Chapter

<i>‘Poor Sinnership’: Moravian Narrative Culture</i>

D. Bruce Hindmarsh

in The Evangelical Conversion Narrative

Published in print March 2005 | ISBN: 9780199245758
Published online April 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191602436 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199245754.003.0006
 ‘Poor Sinnership’: Moravian Narrative Culture

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The narrative culture that emerged among English Moravians out of the original undivided revival movement in the 1730s bore witness to a different view of conversion. Consequently, among the Moravian laity we are able to observe a sub-genre of the evangelical conversion narrative, one in which soul-distress under the preaching of the law (the Pietist Busskampf) was replaced by the ideal of self-abandonment and childlike trust in the love of the bleeding Saviour. Moravian conversion narratives differed from the Methodist narratives in three principal ways: they were more quietist and less agonistic; they were more preoccupied with devotion to the bodily suffering of Christ than with monitoring inner emotional states, a devotion that passed over into responding to Christ as a wounded lover and bridegroom; and their narratives were more shaped by liturgical rhythms. These emphases looked back to Zinzendorf’s own formation and his distinctive theology and are well illustrated in the case of the English convert Martha Claggett.

Keywords: bridegroom; Busskampf; childlike; liturgical; liturgy; Martha Claggett; Moravian; quietism; quietist; suffering; Zinzendorf

Chapter.  14827 words. 

Subjects: History of Christianity

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