Religion, Gender, and Industry: Exploing Church and Methodism in a Local Setting

Religion, Gender, and Industry: Exploing Church and Methodism in a Local Setting

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Overview

Synopsis:

What part did religion play in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Britain? How did the local situation differ from the national picture? What was the role of women in society and the church? And how did the emerging centers of industrial activity interact with the places in which they sprung up? These are wide questions, but they can be seen in microcosm in one small area of the English midlands: the parish of Madeley, Shropshire, in which was the "birthplace of the industrial revolution," Coalbrookdale. Here, the evangelical Methodist clergyman John Fletcher ministered between 1760 and 1785, among a population including Catholics and Quakers as well people indifferent to religion. Then, for nearly sixty years after his death, two women, Fletcher's widow and later her protégé, had virtual charge of the parish, which became one of the last examples of Methodism remaining within the Church of England.

Through examining this specific locality, these essays engage particularly with areas of broader significance, including: Methodism's roots and growth in relation to the Church of England, religion and gender in eighteenth-century Britain, and religion and emerging industrial society. The last decade has seen substantial growth in studies of John and Mary Fletcher, early Methodism, and its relationship to the Church of England. Religion, Gender, and Industry offers a contribution to this developing area of research. The groundbreaking essays in this volume are written by an international group of scholars and present the latest research in this field.

The contributions in this volume, originally presented at a conference in Shropshire in 2009, address these themes from multidisciplinary perspectives, including history, theology, gender studies, and industry. In addition to furthering knowledge of Madeley parish and its relation to larger themes in eighteenth-century Britain, the impact of the Fletchers in nineteenth-century American Methodism is examined.

Endorsements:

"Local studies sometimes paint richly textured portraits of people and places that reveal the complex matrix of real life. This is one of those studies. A collection of essays on church and Methodism in the parish of Madeley in Shropshire, this book offers a model of interdisciplinary collaboration at its best. If you love to see how faith, work, and life connect for real people in an ever-changing world, this book is for you."
-Paul W. Chilcote
Professor of Historical Theology and Wesleyan Studies
Ashland Theological Seminary

"This valuable volume is to be welcomed for bringing the Fletchers further out from Wesley's shadow. It is instructive to see them expertly assessed from the perspective of recent historiography: John as model Evangelical pastor of an industrializing parish and as a theologian whose insights into holiness, mysticism, and charismatic piety continue to engage transatlantic attention; Mary as an enduring inspiration to women preachers and leaders."
-John Walsh
Emeritus Fellow
Jesus College, Oxford


Editor Biography:
Geordan Hammond is Lecturer in Church History and Wesley Studies, Nazarene Theological College and Director of the Manchester Wesley Research Centre, UK.

Peter S. Forsaith is Research Fellow at The Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History, Oxford Brookes University, UK.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781608996421
Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Publication date: 11/04/2011
Pages: 258
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Geordan Hammond is Lecturer in Church History and Wesley Studies, Nazarene Theological College and Director of the Manchester Wesley Research Centre, UK.

Peter S. Forsaith is Research Fellow at The Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History, Oxford Brookes University, UK.

Table of Contents

Foreword D. Bruce Hindmarsh vii

Introduction Geordan Hammond Peter S. Forsaith xi

1 Religion, Gender, and Industry in the Eighteenth Century: Models and Approaches Jeremy Gregory 1

2 John Fletcher's Parishioners: Reflections on Industrial Revolution and Evangelical Revival in the Severn Gorge Barrie Trinder 25

3 John Fletcher's Silent Bishop: Lord James Beauclerk of Hereford William Gibson 38

4 Church and Chapel: Methodism as Church Extension David R. Wilson 53

5 John Fletcher's Links with Mystical Methodists and Swedenborgians Peter James Lineham 77

6 "Adoring the Holy Trinity in Unity": John Fletcher's Doxological Trinitarianism Kenneth M. Loyer 92

7 Women, Work, and Worship in the Trefeca Family 1752-1773 ErynM.White 109

8 Mothers in Christ: Mary Fletcher and the Women of Early Methodism Brett C. Mclnelly 123

9 Support Groups for Methodist Women Preachers 1803-1851 John H. Lenton 137

10 "Oh That the Mantle May Rest oh Me!": The Ministry of Mary Tooth Carol Blessing 156

11 Holding Tightly to "the Promise of the Father": Phoebe Palmer and the Legacy of the Fletchers of Madeley in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Methodism Harold E. Raser 173

12 John Fletcher as the Theologian of Early American Methodism Laurence W. Wood 189

13 The Long Fletcher Incumbency: A Personal View of the Context and Continuity Peter S. Forsaith 205

List of Contributors 223

Index 225

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