Large Minutes

In 1753 John Wesley published a compendium of the published and unpublished Minutes of the Conferences from 1744. Five further revisions were made in his lifetime, the last in 1789. It became the custom to give an inscribed copy of these 'Large Minutes' to a preacher when he was received 'on trial' and another when he was received into full connexion. The 1789 edition continued in use until Lord Chancellor Lyndhurst's judgment in Dr. Samuel Warren's case in 1835 described it as 'a mere guide and assistant to the preacher', treating as legally authoritative instead the 'Collection of Rules, or Code of Laws' adopted by the Conference in 1797. The latter Code was therefore substituted as the Large Minutes, and continued substantially unaltered until it was superseded in 1896 by J.S. Simon's Summary of Methodist Law and Discipline.

See also Constitutional Practice and Discipline

  • J.S. Simon, A Summary of Methodist Law and Discipline (5th edn., 1923), pp.xi-xv
  • W.F. Swift in WHS Proceedings, 31 (1957-8) pp.158-9
  • Edmund Grindrod, Compendium of the Laws and Regulations of Wesleyan Methodism (1842) pp.371-409
  • Henry D. Rack (ed.), The Methodist Societies: the Minutes of Conference, in 'The Works of John Wesley', vol. 10 (Nashville, 2011) pp.105-6