Keepers of the Covenant: Frontier Missions and the Decline of Congregationalism, 1774-1818

By James R. Rohrer | Go to book overview

CHAPTER SEVEN
The CMS and Republican Religion

The Congregational missionary movement was not designed to prop up an embattled orthodoxy. As we have seen, orthodox missionary leaders were driven by a desire to keep covenant with New England migrants in "the wilderness," as well as by millennial expectancy. The creation of the CMS constituted a positive, forward-looking response to social change, not primarily a negative reaction against sectarian competition or the threat of disestablishment.

Nonetheless, confrontation with preachers of other denominations was necessarily a major concern of Congregational missionaries in the field. From northern New England to the Ohio country, CMS employees came into constant contact with Methodist circuit riders, regular and freewill Baptist preachers, Universalists, freethinkers, and vocal proponents for a host of other sects. In the absence of any meaningful checks on religious expression, republican Americans were free to reject the authority of traditional creeds and platforms, and to espouse virtually any set of beliefs that conscience and personal taste might dictate. Post- revolutionary Americans experienced, as Robert Wiebe has observed, a dramatic "revolution in choices" that made the early republic a fertile environment for the growth of new religious movements of remarkable diversity. "Whenever someone discovered new nooks and crannies on the spiritual landscape," Martin Marty has written, "they quickly developed new movements or sects. The message of the aggressors to the uncommitted was 'be saved!' and to each other, 'Adapt or die!'"1

Many scholars have concluded that Congregationalism declined after the Revolution because orthodox ministers could not adapt to this fluid new environment. Most assessments of orthodox evangelism share the

-115-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Keepers of the Covenant: Frontier Missions and the Decline of Congregationalism, 1774-1818
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 212

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.