Methodism as a distinctive form of Church life and polity, dates from the revival of religion in England under the labors of the brothers Wesley and of Whitefield. See' these names respectively.
I. Origin. — In November, 1729, the Wesleys, Whitefield, and their associates-about a dozen young men, students at Oxford University- formed themselves into a society for purposes of mutual moral improvement. They had a sincere desire to please God; and, by diligence, self-denial, and active benevolence, they sought to know and do his will. By instructing the children of the neglected poor, by visiting the sick and the inmates of prisons and almshouses, by a strict observance of the fasts ordained by the Church, and by scrupulous exactness in their attendance upon public worship,' they became objects of general notice. Many grave men thought them righteous overmuch, and attempted to dissuade them from an excess of piety; while profane wits treated them with sarcasm and contempt. Nothing could save from ridicule men who in that age and in such a place professed to make religion the great business of life. Hence by their fellow-students they were called in turn, Sacramentarians, Bible- bigots, Bible-moths, The Godly Club. One, a student of Christ-Church College, with greater reverence than his fellows, and more learning, observed, in reference to their methodical manner of life, that a new sect of METHODISTS had sprung up, alluding to the ancient school of physicians known by that name. The appellation obtained currency, and, although the word is still sometimes used reproachfully as expressive of enthusiasm, or undue religious strictness, it has become the acknowledged name of one of the largest and most rapidly increasing evangelical Christian denominations (comp. Tyerman, The Oxford Methodists, N. Y., Harpers, 1873, 8vo).
From this time Methodism may be said to have started. In 1739 the first Methodist "'meeting-house" in England was built at Kingswood. "Wesley's idea at this time, and for many years afterwards," says Skeats (Hist. of the Free Churches of England, p. 363), "was merely to revive the state of religion in the Church; but he knew enough of the condition of society in England, and of human nature, to be aware that unless those who had been brought under the awakening influence of the Gospel met together, and assisted each other in keeping alive the fire which had been lit in their hearts, it must, in many instances, seriously diminish, if not altogether die out." Originally, therefore, it was no part of the design of Wesley and' his associates to found a new religious sect. He considered them all me-ni'bers of the Church of England-zealous for her welfare, and loyal to her legitimate authorities. For a full discussion of this point, see the article WESLEY. They were all tenacious of her order, and great sticklers for what they deemed decency and decorum. One of them tells us, "I should have thought the saving of souls almost a sin if it had not been done in a church;" and such was the sentiment of John Wesley, when, to his horror he first heard that his bosom friend, Whitefield, had attempted to preach the Gospel in the open air. This was in the year 1739, on Saturday, the 17th of February. The discourse was addressed to the colliers at Kingswood, near the city of Bristol. "I thought," said Whitefield, 'that it might be doing the service of my Creator, who had a mountain for his pulpit, and the heavens for a sounding-board; and who, when his Gospel was rejected by the Jews, sent his servants into the highways and hedges." In a little while John Wesley was induced to follow his example. Being providentially at Bristol, and a great assembly (estimated at 3000) having come together at a place called Race Green, "I submitted," he says, " to be more vile, and proclaimed in the highways the glad tidings of salvation This was Wesley's first attempt in England. He had previously preached in the open air while in this country as a missionary to the Indians in Georgia, but he had no intention of resuming the practice in England, till he was stimulated by the example and urgent advice of his friend. His brother Charles was even more opposed to this departure from Church usages, and this apparent breach of ecclesiastical order. He had 'confined himself to the usual labors of the ministry in such pulpits as were opened to him, preaching the Gospel with earnestness and simplicity, more especially in London, where he also devoted much of his time to the felons in Newgate, not a few of whom were brought through his instrumentality to repentace and faith in Christ. Being strenuously urged by-Whitefield, he-at length consented to make one effort. "I prayed," he says, "and went forth in the name of Jesus Christ. I found near a thousand helpless sinners waiting for the Word in Moorfields. I invited them in my Master's words, as well as name, 'Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.' The Lord was with me, even me, the meanest of his messengers, according to his promise.. My load was gone, and all my doubts and scruples. God shone on my path, and I knew this was his will concerning me." Thenceforth, in various parts of the kingdom, they continued to preach the Gospel in the open air as opportunity was afforded. Immense crowds thronged everywhere to hear the Word, and multitudes were converted from the error of their way. As a consequence of this violation of ecclesiastical order, and more especially because of the earnest and energetic style of the preachers, most of the pulpits of the Established Church were soon closed against them. Many dignitaries of the Church were above measure enraged at this new way, and zealous in opposing it. "Some clergymen," says Wesley, " objected to this 'new doctrine;' salvation by faith; and, because of my unfashionable doctrine, I was excluded from one and another church, and at length shut out of all." In many places, too, Wesley and his associates were treated as disturbers of the peace, and subjected to annoyance and persecution. They were reviled, mobbed, imprisoned. They bore everything with patience. "Not daring to be silent," says Wesley, "it remained only to preach in the open air; which I did at first not out of choice, but necessity. I have since seen abundant reason to adore the wise providence of God herein, making a way for myriads of people who never troubled any church, nor were likely so to do, to hear that Word which they soon found to be the power of God unto salvation." The result of these labors was not only the conversion of manly souls, but the formation of religious societies. The young converts, neglected, and in many instances treated contemptuously by the established clergy, were as sheep having no shepherd. They naturally longed for the fellowship of kindred spirits. At their own request, they were united together for mutual comfort and edification. Wesley gives the following account of the origin of what was then called simply " the United Society." The rules which were drawn up for them are to the present day recognised, with two or three very slight alterations, as the General Rules of all branches of the great Methodist family in England, in the United States, and elsewhere:
"1. In the latter end of the year 1739 eight or ten persons came to me in London, who appeared to be deeply convinced of sin, and earnestly groaning for redemption. They desired (as did two or three more the next day) that I would spend some time with them in prayer, and advise them how to flee from the wrath to come, which they saw continually hanging over their heads. That we might have more time for this great work, I appointed a day when they might all come together; which, from thenceforward, they did every week, viz. on Thursday in the evening. To these, and as many more as desired to join with them (for their number increased daily), I gave those advices from time to time which I judged most needful for them; and we always concluded our meetings with prayer suitable to their several necessities.
"2. This was the rise of the United Society, first in London, and then in other places. Such a society is no other than ' a company of men having the form and seeking the power of godliness; united in order to pray together, to receive the word of exhortation, and to watch over one another in love, that they may help each other to work out their salvation.'
"3. That it may the more easily be discerned whether they are indeed working out their own salvation, each society is divided into smaller companies, called classes according to their respective places of abode. There are about twelve persons in every class; one of whom is styled the Leader. It is his business, "(1.) To see each person in his class once a week, at least, in order "To inquire how their souls prosper; "To advise, reprove, comfort, or exhort, as occasion may require;
"To receive what they are willing to give towards the support of the Gospel;
"(2.) To meet the ministers and the stewards of the society once a week, in order "To inform the minister of any that are sick, or of any that walk disorderly, and will not be reproved;
"To pay to the stewards what they have received of their several classes in the week preceding; and "To show their account of what each person has contributed.
"4. There is one only condition previously required of those who desire admission into these societies; viz. 'a desire to flee from the wrath to come, and be saved from their sins.' But wherever this is really fixed in the soul, it will be shown by its fruits. It is therefore expected of all who continue therein that they should continue to evidence their desire of salvation, "First, by doing no harm, by avoiding evil in every kind; especially that which is most generally practiced. Such as "The taking the name of God in vain; "The profaning the day of the Lord, either by doing ordinary work thereon, or by buying or selling;
"Drunkenness; buying or selling spirituous liquors; or drinking them, unless in cases of extreme necessity;
"Fighting, quarrelling, brawling; brother going to law with brother; returning evil for evil, or railing for railing; the using many words in buying or selling;
"The buying or selling uncustomed goods; "The giving or taking things on usury, viz. unlawful interest;
"Uncharitable or unprofitable conversation ; particularly speaking evil of magistrates or of ministers;
"Doing to others as we would not they should do unto us;
"Doing what we know is not for the glory of God: as, "The putting on of gold and costly apparel; "The taking such diversions as cannot be used in the name of the Lord Jesus;
"The singing those songs or reading those books which do not tend to the knowledge or love of God;
"Softness, and needless self-indulgence; "Laying up treasure upon earth; " Borrowing without a probability of paying; or taking up goods without a probability of paying for them.
"5. It is expected of all who continue in these societies, that they should continue to evidence their desire of salvation, "Secondly, by doing good, by being in every kind merciful after their power, as they have opportunity; doing good of every possible sort, and as far as is possible to all men:
"To their bodies, of the ability that God giveth, by giving food to the hungry, by clothing the naked, by helping or visiting them that are sick or in prison ;
"To their souls, by instructing, reproving, or exhorting all we have any intercourse with; trampling under foot that enthusiastic doctrine of devils, that 'we are not to do good, unless our hearts be free to it.'
"By doing good, especially to them that are of the household of faith, or groaning so to be; employing them preferably to others, buying one of another, helping each other in business; and so much the more, because the world will love its own, and them only.
"By all possible diligence and frugality, that the Gospel be not blamed.
"By running with patience the race that is set before them, denying themselves, and taking up their cross daily; submitting to bear the reproach of Christ; to be as the filth and offscouring of the world; and looking that men should say all manner of evil of them falsely, for the Lord's sake.
"6. It is expected of all who desire to continue in these societies that they should continue to evidence their desire of salvation, "Thirdly, by attending upon all the ordinances of God: such are "The public worship of God; "The ministry of the word, either read or expounded;' "The supper of the Lord: "Family and private prayer; "Searching the Scriptures; and "Fasting or abstinence.
"7. These are the general rules of our societies: all which we are taught of God to observe, even in his written Word the only rule, and the sufficient rule, both of our faith and practice. And all these we know his Spirit writes. on every truly awakened heart. If there be any among us who observe them not, who habitually break any of them, let it be made known unto them who watch over that soul, as they that must give an account. We will admonish him of the error of his ways: we will bear with him for a season. But then, if he repent not, he hath no more place among us. We have delivered our own souls." The "societies" thus formed increased so rapidly that very soon there arose a necessity for additional ministerial service. As the leaders in this wonderful revival of religion had been led providentially into the practice of field-preaching, and into the formation of religious societies, so they were induced in the same manner to accept the assistance of preachers who had not been educated for the ministry, nor ordained to that service; This. was at that time regarded by many as the most heinous of their offences. The Wesleys themselves at first hesitated at what seemed so monstrous an innovation; and the elder brother, when he first heard that a layman had taken a text and preached a sermon, hastened to London to put a stop to the irregularity. The man, Thomas Maxfield by name, had been left in charge of the little flock during the absence of the ordained ministers, had prayed with them, read to them passages of Scripture, attempted an exposition of a verse or two, and found himself preaching almost before he was aware of it. Happily for the interests of the new sect, and happily, too, for the cause of Christ, Wesley was met by his mother before he had time to censure the young preacher, or publicly to denounce this innovation. Mrs Wesley; the widow of a stanch minister of the Established Church, had been educated in its doctrines, and she revered its prelatical assumptions. But she had heard the young man preach several times. On the arrival of her son, seeing that his countenance was expressive of dissatisfaction, she inquired the cause. "Thomas Maxfield," said he, abruptly, "has turned preacher, I find." She looked attentively at him, and replied "John, you know what my sentiments have been. You cannot suspect me of readily favoring anything of this kind; but take care what you do with respect to that young man, for he is as surely called of God to preach as you are." Her advice was followed, and the result justified her opinion. Wesley recognised the validity of the young man's call; and thereafter it became a settled conviction with him, as it is with his followers to this day, that a warrant to preach the Gospel does not of necessity come only through one channel. In process of time, as instances of this kind increased, it became necessary to devise some criterion by which to test those who professed to believe themselves called of God to preach. This was a subject to which John Wesley early turned his attention; and the question, with his answer, continues to the present day to be incorporated among the rules recognised by all Wesleyan Methodists. We say Wesleyan Methodists because, previous to the preaching of Maxfield, Whitefield had separated himself from his associates, and thenceforward became known as the leader of the Calvinistic division of Methodism. The question and answer were in the following words:
"Quest. How shall we try those who profess to be moved by the Holy Ghost to preach ?
"Ans. 1. Let the following questions be asked, namely: Do they know God as a pardoning God? Have they the love of God abiding in them ? Do they desire nothing but God ? And are they holy in all manner of conversation?
"2. Have they the gifts (as well as the grace) for the work? Have they (in some tolerable degree) a clear, sound understanding, a right judgment in the things of God, a just conception of salvation by faith? And has God given them any degree of utterance ? Do they speak justly, readily, clearly?
"3. Have they fruit? Are any truly convinced of sin and converted to God by their preaching ?
