Histories of women and American religion have tended to focus on women's religious activities rather than on women's religious lives. Studies of early American religion and spirituality have usually depended on the journals and sermons of male preachers. In order to understand the religious lives of ordinary Methodist women, Jean Miller Schmidt has looked at their diaries, letters, spiritual autobiographies, and the accounts of their pious lives and holy deaths that appeared as obituaries in publications like the Methodist Magazine. These powerful stories of faith are part of the shared history of Methodist people.
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About the Author
Jean Miller Schmidt is Gerald L. Schlessman Professor Emerita of Methodist Studies, The Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colorado.