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In Their Own Words

November 07, 1737

Stephens Met with Wesley

William Stephens met with John Wesley on this day, and recorded in his journal Wesley’s account of the dispute which would soon cause Wesley to leave Georgia forever:

“Went in the Morning and took my Break fast with Mr. Wesley, when I paid him the 10l. sent by me from an unknown Hand ; and then we had some Talk about the Differences betwixt him and Mr. Causton, which he put in another Light than what I had it on the other Side :

I desired him to be free, assuring him that my Ears were equally open, and I should be glad to be instru- mental (if it lay in my power) to reconcile those Ani- mosities, which began first between two Friends, and had now drawn almost the whole Town into Parties in the Quarrel. I found it manifest the first Rise of it was upon young Williamson’s marrying Mr. Causton’s Niece, whom the Parson had a Liking to for himself ; and who, whilst she was unmarried, used constantly to receive the Sacrament, which is here administered weekly to some few, who frequently resort to Mr. Wesley, for their better edification, in private ; but upon Miss Hopkin’s entering into the State of Wedlock, she refrain’d from such pri- vate Lectures, and refused to go to him, when sent for ; probably, by Diredlion from her Husband ; for which Reason, (or some other unknown to me) Mr. Wesley re- fused her the Sacrament at the next Communion, and she went home from the Table : So far Mr. Wesley ac- knowledged to me ; but in his own Justification said, he had given her Notice before, not to offer herself there, till she had first conferr’d with him in private. Mr. Wesley told me farther, he would at some other oppor tunity explain these Things more fully, and believed I would hear it impartially : So we parted…”

Source: Allen D. Candler, ed. The Colonial Records of the State of Georgia, Vol. IV, Stephens’ Journal 1737-1740, Atlanta, GA, 1906, pp. 14-15.