"As long as these three marks concur in any one, we believe he is called of God to preach. These we receive as sufficient proof that be is moved by the Holy Ghost." From the time of Maxfield's admission as a preacher, many others of similar piety and gifts offered their services and were accepted. As the work went on, and additions were made to the "societies" in all parts of the kingdom, the demand for preachers increased. Wesley had always thought that preachers would be supplied from the pulpits of the Established Church, but, disappointed in this, he came to favor the admission of those who, although not episcopally ordained, were wholly devoted to the work of preaching the Gospel, and gladly recognised them as ministers of Christ. The employment of this class of auxiliaries constantly increasing, finally led to a meeting, held annually thereafter, and known as "the Conference" (q.v.). The first of these assemblies was held in 1744, and from this year Methodism began to assume the appearance of an organized system. It was in 1744 that the brothers John and Charles Wesley, with two or three other regularly-ordained clergymen, met with such of the "preachers" as could conveniently attend, to clothe Methodism with the conventional forms of established ecclesiastical government. Of course neither John nor Charles could brook the idea of becoming Dissenters, and Methodism was organized as an independent Church body only after the death of John Wesley. SEE WESLEYANS. To all intents and purposes the Church was organized at this first Conference in 1744, and yet by this very body one of the questions asked was, "Are we Dissenters?" and its answer an emphatic "No." "Although we call sinners to repentance in all places of God's dominion, and although we frequently use extemporary prayer, and unite together in a religious society, yet we are not Dissenters in the only sense which our law acknowledges, viz. those who renounce the service of the Church. We do not, we dare not,' separate from it. We are not seceders, nor do we bear any resemblance to them. We set out upon quite opposite principles. The seceders laid the very foundation of their work in judging and condemning others. We laid the foundation of our work in-judging and condemning ourselves. They begin everywhere with showing their hearers how fallen the Church and its ministers are; we begin everywhere with showing our hearers how fallen they are themselves" (Coke, Life of Wesley, p. 287). "Monday, June 25, and the five following days," says the leader of this little band, " we spent in conference with our preachers, seriously considering by what means we might the most effectually save our own souls and them that heard us, and the result of our consultations we set down to be the rule of our future practice." Already had the larger portion of England been divided into "circuits." to each of which several preachers, were sent for one or two years. A part of the work of each annual assembly was to arrange these appointments and changes. At the early Conferences various theological questions were discussed with reference to the agreement of all the parties in a common standard; and when this was settled, and the doctrinal discussions were discontinued, new regulations of another kind were from year to year adopted, as the state of the societies, and the enlarging opportunities of doing good, seemed to require. The first indication of a desire to see a separate establishment was given by John Wesley in 1784, when he ordained Coke (q.v.) bishop of the Methodist Church in this country. SEE METHODIST
EPISCOPAL CHURCH. On neither side of the ocean had adherents of Wesley hitherto organized as a Church. They were simply up to this time non-ecclesiastical religious societies, entirely voluntary on the part of the members, and all governed by a common discipline, of which their founder was the sole dictator and the chief executor. Yet even this step to provide for the Methodists in America a separate ecclesiastical organization does not clearly reveal whether Wesley changed his mind as to his former relation and that of his adherents within the Anglican rule to the Church of England. Says Dr. Curry, of the Christian Advocate (N. Y., May 25, 1871), "No fact respecting the history of John Wesley is more clearly manifest than that he was always a strenuous supporter of the authority of the Established Church of England. He jealously regarded the exclusive ecclesiastical authority of that Church in all that he did as an evangelist, and seemed always determined that while he lived and ruled-and it was always understood that he would rule as long as he lived-nothing should be tolerated in his societies at all repugnant to the sole and exclusive ecclesiastical authority of the Established Church. This rule was applied to his societies in America before the Revolution just as strictly as to those in England. But the political separation of America from Great Britain, as it also ended the authority of the English Church in this country, made it lawful, according to his theory of the case, for the Methodist societies in America to become regularly organized churches."
II. The theological doctrines of Wesleyan Methodism are, with perhaps two or three modifications, the same as those which, by common consent, are at present deemed evangelical. The articles of religion drawn up by Wesley for his immediate followers, and substantially adopted by all Methodist bodies since, are but slightly modified from those of the Established Church of England. They were originally prepared for the churches in the States. SEE ARTICLES, TWENTY-FIVE. The sermons of John Wesley, and his notes on the New Testament, are recognised by his followers in Great Britain and America as the. standard of Methodism, and as the basis of their theological creed. The unity of the Godhead, and the coequal divinity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost; the death, resurrection, ascension, and intercession of Jesus Christ; salvation by faith; the sufficiency and divine inspiration of the Holy Scriptures; a final day of judgment, and the eternity of future rewards and punishments, are doctrines held in common with other evangelical branches of the Church of Christ. Maintaining man's total depravity through the fall of Adam, and his utter inability, unless aided by divine grace, to take one step towards his recovery, Methodists hold that this grace is free, extending itself equally, by virtue of the atonement, to all the children of men. Hence they deny the doctrine of special election, with its counterpart, reprobation, as taught in Calvinistic formularies, and maintain, in opposition to those who hold to a limited atonement, that Jesus Christ, "by his oblation of himself once offered, made a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction for the sins of the whole world." They recognise two sacraments as ordained by Christ Baptism and the Lord's Supper. Infant children and believing adults have a right to the former; and penitent, seekers of salvation, as well as professing Christians, are invited to partake of the latter, both being regarded not only as "badges or tokens of Christian men's profession, but as certain signs of grace and God's good will towards us, by the which he doth work invisibly in us, and doth not only quicken, but also strengthen and confirm our faith in him." As to the mode of baptism, so that the ceremony be performed by an authorized minister in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, it is optional whether the water be applied by sprinkling or pouring, or by the immersion of the candidate; and although kneeling is the usual mode of receiving the elements at the Lord's table, those who prefer may partake of them in a standing or sitting posture. They deny the doctrine usually styled the "perseverance of the saints," believing that a true child of God may fall from grace and finally perish; but they hold the doctrine of assurance, in the sense that it is the privilege of the justified sinner now to know his sins forgiven. The Holy Spirit, they teach, bears witness of the fact of present pardon and acceptance; but this is deemed to be the privilege of believers, not the indispensable evidence of regeneration. "It does not follow," says Wesley, "that all who do not know their sins forgiven are children of the devil." Methodism teaches also that it is the privilege of believers in this life to reach that maturity of grace, and that conformity to the divine nature, which cleanses the heart from sin. and fills it with love to God and man-the being filled as Paul phrases it, with all the fulness of God. This they call Christian perfection, a state which they declare to be attainable through faith in Christ. Wesley says on this subject, and none of his authorized followers have gone beyond him, "Christian perfection implies the being so crucified with Christ as to be able to testify, 'I live not, but Christ liveth in me.' It does not imply an exemption from ignorance or mistake, infirmities or temptations. I believe," he adds, "there is no such perfection in this life as excludes these involuntary transgressions, which I apprehend to be naturally consequent on the ignorance and mistakes inseparable from mortality. Therefore 'sinless perfection' is' a phrase I never use, lest I should seem to contradict myself. I believe a person filled with the love of God is still liable to these involuntary transgressions. Such transgressions you may call sins, if you please: I do not, for the reasons above mentioned." This doctrine Wesley calls "the grand depositum which God has given to the people called Methodists;" and he gives it as his opinion that God raised them up chiefly to preach, and exemplify, and propagate it. SEE WESLEYANISM.
II. As to the government and usages of 'Methodism they are similar, but not entirely uniform, in all its branches and divisions. In the parent body, the Wesleyan Methodists of England, the ecclesiastical government is entirely in the hands of the ministry. "The Conference," originally instituted, as we have seen, by Wesley, has the power of making rules and regulations for the government of the body. This power is, how, ever, restricted within certain limits prescribed in what is known as "the deed of declaration," executed by John Wesley a little while before his death, and enrolled in the archives of the high court of chancery in 1794. By the provisions of this deed, the Conference consists of one hundred ministers, who were originally named therein, and to whom and to their successors was committed the duty of filling vacancies as they occur. The Conference, by the deed of declaration, is to meet annually, and to continue in session not less than five days nor more than three weeks. Other ministers attend and take part in the discussions, but the legal body consists of the "hundred" only. Their first business, after filling vacancies, is the election from their own number of a president, who holds his office for one year, but is eligible to a reelection after an interval of eight years. Any member of the "legal hundred" absenting himself without leave from. two successive Conferences, and not appearing on the first day of the third, forfeits his seat. The Conference admits preachers on trial;' receives them into full membership by ordination; examines and scrutinizes the character of every minister in the connection, and has power 'to try those against whom any charge is brought, and to censure, suspend, or excommunicate, if necessary. By the Conference the proceedings of subordinate bodies are finally reviewed, and the state and prospects of the Church at large are considered, and regulations enacted for its increasing efficiency. The most important of these subordinate judicatories is "the district meeting," which is composed of ministers and laymen "residing within a district of country embracing from ten to twenty or more circuits" a circuit being the prescribed field of labor for two, three, or, in some cases, four ministers. The district meeting has authority:
1. To examine candidates for the ministry; and without their recommendation no candidate can come before the Annual Conference.
2. To try and suspend ministers who are found immoral, erroneous in doctrine, unfaithful to their ordination vows, or deficient in ability for the work they have undertaken.
3. To decide preliminary questions concerning the building of chapels.
4. To review the demands from the less wealthy churches, which draw upon the public funds of the connection for aid in supporting their ministers.
5. To elect a representative, who is thus made a member of a committee appointed to sit previously to the meeting of "the Conference," in order to prepare a draft of the stations of all the ministers for the ensuing year; regard being had to the wishes of the people in the allocation of individual pastors. The judgment of this " stationing committee" is conclusive until Conference, to which an appeal is allowed in all cases, either from ministers or people. But the appointments are made for one year only, and no preacher can be appointed to the same charge more than three years successive. In the District Conference laymen take part, equally with ministers, in all that affects the general welfare of the body; and the lay influence predominates still more in "the quarterly meeting," which is held, as its name indicates, every three months on every circuit. All local preachers, a numerous and influential body of men, who preach on Sundays, and follow some secular employments for a livelihood; stewards, whose duty it is to attend more especially to the temporalities of the society; class-leaders, of whom mention is made above in the general rules, are members of the quarterly meeting, at which candidates for the sacred office are first proposed, and, if rejected by their fellow-members, they have no appeal to- another tribunal. A similar balance of power is maintained in the "leaders-meeting," which is held monthly, in regard to various affairs of the particular society to which it belongs. Many of these meetings are attended by one minister only, or, at the most, by two or three, while the lay members are very numerous. No leader, or other society officer, is appointed but with the concurrence of a leaders' meeting;
no steward without that of the quarterly meeting. Among the usages peculiar to Methodism we have already noticed "the class-meeting," at which, although chiefly designed for spiritual instruction and improvement, it is expected that weekly contributions shall be made for the support of the ministry; and in which it is necessary for all who desire to become Methodists to undergo a period of probation of three among the Methodists of England, and of six months among those of the Methodist Episcopal Church (in the Church South there is no probationship), and attendance upon which thereafter is a term of membership. There is also in England what is known as the band-meeting, which differs from the class- meeting in that it is a voluntary association, and does not allow males and females to meet together, nor the married to belong to the same "band" with the single. The love-feast is a meeting held at the discretion of the preacher, quarterly or oftener; and the watchnight is a meeting for prayer, preaching, and mutual exhortation, held at first frequently, but now only on the last night of the year, and continuing until after midnight. John Wesley is claimed to have been the originator of religious tracts for gratuitous distribution, and of cheap volumes for the dissemination of the principles of Christianity. His followers have continued the system of publishing, and from " the Book-room" in London still emanate religious publications, tracts, and periodicals, the profits arising from the sale of which are applied to connectional purposes. For further details, SEE WESLEYANS.
The duties of a Methodist minister were thus defined by Mr. Wesley, and they have since remained substantially in all branches of the denomination (see Discipline, etc., § 138 sq.):
"Q. What is the office of a Christian minister ?
A. To watch over souls, as he that must give an account. To feed and guide the flock.
Q. How shall he be fully qualified for his great work?
A. By walking closely with God, and having his work greatly at heart; by understanding and loving every branch of our discipline, and by carefully and constantly observing the twelve rules of a helper, viz.:
1. Be diligent; never be unemployed; never be triflingly employed; never WHILE away time, nor spend more time at any place than is strictly necessary.
2. Be serious; let your motto be, Holiness to the Lord; avoid all lightness, jesting, and foolish talking.
3. Converse sparingly and cautiously with women, particularly with young women.
4. Take no step towards marriage without solemn prayer to God, and consulting with your brethren.
5. Believe evil of no one; unless fully proved, take heed how you credit it: put the best construction you can on everything-you know the judge is always supposed to be on the prisoner's side.
6. Speak evil of no one. else your word especially would eat as doth a canker; keep your thoughts within your own breast till you come to the person concerned.
