Beginning in 2020 and the society changes due to COVID-19, we are running more topical stories in Friends Journal. These can be a mix of reflections, viewpoints, opinions, and stories and generally run from 800-2,500 words. We intend to publish these as online features first and then considered for possible inclusion in upcoming print issues.

Learn more: Tips for Writing for Friends Journal Open Issues
Also, please note: All poetry should be submitted separately here.

Friends Journal is seeking a new milestones editor. This is an unpaid volunteer position, with an expectation of 15-18 hours/month. The candidate will work remotely.

Qualifications include: an interest in the lives of present-day Quakers; a familiarity with Friends Journal and its audience; proven editing, writing, and research skills; project management skills.

Roles of the milestones editor:

  • Works with Friends Journal editorial staff to manage and log incoming milestone submissions (via email, Submittable, and postal mail). The log is kept via Google Forms. We receive about 5-10 submissions per month.
  • Using email, phone, and/or Submittable, corresponds with submitters in a timely manner to gather all information required for publication. Conducts basic fact-checking and additional research if necessary. (See description here.)
  • Edits each milestone for consistency in order, tone, length (600 word limit), and style. See published milestones here. Adheres to a monthly deadline to send completed milestones to editorial staff.

We will stop collecting new submissions for the September 2020 issue on June 8, 2020.

Since 2012, most of the monthly issues of Friends Journal have been set aside for specific themes. Every eighteen months or so we poll readers and dream up ideas for future issues. Sometimes we’ll be inspired by a particular article that struck a chord with readers; other times we’ll look at a topic that Friends aren’t talking about enough. There are some relatively perennial themes (race, art, finance, social witness, outreach), but even with these, we try to find hooks that might bring fresh voices to the conversation.

We also keep two issues a year open: no theme and no expectations. Most of our unsolicited articles go into a “General Submissions” list that we hold for these issues. Sometimes a choice is easy: we’ll get a blockbuster article that we know we just have to print. But just as often we’ll run some quiet piece of Quaker life that is offered us without regard to our schedules. 

Please be aware that since we only run two un-themed issues a year, response times can be longer on these, from 3-9 months.

Learn more: Tips for Writing for Friends Journal Open Issues

Also, please note: All poetry should be submitted separately here.

One of the things that define many of us as Friends is our reliance on Quaker process for decision making. What is it? How does it different from consensus? How do we respectfully adapt it for non-spiritual uses? Where did it come from and is it really still the best way of making every kind of decision? Due July 13, 2020.

Quakers outgrew the British isles in the first decade of the new moment in the 1650s and now speak dozens of languages. What are the unique issues in translating Quaker texts? How do we make sure that language doesn’t remain a barrier in our worldwide religious fellowship? Due August 10, 2020.

Friends talk of “concerns” that start with an individual or small minority of our fellowship and grow into more widespread leadings and eventually sometimes into society-wide testimonies. There are a handful of popular Quaker testimonies that get talked about all the time. But what are some emerging ones that might deserve our attention? Some might be older ones that could be revisited; others might be issues that are new or that Friends may have overlooked. Due September 14, 2020.

Friends Journal