Chapter

The Western Schism

Grayson Carter

in Anglican Evangelicals

Published in print February 2001 | ISBN: 9780198270089
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683886 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198270089.003.0005

Series: Oxford Theological Monographs

The Western Schism

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The Western Schism has remained an obscure and virtually unexplained footnote in the history of the Church of England ever since its outbreak in 1815. Although episodic clerical secessions from the Church had occurred among Evangelicalism during the previous century, especially within its Methodist branches, such disruptions were surprisingly few and inconsequential. Despite fears that the Schism would produce a wave of Evangelical secessions throughout England and Ireland, its influence was largely confined to the counties of Surrey, Hampshire, Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon, and Gloucestershire. The Schism had presented a distorted version of Evangelical theology — advancing, among other things, unorthodox Trinitarianism and Christology, and antinomianism — and had strained relations between Evangelicals and their fellow Anglicans. The significance of the Schism lay less in the secession of a handful of little-known clergy and lay people from the Church of England, and more in the damage that it inflicted on Evangelical claims to represent Anglican orthodoxy and in the pattern it set for further outbreaks of theological extremism.

Keywords: Western Schism; secession; Church of England; Evangelicalism; Trinitarianism; Christology; antinomianism; Evangelicals; Anglicans

Chapter.  19489 words. 

Subjects: Christianity

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