Monday, April 06, 2009

This Week In Texas Methodist History April 5

Brazos Presbytery Organized at Chriesman's Schoolhouse April 3-7, 1840

The Methodist Episcopal Church was not the first of the three largest Protestant denominations in the Republic of Texas to create its own Texan governance body. The "Old School" or "Regular" Presbyterians were the first to do so during the first week of April, 1840, just a few miles west of Independence in northern Washington County. The Baptists followed the next October at Travis, about 25 miles away at Travis in northern Austin County. Readers of the this column would already be familiar with the organization of the Texas Conference of the MEC at Rutersville in northern Fayette County on Dec. 25, 1840.

The Presbyterians chose the name Brazos Presybtery even though they claimed the entire Republic of Texas as their area of operation. The Presbyterian historian, William Red, says they used the name "Brazos" because the Cumberland Presbyterians had already organized their own Texas Presbytery in 1837. The Old School body was thus being deferential to their Cumberland brethren.


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