7. Tell every one what you think wrong in him, lovingly and plainly, and as soon as may be, else it will fester in your own heart; make all haste to cast the fire out of your bosom.
8. Do not affect the gentleman; a preacher of the Gospel is the servant of all.
9. Be ashamed of nothing but sin; no, not of cleaning your own shoes when necessary.
10. Be punctual; do everything exactly at the time; and do not mend our rules, but keep them, and that for conscience' sake.
11. You have nothing to do but to save souls, and therefore spend and be spent in this work; and go always, not only to those who want you, but to those who want you most.
12. Act in all things, not according to your own will, but as a son in the Gospel, and in union with your brethren. As such, it is your part to employ your time as our rules direct; partly in preaching and visiting from house to house; partly in reading, meditation, and prayer. Above all, if you labor with us in our Lord's vineyard, it is needful that you should do that part of the work which the Conference shall advise, at those times and places which they shall judge most for his glory. Observe: It is not your business to preach so many times, and to take care merely of this and that society, but to save as many souls as you can; to bring as many sinners as you possibly can to repentance; and with all your power to build them up in that holiness without which they cannot see the Lord; and, remember, a Methodist preacher is to, mind every point, great and small, in the Methodist discipline; therefore you will need all the grace and all the sense you have, and to have all your wits about you." SEE ITINERANCY.
The latest writer on Methodism (the Revelation L. Tyerman, Life and Times of John Wesley) who dares to hold that it is "the greatest fact in the history of the Church of Christ," thus comments upon the present condition of the parent body of Methodism, the Wesleyan Methodist Church (q.v.): "The 'Methodist,' or parent 'Conference,' employs in Great Britain and Ireland 1782 regular ministers. Besides these, there were, in 1864, in England only, 11,804 lay preachers, preaching 8754 sermons every Sabbath-day. In the same year, the number of preaching-places in England only was 6718, and the number of sermons preached weekly, by ministers and lay preachers combined, was 13,852. To these must be added the lay preachers, preaching-places, etc., in Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Shetland, and the Channel Islands. The number of Church members in Great Britain and Ireland is 365,285, with 21,223 on trial; and, calculating that the hearers are three times as numerous as the Church members, there are considerably more than a million persons in the United Kingdom who are attendants upon the religious services of the parent Conference of 'the people called Methodists.' Some idea of their chapel and school property may be formed from the fact that, during the last seven years, there has been expended, in Great Britain only, in new erections and in reducing debts on existing buildings, £1,672,541; and towards that amount of expenditure there has been actually raised and paid (exclusive of all connectional collections, loans, and drafts) the sum of £1,284,498. During the ten years from 1859 to 1868, inclusive, there was raised for the support of the foreign missions of the connection £1,408,235; and if to this there be added the amount of the Jubilee Fund, we find more than a million and a half-sterling contributed during the decade for the sustenance and extension of the Methodist work in foreign lands. The missions now referred to are carried on in Ireland, France, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Gibraltar, India, Ceylon, China, South and West Africa, the West Indies, Canada,. Eastern British America, Australia, and Polynesia. In these distant places the committee having the management of the missions employ 3798 paid agents, including 994 who are regularly ordained, and are wholly engaged in the work of the Christian ministry. Besides these, there are about 20,000 agents of the society (as lay preachers; etc.) who are rendering important service gratuitously, while the number of Church members is 154,187, and the number of attendants upon the religious services more than half a million. Space prevents a reference to the other institutions and funds of British Methodism, except to add that, besides 174,721 children in the mission schools, the parent connection has in Great Britain 698 day-schools, efficiently conducted by 1532 certificated, assistant, and pupil teachers, and containing 119,070 scholars; also 5328 Sunday schools, containing 601,801 scholars, taught by 103,441 persons who render their services gratuitously; and that the total number of publications printed and issued by the English Book Committee only, during the year ending June, 1866, was four millions one hundred and twenty-two thousand eight hundred, of which nearly two millions were periodicals, and more than a quarter of a million were hymn-books."
IV. Subdivisions.-The different branches of the great Methodistic body are as follows:
1. The WESLEYAN METHODISTS, or main and original body of the Methodists in Great Britain, often spoken of above. SEE WESLEYANS.
2. The CALVINISTIC METHODISTS date from a dispute between Whitefield and the Wesleys on doctrinal points. The former, with his associates, under the special patronage of the countess of Huntingdon, and greatly aided by her liberal contributions, organized societies and built chapels in various parts of England, Scotland, and Wales. For their particular doctrinal tenets, SEE CALVINISM. After the death of Whitefield they were divided into three separate sects.
(1.) The first was known as Lady Huntingdon's Connection, which observed strictly the liturgical forms of the English Established Church, with a settled pastorate instead of an itinerant ministry. They have not increased with much rapidity since her death, having at the present time less than a hundred ministers, and between sixty and seventy chapels. They have maintained from the beginning a theological school for the education of ministers, now known as Cheshunt College, in Hertfordshire, England. SEE HUNTINGDON. Although the name " connection" continues to be used, the Congregational polity is practically adopted; and, of late years, several of the congregations have become, in name as well as virtually, Congregational Churches. The number of chapels, mentioned in the census of 1851, as belonging to this connection, was 109, containing accommodations for 38,727 persons, and the attendance on the census Saturday was 19,151.
(2.) The second of these divisions was called the Tabernacle Connection, or Whitefield Methodists. They had no connectional bond after the death of their founder, and each separate society regarding itself as independent, they are now lost as a distinctive sect, and found only among the churches known as Congregationalist or Independent.
(3.) The Welsh Calvinistic Methodists, the third of these branches, was organized in 1743. They have continued to increase and prosper until the present day, being confined, however, mostly to the principality of Wales, where they at present number about 60,000 communicants. In the United States there are about 4000 members of this denomination, with four annual Conferences, one in each of the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Wisconsin. The members are mostly Welsh, or of Welsh descent, and their religious services are generally celebrated in the Welsh language.
3. The WESLEYAN METHODIST NEW CONNECTION was the result of the first secession from the parent body after the death of Wesley. It originated in 1797, under the leadership of Alexander Kilham, after whom they are sometimes called Kilhamites (q.v.). He had been a preacher among the Wesleyans, and was expelled from the Conference in 1796. His offence was a publication in Which he-criticised severely the then present order of things, and submitted proposals for what he deemed reform. In accordance with his sentiments a secession Church was organized, and the New Connection sprang into existence with about 5000 members. Their Conference is constituted upon the representative system, laymen having an equal voice with the clergy in -the government of the Church, while in doctrine and general usage they differ not at all from the old connection. Their history has not been marked by any great success. They have a few chapels in Ireland, and in Canada there are from 8000 to 10,000 members. Of late years they have decreased in the number of membership. In 1890 the body contained about 35,000 members.
4. THE BAND-ROOM METHODISTS originated in Manchester in 1806. The name is derived from the Band Room in North Street, Manchester, where a class of overzealous revivalists used to gather, and, contrary to the rules of the Connection, admitted parties not members. They were also guilty of acting independently of leaders' meetings, and when remonstrated with, withdrew and formed an independent body. The Band-Room Methodists still exist; but are now called The United Free Gospel Churches. They differ from the "parent" body in having no paid ministers. They have, however, annual conferences.
5. The PRIMITIVE METHODISTS are, next to the Wesleyans, the largest Methodist body in England. They date from the year 1810. A few regular Wesleyan preachers introduced, on their circuits, the American practice of holding camp-meetings. These were disapproved by the Conference, and denounced as "highly improper." Other questions entered into the controversy, and the result was the formation of the new sect. Their discipline and theology are strictly Wesleyan, but they go beyond any other denomination in committing the duty of Church government to the laity. Their Conference is composed of one third preachers and two thirds laymen. From the stir they make in their religious services, they have been called Ranters. They allow women to preach. They have several missions in foreign lands, and in England and Wales, according to the last official report of 1890, the connection had 193,658 members. In the United States, also, they have secured a footing; they here coun 'a membership of 5639. SEE PRIMITIVE METIODISTS.
6. The BRYANITES, or BIBLE CHRISTIANS, are a sect of Methodists very similar to the preceding. They date from 1815. Their leader was a Wesleyan local preacher of considerable talent, by the name of O'Bryan (q.v.). Among them, as among the Primitive Methodists, females are regularly licensed to preach in public. They principally exist in Cornwall and the West of England, but also have mission stations in the Channel Islands, the United States, Canada, Prince Edward's Island, and Australia. They had, according to their report of 1873, 26,427 full and accredited Church members.
7. The PRIMITIVE METHODISTS OF IRELAND. This body of Primitive Methodists is of later origin than that of England, and is entirely independent of the other organization of like name, The Primitive Methodists of Ireland date from 1816. The English Conference in 1795 granted to the members the privilege of receiving from their own ministers, under certain guards and restrictions, the sacraments. The Irish Conference thereupon, in the following year; came to the conclusion that among them "it was not expedient;" but in 1816, after the subject had been freely discussed by the people, and numerous petitions asking that it might be administered were brought before the Conference, the request was granted by a majority of sixty-two against twenty-six. The minority, with the Revelation Adam Averell, one of their most influential ministers, at their head, separated, and took with them about ten thousand members, full one third of the whole. (It is worthy of remark that the secession in 1797 [see 3] was the result of the non-compliance of the English Conference with the wishes of the people to have the sacrament from their own ministers.) The only difference between the Irish Primitive Methodists and the Wesleyans remains to this day the liberty of members in the former body to partake of the sacraments in the churches. The preachers are regarded simply as laymen, because of the failure of this secession among them.- The real lay members, however, have also a voice in the government of the societies. In 1861 the Irish Primitive Methodists numbered 14,247 members. SEE PRIMITIVE METHODISTS.
8. The UNITED METHODIST FREE CHURCH is a union, recently formed, of three different divisions of seceders from Wesleyan Methodism.
(a) The PROTESTANT METHODISTS, who organized into a distinct body in 1828, then counting 28 local preachers, 56 leaders, and upwards of 1000 members, seceders from the Leeds societies, because of the opposition to the introduction of an organ.
(b) The WESLEYAN METHODIST ASSOCIATION, which was organized in 1835, under the leadership of Samuel Warren, one of the opponents (in 1834) to the proposed establishment of a theological institution, to be presided over by Dr. Jabez Bunting. The Leeds seceders joined the Associationists in 1828; both amalgamated with the Free Methodists in 1857. SEE UNITED METHODIST FREE CHURCH.
(c) The REFORMERS, who were organized into a body in 1849. At the Manchester Conference held in that year, six members, suspected of private intrigue with members of the Wesleyan Methodist Association (see b), were placed at the bar, without having received any regular notice of the charges to be preferred against them, as required by the standing laws and usages of the connection, and without a trial, without any evidence that they had violated any law, human or divine, three of them were reprimanded and three were expelled. The act excited the astonishment of the nation, convulsed the connection, and led to the loss of one hundred thousand members. Many of them, after a while, for want of ministers and suitable places of worship, returned to the old body, but others formed themselves into a distinctive body styled the Reformed Methodists. These amalgamated bodies differ from the "parent" body only in Church government and usages. One of their professed objects is the reformation of the body from which they are separated. Their annual assembly admits lay representatives, circuits with less than 500 members sending one; less than 1000, two; and more than 1000, three delegates. Each circuit governs itself by its local courts, without any interference as to the management of its internal affairs. At their Annual Assembly, held at Bristol, England, in August, 1890, they reported 85,461 members.
9. The WESLEYAN REFORM UNION is a body composed of those of the seceders of 1849 (see 7 [c]) who refused to amalgamate with the United Methodist Free Church. In 1868 it numbered nearly a thousand Church members.
The above comprise all the Methodist branches now existing in Great Britain and Ireland. Some others have occasionally sprung up, such as the Tent Methodists, the Independent Methodists, etc., but they are now either extinct or incorporated with other churches.
