RepositoryChurch of England Record Centre
Alt Ref NoCEPS
Extent14 volumes
TitleChurch of England Purity Society
DescriptionThe central records of the Church of England Purity Society. The papers comprise minute books and the Society's monthly paper, 'The Vanguard'.
AccrualsNone expected
CreatorNameChurch of England Purity Society
AdminHistoryThe Church of England Purity Society was formed in 1883, following requests on the part of the Church Penitentiary Society, the Lower House of Convocation, Ellice Hopkins and others for a concerted effort to be made by the Church in the field of reformatory work.

The objects, as approved by the Council in February 1884, were:
1. Purity among men
2. A chivalrous respect for womanhood
3. The preservation of the young from contamination
4. Rescue work
5. A higher tone of public opinion

The Society, which had a Council of one hundred members and the Archbishops of Canterbury and York as Presidents, claimed a membership of 400 individuals by 1884. Via the means of literature, sermons and lectures, the Society promoted the idea that purity was an obligation to be shared equally between men and women; membership was limited to men over the age of 18, but Lady Referees were to be appointed by the Council for consultation.

By November 1889, the question of amalgamation with the White Cross Society, which undertook similar work, had been raised and was finally brought into force in October 1891 to form the White Cross League. The League was subsumed within the Church of England Moral Welfare Council when it formed in 1938-1939, and subsequently under the newly-created Board for Social Responsibility in 1958.
AcquisitionThe records of the Church of England Purity Society were acquired with those of the Board for Social Responsibility.
RelatedMaterialFor records of the White Cross League and its predecessor the White Cross Society, with which the Purity Society amalgamated, see WCL.

For the annual reports of the Church of England Purity Society, 1883-1891, see WCL/AR/1/1

Show related Persons records.

Related name records
DS/UK/3690Church of England Purity Society; 1883-18911883-1891
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