In history today, March 2 1791 John Wesley founder of Methodism died in London.
Wesley was born in a strong Anglican home. His father Samuel was a priest and his mother Susanna taught religion and morals faithfully. In 1729, John joined his brother Charles, Robert Kirkham and William Morgan in a religious study group called “Methodists”. Taking over leadership from his brother, John helped it to grow.
Wesley’s followers first met in private home ‘societies’. Because of increasing numbers, Wesley organized classes to pray and read the Bible. Apart from that, they discuss their spiritual lives and collect money for charity. From such humble beginnings, today Methodists number about 30 million worldwide.
Despite of criticism and persecution, Wesley persevered. In his words, “The world is my parish” which is famous among Methodists. John travelled 4,000 miles, preaching some 40,000 sermons in his lifetime. Methodism gradually moved out of the Church of England though Wesley remained Anglican until he died.
He had 71,668 British members, 294 preachers, 43,265 American members with 198 preachers and 19 missionaries according to Christian Today.Wesley is such an inspiration, not to mention, his influence on today’s Methodists.
“Do all you can, by all means you can, in the ways you can, in all the places you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can”-John Wesley