10. In the United States, the main body of Wesley's followers are incorporated in the METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, which was formally organized in 1784. Previous to that time local preachers from England, prominent among whom were Philip Embury and an officer in the British army by the name of Webb, had preached in New York and other places, and organized societies on the English model. In 1769 the first regular itinerant Methodist preachers, Boardman and Pilmoor, were sent over by Mr. Wesley. The former took his station in New York, the latter in Philadelphia-occasionally changing with each other, and often making short excursions into the country. They were very successful in their labors; and, by their instrumentality, not only were multitudes converted, but quite a number of lay preachers were received and employed. At the English Wesleyan Conference of 1771, Francis Asbury and Richard Wright volunteered to come to America as missionaries. They landed in Philadelphia in the month of October of that year, and were received by the societies with great cordiality. In the year 1773 two additional missionaries, Rankin and Shadford, were sent over, and the first American " Conference" was held at Philadelphia in July of that year. The number of members in the society was stated to be 1160; and resolutions were adopted recommending continued conformity to the discipline and doctrines of the English Methodists. From that time, all through the stormy season of the Revolutionary War, success seems to have attended their efforts, so that, at the Conference of 1784, there were reported to be about 15,000 members in the connection. In this year Wesley, for the first time, performed the solemn rite of ordination by setting apart two men as elders for the flock in America, and by consecrating to the episcopal office Dr. Thomas Coke, at that time a presbyter in the Church of England. The doctor and his two associates immediately thereafter sailed for America, and were present at the Conference in Baltimore, at which the Methodist Episcopal Church was organized. The first act of that Conference was the ratification with entire unanimity of Coke's ordination, and the election of one of their own number, Francis Asbury, to the same office. The Conference also received Wesley's abridgment of the Articles of the Church of England, which continue to be their standard of doctrine to the present day, and also an abridgment of the Book of Common Prayer, prepared by the same hand, and sent over with the recommendation that it should be used in the Methodist chapels. This was done in some of the large cities for a season, but soon fell into disuse, with the exception of the sacramental services and the forms of ordinations, which are still. retained and used. The bishops are elected by a General Conference, which meets every four years, and is composed of delegates from the several Annual Conferences in the ratio of one delegate for a certain number of members, which has been changed from time to time according to the increase of the general body. The ratio fixed by the General Conference of 1872 as a basis of future representation is one delegate for every forty-five members of an Annual Conference. At the same Conference lay members, in the ratio of two for every Annual Conference, were also admitted. The bishops, like the preachers, are itinerant; and it is specially enacted that if one of them ceases from travelling without the consent of the General Conference, he shall not thereafter exercise the episcopal office. His powers are similar to those of the president of the English Conference, with the additional duty of fixing the appointments of the preachers, deciding all questions of law in an Annual Conference, and ordaining bishops, elders, and deacons. The limit of three years, beyond which the preachers of the British Wesleyan Connection may not continue in the same place, is now also the rule of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States; and to this is added the regulation that they may not be returned to the same place more than three years in six. Presiding elders in this branch of the Church occupy a position very similar to that of the chairmen of districts in England, except that they have no separate pastoral charge. They are appointed by the bishops, and may remain four years on the same district. They form a kind of advisory' committee in assisting the bishops to fix the appointments-of the preachers. The "Book Concern," situated in New York, with a branch at Cincinnati, and depositories in various other cities, has a capital of more than a million of dollars, and is one of the largest publishing houses in the world. Under the patronage and control of the Church are weekly papers published in New York, Syracuse (N. Y.). Pittsburgh (Pa.), Cincinnati (O.), Chicago (Il.), St. Louis (Rio.), San Francisco (Cal.), Portland (Oregon), and Atlanta (Ga.). They publish also several illustrated papers for Sunday-schools, one of a similar kind for the Tract' Society, a monthly Sunday-school journal, a monthly magazine in English, another in German, and a quarterly review. SEE METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH.
11. The METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, SOUTH, projected at Louisville, Ky., in 1845, was formally organized by delegates from Conferences within the slaveholding states in May, 1846. In doctrine, discipline, and general usages, it is the same as the preceding. The same is true of its forms of worship and usages. But while the Church North made open declaration against the institution of slavery, the Church South ignored the subject. Now that the institution is abolished in the United States, the two bodies can hardly be said to differ. The Methodist Episcopal Church, South, has a flourishing publishing house (at Nashville, Tenn.), and issues several periodicals. SEE METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, SOUTH.
12. The METHODIST PROTESTANT CHURCH was organized in the city of Baltimore, Md., in the year 1830, by a convention composed of an equal number of clerical and lay delegates from various states of the Union. The convention continued in session three weeks, and adopted a "Constitution" for the new association. Its fundamental doctrines, and most of its usages, are the same as those of the Episcopal Methodists, the body from which it seceded. Following the example of the British Wesleyans, the episcopal office is denied, and a president called to rule over each Annual Conference, elected by the ballot of that body. The laity is admitted to an equal participation with the clergy in all Church legislation and government. The General Conference, which meets every four years, consists of an equal number of ministers and laymen, who are elected by the Annual Conferences. The slavery question divided the Methodist Protestant Church into two bodies the Methodist Protestant Church of the
North-western States and the Methodist Protestants of the Southern States. The head-quarters of the former were established at Springfield, Ohio; those of the latter at Baltimore, Md. Their members were found only in certain parts of the United States. Their greatest strength is in Virginia, Maryland, and in some portions of Ohio and Pennsylvania. Of late years, a union of all nonepiscopal Methodists having been proposed, the Protestant Methodists North changed their official name to The Methodist Church. The Wesleyan Methodist Church was one of the churches expected to be merged into this newly-constituted body, but hitherto all efforts at union have failed, and there seems to be no immediate prospect of their amalgamation. The Methodist Church numbers about 75,000 members; altogether the Methodist Protestants count about 148,000. The head- quarters of the Church South remain at Baltimore, Md.; those of The Methodist Church have been removed from Springfield, Ohio, to Pittsburgh, Pa. SEE METHODIST PROTESTANT CHURCH; SEE METHODISTS. THE.
13. The WESLEYAN METHODIST CHURCH was formed by a convention of clerical and lay delegates which met in the city of Utica, NY., in 1843. The principal part of the delegates in attendance were ministers or members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the main' reason for the establishment of the new body was their hostility to slavery. At their organization as a Church they adopted a Discipline and plan of Church government, and divided the connection into six Annual Conferences, having about 600 ministers and preachers(mostly local), and a reported membership of about 20.000. Their Articles of Faith are the same as those of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and their General Rules are similar, with the exception that they are more stringent on the subject of slavery. They discard episcopacy and presiding elders, but, like the English Wesleyans, they have chairmen of districts, and elect the presidents of their Annual Conferences at each successive session. Ministers are appointed to their respective fields of labor by a stationing committee, the decisions of said committee being subject to approval by the Conference. Societies and churches are permitted to negotiate beforehand with any minister for his services; but such engagements, if made, must receive the sanction of the Conference. Both General and Annual Conferences are composed of ministers and lay delegates, the local preachers also having a representation.,
14. The AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH was formed by a party of colored members, under the leadership of Richard Alien, hence sometimes called Allenites, who seceded from their white brethren at Philadelphia in 1816. They adopted, in the main, the doctrines and usages of the body from which they seceded. Mr. Allen was elected to the office of bishop, and ordained by four elders of their Church, assisted by a colored presbyter of the Protestant Episcopal denomination. They are found in various parts of the states of Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland. There are also some in the Western States, and a few in Upper Canada, their congregations being largest and most influential in the city of Philadelphia. The Methodist Almanac of 1189 assigns them 7 bishops, 3000 preachers, and( 400,000 members.
15. The AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL (Zion) CHURCH was formed by another secession of colored members in the city of New York in 1819. They elect annually one of their elders as general superintendent but do not ordain or set him apart to that office by the imposition of hands. The Methodist Almanac of 1891 credits them with 7 bishops, 3000 preachers, and 412,513 members.
16. The UNITED BRETHREN IN CHRIST is the designation of a body of Christians, sometimes called German Methodists. They must not be confounded with the Moravians, or Unitas Fratrum, who are sometimes called the United Brethren. " The United Brethren in Christ," although mostly consisting of Germans and their immediate descendants, are of American origin, and date as a distinct sect from the year 1800, when their first Annual Conference was held. From that time they have continued to increase in Pennsylvania, Maryland,Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, and other portions of the United States. They have four bishops, nine Annual Conferences, and a General Conference, which meets every fourth year. In doctrines and 'Church government they are, with few unimportant variations, the same as the Methodist Episcopalians.
17. The. EVANGELICAL ASSOCIATION are in doctrine and Church government nearly allied to the Episcopal Methodists. They date from the year 1800, and are sometimes called Albrights, after one of the founders of the sect. They elect bishops from the body of the elders, and have several Annual Conferences, and a General Conference, the supreme law-making authority, which meets quadrennially. The members are mostly Germans or of German descent, and are numerous only in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Illinois. The Methodist Almanac of 1891 reports 1 bishop, 1187 preachers, 428 local preachers, and 145,903 members.
18. The FREE METHODIST CHURCH was organized by former members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, Aug. 23,1860. The main occasion for the establishment of this body was the expulsion of two ministers from the Genesee Conference. The Free Methodists rigidly enforce the rule for simplicity of dress; the privilege of free seats in all houses of worship; congregational singing, without the aid of choir or musical instrument: extemporaneous preaching. In doctrine they are one with other Methodist bodies; but adhere strictly to Wesley's views on sanctification, and, teach everlasting torment. They have abandoned the episcopacy, but have one superintendent, who is elected every four years at the meeting of their General Conference. They report, in 1890, 513 preachers and 19,998 members. SEE METHODISTS, FREE.
19. The COLORED METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH IN AMERICA was organized by order of the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, December 16, 1870. The new Church consists of the colored preachers and members heretofore belonging to the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Two bishops were elected-Revelation William H. Miles, of Kentucky, and Revelation R. H. Vanderhorst, of Georgia. The Christian Index, edited by Revelation Samuel Watson, at Memphis, Tenn., was adopted as the organ of the new Church, and Revelation L. J. Scurlock was elected assistant editor and book agent. The structure of the new Church, counting about 17,000 members, conforms in all essential particulars to that of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, viz. in doctrine, discipline, and economy, but is entirely independent of that organization, though in sympathy with and fostered by it. White people are not admitted to membership.
There are a few other minor subdivisions of the Methodist family, e.g. the Independent (or Congregational) Methodist Church, the names and statistics of which are given in the tabular summary below. In connection with one or other of the larger bodies; Methodists are found not only in England and North America, but they have "Conferences" in France, Germany, Africa, and Australia. They have missionary stations (for more particulars concerning which. see section VI)
20. Defunct Methodist Bodies. -Of these, the most important are:
(a) The REFORMED METHODIST CHURCH. This body, which is now merged into the Wesleyan Methodist Church (see 13), originated in a secession from the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1814. The seceders considered themselves restricted under the episcopal form of government, and, with a view to obtain redress of their grievances, petitioned the General Conference. Their representations met with no favorable reception, and in consequence they withdrew from the membership of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Their formal separation from that body took place Jan. 16, 1814. In the leading doctrines of Christianity they agreed with the Church which they left; but as to the government of the Church, they conducted their affairs on the Congregational principle. They held peculiar views regarding the efficacy of faith. They believed that all blessings given in answer to prayer are in consequence of faith; and in cases of sickness and distress, faith exercised is the restoring principle. They also taught moral perfection in the present state. They admitted to membership all who simply exhibited clear evidence that their sins were forgiven, and that their hearts were renewed. They held that subscription to any record of Christian principles is altogether unnecessary. In 1818 they spread in Upper Canada, and there made great progress. For some time after the organization of the Wesleyan Methodist Church they united with that body in publishing a magazine-a circumstance which ultimately led to a union between the two bodies.
(b) The METHODIST SOCIETY, a body which originated in a secession from the Methodist Episcopal Church in New York in 1820, in consequence of what was deemed an undue interference on the part of the ruling preacher with the temporalities of the Church. In Church doctrine the new body adhered to the rules of the "parent" society, but in the government of the Church there was a considerable difference. 1. No bishop was allowed, but a president of each Annual Conference was chosen yearly by ballot from the members thereof. 2. All ordained ministers, whether travelling or not, were allowed a seat in the Annual Conference. "The property of the societies to be vested in trustees of their own choice, and the minister to have no oversight of the temporal affairs of the Church." After the organization of the Methodist Protestant Church (see 12), the Methodist Society was merged in the former.
21. Methodists in Canada and other British Dominions in America.-A little more than sixty years ago Methodism was for the first time represented in those parts by William Losee, whom the sainted Asbury had appointed as a worker of the Gospel, "to range at large." The work has prospered there as elsewhere, and there are now five large bodies, presided over by no less' than 900 itinerant ministers. Four of these large bodies, viz. the Wesleyans, Primitives, New Connectionists, and Bible Christians, are either an offspring of like associations in the United Kingdom, or in intimate relations at present. But the fifth of them is an independent organization, like the great Methodist body of the United States, from which it sprang, and after which it is named the Methodist Episcopal Church of Canada, dating its origin as a separate body in 1828. The Canada Wesleyans, though adhering to the polity of the English Wesleyans, are now agitating the adoption of lay-representation, in order to effect a union of all the Methodist bodies in Canada; their aggregate membership amounts at present to a little over 100,000, their preachers to over 600 in all the different bodies. SEE METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH IN CANADA; SEE WESLEYAN METHODISTS; SEE PRIMITIVE METHODISTS; SEE NEW-CONNECTION METHODISTS; etc.
V. Aggregate.-Not reckoning the Band-Room Methodists, nor the countess of Huntingdon's Connection, and making a moderate estimate of the Sunday-school scholars belonging to the Welsh Calvinistic Methodists and to the Primitive Methodists in Ireland, we arrive at the results given in the table below. Reckoning two additional hearers for each Church member and Sundayschool scholar, we make a total of more than twelve millions of persons receiving Methodist instruction, and from week to week meeting together in Methodist buildings for the purpose of worshipping Almighty God. The statement is startling, but the statistics given entitle it to the fullest consideration.
