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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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Contents page

appendix 6: marriage

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6A: Suggested Topics for the Marriage Clearness Committee

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.


 backgrounds and acquaintance. How well does the couple know each other? What are their basic common values? How do they adapt to differences in background, religion, temperament, and interests? Can they meet these differences with humor, mutual respect, patience, and generosity? Do they have the courage and the willingness to go together for outside guidance with any problem they are unable to solve?

 religious beliefs, feelings, aspirations. Do they see marriage as a sacred relationship to be entered into with appreciation of its spiritual basis? How do they propose to meet their religious needs as a married couple? How do they plan to make their marriage accessible to divine assistance? Do they endeavor to hold each other in the Light?

 the marriage relationship. Do they think of themselves as trusted and equal partners in marriage, sharing the responsibilities and decisions? Are they supportive of each other’s goals for personal growth and fulfillment? Do they communicate their feelings and needs, their dreams and fears to each other? Are they aware of the need for developing a variety of other friendships that contribute both to individual growth and to the marriage relationship? How do they view their relationships with each other’s families and their obligations toward society?

 plans for the future. Have they considered together whether or not they desire children — the problems as well as the joys they would bring, and the responsibilities for nurturing and guiding them?

 discharge of prior commitments. Have they prior obligations, personal or financial, which need to be met? attitude of parents. What are the views of the parents toward the prospective marriage? These should be learned directly by the committee through personal conferences or correspondence.

  the wedding. How do they view the wedding that is to take place under the care of the Meeting? Are they familiar with the procedure? Do they appreciate the values involved as related to its forms?