Plymouth Brethren

A religious sect which appeared in England and Ireland early in the 19th century. The first permanent meeting was formed at Plymouth, England, 1829; hence the name Plymouth Brethren. Various communities, however, call themselves Believers, Christians, Saints, or Brethren. Identified with this movement were John Nelson Darby, George Muller, Samuel Prideaux, and Anthony Norris Groves. Since there was no ecclesiastical organization, divisions arose around the different leaders. There are now six bodies of this sect. In America the divisions are "open" and "exclusive," although no one term applies to any single division. The tenets of the various bodies are in fundamental agreement. Acknowledging no creeds, they regard the Scripture as their only guide. Believing personal gifts a sufficient authorization, there is no regular ministry among the Plymouth Brethren.

New Catholic Dictionary

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