But rightly to estimate the results of Methodism during the last hundred and thirty years, there are other facts to be remembered.
"Who will deny, for instance, that Methodism has exercised a potent and beneficial influence upon other churches: Episcopal, Presbyterian, Independent, and Baptist churches have all been largely indebted to Methodism, either directly or indirectly, for many of the best ministers and agents they have ever had. It is a remarkable fact that, during Wesley's life- time, of the 690 men who acted under him as itinerant preachers, 249 relinquished the-itinerant ministry. These 249 retirers included not a few of the most intelligent, energetic, pious, and useful preachers that Wesley had. Some left him on the ground of health; others began business, because as itinerant preachers they were unable to support their wives and families; but a large proportion became ordained ministers in other churches. In some instances, the labors of these men, and their brother Methodists, led to marvellous results. To give but one example: David Taylor, originally a servant of lady Huntingdon, was one of Wesley's first preachers, but afterwards left the work. Taylor, however, was the means of converting Samuel. Deacon, an agricultural laborer; and the two combined were the instruments, in the hands of God, in raising up a number of churches in Yorkshire and the midland counties, which, in 1770, were organized into the New Connection of General Baptists; and that connection seventy years afterwards, in 1840, comprised 113 churches, having 11,358 members, a foreign missionary society, and two theological academies" (Methodist Magazine , p. 335).
Sunday-schools are now an important appendage of every church, and have been a benefit to millions of immortal souls; but it deserves to be mentioned that Hannah Ball, a young Methodist lady, had a Methodist Sunday-school at High Wycombe fourteen years before Robert Raikes began his at Gloucester; and that Sophia Cooke, another Methodist, who afterwards became the wife of Samuel Bradburn, was the first who suggested to Raikes the Sunday-school idea, and actually marched with him, at the head of his troop of ragged urchins, the first Sunday they were taken to the parish church.
The first British Bible Society that existed, "The Naval and Military," was projected by George Cussons, and organized by a small number of his Methodist companions. The London Missionary Society originated in an appeal from Melville Hormne, who for some years was one of Wesley's itinerant preachers, and then became the successor of Fletcher as vicar of Madeley. The Church Missionary Society was started by John Venn, the son of Henry Venn, the Methodist clergyman. The first Tract Society was formed by John Wesley and Thomas Coke in 1782, seventeen years before the organization of the present great Religious Tract Society in Paternoster Row-a society, by the way, which was instituted chiefly by Rowland Hill, and two or three other Calvinistic Methodists. It is believed that the first Dispensary that the world ever had was founded by Wesley himself in connection with the old Foundery, in Moorfields. The Strangers' Friend Society, paying every year from forty to fifty thousand visits to-the sick poor of London, and relieving them as far as possible, is an institution to which Methodism gave birth in 1785.
Building churches is one of the great features of the age. Unfortunately, England has had no religious worship census since 1851; but even then, according to the tables of Horace Mann, Methodism had, in England and Wales only, 11,835 places of worship, with 2,231,017 sittings. In America, according to the census of 1860, Methodism nine years ago provided church accommodation for 6,259,799, which was two and a quarter millions more than was provided by any other Church whatever.
The public press is one of the most powerful institutions of the day. England has four Methodist newspapers; Ireland, one; France, one; Germany, one; India, one; China, one; Australia, two; Canada and British America, five; and the United States about fifty.
VI. Outgrowth in Missionary Labors.
1. In English. or chiefly so. — Methodism was from its very inception a. missionary movement, domestic and foreign. It initiated, so to speak, both the spirit and plan of modern English mission work. Protestant England had manifested but a faint interest in this species of Christian labor until the birth of Methodism, and the spirit of life may be said to have been breathed into English missionary societies by Methodism. Nor need this astonish us. The Church of England recognised as its field the territory held by the Anglican throne; cold and almost lifeless at home, the residents in the colonies and other dependencies received but little religious care. Methodism, the outgrowth of a reawakened zeal for holy living, sought its fields not only in England and Ireland, but manifested early a strong desire for the spread of the Gospel into all parts. To this end Dr. Thomas Coke, in 1786, issued "An Address to the Pious and Benevolent, proposing an Annual Subscription for the Support of Missionaries in the Highlands and adjacent Islands of Scotland, the Isles of Jersey, Guernsey, and Newfoundland, the West Indies, and the Provinces of Nova Scotia and Quebec;" and in the year following the Wesleyan missions bore the distinctive title of "Missions established by the Methodist Society." Even before this organization had been effected, missionary labors were put forth in behalf of the residents of the West Indies. In 1791 Methodism reached out its hand after France, and its great schemes to Christianize Africa were brought to trial as early as 1811. In Asia labor was commenced in 1814; in Australia in 1815; in Polynesia in 1822; until, from the first call of Wesley for American evangelists, in the Conference of 1769, down to our day, we see the grand enterprise reaching to the shores of Sweden, to Germany, France, and the Upper Alps; to Gibraltar and Malta; to the banks of the Gambia, to Sierra Leone, and to the Gold Coast; to the Cape of Good Hope; to Ceylon, to India, and to China; to the colonists and aboriginal tribes of Australia; to New Zealand, and the Friendly and Fiji Islands; to the islands of the western as well as of the southern hemisphere; and from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Puget's Sound (comp. Alder, Wesleyan Missions [Lond. 1842], p. 4). From 1803 to the present time Wesleyan Methodism has contributed more than twenty millions of dollars for foreign evangelization. In England the Wesleyan Society to-day enrolls more communicants in its mission churches than. all other British missionary societies combined. The historian of religion during the, last and present centuries would find it difficult to point to a more magnificent monument of Christianity.
Methodist missions may, however, be said to have had their origin long before the founding of a society for the specific purpose of spreading its doctrines in foreign parts. "From its very beginning," says Stevens (Hist. of Methodism iii, 312), Methodism was characterized by a zealous spirit of propagandism. It was essentially missionary. Its introduction into the West Indies by Gilbert in 1760, and into Nova Scotia by Colughlan in 1765; the appointment of Pilmoor and Boardman to America in 1769, and its commencement at New York at least three years before this date; the formation successively of its Irish, Welsh, and English domestic missions, and the organization of a missionary 'institution' at least two years before the first of what are called modern missionary societies, attest its character as an energetic system of evangelization." But these wide developments of missionary energy, grand as some of them are in their historical importance, were but initiatory to that denominational missionary system which arose from Coke's project of an Asiatic mission (in 1786), to be headed by himself in person, requiring his life as a sacrifice, and thus constituting him, above the mere fact of being first bishop of American Methodism, and the first Protestant bishop of the New World, as the representative character of Methodist missions.
American Methodism has been aptly termed by Dr. Abel Stevens (Centenary of Amer. Meth. p. 187) "a missionary scheme," for it was clearly "the great home mission enterprise of the North American continent." The independent establishment of the colonies as a republic in 1776 largely altered the relation to England, and the -missionary body gradually ripened into a Church organization, from which, in turn, went out enterprises. The year 1819 is memorable in the history of American Methodism as the epoch of the formal organization of its missionary work. But these early labors were confined to the "home" fields, and aimed mainly at the conversion of the aborigines and slaves. It was some thirteen years later, during the session of the General Conference of 1832, that foreign missions were decided upon, and American Methodism commissioned its Gospel harbingers to carry the truth as it is in Jesus to the dark nations of South Africa, the Romish adherents of Mexico, and of South America. We give below some of the details of this-great work in particular fields. Besides its very extensive domestic work, the Methodist Episcopal Church has now missions in China, Corea, India, Africa, Bulgaria Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and South America. Its missions, foreign and domestic, in the year 1889 numbered 1239 circuits and stations, 3325 paid laborers (preachers and assistants), and 261,987 communicants. 'The funds contributed to its treasury, from the beginning down to 1865, amounted to about $6,000,000. About 350 of the missionaries were in 1866 reported to preach in the German and Scandinavian languages, and more than 30,000 of the communicants of German and Scandinavian origin.
"American, like British Methodism," says Stevens (Centenary of Amer. Meth. p. 199), "has become thoroughly imbued with the apostolic idea of foreign and universal evangelization. With both bodies it is no longer an incidental or secondary attribute, but is inwrought into their organic ecclesiastical systems. It has deepened and widened till it has become the great characteristic of modern Methodism, raising it from a revival of vital Protestantism, chiefly among the AngloSaxon race, to a world-wide system of Christianization, which has reacted on all the great interests of its AngloSaxon field, has energized and ennobled most of its other characteristics, and would seem to pledge to it a universal and perpetual sway in the earth. Taken in connection with the London and Church Missionary societies the British and Foreign Bible Society, the London Tract Society, to all of which Methodism gave the originating impulse, and the Sunday-school institution, which it was the first to adopt as an agency of the Church, it is not too much to say that it has been transforming the character of English-Protestantism and the moral prospects of the world. Its missionary development has preserved its primitive energy. According to the usual history of religious bodies, if not indeed by a law of the human mind, its early. heroic character would have passed away by its domestic success and the cessation of the novelty and trials of its early circumstances; but by throwing itself out upon all the world, and especially upon the worst citadels of paganism, it has perpetuated its original militant spirit, and opened for itself a heroic career, which need end only with the universal triumph of Christianity. English Methodism was considered, at the death of its founder, a marvellous fact in British history; but to-day (1866) the Wesleyan missions alone comprise more than twice the number of the regular preachers enrolled in the English Minutes in the year of Wesley's death, and nearly twice as many communicants as the Minutes then reported from all parts of the world which had been reached by Methodism. The latest (1865) reported number of missionary communicants in the Methodist Episcopal Church equals nearly one half the whole membership of the Church in 1819, the year in which the Missionary Society was founded, and is nearly double the membership with which the denomination closed the last century, after more than thirty years of labors and struggles."
2. Methodism among the French. — In the year 1790 Methodism was introduced among the French by English Wesleyan preachers, and in 1791 Dr. Coke ordained in a small village of Normandy the first French Methodist preacher. The work was successful, land a society of 100 members had been gathered when the storm of the Revolution prevented further progress, and in 1817 the work had to be begun anew. In 1819 Methodism was introduced into the south of France by Charles Cook, whose labors were eminently successful among the Protestants, who were then in such a state of ignorance and religious indifference that, out of some 400 ministers, not ten could be found who knew and preached the Gospel. Revivals ensued, classes were formed, societies were organized, preachers were raised, and in 1844 there was in France a Church of nearly 1500 members, with 24 travelling preachers. During the progress of the work the other churches had profited, however, by the reviving influence, and Methodism. being regarded as a "foreign importation," began gradually to lose in membership, so that by 1852 there were only 900 actual adherents to the Methodist Church, notwithstanding that the work of evangelization had progressed as usual. These circumstances prompted the Wesleyans to counsel the independent establishment of French Methodism in a distinct French Church, dependent upon the "parent body" for an annual stipend only. The first French Conference was held at Nismes in 1852. From that moment the tide turned again in favor of Methodism; and, notwithstanding the organization of other churches, some of which, it must be owned, have grown more rapidly, the Conference of 1890 reported 1518 members, 184 chapels and preaching-rooms, 53 Sunday- schools, 2539 Sunday-scholars, 101 local preachers, and 36 ministers, and some 9000 regular hearers at the public services. The official title of the Methodist body in France is The Evangelical Methodist Church of France and Switzerland. The French Methodists sustain a publishing-house at Paris, and issue a weekly paper, entitled L'Evaangelist. The "Methodist Episcopal Church" sustains one missionary in the suburbs of Paris, but he is a member of the Swiss Mission Conference, and his labors are intended to benefit only the German residents of the French metropolis.
3. Methodism among the Germans. — The Germans were first brought into direct contact with the Methodists in the United States of America. The United Brethren, who have always been in close communion with the Methodists, may really be said to have paved the way for the success of the work among the Germans. The labors of the Revelation William Otterbein, the founder of the United Brethren Church, and a warm personal friend of bishop Asbury, were thoroughly Methodistic, and the United Brethren Church was for many years considered by the Methodists a co-ordinate branch -of their own Church, having a special mission to labor and spread the doctrines of Methodism among the Germans. Turning their attention to the young generation and its wants, the United Brethren came to drop the tongue of the Fatherland, and thus alienated themselves from the field which Methodism anxiously sought to supply. A helper offered in the hour of need in the person of Jacob Albright, who, having been converted, and feeling himself called of God to preach the Gospel among the Germans of Pennsylvania, prayed for the sympathies of the Methodist Episcopal Church-for his project. Failing to secure the aid asked for, he finally struck out for himself, organized the converts God had given him into a Church, which he called the Evangelical Association, a work that has since been owned of God to the salvation of thousands upon thousands of Germans throughout the land. The Evangelical brethren have always claimed to be Methodists, are known as such among the Germans, and were in former years very much in the habit of styling themselves "The Evangelical Association, commonly called Albrights, or Albright Methodists." With blut slight modification, they have adopted the Methodist Discipline and Methodist usages. In the matter of doctrine they are Methodistic throughout, laying peculiar emphasis upon those experimental doctrines of Christianity-repentance, faith, regeneration and adoption, growth in grace,, and the duty and privilege of entire sanctification. Wesley, Watson, and Clarke are their standard authorities. They lay claim to the fathers of Methodism, thus priding themselves in a common origin with Methodists. At a very early date of their history when they numbered but a few hundred members, they proposed organic union with the Methodist Episcopal Church upon the sole condition of being permitted to use the German language in the public worship of their congregations, and of laboring exclusively among the Germans. Strange as it may now seem, the offer was rejected, under the erroneous impression which then prevailed that the German language would necessarily die out in a generation or so. Of course emigration had not then attained its present gigantic dimensions, nor were there any indications of results in this direction such as we witness in our day. Efforts looking to organic union between the Methodist Episcopal Church and the Evangelical Association have since been renewed.
