Ireland Yearly Meeting

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Ireland Yearly Meeting
PolityCongregationalist polity
LeaderChanges Annually
AssociationsFriends World Committee for Consultation, Irish Council of Churches
FounderWilliam Edmundson
Lurgan, Co. Armagh
Separated fromBritain Yearly Meeting
Nursing homes1
Aid organizationIrish Quaker Faith in Action (IQFA), Christian Aid
Primary schools3
Secondary schools3

The Ireland Yearly Meeting is the umbrella body for the Religious Society of Friends in Ireland. It is one of many Yearly Meetings (YM's) of Friends around the world.

In Ireland there are 27 local (preparative) meetings. These are grouped into 7 regional Monthly meetings, which are in turn grouped together in 3 provincial (quarterly) meetings. The three quarterly meetings together constitute the Ireland YM. There are between 1000 and 2000 Friends in Ireland.

A notable aspect of the Ireland YM is that it encompasses meetings with widely divergent Christian viewpoints from theologically conservative (evangelical) to theologically liberal. All meetings under its care are in the unprogrammed tradition. It also includes meetings both in the Republic of Ireland and in Northern Ireland.


The Religious Society of Friends was introduced to Ireland by William Edmundson. He was born in Westmorland, England in 1627 but moved to Ireland in 1652. On a return trip to England, Edmundson was convinced of the truth of Quakerism under the teaching of James Nayler He went back to Ireland and set up a business in Lurgan, County Armagh. The first Friends meeting in Ireland took place in Edmundson's home there in 1654.

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