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The first conference, held in London, commenced June 25; consisted of six clergymen and four lay preachers, and lasted five days

Mr. W. preached the sermon on "Scriptural Christianity" before the University of Oxford, August 24: his last discourse before that learned body

The Band Rules published, December 25
Ten preachers this year began to travel: three were clergy-

men

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Mr. Grimshaw, vicar of Haworth, unites with the Methodists Second conference, held in Bristol, commenced August 1, and consisted of ten preachers. Subjects considered were church government, justification, sanctification Thirteen preachers this year join: one a clergyman Third conference, in Bristol, May 13: present, eight preachers 1746 Circuits first mentioned this year. The following were the

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first: London, Bristol, Cornwall, Evesham, York, Newcastle, and Wales. Each was some hundreds of miles in circumference .

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Probably circuit stewards were now appointed
Eight preachers join: one a clergyman

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Fourth conference in London, June 16: present, 17 preachers 1747

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Now 22 assistants, and 39 local preachers .
Ireland first visited by Mr. Wesley, August 4
Twelve preachers join, one a clergyman

Kingswood school opened for the education (chiefly at first,
altogether afterward) of preachers' children, June 24. A
yearly collection in the congregations to aid the school
commenced, and continued to this day

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Mr. W. began the compilation of the

Christian Library,"

published in 50 volumes. Union again established between Mr. Wesley and Mr. White

field

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Persecution of the Methodists in Cork

Mr. Wesley married a Mrs. Vizelle: after 20 years' disturbing, she left him, and died 1781

Mr. Thomas Walsh commences traveling

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Scotland first visited by Mr. Wesley .

James Wheatly expelled the connection: the first expulsion of a preacher. June 25.

Disputes respecting union with the Church of England now

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commenced

Mr. John Bennet and others separated frou. Mr. Wesley First conference in Ireland: seven preachers traveled there this year.

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Five preachers left the connection, and became ministers of
Independent congregations. They were eminent men, but
there was no provision for their wives and children .
At the twelfth conference it was decided not expedient to se-
parate from the church

The Form of Renewing the Covenant first used in the Lon-
don society, August.

The yearly collection for contingencies commenced in the classes

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The chapel debt now amounted to nearly 4,0007.
The 13th conference closed by Messrs. J. and C. Wesley
solemnly declaring that their intention was, never to sepa-
rate from the church

Mr. Fletcher first assisted Mr. Wesley, March 13
Mr. Alex. Mather, the first married preacher taken into the
connection, and his wife the first provided for by a fixed
sum of money. Her allowance was 4s. per week, but four
guineas a year were afterward added. Before this the fa-
milies of preachers had a precarious supply sometimes
the stewards attended to, and at other times heeded not,
their wants

·

Mr. Charles Wesley ceased his itinerancy, and settled in
Bristol

.

Mr. Wesley published his Twelve Reasons against separat-
ing from the Church of England
At the 16th conference the subject of Christian perfection
again largely considered, and soon after Mr. W. published
"Thoughts on Christian Perfection"

George III., succeeding his grandfather, declared, in his first
speech from the throne, his determination to "maintain
the toleration inviolable"

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The work of entire sanctification, languishing for 20 years, greatly revived among the Methodists in England and Ireland, and grew for some years

Thomas Maxfield and others separated from Mr. Wesley,

who would not countenance their religious extravagances A Greek bishop ordained one of the preachers The Twelve Rules of a Helper now first published The probation of a preacher determined to be one year The Deed of Trust published and recommended to the societies "The Preachers' Fund" instituted for relieving old and sickly preachers, or the widows and children of preachers This year there were 20 circuits in England, 2 in Scotland,

2 in Wales, 7 in Ireland-total 31 circuits

Mr. Wesley wrote his Catholic Letter to the Converted Cler-
gy, entreating them to unite with him in reforming the na-
tion; but they declined

