Posted on 11 October 2019
The Bell at the Quaker Settlement, New Zealand, was a gift from Philadelphia Friends who had it transported in 1950.
The plaque below the bell reads:
The Quaker Settlement, established in 1976, is also known as Friends Settlement and locally as Quaker Acres. A community with a residential seminar centre at its heart, the settlement is set in 20 acres of farmland and planting on the outskirts of Wanganui, a provincial city of 43,000.
The settlement prefers to spell the city ‘Whanganui’ in keeping with local Maori wishes. Currently 23 Settlers range in age from preschool to Friends in their 70s. The site is noted for its quiet, peaceful atmosphere.
The seminar centre is surrounded by 16 individual houses occupied by the Friends who comprise of the community, care for the centre and run an annual Quaker programme, all on a voluntary basis.
There is no individual ownership of land. Tenure is therefore not ‘ownership’ rather ‘guardianship’. The Settlers share all management responsibilities and work cooperatively using spiritually discerned decision-making. Part of the settlement’s mission is to find more sustainable ways of living together and resourcefully sharing the land.
The bell is still used for calling people back in during seminars or back in from communal outdoor work for meals.
Images from quaker.org.nz