Wright, Dr Charles James
1888-1967; e.m. 1912

Born in Glasgow. A protégé of Thomas H. Barratt, he gained a London PhD for a thesis on Miracle in History and in Modern Thought (published 1930) and was tutor in Systematic Theology and Philosophy of Religion at Didsbury College 1930-1942. In 1937 he published Modern Issues in Religious Thought. The most liberal theologian Methodism ever produced, he broadened the outlook and liberated the minds of some students. He was well thought of by the philosopher Samuel Alexander. The Anglican Modern Churchman H.D.A. Major allocated the Fourth Gospel to him in the symposium The Mission and Message of Jesus (1937). During World War II he was much involved with the Manchester Free Churches and the Religion and Life Campaigns. Frustrated in Methodism, he was ordained in the Church of England in 1944, but his time there was unhappy. He fell foul of Archbishop Fisher for his views on the Virgin Birth and suffered a severe nervous breakdown. He had welcomed Tillich, but was not capable of further serious theological work.

  • C.J. Wright, 'My Reasons for Entering the Church of England' in Modern Churchman, Dec 1944
  • Alan M.G. Stephenson, The Rise and decline of English Modernism (1984) pp.146, 191