In 1836 the conversion and call to the ministry of William Nast, a highly- educated German, a graduate of Tibingen University, moved the leading men in the Methodist Church to establish a domestic mission among the Germans, and it was intrusted to the newly-made convert. He travelled extensively through Ohio and Pennsylvania, and was eminently successful in impressing his countrymen with the need of a " higher" life. The progress of forming a congregation, however, was very slow. Thus after a whole year's labor at Cincinnati, among its thousands of Germans, subjected to the grossest insults, and in constant danger of bodily harm, preaching in the streets and market-places, distributing tracts and talking about Jesus and his salvation in the beer saloons and the tenement houses, he went up to Conference and reported the reception of three members, all told. But the final result was, after all, great and glorious. The influence of Nast's example gradually spread among the Germans, and converts came in numbers. From the little congregation, in the old Burke chapel on Vine Street, in Cincinnati, Methodism has made its inroads among the Germans of the United States with such a force that this branch of the Church now presents the results given in the tables below.
The German Methodists now possess two colleges one in Berea, Ohio, and one in Warrenton, Mo.; one Normal School in Galena, Ill.; and a "Mission House" at New York. They have also two orphan asylums one in Berea, Ohio, with sixty-five orphans, and one in Warrenton, Mo., with thirty-five orphans; the running expenses of these orphan asylums amount to nearly $14,000 per year, which sum is contributed by German Methodists. The value of the property of these institutions is over $250,000, besides an endowment fund of $57,000 of the German Wallace College at Berea, Ohio. The circulation of their official organ, the Christliche Apologete, is 1915, and of the Sonntag- und SchulGlocke (their Sunday-school paper) 26,000. Very recently a religious German monthly family magazine has been started, and it promises to be a success. The Germans of the Methodist. Episcopal Church, South, issue an official organ weekly, and a Sunday-school paper.
German Methodists returning to their native country impressed the German mind with the value of experimental religion, and in 1849 a mission was established in Germany by the Methodist Episcopal Church. Its first superintendent and most efficient worker was the Revelation L. S. Jacoby, DD., himself a German. But long before any effort had been made to establish missions in that country Methodism was already known there. Wesley had spent in 1738 nearly three months in Germany and Holland. and again in 1783 and 1786 shorter periods in the latter country, where he became acquainted with some of the most godly and learned men in those two centres of Protestant Christianity and enlightenment. The friendship of the Moravians contributed to make his name and doings still more widely known there. Nor was the German press silent while such a revival was going on in England. Dr. Burckhardt, a godly minister, of the Savoy Chapel, in the Strand, and an admirer of the Wesleys, published in Nuremberg a Complete History of the Methodists in England, which reached a second edition in 1795. Wesley's sermons were translated into German by Lutheran ministers, several of whom visited England and became greatly interested in Methodism. Since then Methodist literature has multiplied in Germany, until it would make up quite a formidable list both for and against the Methodists, The first Methodists who established themselves on German soil were the converts of a German named Albrecht, or Albright, who having embraced the Methodist doctrines in America, was pressed in spirit to engage actively in caring for the religious wants of his fellow countrymen in the United States. The work which he first organized, about the beginning of the century, has grown into vast proportions, under the name of the "Evangelical Association," noticed above. After having extended to thousands of the Germans of America, the Albrecht Methodists, as they are called abroad, began to extend their efforts towards the Germans in Europe. They held their sixtieth Conference in 1872 at Strasburg, where they commenced a work several years since. They have in all Germany 10,231 Church members, 286 Sunday-schools with 11,322 scholars, and 64 itinerant preachers. They have two periodicals, and have lately extended their field to Switzerland.
This work was strengthened by the establishment of a mission from the Wesleyans of England. A German layman of the name of Muller had been converted in London, and had become an exhorter and class-leader. Upon his return to Wurtemberg, his native place, after an absence of fourteen years, he could not conceal from his family the change which had been wrought in his heart, and he soon began to hold meetings from village to village. A revival took place, and the persons converted organized themselves in classes. Muller, finding himself in a work that demanded all his ability, gave up his secular business and devoted himself to the evangelization of his fellow-countrymen. This work, begun in .1831, has resulted in the founding of a number of small churches, which comprise (in 1873) a membership of 7026, and 6778 Sunday-school scholars, with 101 travelling and local ministers; and has extended from Wurtemburg into the duchy of Baden and to the borders of Austria.
But the grandest and most enterprising of the branches of German Methodism is unquestionably that of the American Methodist Episcopal Church, which, as we have seen above, took its rise from the work among the German emigrants in the United States. In 1852 this missionary field was constituted into an Annual Conference, and it now covers all the German-speaking people in Germany, Switzerland, and France, divided into seven districts: Bremen, Berlin, Frankfort, Ludwigshaven, Carlsruhe, Zurich, and Basle, which comprise more than sixty circuits or stations, with (in 1872) 73 travelling ministers, 386 places of worship, 229 Sunday- schools with 10,071 scholars, 6230 Church members, and 1369 probationers. This mission is thoroughly organized. It has a book publishing-house, which issues, besides a variety of treatises 'or books, every fortnight the Evangelist and Kinder-Freund; every month the Missionar-Sammler and Monatlicher Bote; and every quarter the Wachter Stimmen. It has also a theological college, which has had as its professors Dr. Warren, of Boston University, and Dr. Hurst, of Drew Theological Seminary. Its present instructors are Dr. Sulzberger and Nippert. It had had an existence of fourteen years, when, by the timely and princely gift of John T. Martin, of Brooklyn, N. Y., the present commodious and substantial building, four stories high, standing on a lot one hundred by five hundred feet, was erected, free of debt, at Frankfort-on-the-Main. The property is estimated at about $30,000. The following branches are taught: Greek, Latin, English, German, Hebrew, geography, arithmetic, music, homiletics, dogmatics, discipline of the Methodist Episcopal Church, history of Methodism, Church history, profane history, literature, archaeology, exegesis. There are at present twenty-seven young men in this school preparing for the ministry. Sixty or seventy ministers have already gone forth in the course of twelve years. About fifty-four labor in Germany, and others have come to America and are laboring here.
4. Methodism among the Scandinavians.- The Methodist Episcopal Church has also done immense service to the cause of personal religion by its missionary efforts among the Scandinavians, with whom the Church was brought face to face in this country. As early as 1845 these labors were commenced, under the auspices of the Home Missionary Society. The work has grown until it presents this imposing array:
For the last three years a monthly, called Missionaren, devoted to religion, has been published. A hymn-book has also been prepared for the members of this branch of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
The success of this work at home gave rise to the 'establishment of a mission to the Scandinavians in 1854. It now extends over Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. Its importance may be judged by the last annual report. In Denmark there are now 301 members, 6 classleaders, 3 exhorters, 2' local preachers, 20 regular appointments, and 4 missionaries, under the superintendence of the Revelation Karl Schon, at Copenhagen, where the mission possesses a very elegant church. In the other two countries the reports are as given in the two preceding tables.
5. Methodism in Australia.-Methodism at the beginning of this century found its adherents in Australia. The first class was organized March 6,1812. The first missionary to this colony was Samuel Leigh, who landed in 1815. At first the labors of the preacher were confined to the whites, particularly the convicts who had been transported hither from the mother country. Gradually the work was extended to the natives also. In-1853 Methodism had progressed so well that the formation of an independent Conference was counselled by the home Church, and in January, 1855, the first session of the Wesleyan Conference was held at Melbourne, and was presided over by the Revelation W. B. Boyce, at that time general superintendent of Methodist missions in Australia, now secretary of the Wesleyan Missionary Society, London. At that time there were some 60 preachers and 11,000 members. Now this bough of the vigorous tree planted by John Wesley divides itself into three branches. The first extends over Australia Proper and Van Diemen's Land, the Methodist districts in which adapt themselves to the colonial divisions of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia, and Tasmania. These are the home districts of Methodism in that region, the work in them being missionary only as regards a few surviving relics of the feeble aborigines, or the swarms of immigrant Chinese. The second branch of Australian Methodism divides itself over New Zealand into the two districts of Auckland and Wellington, and the work is of a mixed character, embracing the British settlers and the Maori. The third branch is purely missionary, and extends over the Friendly and the Fiji Islands. " These," said the Revelation G. T. Perks, at the anniversary of the Wesleyan Missionary Society, May 5, 1873, " have been among the most successful of modern missions." SEE FIJI ISLANDS. The statistics of these. missions speak for themselves: 23 European missionaries labor in connection with 63 native missionaries, and 906 native catechists, and 1796 local preachers; the number of Church members is 33,149. There are above 133,000 attendants at public worship in 802 chapels and in 357 other preaching-places. The work of education has not been neglected; 1568 day-schools, taught by 148 head teachers, and by 2469 subordinate masters, return 53,804 day- scholars, and about the same number attend the Sunday-schools, in which there are 3551 teachers." At the fifteenth session of the Conference in 1868, held at Sydney, the reports from all parts of the work were very encouraging. There were then 241 preachers and 57 native helpers. The collective totals of the Australian connection were, in 1868, 30,590 members, with 8953 persons "on trial." Australian Methodism has three flourishing high-schools-Newington College, at New South Wales; Wesley College, at Victoria; and Horton College, in Tasmania. Of late a theological school has been projected.
6. Methodism in the West Indies. -In no other missionary field has Methodism met with greater success than among this portion of the globe's inhabitants. The West Indies was, moreover, the first foreign field sought by the Wesleyans, and its history is closely linked to that of the founder, John Wesley, and his own associates. One of the natives, Nathaniel Gilbert, from Antigua, came under the influence of the Methodists while on a visit to England, and in 1760 returned to his native land to preach their doctrines to his countrymen. As they were bound by the heavy chains of slavery, he determined to bestow upon them the liberty of the Gospel. When he died two hundred had embraced the cause of Methodism. Their next leader was John Baxter, an Englishman, who had been licensed as "local preacher," and who had gone to the West Indies as a ship-carpenter. He preached for eight years, and did much good among the blacks. When the missionaries finally arrived, he was able to turn over two thousand adherents as the result of preparatory labors. In 1786 the home society set aside one man for the spread of missions in the West Indies. He was to accompany Dr. Coke to America, and then be transferred to his new field. On the way the company suffered shipwreck, and by mere accident all landed at Antigua, and, when Coke witnessed the glorious work begun, he left the three missionaries by his side-Warrener, Clarke, and Hammetin the country, and sailed alone to the United States. In 1792, when Coke visited the West Indies, and held a Conference at Antigua, the missionaries reported 20 stations, with 12 preachers and 6500 members. In 1873 the progress of Methodism in these parts was thus commented upon by the Revelation G. T. Perks, at the annual meeting of the Wesleyan Missionary Society (May 5): "The West Indian missions occupy a peculiar position in relation to other missions. The colonies of Jamaica, the Windward and Leeward Islands, the Bahamas, British Guiana, Honduras, and Hayti are mainly inhabited by the descendants of the Africans emancipated in 1834. The European population is comparatively small. No missions have had greater difficulties to contend against. Earthquakes, hurricanes, the pestilence, and occasional fires have from time to time destroyed life and property; the changes in the commercial policy of the British government operated for a while most injuriously in reducing the value of the staples of these colonies, and in some localities fearful droughts reduced the population to poverty and starvation. Our Maya mission to Honduras has been disturbed by Indian raids on the colony; and our societies in Ruatan, an island belonging to the republic of Honduras, have suffered from a political revolution, which is no strange event in the Spanish republics of America. Yet, in spite of these untoward circumstances, the West Indian colonies are gradually improving-agriculturally, commercially, and socially. The great want is an educated native ministry. The time since the emancipation has been but a short period in the history of a nation, and our moral and educational agencies have not been equal to the task of thoroughly changing the character and habits of the people within the lifetime of a generation. Yet over many of our churches we have great reason to rejoice; and, from what has been effected in their case, to look hopefully in reference to the future. In these missions we have 97 missionaries, 44,728 members, and 28,038 scholars."
