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To this period is to be referred the origin of some of the minor American sects.

The "United Brethren in Christ" grew into a distinct organization about the year 1800. It arose incidentally to the Methodist evangelism, in an effort on the part of Philip William Otterbein, of the German Reformed Church, and Martin Boehm, of the Mennonites, to provide for the shepherdless German-speaking people by an adaptation of the Wesleyan methods. Presently, in the natural progress of language, the English work outgrew the German. It is now doing an extensive and useful work by pulpit and press, chiefly in Pennsylvania and the States of that latitude. The reasons for its continued existence separate from the Methodist Church, which it closely resembles both in doctrine and in polity, are more apparent to those within the organization than to superficial observers from outside.

The organization just described arose from the unwillingness of the German Reformed Church to meet the craving needs of the German people by using the Wesleyan methods. From the unwillingness of the Methodist Church to use the German language arose another organization, "the Evangelical Association," sometimes known, from the name of its founder, by the somewhat grotesque title of "the Albrights." This also is both Methodist and Episcopal, a reduced copy of the great Wesleyan institution, mainly devoted to labors among the Germans.

In 1792 was planted at Baltimore the first American congregation of that organization of disciples of Emanuel Swedenborg which had been begun in London nine years before and called by the appropriately fanciful name of "the Church of the New Jerusalem."

 

FOOTNOTES:

[210:1] Quoted in Tiffany, p. 289, note. The extreme depression of the Protestant Episcopal and (as will soon appear) of the Roman Catholic Church, at this point of time, emphasizes all the more the great advances made by both these communions from this time forward.

[211:1] Preface to the American "Book of Common Prayer," 1789.

[211:2] See the critical observations of Dr. McConnell, "History of the American Episcopal Church," pp. 264-276. The polity of this church seems to have suffered for want of a States' Rights and Strict Construction party. The centrifugal force has been overbalanced by the centripetal.

[213:1] Tiffany, pp. 385-399.

[216:1] Bishop O'Gorman, pp. 269-323, 367, 399.

[218:1] Buckley, "The Methodists," pp. 182, 183.

[219:1] Jesse Lee, quoted by Dr. Buckley, p. 195.

[222:1] Newman, "The Baptists," p. 305.

[222:2] _Ibid._, p. 243.

[224:1] Tiffany, p. 347; McConnell, p. 249.

[225:1] Dr. Richard Eddy, "The Universalists," p. 429.

[225:2] _Ibid._, pp. 392-397. The sermons of Smalley were preached at Wallingford, Conn., "by particular request, with special reference to the Murrayan controversy."

[227:1] Leonard Bacon, of New Haven, in conversation.

[228:1] Eddy, p. 387.

Source: A History of American Christianity chapter 13, by Leonard Woolsey Bacon etext available at the Project Gutenberg website