Planned by William O'Bryan for circulation among the c 5000 members of what became a new Methodist denomination, this was first published in 1822 as The Arminian Magazine and consisted of 'Extracts and Original Treatises on Universal Redemption'. Both its title and its contents reflected the format and Arminian stance of the magazine launched by John Wesley in 1778. In an introduction 'To the Reader', O'Bryan recommended it to the members of his societies, some of whom thought that all books other than the Bible were largely useless. It was printed and published by S. Thorne, first from Stoke Damerel and later from Shebbear. In 1828, under its new editor J, Thorne, the title was changed to Bible Christian Magazine. He made it his pulpit for his educational, chapel building and missionary enthusiasms as well as for championing Temperanceteetotalism and nonconformist rights. F.W. Bourne, editor from 1866 to 1899, with an eye on approaching Methodist Union, widened its ecumenical coverage, stating its purpose as to chronicle 'whatever takes place that is of concern to the Methodist group of churches'. Despite this, it remained the house journal O'Bryan had intended, as the series on 'Living Friends in Active Circuits' (1901-1903) exemplifies.
Entry written by: CCS and TS
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