About Friends United Meeting

The Friends United Meeting community stretches far and wide across the globe. We are a collection of Christ-centered Quakers, embracing thirty-seven Yearly Meetings and Associations, thousands of local gatherings and hundreds of thousands of individuals.

Joined together through our shared experience of God and united in common ministries, we form a beloved fellowship that is powerfully at work in our local areas and through cross-cultural service.

From the Caribbean to Palestine, Africa to North America and scattered places in between, FUM is building a global partnership in a season of history when much of the world is being stretched and strained by cultural, political, and geographic differences. An important part of our work and witness is to express the love and peace of Christ with one another, believing God is transforming us into a people who are more lovely and whole than we could ever be on our own. As we are powerfully energized by the Holy Spirit, equipped for faithful service and leadership, and deeply connected to one another, we experience a unity that transcends our diversity.

Four ministry priorities shape the ways we serve the FUM Community—Leadership and Resource Development, Evangelism, Communication, and Global Partnership.

Ministry Priorities

Leadership and Resource Development

Friends United Meeting provides educational and inspirational resources to assist local and Yearly Meetings to grow and flourish in the Spirit of Christ and create ways to guide Friends to that living Source from which the Quaker testimonies originated. FUM also provides training that grows effective leadership—not only for pastors and organizational leaders, but for any who are open to God’s service in the world. FUM operates a leading school in Palestine, a theological college in East Africa, advances peace education throughout hundreds of Kenyan schools, hosts a wide variety of practical trainings, and seeks to be a hub for sharing resources across our community. A growing concern for FUM has been advancing girl-child education opportunities in places where the rights of young women are often ignored.

Evangelism

Evangelism for FUM is the joyful proclamation and demonstration of God’s love expressed through Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, and continued on through the life and witness of Friends. Through words, evangelism is the invitation to all to love, know, and follow the Living Christ and to find a home in the community of Jesus’ Friends. Through deeds, evangelism is expressed through the way we consistently seek first the Kingdom of God and faithfully live so that God’s will is done on earth, just as it is in heaven. In some places, this means FUM helps train and support church planters and evangelists who are called to embody and share the love of Christ with others in a culturally appropriate way. In other places, evangelism is expressed through clean water projects, medical ministry, and working with Meetings and Churches to find new ways to connect with their local communities.

Communication

Communication, for Friends United Meeting, is the transformational ministry of sharing about God’s ongoing work through Friends, both among ourselves and to a watching and listening world. By relying on story-telling and creative media, our communication efforts serve as an invitation to a deeper commitment to the Holy Spirit and the work and witness of Friends. This means keeping our community up-to-date on news and events across the global fellowship. Through weekly e-news and a monthly Connections newsletter, we learn about one another and from one another. Different forms of social media also help us stay aware of all that is taking place. On a more foundational level, FUM publications—Quaker Life magazine and Friends United Press books and curricula—intend to educate, equip, and enable our community to understand our unique spirituality and to learn to faithfully express it in all we do.

Global Partnership

Friends United Meetings’ focus on Global Partnership involves restructuring our way of thinking even as we rely on finding practical ways to connect Quakers across the world. FUM sponsors many service-learning opportunities where Friends can explore cross-cultural relationships. Regional worship and learning gatherings also serve to strengthen the connection between Friends and encourage us to stretch beyond the comfort of our home fellowships. The FUM Board is intentionally organized so that our global community is governed by representatives from every one of our regions, all working together in mutual partnership. Our goal is for Board and FUM members everywhere to feel involved in FUM decisions and programs anywhere. To turn this goal into reality, global partnership must become our way of being, our way of thinking, and our way of conducting all our business. Behind these face-to-face gatherings and chances to hear how Christ is speaking to Friends in other parts of the world, a fundamental aspect of building a healthy global partnership involves learning to see ourselves and one another differently. FUM is not a “North American mission agency” doing work around the world for “them.” No—“we” are collaborating together. We are learning from one another, relying on one another, and sharing in the responsibility and opportunity to express and embody Quaker faith within a global context.