Upcoming Events and Meeting Dates
About Piedmont Friends Fellowship
PFF Member Meetings
Piedmont Friends Fellowship History
PFF Organizational Structure
Minutes and Documents
Retreat Information and Forms
Contact Piedmont Friends Fellowship
Piedmont Friends Fellowship Directory 2012-2013 (Revised 2/16/13)
to top of page
Piedmont Friends Fellowship (PFF) is a collective of Friends (Quaker) Meetings and Worship Groups in North Carolina and surrounding areas that gathers for worship, fellowship, and sharing of messages as illuminated by the Inward Light in the spirit of Friends' quarterly meetings. The organization was founded in 1968 out of a need for meetings to come together and to address issues and concerns in a wider Quaker forum. Annually, PFF develops one or two workshops, a weekend family retreat, and through its youth committee, retreats for middle and high-school age young Friends. At all of these gatherings, the underlying goal is to nurture the spirit within each of us as we share with new and old Friends.
Through its affiliation with Friends General Conference (FGC), many families and individual Friends in PFF enjoy attending the annual FGC national Gathering of Friends. PFF appoints representatives to the FGC Central Committee and numerous PFF members are engaged in the various programs and ministries of FGC.
Piedmont Friends Fellowship has welcomed into its membership Friends Meetings or organized Friends worship groups desirous of mutual support and fellowship as Quakers in North Carolina and adjacent areas. PFF respects the theological basis and worship practice of each individual meeting or worship group and, although open to Friendly and educational discussion, as an organization does not emphasize theological issues.
Piedmont Friends Fellowship has historically focused on the Quaker testimonies of Peace, Equality, Integrity, Simplicity, and Community. From this basis PFF meetings founded and have supported Quaker House of Fayetteville with a mission of service, witness, and peace building around our country's military establishments in Fayetteville, NC and nearby.
PFF has been an intentionally inclusive organization not only with respect to theology, but also with regard to race and sexual orientation as part of our testimony of equality. While individual Friends and PFF meetings may have some differing understandings and worship practices, PFF holds to unprogrammed worship at its gatherings seeking, through deep spiritual attention, to experience and respond to the Light Within.
to top of page
As of March 2012, the following Friends Meetings and Worship Groups are members of Piedmont Friends Fellowship.
COUNTY FRIENDS WORSHIP GROUP (under
the care of Raleigh Friends Meeting)
CATAWBA VALLEY FRIENDS (Preparative under the care of Charlotte)
UPSTATE FRIENDS WORSHIP GROUP (under the care of Charlotte)
to top of page
The Piedmont Friends Fellowship evolved from a quarterly meeting of NC Yearly Meeting-FUM held in the Fall of 1968 at Quaker Lake Conference Center. Claude Shotts of Chapel Hill Monthly Meeting suggested that the particular needs of unprogrammed meetings in this region might better be met by a separate organization. Among several concerns, it was clear that the (FUM) yearly meeting was unable to consider Friends' response to the continued prosecution of the war in Vietnam. John Hunter from Durham Meeting was asked to organize such a meeting. The first gathering of what became known as Piedmont Friends Fellowship (PFF) was held at Carolina Friends School on a Saturday in early December of that year. At this all-day conference focused on the peace testimony and the Vietnam War, about 40 Friends were in attendance representing Chapel Hill, Durham and Raleigh meetings as well as Friends from the newly formed Friendship Meeting in Greensboro. At the end of the evening, when asked if the group wished to assemble again, there was a resounding yes!
The first of what would become regular meetings of the group was held as a weekend retreat over Easter the weekend at Quaker Lake in 1969. Friends from Charlotte attended and the group size swelled to well over 60 adults and many children. What would become the standard PFF format was instituted, involving an engaging adult program, a children's program, socializing, worship, and a business meeting. Of great significance at that first business meeting was the introduction by Bob Gwyn of the Chapel Hill Meeting of a young soldier from Fort Bragg who bore a concern and a request for help. In that neither of the established North Carolina yearly meetings were addressing the Vietnam War, a decision was made to independently move forward with support from the gathered meetings to establish a peace witness in Fayetteville. The result was the creation of Quaker House of Fayetteville in December of that year with the first staff members as Sue and Wood Bouldin of Durham Meeting.
