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Missions, Slavery, And The Anglican Pulpit, 1780–1850

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Chapter Summary

Preaching to non-Christians was intended to raise missions' &t;profile&t;, while for even the abolitionists the redemption of souls generally took priority over legal freedom. This chapter attempts a critical analysis of the missionary movement's preaching and offers a thesis about the development of the sermon as the chief transformational tool in British Christianity's great extroversion, a movement spiritual as well as geographical. Despite the fact that Africans' perceived moral turpitude was not blamed for their becoming slaves, the metaphors around slavery, spiritual freedom, knowledge, and understanding were so fundamental to inherited thinking that the distinction between slave workers and enslaved souls was never made. Mid-century Anglican evangelicals like Hay Aitken and the great F.W. Robertson, both with ministries in Brighton, preached &t;missionary sermons&t; and expounded a theology of universal brotherhood and mutual responsibility. Seamen's Missions were established in many home ports as well as on the imperial trade routes.

Keywords: 1780-1850; anglican pulpit; British Christianity; missionary movement's preaching; missionary sermons; Seamen's Missions; slavery



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