HISTORY

Important Dates in the Early History of John Street Church

1703         
John Wesley born in England.

1710 
3000 Protestant German immigrants settle in Ireland. They will become known as “The Irish Palatines.”

1730           
While a student at Oxford University, Wesley becomes the leader of a spiritual renewal group.  The group’s methodical approach to integrating Christian teachings into their daily lives earns them the nickname “Methodists.”

1738           
On May 24, Wesley attends a religious meeting on Aldersgate Street in London during which he experiences assurance of God’s saving grace noting, “I felt my heart strangely warmed.” 

1740’s           
Methodism gains momentum as a renewal movement within the Church of   England.

1739           
Rev. George Whitefield delivers the first sermon in NYC by a Methodist preacher. His efforts are well received but do not result in the establishment of any permanent congregations.

1752           
Wesley converts Philip Embury, an Irish Palatine, living in Limerick County, Ireland.  Embury becomes a Methodist lay preacher and class leader.

1760           
Embury, his cousin Barbara Heck, and other passengers on the ship Perry sail from Limerick to New York City.

1766           
On October 12, at Heck’s insistence, Embury preaches to five people in his home, the first meeting of our congregation.

1768           
On October 30, Wesley Chapel on John Street is dedicated.  Over 400 people attend the service.

1771           
Francis Asbury, “the most important figure in early Methodism in America,” preaches his first sermon at Wesley Chapel.

1784           
Methodists in America formally separate from the Church of England, creating the Methodist Episcopal Church.  Wesley Chapel becomes John Street Methodist Episcopal Church. 

1796           
Peter Williams, James Varick, and other black members of John Street Church start their own congregation, an event recognized as the birth of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church.

1817           
The second building on our present location is built.

1841           
Our current church is built.    
              
1858           
Fanny Crosby, one of Christianity’s most beloved writers of hymns, begins a long association with our congregation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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