Open to All Parties

Chris Beneke

in Beyond Toleration

Published in print November 2006 | ISBN: 9780195305555
Published online September 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199784899 | DOI:
  Open to All Parties

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This chapter examines religious discourse in mid-century America, which was characterized by unprecedented ecumenism and surprisingly widespread praise for integration. Beginning in the mid-1740s, religious writers stressed the common principles that Protestants of all denominations shared. During the same period, colonial institutions of many types declared themselves “open to all parties” — by which they usually meant all religious parties. Extended accounts of the Free Mason movement, the legislative assemblies of New York and Philadelphia, and the fight for control of King’s College (Columbia University), demonstrate a growing consciousness of religious diversity and the increasing priority accorded to interdenominational cooperation.

Keywords: ecumenism; integration; Protestants; denominations; open to all parties; free masons; New York; Philadelphia; King’s College; religious diversity

Chapter.  14631 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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