Sunday, August 20, 2006

Insights on Wesley

"For Wesley, there was no contradiction between sacramental and evangelical religion, as these terms were later formulated. He was both a Catholic sacramentalist - if by that is signified a deep attachment and devotion to the given forms through which God has promised to convey His grace and in which the believer is confirmed in faith and his life sanctified - and a revivalist who saw in the Supper a means not only of sanctification but of preaching unto conversion and justification. Without denying any of the richness of his Anglican eucharistic heritage, he broadened it to include new elements. This is paralleled by the fact that he adhered to the Anglican liturgy while at the same time adding characterist Methodist features, notably hymns and extempore prayer. The Catholic and Protestant features were present also in doctrine, and, as with baptism, Wesley strove for a genuine via media between the extremes of both positions..."

from John R. Parris, John Wesley's Doctrine of the Sacraments. London: The Epworth Press, 1963, pgs 95-96.

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