Hopefully, we have come a long way since those times when Quakers were considered on the fringes of society, but prejudice will always be with us. When Jesus was alive, it was the same. He was rebuked by religious people who noticed that he seemed to spend most of his time with people that most of society would try and avoid.
In fact, one of the first people he reached out to was from a different tribe, scorned by the tribe of Israel. She was a woman who had been married and divorced 5 times. The man she was currently with was not her husband and so, outcast, she went to the well alone when it would have been the normal practise to go with friends. There she met Jesus, who accepted her as a friend, forgave her, showed her compassion and welcomed her into the new family he was building here on earth. Then he asked her to go and tell everyone in her town all about this - God's rescue plan for humanity.
Why am I a Christian and why do I write about it in this blog? Because he accepted me as his friend too, forgave me and showed me love beyond compare. How could I not want other people to join our family and experience the love of Jesus? The news is simply too good to keep to myself.
(Read more about the story of the Cadburys and their faith in this article in the Christian History Magazine.)