Minutes of Conference now first published
This year 96 preachers occupied 39 circuits, and 24 preach-

ers began to itinerate

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[Here ends the first race of Methodist preachers: it began 1739, ended 1765, and included 26 years. This race comprised 220 preachers, a few of whom were only local preachers, but men zealous for the cause. 1. Of this race 15 were clergymen before they became Methodist preachers; and 16 were made clergymen after. 2. There died in the work 83 traveling preachers. 3. There departed from it, from lack of health, or zeal, or support for families, or from change of doctrines, or other causes, 111. 4. Expelled from the office, eight. 5. This race was more noted for ardent piety than extensive learning. Yet some were men of deep erudition; and the most were men of good natural understanding, of sound religious experience, of great knowledge of the Scriptures, and of VOL. IX.-July, 1838.

87

noble spirit. 6. Their ministerial labors were vast, as they usually traveled 20 or 30 miles a day, besides preaching twice or three times. Their zeal astonished the nation, and roused the regular clergy.] Mr. Whitefield attended the 24th conference in London This year there were 40 circuits, 104 preachers, and 25,911 members

1767

Quarterly fasting first appointed to the societies.

Mr. Asbury admitted on trial

Remarkable work of God among the children in Kingswood
School

At the 25th conference a great want of preachers felt
The celebrated expulsion of six students from the Oxford
University for holding Methodistic tenets. Mr. M'Gowan's
sermon of "The Shaver" quickly followed

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6

First resolved that preachers should not work at trades
North America calling, two preachers went
Methodism introduced into Newfoundland
Resolved by the conference that a preacher should receive
121. a year for his wife, and 41. for each of his children
Propositions discussed by the conference, and published in
the Minutes, gave birth to the Rev. Walter Shirley's cir-
cular; and this gave rise to the long controversy between
the Calvinists and Arminians in which Mr. Fletcher was
so conspicuous
Mr. Whitefield died at Newburyport, New-England, Sept.
30; his funeral sermon preached by Mr. Wesley, Nov. 16
Mr. Wesley published his "Thoughts on Public Affairs"
Mr. Shirley and his friends came to the 28th conference to
protest against the propositions

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Mr. Joseph Benson admitted on trial

Messrs. Asbury and Wright sent to America

Preachers signed "Articles of Union" at this conference and

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the two next

Mr. Samuel Bradburn admitted on trial

Mr. Wesley published his "Thoughts on Slavery"

Mr. John Crook, a zealous local preacher, visited the Isle of
Wight: his preaching followed by uncommon success
The conference declared, "We all deny that there is or can
be any merit, properly speaking, in man"

In Great Britain and Ireland 155 traveling preachers
Dr. Coke unites with Mr. Wesley, August 13

American colonies revolting, Mr. Wesley published "An Ad-
dress to the Colonies," and "Observations on Liberty"
The opinion of the conference was, "That the Methodists are
not a fallen people".

Notices of the deaths of preachers now first published in the
Minutes

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First volume of the Arminian Magazine published
The New Chapel in London opened, November 1
The first general decrease of members and collections
The Foundry Chapel now forsaken

Mr. Henry Moore admitted on trial
The large Hymnbook published. Dated Oct. 20, 1779
Mr. Wesley wrote and published an address to the members

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1770 1771.

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and friends of the Methodist societies, requesting aid for the Preachers' Fund; and the people cheerfully contributed. 1781 Agreed, That no more married preachers be called to itinerate, as we have neither money nor houses for any more wives

Mr. Wesley preached to a congregation of 23,000 persons in
Gwenap pit, Cornwall, September 1

Dr. Coke delegated to hold a conference in Dublin. In Ire-
land there were 25 circuits, 34 preachers, and 6,472 mem-
bers.

