William Wlberforce Sociology

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William Wilberforce was born in Hull, England in 1759. He received his university education in Cambridge. Described by those who knew him as worldly, wealthy and popular he was known for his wit, good conversation and humour. He enjoyed gentleman’s clubs, drinking and gambling more than study but managed the minimum requirements to pass his exams (Windschuttle 2008). In 1785 at 26 years of age he experienced what he described as his “great change”, and emerged from this period inwardly and outwardly a different person, with a strong Christian faith. Already a politician, Wilberforce considered the priesthood however John Newton advised him to stay in politics. Through prayer Wilberforce discerned that God had set him two tasks; suppressing …show more content…
In pre-Victorian England, the upper class were by Christian moral standards, corrupt . Within the Church of England at this time religious and moral standards were falling. Congregations were in sharp decline and the church and not established itself in the new industrial towns. Industrialisation was dramatically changing traditional social structures and affected daily life in every way. It also contributed to a rural to urban population shift particularly among working classes. A new kind of poverty emerged as people worked long hours in unregulated and harmful conditions. Children were particularly vulnerable; having always worked in poor rural families, they were seen as a source of cheap labour and began working long hours in mills and factories. English merchants were engaged in the slave trade which provided labourers to its colonies. Wilberforce was opposed to slavery, both as a moral concept and because of the violent and harmful situations enslaved people were subjected to within the slave trade (Hill 2004) (White …show more content…
The life of the Clapham Group has implications for us. As they worked together, sharing meals and ideas and supporting each other on mission, they formed a local geographical community which functioned like an extended family with prayer and worship. There was a range of professional skills within the group and they worked together to use their personal gifts and material possessions to achieve their aims of evangelism, social care and political reform (Hill 2004). This mirrors a contemporary call in the church away from individualism towards deeply connected relationships with each other and towards family, because “…humans are meant to exist deeply connected in covenant relationship to God and to each other and [that] this is a vital key to being able to function in the mission God calls us to” (Breen 2014). This commitment to relationship with each other and to making disciples and sharing the love of Christ in everyday life is currently being formally explored in 3DM Learning Communities around New Zealand and particularly within the Anglican Diocese of Wellington alongside churches in Nelson and Christchurch (Movement Online

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