Experience and Good Order

David Bebbington

in Victorian Religious Revivals

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199575480
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741449 | DOI:
Experience and Good Order

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In 1857 a revival at Union Church, Moore County, North Carolina, revealed an interplay between uninhibited undenominational religion and disciplined Presbyterian management. The event was marked by memories of earlier boisterous revivals and promoted by ministers of strongly exuberant temperament. The circumstances of the congregation also encouraged emotional display. Yet their Scottish background and learned traditions inhibited the expression of experiential religion. Calvinist theology and Presbyterian order had the same effect, establishing a distance from Methodists and Baptists. Women, children and slaves were not prominent, but the farmers and inhabitants of a nearby town set a restrained tone under the leadership of their minister. The result was the containment of experience by good order.

Keywords: revival; Union Church; Moore County; North Carolina; Presbyterian; Scottish; Calvinist; women; children; slaves

Chapter.  12613 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Christianity

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