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Splits[ edit ] In the 19th century, there was a diversification of theological beliefs in the Religious Society of Friends, and this led to several large splits within the Quaker movement.
Hicksite—Orthodox split[ edit ] The Hicksite—Orthodox split arose out of both ideological and socio-economic tensions. Philadelphia Yearly Meeting Hicksites tended to be agrarian and poorer than the more urban, wealthier, Orthodox Quakers.
With increasing financial success, Orthodox Quakers wanted to "make the Society a more respectable body—to transform their sect into a church—by adopting mainstream Protestant orthodoxy".
Hicksites viewed the Bible as secondary to the individual cultivation of God's light within. Conversely, within the Hicksite movement the rejection of the market economy and the continuing focus on community and family bonds tended to encourage women to retain their role as powerful arbiters.
Elias Hicks ' religious views were claimed to be universalist and to contradict Quakers' historical orthodox Christian beliefs and practices. They were referred to by their opponents as Hicksites and by others, and sometimes themselves, as orthodox.
Quakers in Great Britain only recognised the Orthodox Quakers and refused to correspond with the Hicksites. He published a book titled A Beacon to the Society of Friends inwhich strongly argued that the inward light could not exist alongside a religious belief in salvation by the atonement of Christ.
Some of these Quakers joined the Plymouth Brethren Church. Rise of Gurneyite Quakerism, and the Gurneyite—Conservative split[ edit ] Joseph John Gurney was a prominent 19th century British Friend and a strong proponent of evangelical views Orthodox Friends became more evangelical during the 19th century  and were influenced by the Second Great Awakening.
Christian Friends held Revival meetings in America and became involved in the Holiness movement of churches. Quakers such as Hannah Whitall Smith and Robert Pearsall Smith became speakers in the religious movement and introduced Quaker phrases and practices to it. Many eventually collectively became the Five Years Meeting and then Friends United Meetingalthough London Yearly Meetingwhich had been strongly Gurneyite in the nineteenth century, did not join either of these groups.
These Quaker yearly meetings make up the largest proportion of Quakers in the world today.
Some orthodox Quakers in America disliked the move towards evangelical Christianity and saw it as a dilution of Friends' traditional orthodox Christian belief in being inwardly led by the Holy Spirit. These Friends were led by John Wilbur who was expelled from his yearly meeting in He and his supporters formed their own Conservative Friends Yearly Meeting.
They formed a separate body of Friends called Fritchley General Meetingwhich remained distinct and separate from London Yearly Meeting until Similar Christian splits took place in Canada.
This statement of faith was agreed to by 95 of the representatives at a meeting of Five Years Meeting Friends; but unexpectedly the Richmond Declaration was not adopted by London Yearly Meeting because a vocal minority, including Edward Grubbopposed it.
The first missionaries were sent to Benares Varanasiin India, in Cleveland Friends went to MombasaKenyaand started what was the most successful Friends' mission. Theory of evolution[ edit ] Main article: Quakers in science The theory of evolution described by Charles Darwin in On the Origin of Species was opposed by many Quakers in the nineteenth century,  particularly by older evangelical Quakers who dominated the Religious Society of Friends in Great Britain.
These religious leaders were suspicious of Darwin 's theory, and believed that natural selection needed to be supplemented by another process. However, some young Friends such as John Wilhelm Rowntree and Edward Grubb supported Darwin's theories adopting a doctrine of progressive revelation with evolutionary ideas.
Quaker Renaissance[ edit ] In the late 19th century and early 20th century a religious movement known as the Quaker Renaissance movement began within London Yearly Meeting.
Young Friends in London Yearly Meeting at this time moved away from evangelicalism and towards liberal Christianity. These Liberal Friends promoted the theory of evolutionmodern biblical criticismand the social meaning of Jesus Christ's teaching—encouraging Friends to follow the New Testament example of Christ by performing good works.Copyediting-L.
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