Christianity in the 18th century

See also: Christianity in the 17th century and Christianity in the 19th century For broader coverage of this topic, see Christianity in the modern era. George Whitefield, leader in the first Great Awakening

Christianity in the 18th century is marked by the First Great Awakening in the Americas, along with the expansion of the Spanish and Portuguese empires around the world, which helped to spread Catholicism.

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Protestant Pietism, evangelicalism

Global Protestantism, 1710

Historian Sydney E. Ahlstrom identified a "great international Protestant upheaval" that created Pietism in Germany and Scandinavia, the Evangelical Revival, and Methodism in England, And the First Great Awakening in the American colonies. This powerful grass-roots evangelical movement shifted the emphasis from formality to inner piety. In Germany it was partly a continuation of mysticism that had emerged in the Reformation era. The leader was Philipp Spener (1635-1705), They downplayed theological discourse and believed that all ministers should have a conversion experience; they wanted the laity to participate more actively in church affairs. Pietists emphasized the importance of Bible reading. August Hermann Francke (1663-1727) was another important leader who made the University of Halle the intellectual center. Pietism was strongest in the Lutheran churches, and also had a presence in the Dutch Reformed church. In Germany, however, reformed Reformed Church's work closely under the control of the government, which distrusted Pietism. Likewise in Sweden, the Lutheran Church of Sweden was so legalistic and intellectually oriented, that... ...read more

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