By Mark A. Noll

From the full of life severities of the 17th-century Pilgrims and Puritans to the ebullience of the televanglism age, the Christian adventure in North the US is wealthy and sundry. Noll covers all of it during this brilliant narrative survey. Tracing the expansion of Christian trust and associations and their interactions with tradition within the U.S. and Canada from the colonial interval to the current, his strategy is wide and complete. Many biographical profiles upload a private size to the narrative.

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But others, including some of the most important voices of English and Scottish reform, managed to lie low in England or escape to the Continent. The experience of the exiles proved especially decisive not only for later events in Britain but also for long-term developments in America. 31 BEGINNINGS Until the mid- 1 550s, the English Reformation was a fairly thorough mixture that combined some impulses from Luther, some borrowings from other Protestant leaders in Europe, and a number of native English tenden­ cies.

Thus it was that, even as Quebec "fell" into the hands of the British in 1 759, Pontbriand was strengthening traditional bonds between church and state as well as traditional forms of Catholic life by founding new orders for sisters to work in Quebec's hospitals and schools. Quebec's ultramontanist Catholicism was a target of endless hostility from the British and their largely Protestant colonies. Britain took control of Nova Scotia in 1 7 1 3 and treated the Acadians there with caution for nearly forty years.

Among themselves, however, Puritans could not always agree on what exactly the Bible demanded. The issue of church organization proved to be a contro­ versial sticking point. Some Puritans (mostly in England) defended a pres­ byterian church-state organization (churches ruled by elders, whom the members at large elect, with elders meeting together to guide the church as a whole, and with the state actively supporting the church) . , that churches are organized individually but cooperate with godly magistrates to promote the total reformation of society) .

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