in Dublin have conducted Meetings for Worship to celebrate the committed relationships of our Members.

As Christians, Quakers are deeply committed to equality, recognising that of God in every person. It is fundamental to Christianity that we should seek to love our neighbours as ourselves.

Signed on behalf of: Dublin Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends.

Alan G. Harrison

* Other constituent member Meetings of Dublin Monthly Meeting are Churchtown PM; Drogheda Allowed Meeting; Edenderry PM; Monkstown PM and Rathfarnham PM.

Ireland Yearly Meeting is an annual gathering of all Ireland Monthly Meetings and is the umbrella body for Quakers in Ireland. It is Ireland Yearly Meeting and its Committees that represent Irish Quakers (or ‘Friends’) as a whole, but each Monthly Meeting is autonomous in its business and Spiritual dealings and in the pastoral care of its members. That is how Dublin Monthly Meeting can and does record its own concerns.