Perronet, Charles

Perronet, Charles a Wesleyan preacher in the days of the founder of Methodism, and one of the companions of the Wesleys, was born about 1720 at Shoreham, England, where his father was then vicar. He was educated at Oxford University, and was untended for the ministry in the Church Establishment. But becoming interested in the Wesleyan movement, like his brother Edward and his father, Charles accompanied Charles Wesley in 1747 to Dublin, and traveled for more than half a year over Ireland. This was his initiation into the itinerant ministry, and he became a most efficient helper in the Wesleyan cause. When Charles Perronet joined the Conference we have been unable to determine. His name does not appear in the appointments or minutes even as late as 1753, but as many of Wesley's assistants did not join the itinerant ranks, it is possible that Perronet simply labored as the opportunity opened. In 1755, at the twelfth Conference, e.g., there were present 63 preachers, who are subdivided into three classes; the first is a list of 34 names, beginning with John and Charles Wesley, headed "Our present itinerants are." The second is a list of 12 names, headed "half itinerants; "the third contains 14 names, who are called "our chief local preachers." "These half itinerants," says Smith (Life of Wesley, p. 288), "were unquestionably men who gave themselves up to travel under Wesley's direction." Charles Perronet must have belonged to this class. Aug. 12. 1776, we find the death of Charles Perronet recorded, and he is spoken of as an itinerant Methodist preacher of "more than twenty years' faithful service." "He was a living and a dying witness of the blessed doctrine he always defended entire sanctification. 'God,' he said shortly before his death, 'has purged me from all my dross; all is done away. I am all love.'" See Arminian Mag. 1871, 529; Stevens, Hist. of Methodism, 2:260.

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