Issue 95 | Autumn/Winter 2023


From the early 1990s to 2017, EarthQuaker was published as a printed newsletter, initially from Quaker Green Concern which was later renamed Quaker Green Action. EarthQuaker continued after Living Witness and QGA merged in 2008, but we paused it in 2017, partly due to difficulties in finding contributions and a volunteer editor.

So much has happened since. 2018 was a year of widespread awakening to the seriousness and urgency of the climate and ecological crisis, and to the potential for civilisation collapse. Subsequently the Covid pandemic, increasing social and political polarisation, and violent and destructive conflicts have brought a clearer sense of some ways that collapse might happen.

This year has seen a surge in Quaker energy for engaging with the crisis. Post-pandemic, we have a new ability to sustain our community through online worship and discernment. Hundreds are signed up to the new WhatsApp-based Quaker Support for Climate Action, providing mutual support in climate action and activism (they have an announcements-only group here). An initiative from that group led many Local Meetings to hold climate vigils in October.  Meetings are winning Eco Church awards. Friends are story-telling, writing poetry and creating art, some in the context of the Loving Earth Project and the Quaker Arts Network. Friends have been part of setting up communities and ecovillages. There is a Quaker movement supporting the Stop Ecocide campaign, and much more.

Some of the diversity is reflected in this first issue of EarthQuaker relaunched. We are feeling our way forward with all aspects of the publication; feedback is welcome. In choosing material to publish, we’ve focused mainly on newly written material that offers some sense of the “active hope” among Friends.

It is hard to be involved in this work without a deep sadness for all that has been lost. But there is sustenance in community, in spiritual practice, and in “just doing stuff”. As Adrienne Rich says: “I have to cast my lot with those/who age after age, perversely,/ with no extraordinary power/reconstitute the world” (Natural Resources, in The Dream of a Common Language, 1978).

Laurie Michaelis
on behalf of the EarthQuaker editorial team