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Pursuing Social HolinessThe Band Meeting in Wesley's Thought and Popular Methodist Practice$
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Kevin M. Watson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199336364

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199336364.001.0001

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(p.182) Conclusion
Pursuing Social Holiness

Kevin M. Watson

Oxford University Press

The conclusion argues that the prior lack of a focused study of the early Methodist band meeting marked a significant gap in Wesleyan studies. It is argued that the history of the band meeting helps one understand the class meeting, which was an extension of the benefits of “social holiness” Wesley found in the bands. It is also argued that Wesley’s understanding of holiness cannot be adequately understood without an appreciation of the role of small group formation in early Methodism. Two areas of further study are also highlighted, the select societies, and the prayer meetings (which likely facilitated the ease with which Methodists adopted the camp meeting). Finally it is argued that the history of the band meeting has potential to inform contemporary reflection in Wesleyan faith communities about the role of small groups for Christian formation, as well as contributing to a more accurate understanding of “social holiness.”

Keywords:   band meeting, camp meeting, Christian formation, class meeting, holiness, Methodism, prayer meetings, select societies, social holiness, Wesley

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