Arminian Methodist Connexion

This short-lived denomination originated with a Redditch schoolmaster, Henry Breeden, when he moved to Derby. It led to a division in the Derby WM Circuit (hence the alternative name, 'Derby Faith Folk') in January 1832. Strongly revivalistic in nature, it has been characterized as the only secession that occurred on doctrinal grounds. Its members emphasized entire sanctification and were charged with holding Sandemanian views. Some of the leaders were semi-Pelagian, believing that it was not necessary to pray for faith.

Breeden 'was powerfully seconded by his able and accomplished usher, an old Grove lad, Thomas Graham, who had honourably resigned his place in our ministry, on finding himself definitely out of harmony with our doctrine.' (Benjamin Gregory) Like other revivalist groups, it made use of women preachers, notably Elizabeth Ann Evans. The movement spread into other Northern and Midland counties and at its height numbered about 1,800 members. It amalgamated with the WMA in 1837, but several circuits later withdrew, becoming independent, linking with the WRU or ceasing to exist.

  • WHS Proceedings 23, pp. 25-8
  • William Parkes, The Arminian Methodists (Cannock, 1995)