1783

Trustees of Bristol Chapel desired to choose their preachers 1783 Mr. Adam Clarke admitted on trial

1783

Dr. Coke requested to travel through England, to procure the settlement of the preaching houses on the Methodist plan

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Mr. Wesley visited Holland

Consultation about sending missionaries to the East Indies; but it was deemed, at present, inexpedient

Deed of Declaration executed, constituting 100 preachers
"The conference of the people called Methodists," Fe-
bruary 28

Four preachers, offended by the Deed, left the connection
Trial of preachers lengthened to four years
Methodism introduced into Jersey by a gentleman named
Brackenbury.

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Dr. Coke ordained by Mr. Wesley, and sent to superintend the societies in North America

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Rev. Mr. Perronet, vicar of Shoreham, died May 9

Sunday schools, begun 1784, recommended to the societies
for their adoption, by Mr. Wesley .

Rev. John Fletcher, vicar of Madeley, died August 14
Mr. Wesley ordained three preachers for Scotland
At the 43d conference Mr. Wesley advised the preachers
never to preach a funeral sermon but for a person emi-
nently holy*

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W. Bramwell and Jon. Edmondson admitted on trial
Two preachers left in the West Indies by Dr. Coke: now
commenced the West Indian mission

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Mr. Wesley again visited Holland

The Conventicle Act not being repealed, Mr. Wesley was
induced to have preachers and preaching houses licensed
Mr. Wesley ordained three other preachers
Mr. Charles Wesley departed this life, March 29
A conference, first and last time, held in Scotland
Trustees of Dewsbury Chapel, claiming the right of reject-
ing preachers, and meeting with a denial, withheld their
chapel, and another chapel was built
Rules published by Mr. Wesley for "Strangers' Friend So-
cieties:" a charity begun by the Methodists in London in
1784

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* A resolution embracing the same sentiment passed the Conference in NewEngland in 1777. Why the general departure from this example and the above advice?

Mr. Wesley preached his last field-sermon at Winchelsea,
September

Attended the 47th conference, the last he visited

Now the connection had greatly increased: there were in England 65 circuits, 195 preachers, 52,832 members. 29

Ireland

67

14,106

7

566

Wales
Scotland

18

1,086

3

2,580

13

4,500

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3

8

9

7

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Isle of Man

West Indies.

4-125

6-299

800-76,470.

British America
Mr. Wesley preached his last sermon at Leatherhead, from
66 Seek ye the Lord while he may be found," &c., Feb. 23 1791
Sickened Feb. 25; died, March 2, in the 88th year of his age

and 65th of his ministry; and buried March 9

1791 [Here ends the second race of Methodist preachers: it lasted 25 years, and embraced 476 men. 1. This body possessed more knowledge than the preceding. 2. Nine were clergymen before they be3. The came Methodist preachers; and nine were made such after. members increasing, the circuits were contracted, and the preachers more at home. 4. As the preachers were now better known, they were less persecuted. 5. During this period the circuits, members, and preachers trebled the number of the former period.] The 48th conference assembled at Manchester: more than

Connection agitated on the union with the Established
Church: the conference resolved to follow strictly Mr.
Wesley's plan.

200 preachers present. Mr. W. Thompson, a preacher for 34 years, the first president; and Dr. Coke, the secretary 1791 Married men, becoming preachers, required to possess an income to support their wives independently of the con

nection

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Mr. Wilberforce sent a present of 102 volumes on the slave trade, and a letter, to the conference, desiring them to assist in petitioning for the abolition of the trade in negroes; they cheerfully complied

The circuits now formed into districts, each to have not less
than three, nor more than eight circuits

The 49th conference assembled in London; Mr. Alexander
Mather, president

Dispute with Dr. Whitehead concerning the "Life of Mr.
!. Wesley"

Seditious publications causing national uneasiness, the conference resolved, "None of us shall speak lightly or irreverently of the government"

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Decided by lot that the societies this year should not receive the sacrament from the preachers

Conference addressed the people for the first time
Preachers' sons not admitted into Kingswood School to re-
ceive each 127. per annum for education .
The conference addressed Mr. Asbury and the American
preachers on the division caused by one of the West India
missionaries in Charleston

His majesty annulled the act of the assembly of St. Vincent,

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