Reading List for Quaker Inquirers

A selection of introductory materials. Some are available in our literature rack or for borrowing from the library. You may also order from:

Pendle Hill Bookstore (800) 742-3150 ext 2,,
Friends General Conference Bookstore (800) 966-4556,, or
Also, classic Quaker pamphlets are online and free at


Baltimore Yearly Meeting. Faith And Practice, 1988. 102p

Peck, George T. What Is Quakerism? A Primer. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #277. 45p

West, Jessamyn. The Quaker Reader

The Bible. Our founders were Christian, deeply rooted in the scriptures. Quaker faith and practice is especially reflected in The Letter of James. The Gospel of John has been called the Quaker gospel. Revelation may help in understanding “The Lamb’s War,” which was a phrase early Quakers used for their evangelical crusade. “The Sermon on the Mount” (Matthew 5-7) helps give a sense of the radical transformation that Jesus and early Friends were calling for.

Spirituality and Worship

Allen, Richard. Silence And Speech. Quaker Home Service, 1992. 12p

Kelly, Thomas. A Testament Of Devotion. Harper, 1992. 86p

Gorman, George. The Amazing Fact Of Quaker Worship. Quaker Home Service, 1973. 158p

Punshon, John. Encounter With Silence: Reflections from the Quaker Tradition. Friends United Press, 1987.

Punshon, John. Alternative Christianity. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #245.

Taber, William. Four Doors To Meeting For Worship. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #306. 30p

Steere, Douglas. On Speaking Out Of The Silence: Vocal Ministry in the Unprogrammed Meeting for Worship. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #182.

Steere, Douglas. Prayer In The Contemporary World. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #291

Quaker History

Bacon, Margaret Hope. Quiet Rebels: The Story of the Quakers in America. Pendle Hill, 2000. 250p

Barbour, Hugh & J. William Frost. The Quakers. Friends United Press,1994. 418p

Brinton, Howard H. Friends For 350 Years. Pendle Hill Publications, 2002. 348p (See our discussion guides.)

Cooper, Wilmer A. A Living Faith: An Historical Study of Quaker Beliefs. Friends United Press, 1990. 217p

Punshon, John. Portrait in Grey: A Short History of the Quakers. Quaker Home Service, 1984. 293p

Murray-Rust, David M. Quakers in Brief. Birkenhead Meeting, Merseyside, UK, 1995,

Personal Experience

Brinton, Howard H. Quaker Journals: Varieties of Religious Experience Among Friends. Pendle Hill, 1972.

Newman, Daisy. A Procession Of Friends. Friends United Press. 1980. 460p

Steere, Douglas, Ed.: Quaker Spirituality: Selected Writing. This draws from writings of George Fox, Isaac Penington, John Woolman, Caroline Stephen, Rufus M. Jones, and Thomas R. Kelly

Fox, George. The Journal. (several editions available; for the hardy reader.)

Woolman, John. The Journal And Major Essays Of John Woolman. Ed. by Philips Moulton. Oxford University Press, 1971. 336p


de Hartog, Jan. The Peaceable Kingdom: An American Saga. Atheneum, 1972. (one of a series)

Newman, Daisy. I Take Thee Serenity. Houghton, 1975. (one of a series)

West, Jessamyn. Friendly Persuasion. Harcourt, 1976.


Brinton, Howard H. Guide To Quaker Practice, Pendle Hill, 1955. 64 p

Brown, Thomas S. When Friends Attend To Business. Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. (tract)

Loring, Patricia. Spiritual Discernment: The Context and Goal of Clearness Committees. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #305, 1992. 32p

Loring, Patricia. Listening Spirituality – Volume I: Personal Spiritual Practices Among Friends. Openings Press, 1997. 207p

Loring, Patricia. Listening Spirituality – Volume II: Corporate Spiritual Practices Among Friends. Openings Press, 1999. 300p

Morley, Barry. Beyond Consensus: Salvaging the Sense of the Meeting. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #307. 32p

Sheeran, Michael J. Beyond Majority Rule: Voteless Decision-Making in the Religious Society of Friends. Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, 1983. 153p


Friends General Conference. The Quaker Way. FGC, 1998. 96p

Briggs, Elinor, Marnie Clark, and Carol Passmore, Eds. Lighting Candles In The Dark. Friends General Conference. 1992. 215p

de Angell, Marguerite. Thee, Hannah! Doubleday, 1941.

Tuckle, Brinton. Rachel And Obadiah. Penguin. (one of a series)

Readings on the Quaker Testimonies


For annotations, see The Quaker Heron, Volume 1, Number 2, April 2000; p. 7

Thoreau, Henry David, Walden

Schumacher, E.F., Small is Beautiful

Woolman, John, Journal of John Woolman,

Bender, Sue, Plain and Simple

Elgin, Duane, Voluntary Simplicity

McKibben, Bill, The Hundred Dollar Christmas

Foster, Richard, Freedom of Simplicity

Scott Savage, ed., The Plain Reader, Essays on Making a Simple Life

Kelly, Thomas, Testament of Devotion


Boulding, Elise. Cultures of Peace: The Hidden Side of History. Syracuse University Press, 2000. 348p

The Quaker Peace Testimony: A Workbook for Individuals and Groups. Friends House, London, 1993. 83p

Stoner, John K. Called to be Peacemakers: A New Call to Peacemaking Workbook. New Call to Peacemaking, Akron, PA, 1993. 98p


Hetherington, Ralph. Universalism and Spirituality. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #309, 1993. 32p


Cooper, Wilmer A. The Testimony of Integrity in the Religious Society of Friends. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #296, 1991.28p (See our discussion guide .)


Cronk, Sandra L. Gospel Order: A Quaker Understanding of Faithful Church Community. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #297, 1991.48p

Mindell, Arnold. Sitting in the Fire: Large Group Transformation Using Conflict and Diversity. Lao Tse Press, Portland, Oregon, 1995. 267p

Walton, Marty. The Blessed Community. Southeastern Yearly Meeting, 1994. 21p