Around the time the Methodist revival in England completed its first decade, John Wesley penned an essay called A Plain Account of the People Called Methodists. His aim is to explain the Methodist movement to the larger world, which he does by describing the various internal components of the revival that had developed during Methodism’s first ten years.

One of the components Wesley focuses upon is the prominent place of lay leadership within Methodism. He makes it clear that the revival is not a clergy-driven enterprise. As Wesley tells it, Methodism has many roles for laity that allow them to serve in active ministry. He describes the roles of Lay Preachers and Stewards. He documents the contributions of Class Leaders and Visitors of the Sick. Each of these “offices” has a set of responsibilities attached to it. Each of them is also empowered to do ministry—shepherding the members of the local Methodist societies in ways designed to care for them, nurture their discipleship, and push them forward in mission… Click here to continue reading

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Wesleyan AccentWesleyan Accent provides free and subscription resources for Christian spiritual formation, catechesis, and discipleship in the Wesleyan way. By clearly articulating the Wesleyan understanding of Christian faith, WA seeks to strengthen discipleship, empower mission and evangelism, cultivate ministry gifts of young leaders, and nurture the professional and service life of young theologians.

Andrew C. Thompson joined the writing team of WA upon its launch in the Fall of 2013. For the full catalog of his articles on the WA site, click here.