My way of being a Quaker Universalist
Michael Wright – April 2021
Introduction by Trevor Bending:
I think I first met Michael in 2013 when he gave the keynote address at the Nontheist Friends Network conference at Woodbrooke in March 2013.
At about that time, Michael became a member of NFN and the NFN Steering Group. The following year he stepped forward to become the NFN Clerk, a role he performed with great diligence for three years, continuing on the steering group until 2018 when he left NFN and later joined the Quaker Universalist Group committee. As I was on the NFN SG 2017 to 2021 and the QUG committee at the same time, I felt I got to know Michael quite well and I thought he was an inspiring example of what a Quaker, Nontheist Friend and Universalist might be. I always looked forward to meeting him and I believe learning from him at Woodbrooke or the very occasional in person NFN meetings. (Most NFN business was conducted by email).
This long (34 page) article by Michael (Teesdale and Cleveland AM) was given to the QUG clerk, Tony Philpott, not long before Michael died in June 2021. In it, he gives a slightly fuller explanation of why he left NFN (a question of ‘identity’ perhaps – see page 31 and also 33-34) and throws much light on his spiritual journey from a happily ‘atheist’ family background through ordination and 40 years as an Anglican vicar (with Advices and Queries always on hand!) until he finally came to Quakers, nontheist Friends and Quaker Universalists.
The article will also be published on the NFN website where you can also find a pdf copy of Michael’s earlier book ‘Jesus Today’ (2019) https://nontheist-quakers.org.uk/2019/07/23/jesus-today-book/ and many articles by Michael written between 2013 and 2016. https://nontheist-quakers.org.uk/articles/ (scroll down for Michael’s NFN list of quotations and further for his many articles).