John Wesley Trivia Quiz

This quiz was handed out at Annual Conference 2003.
Here are the questions.  Brief answers can be found at the bottom of this page. 
More detailed answers can be found HERE.

John Wesley Trivia Quiz Questions

1. What was John Wesley’s middle name? 
2. Who was “Old Jeffery?” 
3. What did Wesley’s parents call him? 
4. What traumatic event in his childhood made his mother think his life had a special calling? 
5. When did Wesley dedicate his life to God because he said it was impossible to be “half Christian?” 
6. Who started the group nicknamed the Holy Club, or Bible Moths, or Methodists? 
7. Why did Wesley go to America? 
8. What was the name of the ship that brought Wesley to America?
9. Where did Wesley live during his two years in America? 
10. Why did Wesley start preaching outdoors?
11. What issue caused the separation of George Whitefield and Wesley? 
12. What musical instrument did John Wesley play?
13. Where did Wesley deliver a sermon when his father’s church refused to let him preach?
14. To whom did he marry and when?
15. What was Wesley’s suggested cure for baldness?
16. What was the physical appearance of this great man?
17. What was the subject of Wesley’s final letter (2/24/1791)?
18. What were Wesley’s final words?

Brief Answers that appeared on the John Wesley Quiz Handout

1. Benjamin 
2. the family “poltergeist”, as named by his sisters 
3. Jack, or Jacky 
4. he was rescued from a fire in the nick of time 
5. 1725 
6. Charles Wesley 
7. He wanted to prove his own faith by evangelizing the Native Americans 
8. The Simmonds
9.  Savannah, Georgia 
10. churches wouldn’t give him the pulpit, so he followed Whitefield’s example of preaching outdoors 
11. predestination vs. free-will 
12. flute 
13. outside, standing upon his father’s tomb 
14. widow Mary Vazeille, 1751 
15. rub with an onion twice a day till red, then rub with honey 
16.  almost 5’6”, 120-130 pounds, long hair 
17.  his opposition to slavery 
18. “Farewell”

John Wesley Trivia Quiz - Detailed Answers

1. What was John Wesley’s middle name? 
  Benjamin.  His names (John Benjamin) come from two earlier brothers that died in infancy.  But doesn't appear to have ever used the name.

2. Who was “Old Jeffery?” 
 From December 1716 to January 1717, the Wesley household was visited by what they called a poltergeist.  The girls named him “old Jeffery” after a man who had once lived in the house and died.  John blamed the haunting on his father not keeping a vow made back in 1701 (to not live with his wife until she accepted William as King of England; he moved away for a year but returned).

3. What did Wesley’s parents call him?
 They called him Jack or Jacky … a common nickname for people named John.

4. What traumatic event in his childhood made his mother think his life had a special calling? 
 On February 9, 1909, the parsonage burned to the ground.  The family exited, but John was left in his room upstairs.  He went to the window and was seen by the crown below.  Realizing they didn’t have time to fetch a ladder, they stood upon one another’s shoulders to reach him and pulled him out just before the roof fell in.

5. When did Wesley dedicate his life to God because he said it was impossible to be “half Christian?”  
 Although Wesley’s heart was warmed in 1738, it was back in 1725 that he declared that he wanted to give his life completely to God.  But he was going through the motions without having a feeling of assurance of salvation until the Aldersgate experience.

6. Who started the group nicknamed the Holy Club, or Bible Moths, or Methodists? 
 Charles Wesley started meeting with friends at Oxford in 1729.  When John joined, he was the only ordained clergy and became the unofficial leader.  They held strict and methodical ways, which led to their nicknames.  According to Wesley, the term "Methodists" was used to describe a group of ancient physicians due to their practices.

7. Why did Wesley go to America? 
 To prove his own faith, he aimed to evangelize the native people (“Indians”) of America.  But he was restricted to serving the colonists and never achieved his original goal.

8. What was the name of the ship that brought Wesley to America?
 The ship was the Simmonds.  It is on this ship, in rough seas, that he found himself scared to death and afraid to die.  He noticed the serene attitude of the Moravian Germans.  It is that serenity and conviction of salvation that he would remember and seek … finding it on May 24, 1738. 

9. Where did Wesley live during his two years in America? 
 On the southeast side of Savannah was the parsonage, where he lived.  He did travel to other areas of Georgia such as Ft. Frederica on St. Simons Island, but he resided in Savannah.

10. Why did Wesley start preaching outdoors?
 Soon after he returned from Georgia, he found that the churches didn’t agree with his preaching on holiness and they began banning him from their pulpits.  Upon visiting Bristol, George Whitefield introduced him to the idea of outdoor preaching.  Although unsure at first, he started and continued to preach in this fashion for decades to come.

11. What issue caused the separation of George Whitefield and Wesley? 
 Whitefield believed in the election, or the predestination that those who are going to heaven have been predetermined.  Wesley believed in free will (Arminianism), that anyone could accept salvation and be assured of God’s grace.

12. What musical instrument did John Wesley play?
 He learned to play the flute as a youth.

13. Where did Wesley deliver a sermon when his father’s church refused to let him preach?
 He went outside of the church and stood upon his father’s tomb.  

14. To whom did he marry and when?
 Although he was friendly with a couple of ladies in his college years, he became serious about Sophy Hopkey in Georgia.  But he was unsure if he should marry because it might be detrimental to his ministry, so he procrastinated and she married another.   He fell for one of the Methodist converts in England about 1748-49, Grace Murray.  But Charles was concerned that a marriage might harm the ministry and he made sure she married someone else.  Finally, John ignored his brother and married Mary Vazeille in 1751.  She was the wealthy widow of a London merchant.  It wasn’t to be a harmonious marriage, as she objected to his traveling ways and was jealous.  They later separated.

15. What was Wesley’s suggested cure for baldness?
Wesley produced a book of cures in a book entitled Primitive Physic (1747) that was widely circulated in the 1700s.  It contained hundreds of cures on a number of ills.  
Feeling lethargic?  His remedy for that was "strong vinegar up the nose."  
Hoarse throat?  Try bruised garlic applied to the soles of the feet; it also cured his lumbago.
What was Wesley’s choice for something approximating a universal medicine?  Electricity.

16. What was the physical appearance of this great man?
 He was almost 5’6” tall, average for his day.  He weighed about 120-130 pounds and was muscular and strong. He kept his black hair (which turned white with age) long because he didn’t want to waste money on haircuts. He wore a narrow plaited stock coat with a small, upright collar, buckled shoes, and a three-cornered hat

17. What was the subject of Wesley’s final letter (2/24/1791)?
 His final letter of Feb. 24, 1791 was to William Wilberforce.  It spoke of Wesley’s opposition to slavery and urged Wilberforce to take action against it.

18. What were Wesley’s final words?
 It is typically recorded as “The best of all, God is with us.”  After bidding some friends farewell on March 1, he mustered up all his strength, lifted his arms and spoke those words twice.  But he did speak afterward.  He said his prayer of grace when Mrs. Charles Wesley visited.  During the night, he tried to say the 46th Psalm, but could only get out “I’ll praise.”  The next morning, just before 10 am, several were gathered around his bed.  As Joseph Bradford was praying, they heard Wesley say “Farewell” and he passed on.

by Tim Hebert, Chair, Archives & History