The unique, complex and elusive character of 18th century John Wesley believed that the
future of England is dependent on socio-spiritual change in humanity. To achieve his goal,
he embarked on a small yet significant method of educating people to conscientize them of
their plight and the oppressive forces within and without. Humanization, liberation and
justice were the driving force of his dream movement called Methodism.
The book highlights a comparative study of Wesley's pedagogy and purpose with that of
Paulo Freire, a 20th century Brazilian activist, philosopher and educator, and a leading
proponent of critical pedagogy. While re-examining Wesley's perspective on education in
the light of Freire's critical pedagogy the book exposes striking similarities between the
two. Education ought to be life transforming and not depositing -- the traditional
"banking" system which consider learners as empty accounts to be filled by the
teacher, both Wesley and Freire contend that education must be dialogical, liberative and
a change agent. As per their belief, education should not be oppressive, and not to be
employed in molding learners in accordance with the exploitative system of the given
Wesley was a zealous preacher, theologian, revivalist, reformer, prolific writer,
philosopher, and educator. He used education as a tool for liberation of people; to bring
about spiritual transformation and change in their lives. Wesley and Freire believed that
education is never a neutral process.
To make the research work more meaningful, the author has provided significant
recomendations for the future trajectory of Christian education ministry in the Church.
The information in this book may help those who are concerned with critical education,
especially Christian education, as it is of significant relevance and vital interest.
List of Abbreviations
Principal Events in John Wesley's Life
List of Tables
1. Wesley and the Methodist Movement
2. John Wesley - The Educator
3. Information and insights inferred from field research while comparing Wesley's
Educational methods with Christian Education Ministry of the Methodist Churches in
4. A Critique of John Wesley's Theory and Practice of Christian Education from the
Perspective of Freirean Education Theory of Liberation
5. Towards a Relevant Model of Christian Education
Rev. Dr. Mithra hails from a small village in Northern Karnataka, is
presently a faculty at Union Biblical Seminary, Pune, teaching in the department of
Christian Ministry. He began his theological journey by doing B.Th. from South India
Biblical Seminary, Bangarapet, Karnataka; B.D. from Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur.
He also obtained Master of Theology in Missional Ethics from South Asia Institute of
Advanced Chtistian Studies, Bangalore; and M.Th. in Christian Ministry from United
Theological College, Bangalore. He earned his Doctorate in Theology, (Christian Ministry)
from Senate of Serampore College through SATHRI.
Being an ordained Minister, Dr. Mithra served as Pastor of English Chapel-Hassan:
Bi-lingual Church-Bangalore; and Emmanuel Chapel-Kolkata. He has a rich experience of
teaching for 28 years in different theological colleges. He worked as a Registrar,
Lecturer, Academic Dean in various Theological Seminaries/Colleges. He served as
Counsellor, Chaplain, and Professor at Serampore College, Serampore, West Bengal.