The PFF Friends met for over 30 years at Quaker Lake over Easter weekends with attendance peaking at about 200 in the mid 1970s into the 1980s. Friends participating came from many meetings and worship groups in North Carolina and some from Virginia and South Carolina. The excitement was palpable. Friends loved discovering that there were indeed like-minded Quakers and the fellowship of the conferences eased the feeling of isolation in their respective yearly meetings. Bob Gwyn became clerk of the business meeting and in 1973 the name Piedmont Friends Fellowship was adopted. Two years later PFF formally affiliated with Friends General Conference. Friends from various PFF meetings became highly active within FGC serving on committees and providing leadership within that organization. In the 1990s and subsequently PFF welcomed into membership meetings with programmed and pastoral traditions and found a commonality that could be supported within its inclusive framework. Friends from some of these meetings soon became active within FGC as well.
The issue of possibly becoming a yearly meeting was raised periodically over the decades by meetings who desired such an affiliation. In the 1970s and early 1990s the idea was not pursued out of a sensitivity of not wanting to be seen as a divisive factor in the region. PFF served a role of nurturing beginning meetings until they felt clear about joining a yearly meeting. Since a yearly meeting option was not available through PFF, a number of PFF meetings have opted to join nearby yearly meetings but have retained their memberships in PFF and contiued to be active in the fellowship and within FGC. However, in 2008 the Quaker landscape in North Carolina was changing and a series of inquiries came from various meetings. After almost four years of threshing involving numerous communications, appointment of several study committees, and broad consultations, PFF decided in June of 2012 to assist in the establishment of a new yearly meeting which would seek to be specifically inclusive of a wide range of presently unaffiliated meetings who were looking for an appropriate yearly meeting home.
Back to top of page
Piedmont Friends Fellowship holds an Annual Meeting (business meeting) where all Friends who are members of PFF member meetings or worship groups may attend to hear reports of all activities of the Fellowship. This Annual Meeting may accept reports or may direct committees or the Representative Body to reconsider items of policy and decision or to take up additional specific concerns. The Annual Meeting approves the appointment of the PFF Clerk, Recording Clerk, Treasurer, and representatives to the FGC Central Committee for specified terms of service.
Each member meeting or worship group of Piedmont Friends Fellowship is asked to name one or more representatives to serve on the Representative Body of PFF which meets quarterly. The PFF Representative Body is responsible for all of the business decisions and policy incumbent on managing the Fellowship. The Representative Body may appoint standing or ad hoc committees to consider policy or execute decisions regarding defined areas, may appoint an Assistant Clerk, Assistant Recording Clerk, and/or an Assistant Treasurer as desired, and may appoint representatives to other organizations or meetings. The Representative Body considers regular reports from the Treasurer.
All meetings for business, including the Annual Meeting, meetings of the Representative Body, and appointed committees, will be conducted in the traditional manner of Friends where a unified and worshipful "sense of the meeting" is perceived and tested and minuted in the face of the meeting. The appointed Clerk will conduct the Annual Meeting and meetings of the Representative Body. In the Clerk's absence the members present for the meeting will appoint a Friend to act as Clerk of that meeting.
A standing nominating committee of three Friends is appointed by the Representative Body in the summer (June or subsequent meeting.) The nominating committee will bring names for approval at the Annual Meeting for the Clerk, Recording Clerk, Treasurer, and (3) representatives to the FGC Central Committee for staggered three year terms. The nominating committee will also act to bring names forward to the Representatives to fill the term of any vacated position (listed above) to be ratified at the next Annual Meeting.
A committee consisting of representatives appointed by their meetings as youth representatives may meet independently to plan youth activities on behalf of the Fellowship.
to top of page
Back to top of page
PFF Parent Release Form (revised 2013-1)
PFF Emergency Contact Information
Generic Child's Health/Emergency Authorization Form
October 2012 -- Quakers and Politics (Bill Rogers, presenter)
March 2012 -- "What Is Thy Witness" (Chuck Fager, presenter)
November 2011 -- "Qualities of Quaker Leadership" (Bruce Birchard, presenter)
March 2011 -- "Appreciating Theological Diversity Among Friends" (John Hunter, presenter)
March 2010 -- "Uncovering our Wholeness: Learning to Share Faith Journeys" (Kristin Olson-Kennedy , presenter)
Clerk: (2012-2015) -- John Hunter (Durham Meeting); 919-732-7084; firstname.lastname@example.org
Recording Clerk: (2013-2016) -- Jeff Brown (Chapel Hill Meeting); 919-968-7828; email@example.com
Treasurer: (2010-2013) -- Bob Cooper (Fayetteville Meeting); 910-977-2339; firstname.lastname@example.org
Friends Fellowship Directory 2012-2013 (Revised 2/16/13)
Back to top of page
Raleigh Friends Meeting Home Page