Recorded Friends Ministers

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The Quaker way of thinking about ministry comes into focus when one compares the Friends practice of “recording” with the more common practice of “ordination.” In many Christian denominations, one must first be ordained in order to become a minister. Ordination is the preparation, screening and launching pad for ministry. 

As Friends, we reject the idea that schooling, licensing, or other outward qualifications are necessary to become a minister. We believe that anyone may be called by God into public ministry. Rather than setting human-engineered prerequisites, Quakers have chosen simply to observe those who serve as ministers. When the community is clear that their public ministry is empowered and congruent with the spirit of Friends, we affirm and celebrate that faithful service by “recording" this clarity in the minutes of a meeting for business – hence the terms “recording" and “recorded minister."

Recording isn’t just for Pastors! Public ministry may include all the ways that God’s love flows into the public sphere.


In the life of the Meeting, a community often notices that the gifts and call in a member’s life go beyond the roles they hold inside the Meeting. They have a public presence. This leads to paying attention in an intentional, discerning way. There may be leading to begin a process of exploration, discernment, and clearness around Recording.

The local Meeting is then empowered to follow the Sierra-Cascades Yearly Meeting process for Recording by the local Meeting.


When a person’s ministry sphere is broader than a local area, it may be appropriate for the local Meeting to recommend the person for Recording at the Yearly Meeting level. In addition, a Recording request to the Yearly Meeting may rise from a worship group or anchor committee as they recognize that one of their people has gifts of public ministry.

All Yearly Meeting Recording is under the care of the Committee of Nurture of Ministry of Sierra-Cascades Yearly Meeting of Friends. The purpose of the Committee for Nurture of Ministry is to accompany a person through the process of identifying, empowering, and recommending the person for Recording by Sierra-Cascades Yearly Meeting.

How do we get started at a local meeting?

How do we get started for individual members?

Forms for the Recording Process

Full Recording Process – This document contains all information needed for the Recording Process, including information on the Meeting for Clearness.

All requests can be sent to the Clerk of the Committee on Nurture of Ministry at