We decided that our next NYQ event should be one of our spiritual suppers after most of us agreed that we sorely missed them – it had been several weeks since we’d last been in the Meeting House all together. Usually, our spiritual suppers start with us prepping and cooking a meal together, and then participating in a spiritual activity that someone has prepared, usually Abi!
As usual, this spiritual supper started off with prepping for our meal. We cooked as a community and made a delicious daal with rice and vegan naans, all of the ingredients being provided very helpfully by Tori. Whilst prepping the food, Emily and others created a card for NYQ member Laurie’s 30th birthday, since we wanted to surprise him with something hand-made and personal (we’re delighted to hear that he liked it!). Whilst eating, as our usual custom, we each took turns to share a highlight from our past weeks.
After Emily, Abi and I had been to YFGM the weekend before and had numerous spiritual sessions, we decided as a group that we should try our own epilogue. At YFGM, the epilogues were held in the main Meeting Room and an ambience was created through fake tea-lights and dimmed lights; this really helped me in particular to relax and settle into a calming stillness, something that I wish to practise with others in NYQ.
An epilogue is similar to a Meeting for Worship, except that they tend to have a focal point/start at the beginning of the session to direct thoughts towards. Abi decided on the song Let’s Be Still by The Head and the Heart. We all followed each other into the semi-lit Meeting Room and listened to the song; followed was roughly fifteen minutes of reflective silence. My favourite lyrics from the song were these:
There tearing down
So we can rebuild
And all this time
Is just circles in my mind
So just for a moment,
Just one moment,
Just for a moment let’s be still
Spiritual suppers are one of my favourite regular events for NYQ; as someone new to Quakers, reading through Becoming Friends and exploring Quaker Faith and Practise, as well as other resources such as songs, is incredibly helpful in shaping my own views as well as understanding Quakerism. It’s also a lovely way to get to know the other people that attend NYQ in a relaxed but engaging way, as well as knowing each other spiritually.