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Faith and Practice

Pacific Yearly Meeting

of the

Religious Society of Friends

a guide to quaker discipline in the experience of pacific yearly meeting of the religious society of friends.
published 2001

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Death in the Meeting

pym in context
quaker faith & spiritual practice
testimony & experience of friends
organization of the society
activities & organization of the YM
sources of quotations
index of sources
subject index

We gratefully acknowledge the generosity of Friends who have permitted us to use material for this Faith and Practice.


preparing for death

Make provisions for the settlement of all outward affairs while in health, so that others may not be burdened and so that one may be freed to live more fully in the Truth that shall stand against all the entanglements, distractions, and confusions of our times.

epistles of yearly meetings of pennsylvania and the jerseys, 1694 and 1695,
as paraphrased by philadelphia yearly meeting faith & practice, 1997

 While they are free from unusual mental or physical pressures, adult Friends of all ages are strongly urged to complete a Will and Durable Powers of Attorney (for both financial and medical concerns), and inform medical personnel and family of their wishes. Friends should consider whether their financial situation warrants additional measures such as a Living Trust. Wills, Powers of Attorney, and Living Trusts should all be regularly reviewed, and immediately updated when changes are made. Couples who are not legally married are at special risk and need to take special care that their legal papers reflect their wishes about end-of-life decisionmaking and finances.

 Meetings can aid members by gathering information about hospice care, mortuaries, and relevant legal issues such as organ donations and the use of the body for scientific purposes. Many Friends belong to memorial societies which contract for prompt, simple and inexpensive disposition of the body, frequently through cremation.

 It is useful for Meetings to maintain, along with Membership Records, a record of members’ desires for the time of death, including a list of persons to be notified. A suggested form for this purpose, Information and Instructions on Health Care Decisions and Final Affairs, is found in <Appendix 7>. Members should review and update the information regularly.