The word Methodists refers generally to Protestant Christians affiliated with a denomination that originated in early mid-18th-century England. A group of Anglican students at Christ Church in Oxford, desiring more from their church, formed the Holy Club, which met regularly for prayer and worship, to visit prisoners, and to hold one another accountable for living holy lives. Despite criticism from fellow students, this group’s energy proliferated into a worldwide movement. It gained momentum from original Holy Club members, British brothers John and Charles Wesley; later, in America, George Whitfield; and many others who labored with them and after in the birth of the Methodist Church.

Today, over 30 million people are affiliated with one of many Methodist denominations. Their emphasis on social justice, one’s personal ...

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