7. Methodism in India. — Next in importance is the missionary work in India. The Wesleyans have labored there for years, but their expenditure on the field, both in men and money, is far inferior to that of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which has, especially within a very recent period, met with unprecedented success. But all Methodists have an equal interest in the success of this missionary field, to which the sainted Coke gave his life. SEE COKE. Work was commenced in 1813 at Ceylon. By 1819 the impression made warranted the establishing of schools in the principal cities along the western coast. In the mean time missionary labors had been commenced (1817) on the continent itself, with head-quarters at Bombay. At the time of the centennial of Methodism (1839) the mission in India counted 21 stations, 43 missionaries and helpers, and 1200 members. At present (1873) the field covering the Tamil and Singhalese districts, Calcutta, Mysore, and Madras. contains 2976 members, with 13,987 children in the schools, guided by 75 missionaries. These statistics do not give, however, an adequate impression of the nature and character of the work itself. In India and Ceylon the missionaries preach in the streets and bazars, as well as in the chapels; they make frequent missionary tours in their respective districts, to preach and converse, and circulate books in the villages. Much time is necessarily occupied in the training of native agents, and in the charge of the higher classes in the schools, as well as in the general superintendence of the educational department of this work.
The Methodist Episcopal Church sent its missionaries to these parts in 1856. The pioneer operations were confined to efforts for the education of the natives. By 1864 the work had progressed sufficiently to warrant the organization of an Annual Conference, divided into three districts. That field has since been covered by three distinct conferences and the mission of Malaysia. "Four male and five female missionaries left for India in October last; these are included in the above totals here are 541 members, 526 probationers, 735 non-communicant adherents (regular attendants on worship), with 1178 Sabbath-scholars, and the 86 native helpers, making a Christian community of 3066 souls under the charge of the India Conference in Oulde and Rohilcund, all won for Christ since the Great Rebellion closed. In the 34 Sunday-schools there are 107 officers and teachers, 1177 scholars, and 1088 volumes in the libraries; conversions during last year, 56. In the 45 vernacular day-schools for boys there are 1437 pupils; in the 25 Anglo vernacular boys' schools, 1968 scholars; in the 46 vernacular day-schools for girls, 915 pupils; in the Anglo-vernacular schools, 142 girls: being a total of 116 ;schools, 234 teachers, and 4462 scholars, including 138 orphan boys and 142 orphan girls-the entire expense of which, including the two orphanages, was $29,423 for the' past year, the whole of which was contributed by friends in India and the Ladies' Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church, with the American patrons of the orphan children." Medical instruction is afforded by some of the missionaries, and the natives have by this means been largely interested in Christian work and life. A Biblical institute for the training of native helpers is supported under the name of the "India Conference Theological Seminary." The school was commenced April 15, 1872. The number of young men in attendance has been sixteen, of whom thirteen have received-scholarships. The local preachers attended during the " hot season term." The following is the course of study pursued this first year, viz.: Old-Testament Exegesis; Church Catechism, Nos. 1, 2, and 3; Sacred Geography; Ecclesiastical History; Compend of Theology (Ilenilahi ka usul); Hand-book of the Bible (Miftah ul-Kitab); Homiletics; the Persian and Arabic languages. The Revelation D. W. Thomas, one of the missionaries in India, has given to this institution $20,000, and is now in the United States to increase the endowment, in order to make the school self-supporting.
Very recently the successful labors of the Revelation William Taylor, at Bombay, have added Western India to the missionary field of the Methodist Episcopal Church. No statistics have been published authoritatively, but accounts have appeared in the newspapers of the remarkable revival at Bombay, Poonab, and vicinity. Six itinerants are describing the Bombay circuit, and they do not consider their work as designed for the English and Eurasian populations alone, but for people in IndiaEuropean, Eurasian, Mahratta, Hindu, nominally Christian, Pagan, or Mohammedan.
8. Methodism among the Chinese and Japanese. — In 1847 the Methodist Episcopal Church opened operations in China, and the field has returned more than it at first promised. The gradual success of the work of this body has been given in the article on China (q.v.). The " parent" body-the Wesleyans were introduced into this field by the voluntary labors of George Piercy, a preacher, in 1851. Two years later the Missionary Society of his Church came to his aid by sending two assistants. The Methodist Episcopal Church, South. has also an interest in this field. The Wesleyans support at present in the Canton and Wuchang districts 11 missionaries, with 178 members, and 386 children in the schools. Work has recently been commenced by them at Kwang-chi, with prospects of success. They also support medical institutions. The great coolie traffic moved the establishment of a Chinese mission in Australia, and it is prospering. The mission of the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1890 reported its condition in China to be as follows: Missionaries in the field, 40; assistant missionaries, 29; missionaries of the Women's Foreign Missionary Society (a body lately formed as auxiliary to the regular Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church), 6; native preachers ordained, 79; adults baptized the past year, 558; children baptized the past year, 663; total baptisms during the year, 1221; members in full connection, 3987; probationers, 2385; baptized children, 6379; total members, probationers, and baptized children, 4387; increase, 78; Sunday- school scholars, 4387. A Biblical institute for the training of native helpers is supported. A Christian native teacher is employed, and each American missionary devotes part of one day every week to giving instruction in some special part in the course of study. There is a press connected with the mission, and last year one million and a half of pages of tracts were printed and distributed. The property of the mission is valued at $252,620. The mission has also two boarding-schools, one for boys and another for girls; a day- school, with 75 scholars; and a foundling asylum, with 30 inmates. The Woman's Foreign Missionary Society has greatly aided the work in these parts within the past two years by the employment of deaconesses.
The influx of Chinese on our Pacific coast aroused the interest of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and in 1867 a home mission was inaugurated for their conversion. The present status of this field of labor is as follows: Missionaries, 2; members, 115; 1 church, value $20,000; I parsonage, value $1000; missionary collections, $40; missions, 1; money, $3500. The Methodist Episcopal Church, South, has also very recently commenced operations there, Near the close of last year a Methodist mission was established at Japan under the auspices of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Dr. Maclay, formerly superintendent of the mission in China, has supervision, and he hopes to make this new effort a glorious success. Already a native of influence and rank in the empire has espoused this cause, and is now preaching.
9. Methodism in Africa.-Dr. Coke was early drawn towards this field of missionary labor. But all efforts proved unsuccessful until 1811, when a Methodist mission was established at Sierra Leone, commencing its labor with a membership of 110, and three local preachers, who had fostered the work for some time. Gradually the mission extended to the Gambia districts. In these parts of Western Africa the natives are in process of training, under the Christianizing influences of the Wesleyans, to benefit them by the civilization which too often has been made a means of degradation to their race. The majority of the ministers in Africa are natives, educated and trained for their work. Twenty-one missionaries labor in this field, which has 8974 Church members. "In the 'Cape Colony, the Orange Free State, Trans-VaalRepublic, and Natal, the native and European populations are so mingled that it is impossible to separate the returns of the colonial work from those of the missions in Kaffirland and in the Bechuana country. The early history of the mission is identified with the names of Barnabas and William Shaw, the latter, the honored father of the Kaffir mission, is no longer among us, but his work survives. These missions have been since their beginning, tried by native wars, and by the unsettlement of the population occasioned by emigration, and by' the discovery of the diamond fields; but the work is rapidly advancing. A large number of the Kaffir population have been brought under Christian influence; thousands of scholars have been trained to read the Word of God in their own tongue, and many able native ministers have been raised up. The difficulty now is to meet the enlarged educational wants and requirements of the native people. In these missions 85 ministers labor; the number of Church members is 13,748, and the scholars reported are 13,821" (Perks, in his address already quoted).
The Methodist Episcopal Church established a mission in Liberia in 1832. By 1836 the formation of an Annual Conference became necessary, and at present a bishop presides over this field. We have the following summary of statistics for 1890: Members, 2954; deaths, 67; probationers, 224; local preachers, 58; baptismsadults, 121; children, 85; churches, 16. of the probable value of $31,430; parsonages, I, of the probable value of $150; Sabbath - schools, 41; officers and teachers, 405; scholars, 2614; day- schools. 15; scholars in dayschools, 450; volumes in libraries, 1127; collections for the support of the Gospel, $1282. SEE LIBERIA.
The Conference, at its last session, expressed its deep sense of the need of a more thorough training of men for the holy ministry, and took incipient steps towards the establishment of a Biblical institute. Measures have also been taken for the establishment of a mission in the Kong mountains, north and east of Liberia and Sierra Leone, where dwell the Mandingoes, perhaps the most cultivated tribe on the western coast of Africa. SEE MANDINGO. Ten thousand dollars have been appropriated for this work.
10. Methodism in Italy, Spain, and. Portugal. -For some time the Wesleyans have supported missionaries in each of these countries. Late events have given a new impetus to the work, and it promises to yield fruit in abundance. Besides two English ministers, seventeen Italians are preaching Methodist doctrines. At Rome the Wesleyans are now in possession of suitable buildings for preaching and educational purposes, and at Naples the new chapel and schools are advancing towards completion, while their educational establishment at Padua is in efficient operation.
The Methodist Episcopal Church in 1871 decided to establish a mission in that country, and placed the Revelation Dr. Vernon in charge. Bologna has been selected as head-quarters.
In Spain, Methodism supported for years a mission at Gibraltar, the only spot available until the new order of things developed. At present there are stations at Barcelona and Port Mahon (in the island of Minorca), and in Portugal at Oporto.
11. Methodism in South America and Mexico. — In 1836 missionary work was commenced in South America, but the success of the mission has not yet been fairly established. There are connected with this work 1;8 ordained preachers and 6 assistants, with 985 members. The Sunday- schools number 21.13 teachers and scholars, and the day-school 1379 scholars. About half of these are charity scholars.
In November, 1872, the Methodist Episcopal Church organized a mission for Mexico, under the superintendence of the Rev, William Butler, DD., formerly superintendent of her work in India. The enterprise is too recent to enable us to say much about it.
12. In Bulgaria the Methodist Episcopal Church established a mission in 1857. Connected with it are two ordained preachers, one at Constantinople and the other at Tultcha. These missionaries are engaged in preaching the Gospel, scattering religious reading, and translating the New Testament into the Bulgarian tongue. The appropriation is $19,320.
