Methodist Family - Events By Name

African Methodist Episcopal Church

In 1816, the African Methodist Episcopal Church formed after years of unequal treatment with white Methodists. It is the oldest existing African-American denomination in the U.S.

African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church

The African Methodist Episcopal Zion (AMEZ) Church formed in 1821 as a response to racial discrimination and segregation.

Christian Methodist Episcopal Church

In 1870, the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church formed after southern black Methodists desired to form their own denomination following the Civil War.

Church of the United Brethren in Christ

In 1800, the Church of the United Brethren in Christ formed as a result of evangelizing German immigrants. It is the first uniquely American denomination.

Congregational Methodist Church

In 1852, the Congregational Methodist Church broke off from the Methodist Episcopal Church, South over church governance disputes.

Death of Francis Asbury

Francis Asbury’s 1816 death marked the end of an influential 55-year ministry, but American Methodists continued to flourish following his death.

Duke University Founded

A group of Methodists and Quakers founded a subscription school in 1838 that would eventually become Duke University.

Emory University Founded

In 1836, the Methodist Episcopal Church founded Emory College in Georgia.

Evangelical Methodist Church

In 1946, the Evangelical Methodist Church formed in response to fears of liberalism within the Methodist Church.

Fanny Crosby Writes "Blessed Assurance"

Fanny Crosby’s "Blessed Assurance" (1873) became one of the most popular Christian hymns.

Female Ordination Controversy in Methodist Episcopal Church

In 1880, Anna Howard Shaw and Anna Oliver both were denied ordination rights by the Methodist Episcopal Church, stirring tensions regarding female ordination.

First Camp Meeting, Rehoboth, NC

In 1794, Daniel Asbury and the Methodists held the first recognized camp meeting in the United States.

First Methodist Missionary Societies Organized

In 1819, American Methodists organized their first missionary societies in New York and Philadelphia.

First Methodist Societies Established

From 1763 to 1766, the first Methodist societies in America were established in Maryland, Virginia, and New York.

First Wesleyan Missionaries Arrive in America

Though Methodists were already in America, John Wesley sent Richard Boardman and Joseph Pilmore to America in 1769 in order to further spread Methodism.

Francis Asbury Arrives in America

Methodist missionary Francis Asbury travels from England to America in 1771 and becomes the leader of American Methodism.

Free Methodist Church

Benjamin Titus Roberts and John Wesley Redfield founded the Free Methodist Church in 1860 after failing to reform the Methodist Episcopal Church.

Freedmen's Aid Society

In the 1860s, the Freedmen's Aid Society formed with the goal of increasing educational opportunities for blacks in the American South.

George Whitefield's First American Preaching Tour

George Whitefield's preaching tour (1739-1740) helped propel his career as the preeminent revivalist of the First Great Awakening.

Indian Manual Training School Founded in Oregon

In 1835, Methodist missionaries established a mission and manual labor school for American Indians, which was largely unsuccessful.

James O'Kelly's Congregational Revolt

In 1792, James O'Kelly, concerned with the power of bishops, led the first schism in the American Methodist Church.

John and Charles Wesley Visit America

In 1736, John and Charles Wesley arrived in Savannah, Georgia. Although disappointing, the mission impacted the early stages of Methodism.

John Chivington Leads Sand Creek Massacre

In 1864, former Methodist Episcopal Church pastor John Chivington led a massacre against Colorado Native Americans, now known as the Sand Creek Massacre.

John R. Mott Awarded Nobel Peace Prize

In 1946, John R. Mott was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for promoting religious peace through his ecumenical efforts.

Marjorie Matthews Elected Bishop

Marjorie Matthews was elected bishop in the United Methodist church in 1980. She was the first female elected bishop of any mainline Christian church.

Mary Evans Thorne Appointed Class Leader

Mary Evans Thorne is believed to be the first woman appointed as a class leader in American Methodism around 1770.

Methodist Episcopal Church

In 1784, the Methodist Episcopal Church became the first official Methodist denomination in the United States.

Methodist Episcopal Church, South

In 1845, the contentious issue of American slavery divided the Methodist Episcopal Church into Northern and Southern denominations.

Methodists Approve Full Ordination of Women

In 1956, the Methodist Church finally permitted the full ordination of women after years of resistance.

Northern and Southern Factions of the Methodist Episcopal Church Reunite

The Methodist Episcopal Church and the Methodist Episcopal Church, South reunited in 1939, nearly a century after the issue of slavery divided them.

Pilgrim Holiness Church

The Pilgrim Holiness Church (1897) was originally a Methodist prayer league that grew into a denomination by the early 20th century.

President McKinley Addresses Methodist Ministers on Philippines

On November 21, 1899, President William McKinley told Methodist leaders that he had been divinely inspired to annex the Philippines.

Publication of Autobiography of Peter Cartwright

Peter Cartwright’s Autobiography (1856) recounts the famous Methodist circuit rider’s life, from his conversion to his encounters with famous American figures.

Publication of Religious Experience and Journal of Mrs. Jarena Lee

Jarena Lee’s 1836 autobiography is one of the first extended life accounts of a black woman in America.

Sojourner Truth's Methodist Conversion

In 1843, Sojourner Truth converted to Methodism and found her calling as an important social activist for blacks as well as women.

The Christian Advocate First Published

In 1826, the Methodist Episcopal Church commissioned the Christian Advocate, a weekly newspaper that became one of the most popular periodicals in the country.

The First Great Awakening

The First Great Awakening (1730s-1770s) was a series of religious revivals that propelled the expansion of evangelical denominations in the colonies.

The Methodist Social Creed Adopted

In 1908, the Methodist Episcopal Church developed an official creed to address social problems of poverty and child labor exploitation.

The Second Great Awakening

The Second Great Awakening(s) (1790s-1840s) fueled the rise of an evangelical Protestant majority in antebellum America, giving rise to new denominations and social reform organizations.

The Wesleyan Methodist Church Connection

In 1843, abolitionists split from the Methodist Episcopal Church over slavery and church governance.

Thomas Coke's Anti-Slavery Resolution, "Christmas Conference"

The Christmas Conference of 1784 allowed American Methodists to establish their new denominational identity in the United States and to reaffirm their opposition to slavery.

UMC General Conference Denies Sexuality Amendment

In 2008 and 2012, the United Methodist Church denied changes in the Book of Discipline, which would have permitted a more liberal stance on homosexuality.

Union Church of Africans

In 1813, the Union Church of Africans became the first independently organized black church in the United States.

United Methodist Church

In 1968, Methodist Episcopal Church and the Evangelical United Brethren Church merged to form the United Methodist Church, the largest Methodist denomination in the United States.

Vanderbilt University Founded

In 1873, Vanderbilt University was founded in Nashville, Tennessee with the initial goal of training local Methodist ministers.

Wesleyan Church

In 1968, the Wesleyan Methodist Church and the Pilgrim Holiness Church merged to form the Wesleyan Church.

Wesleyan College

In 1836, Wesleyan College was founded in Macon, GA. It is the oldest college for women in the world.

Wesley's A Collection of Hymns, for Use of the People Called Methodists

This 1780 hymnbook, written by John Wesley, became the definitive hymnbook for Methodists.

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