Advices and Queries have been important to the Religious Society of Friends since the beginning of Friends in the 17th century. Though they have been changed since that time they still are an important part of a statement of who we are. New York Yearly Meeting, by directing us to question our understanding of how we express ourselves verbally or in our actions, prepares us to hold our spiritual beliefs in the Light through statements in our Advices and Queries.
Advices and Queries provide counsel and guidance on spiritual formation of one’s life by directing the attention of Friends to specific aspects of beliefs and behaviors. They invite open, vulnerable, personal consideration of one’s understanding of one’s own self. Advices and Queries are intended as a challenge and as an inspiration to us, as Friends, in our personal lives and in our life as a religious community. They encourage meditation to ascertain if the truths are our truths with the hope we may be more faithful and find deeper joy in God’s service.
Orchard Park Monthly Meeting has accepted the process of reading a selected Advice and Query once a month."
ADVICE FOR JUNE
Remembering the tenderness of Jesus for children, we recommend that parents and those who have the important charge of educating youth exercise a loving and watchful care for them. Meetings are urged to help parents and children share religious experiences at home and in meeting for worship and to give them an understanding of the principles and practices of Friends.
QUERY FOR JUNE
Are love and unity fostered among us? If differences arise, do we endeavor to reconcile them in a spirit of love and truth? Are we careful not to manipulate and exploit one another? Do we avoid talebearing, and are we careful of the reputation of others?
ADVICE FOR JULY
Friends are advised to be mindful of their conduct and conversation and to observe the testimonies of simplicity and moderation.
QUERY FOR JULY
Do we keep to moderation and simplicity in our daily lives? Have we allowed the acquisition of possessions to interfere with God's purpose for us? Are our homes places where the presence of god is felt by those who live there and those that visit there? Do we choose such recreations as are wholesome and consistent with Christian character? Are we careful with our choice of ways to use our time and energy?
ADVICE FOR AUGUST
Parents and older Friends are advised to be sensitive to the insights of younger people and to keep a close and sympathetic contact with them. Children are urged to love and respect their parents that all may be led together to the Light Within.
QUERY FOR AUGUST
Do our children receive the loving care of the meeting? Does the influence of the meeting promote their religious life and give them an understanding of the principles and practice of Friends? Do we offer our young people opportunities for fellowship, for service, for religious instruction, and for participation in the life of the meeting?