13. Recapitulation.- The number of Methodists outside of England and America, according to the best information we can obtain, was in 1866 as follows:
Australia 42,194 West Indies 41,592 Ireland 29,060 Africa 19,403 British Provinces 1,297 Germany and Switzerland 7620 France 1,884 Ceylon 1,661 Norway 1,200 India 1,000 China 336 South America 193 Turkey 75 Total 161,515 The whole number of Methodists in the world would therefore figure at the present time about as follows:
United States and Canada 2,591,875 Great Britain and Ireland 931,450 All others 276,675
VII. Literature.-The sources for the history and doctrine of the Methodists are as follows: Works of John Wesley (first complete edition, Bristol, 1771-74, 32 small volumes, full of typographical errors; 2d ed. 1809-13, 16 vols. 8vo, with a register, also containing errors; a critical edition was prepared by Thomas Jackson and published, London, 1831,14 vols. 8vo; NY. 1831, 7 vols. 8vo); Memoirs of the late John Wesley, with a Review of his Life and Writings, and a History of Methodism from its Commencement in 1729 to the present Time, by John Hampson, AB. (Sunderland, 1791, 3 vols. 12mo; translated into German, with remarks and additions by Niemeyer, Halle. 1793, 2 vols.); Burkhardt, Complete History of the Methodists in England (Nurnb. 1795, 2 vols.); Life of the Revelation John Wesley, A.M., including an Account of the great Revival of Religion in Europe and America, of which he was the first and chief Instrument, by Dr. Coke and Mr. Moore (Lond. 1792, 8vo); Life of John Wesley, collected from his private Papers and printed Works, and written at the Request of his Executors; to which is prefixed some Account of his Ancestors and Relations; with the Life of Charles Wesley, collected from his private Journal, and never before published-the whole forming a History of Methodism, in which the Principles and Economy of Methodism are unfolded (chiefly from a London edition published by John Whitehead, MD., Dublin, 1805, 2 vols. 8vo). For the sources of these biographies, see Curry, Remarks, in the. addition to his revision of Southey's edition, 1:405, 406; Sermons by Charles Wesley, with a Memoir of the Author (Lond. 1816); Journals, of Charles Wesley, to which are appended Selections from his Correspondence and Poetry, with an Introduction and Notes by the Rev. T. Jackson (Lond. 2 vols. 8vo); Thomas Jackson, Memoirs of Charles Wesley, comprising Notices of his Poetry, of the Rise and Progress of Methodism, and of contemporary Events and Characters (Lond. 8vo).; William Myles, Chronological History of the People called Methodists, of the Connection of the late Rev. John Wesley, from their Rise in the Year 1729 to their last Conference in the Year 1802 (Lond. 1803, 12mo); Life of Wesley, and Rise and Progress of Methodism, by Robert Southey, Esq., LLD., with Notes by the late Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Esq.; and Remarks on the Life and Character of John Wesley, by the late Alexander Knox, Esq., edited by the Revelation Charles C. Southey, MA. (2d American edition, with Notes, etc., by the Revelation Daniel Curry, DD. 2 vols. 12m, N. Y. 1847); Richard Watson, Observations on Southey's Life of Wesley (Lond. 1820); R. Watson, Life of the Rev. John Wesley (Lond. 1831); A. Clarke, Memoirs of the Wesley Family (Lond. and N. Y.); Wm. C. Larrabee, Wesley and his Coadjutors (N. Y. 2 vols. 16mo); E. Janes, Wesley his own Historian (NY. 1872, 12mo); the Revelation L. Tyerman, Life and Times of John Wesley, Founder of the Methodists (Lond. and NY. 1872, 3 vols. 8vo); and by the same author, The Oxford Methodists (Lond. and NY. 1873, 8vo); Complete Works of John Fletcher (Lond. 1815, 10 vols. 8vo; N. Y. 1831, 4 vols. 8vo); Joseph Benson, Life of the Revelation John Willian de la Flechere (Fletcher), compiled from the Narrative of the Revelation Mr. Wesley, the biographical Notes of the Revelation Mr. Gilpin, from his own Letters, and other authentic Documents (Lond. 1817, 8vo;. in German, with a Preface by A. Tholuck, Berlin, 1833); Samuel Drew, Life of-the Revelation Thomas Coke, LLD., including in Detail his various Travels and extraordinary Missionary Exertions in England, Ireland, America, and the West Indies, with an Account of his Death (Lond. 1817, 8vo; N. Y.1847, 12mo); Extracts of the Journals of the Revelation Dr. Coke's Five Visits to America (Lond. 1793, 12mo); Stevenson, City Road Chapel, London (Lond. 1863, 12mo); Annual Minutes of the Methodist Conference, from the First held in London by the late Revelation John Wesley, in the Year 1744 (several vols.); Arninian Magazine, from 1778, now styled Wesleyan Methodist Magazine (Lond.); London (Quarterly Review, since 1853; the great ecclesiastical weeklies Watchman, Wesleyan Times, etc. See also Gillie, Life of the Revelation George Whitefield (Lond. 1813); Philip, Life of Whitefield; Life and Times of the Countess of Huntingdon (Lond. 2 vols.); Mudge, Lady Huntingdon Portrayed (N. Y. 1857); Lives of' Early Methodist Preachers, edited by -the Revelation Thomas Jackson (Lond. 1839, 2 vols. 12mo); and numerous biographies from the time of the origin of Methodism.
Sources for the history of the Methodist Episcopal Church especially: Journals of the Revelation Francis Asbury, Bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church (new ed., N. Y. 1854. 3 vols. 12mo); Minutes -of the Annual Conferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church (N. Y. 29 vols. 8vo); Journals of the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church (N. Y. 12 vols. 8vo); Methodist Quarterly Review (NY. 54 vols.); A. Stevens, Memorials of the Introduction of Methodism into the Eastern States (N. Y. 2 vols.); J. B. Finley, Sketches of Western Methodism (N. Y.
12mo); and similar researches by Peck, Raybold, and others; Wakely, Lost Chapters recovered from the Early History of American Methodism ; id. Heroes of Methodism (N. Y. 12mo); Coles, Heroines of Methodism (N. Y. 12mo); Stevens, Women of Methodism (N. Y. 12mo); Revelation W. Reddy, Inside Views of Methodism (N. Y. 18mo); W. P. Strickland, History of Missions of the Methodist Episcopal Church (N. Y. 12mo) ; Bishop Thomson, Our Oriental Missions (N. Y. 2 vols. 16mo); W. C. Smith, Pillars in the Temple, or Lives of Deceased Laymen of the Methodist Episcopal Church (N. Y. 16mo); Deems, Annals of Southern Methodism; Miller, Experience of German Meth. Preachers (Cincinnati. 1859); Strickland, Life of Bishop Asbury; id. Pioneers of the West (NY. 12mo); Stevens, Life and Times of Nathan Bangs (N. Y. 1863); id. Sketches and Incidents (N. Y. 18mo); Larrabee, Asbury and his Coadjutors; Life and Letters of Bishop Hamline (NY. 12mo); Sandford, Wesley's Missionaries to America; G. Peck, Episcopacy and Slavery.
Collective histories of Methodism: the best universal history of Methodism which the Methodist Episcopal Church has ever produced is Dr. Abel Stevens's History of the Religious Movement of the Eighteenth Century called Methodism, considered in its different denominational Forms, and in its Relation to British and American Protestantism (NY. and Lond. 1858-61, 3 vols. 8vo and 12mo). The best history which was ever written in England is by Dr. George Smith: History of Methodism-vol. i, Wesley and his Tines; vol. ii, The Middle Age of Methodism; vol iii, Modern Methodism (Lond. 1857-62, 3 vols. 8vo). Earlier works: Jackson, Centenary of Wesleyan Methodism (Lond. 1839); Jonathan Crowther, Portraiture of Methodism, or the History of the Wesleyan Methodists, showing their Rise, Progress, and present State; Biographical Sketches of some of their most eminent Ministers; the Doctrines the Methodists believe and teach fully and explicitly stated; with the whole Plan of their Discipline, including their original Rules and subsequent Regulations. Also a Defence of Methodism (Lond. 1815, 8vo). Concerning the history of the Methodist Episcopal Church especially: Nathan Bangs, Hist. of the Meth. Episc. Church from the Year 1766 to 1840 (N. Y. 1839-41, 4 vols. 12mo); A. Stevens, Hist. of. the Meth. Episc. Church (N. Y. 1865-67, 4 vols. 8vo and 12mo); Lee, Hist. of the Methodists; Strickland, Hist. of the Missions of the M. E. Church (1st ed. Cincinnati. 1849); Goss, Statistical Hist. of Methodism (N. Y. 1866,. 18mo); R. Emory, Hist. of the Discipline of the M. E. Church, revised and brought down to 1856 by W. P.
Strickland (1st ed. NY. 1843); Charles Elliott, Hist. of the great Secession from the M. E. Church in the Year 1845, eventuating in the Organization of the new Church, entitled the M. E. Church South (Cincinnati. 1855, 8vo);. Hist. of the M. E. Church in the South-west from 1844 to 1864, by the Revelation Charles Elliott, DD., LLD., edited and revised by the Revelation Leroy Vernon, DD. (St. Louis,: Mo., 1872, 12mo). On Canada: G. F. Playter, Hist. of Methodism in Canada (Toronto, 1862, 12mo); Gorrie,: Lives of Eminent Methodist Ministers; etc.
Books on Methodism. (a.) Polemical books. Innumerable anti-Methodistic works have been published since the days of Wesley. A list of 277 such books,. which, however, are now almost forgotten, is given in alphabetic order by H. D. Decanver: Catalogue of. Works in Refutation of Methodism, from its Origin in 1729 to the present Time (Phila. 1846). (b.) Philosophical (pragmatical) studies: Isaac Taylor, Wesley and Methodism (Lond. 1851)-Introduction; 1, Founders of Methodism; 2, Substance of Methodism; 3, Form of Methodism; 4, Methodism of the Future. Mir. Taylor, a copious Calvinistic writer of the Anglican Church, was once a Dissenter; BF. Tefft, Methodism Successful, and the Internal Causes of its Success (N. Y. 1859). (c.) More or less apologetic are, James Porter, Compendium of Methodism, embracing the History and present Condition of its various Branches in all Countries, with a Defence of its Doctrinal, Governmental, and Prudential Peculiarities (N. Y. 1851; 16th ed. 1860, 12mo); George Smith, The Polity of Wesleyan Methodism exhibited and defended (Lond. 1852, 12mo); P. D. Gorrie, Episcopal Methodism as it was and. is (Auburn, N. Y. 1852, 12mo); Bishop Emory, Defence of our Fathers (NY. 8vo); T. E. Bond. Economy of Methodism (NY. 8vo); J. Dixon, Methodism in its Economy (Lond. and NY. 18mo)'; N. Bangs, Responsibilities of the M. E. Church (NY. 18mo); A. Stevens, Church Polity (NY. 12mo); Morris, Church Polity (NY. 12mo); L. S. Jacoby, Handbuch des Methodismus, embracing its history, doctrine, government, and peculiar ceremonies (Bremen, 1853, 12mo); Thomas Jackson, Wesleyan Methodism ai Revival of Apostolical Christianity, a centenary sermon (Lond. and N. Y. 1839); Dixon, Methodism in its Origin, Economy, and present Position (Lond. and N. Y. 1843, 18mo); Wise, Popular Objections to Methodism Considered and Answered (Boston, 1856, 12mo); Rigg, Essay on the Principles of Methodism (Lond.); Shrewsbury, Methodism Scriptural (Lond.); Thomas Bond, The Economy of Methodism Illustrated and Defended (N. Y. 8vo); Jackson, Letter to Dr.
Pusey, being a Vindication of the Tenets and Character of the Wesleyan Methodists against his Misrepresentations and Censures (Lond. and N. Y.); F. Hodgson, Ecclesiastical Polity of Methodism Defended (Lond. and NY.); Henkle, Primary Platform of Methodism (Louisville, Ky., 1851); F. J. Jobson, America and American Methodism (NY. 1857, 12mo); Strickland, Genius and Mission of Methodism (NY. 1851); Turner, Constitution of Methodism (Lond. 12mo); W. J. Sassnett, Progress, considered with particular Reference to the M. E. Church, South (Nashville, 1855, 12mo); N. Bangs, Present State, Prospects, and Responsibilities of the M. E. Church (N. Y. 1850); John Bakewell, Admonitory Counsels to a Methodist, etc. (N. Y. 18mo); Bishop Baker, Guide in the Administration of the Discipline of the 3. E. Church (N. Y. 16mo); Hawley, Manual of Methodism (N. Y. 12mo).
Among the earlier apologetical works of Methodism, Fletcher's Checks to Antinomianism, covering the first two volumes of his whole works (see below), ranks deservedly as the ablest and most learned defence of Arminianism; and, indeed, it proved quite a polemic against Calvinism. The same writer furnished one of the best polemics against Socinianism, provoked by Priestley. The ablest treatise on systematic theology, from a Methodistic stand-point, was furnished by Dr. Richard Watson in his Theological Institutes, a work which to this day remains the text-book of Methodist students in divinity. An elaborate Analysis was prepared for it by the late senior editor of this Cyclopaedia, the Rev. Dr. John M'Clintock. Editions innumerable have been published of the Institutes, with the Analysis, both in this country and in England (1st edition Lond. 1822- 1828, in 6 parts; N. Y. 2 vols. 8vo; Nashville, Tenn., 1 vol. 8vo). There is also a compilation of Methodist doctrines, entitled Wesleyana: a System of Wesleyan Theology (NY. 12mo). See also Meth. Qu. Revelation 1853, Jan. p. 136 sq.; North. Amer. Revelation 1865, April, p. 593 sq.; Wesleyan Meth. Magazine, 1866, Feb.; Good Words, 1866, Jan.; Lond. Qu. Revelation Oct. 1872; D. D. Whedon, in the Bibliotheca Sacra, April, 1862; J. T. Peck, in the Meth. Qu. Revelation April, 1870; J. Porter, in the Meth. Qu. Revelation April, 1871; D. A. Whedon, in the Meth. Qu. Rev. Jan. 1868, and April, 1870; D. D. Whedon, in the Meth. Qu. Rev. 1866, p. 124, 276, 312, 443; 1872, April and Oct. art. iii; 1873, Jan. p. 138 sq.; Lond. Rev. Oct. 1854, art. v; North Brit. Rev. 1852, Feb.; Ch. Examiner, vol. iv; North Brit. Rev. 32:269; Newell Culver, Methodism' Forty Years Ago and Now (NY. 1873, 18mo); Malcom, Theological Index, s.v.; and the excellent Catalogue of the Boston Library (2d or consolidated edition, July, 1873). Dr. Abel Stevens, in his Hist. of Methodism, reckons that at least 1500 titles would be required to make up a fair bibliography of Methodism. The Revelation William F. Warren, I).D., in his Systematische Theologie einheitlich behandelt (Bremen, 1865, 8vo), besides giving the position of Methodism in systematic theology somewhat in detail, has furnished a very elaborate compilation of Methodist literature, which is quite complete up to the time of the publication of his book; it covers p. 168-186. In England, Dr. Osborn prepared a treatise on the literature of the Wesleyans (Lond. 1868, 8vo). Very recently a work was commenced by the Revelation Dr. Sulzberger, of Frankfort-on-the-Main, which is intended to be a full treatment of Methodist doctrinal theology for the use, especially, of German students. Vol. i appeared in 1873.