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Joy Came in the Morning

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The following passage was offered at the beginning of the May 15 meeting for worship:

…Joy came in the morning…
and the storms in measure over,
and the spring time came,
and the singing of birds,
and the voice of the Turtle is heard in our land.
O! the glorious day that is dawned upon us,
where the morning stars do sing together,
and all the sons and daughters of God
do shout for joy….
Oh God’s tender dealings can never
be erased from our remembering,
for God has printed them in our hearts…
— Katherine Whitton, 1681

The Clerk then offered the query: “Do I live expectantly, watching and listening for life’s 'minor ecstasies'?"

The passage is an excerpt of Katherine Whitton's "An Epistle to Friends Everywhere to Be Distinctly Read in Their Meetings." This passage echoes several joyful Bible verses but introduces Quaker messages of continuing revelation and the equality of men and women as children of God:

Psalms 30:5: "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."

Song of Solomon 2:12: "The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land."

Job 38:6: "When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy"