Saturday, August 17, 2019

Anne Hutchinson and Puritan Leadership

Anne Hutchinson and Puritan Leadership Anne Hutchinson was a strong willed and intelligent woman that lived in 1637 in the Massachusetts Bay colony. She opposed both John Winthrop, governor of the colony, as well as the Puritan church leaders who had a different set of beliefs from her, and made up the court of elected officials that assisted the governor. She was banished from the colony in 1638 on charges of blasphemy, because she claimed to have direct and divine inspiration from the Holy Spirit, in a Puritan community it was thought that only preachers and other church leaders could see God, this idea was known as the covenant of works.Anne Hutchinson was a believer in the covenant of grace where God could show himself to anyone at anytime. Anne Hutchinson had a bold personality, many problems with Puritan leadership and their beliefs, and was banished from the colony on charges of blasphemy in a controversial trial. Anne Hutchinson was a very confident and bold woman, and unlike many other women in colonial lifestyle she spoke her mind. Her intellect was very strong, and she outwitted Governor Winthrop and the jury of her trial for many days.She believed very heavily that men and women were equal in the eyes of God, and thought that the covenant of works being preached by the Puritan preachers was incorrect. Anne Hutchinson was an excellent speaker, which was demonstrated in her court trial where she bashed most of the charges against her with her high intellect. Hutchinson also led discussions on the sermons from the Puritan preachers with other women after church using her interpretation of what God was really trying to say.Anne Hutchinson was a strong believer in predestination an, idea developed by John Calvin. Predestination is the belief that God has already chosen those few people for salvation. In her interpretation Anne Hutchinson thought that actions did not matter towards salvation because God had already made his choice, this theory is also kno wn as the covenant of grace. She opposed the Puritan Ministers who for the most part thought and preached that if you do and achieve certain things then God will save you, ideas from the covenant of works.That is why she held discussions on sermons for her followers, after she received divine inspiration from God, because she felt that Puritan preachers were not interpreting God’s word correctly. After openly and publicly disagreeing with the teachings of the Puritan preachers and holding her discussions about their sermons Anne Hutchinson was taken into court by Governor John Winthrop on counts of disturbing the peace and slandering the ministry. After a long and back and forth trial Anne Hutchinson was charged with blasphemy and sentenced to banishment from the colony.The trial was controversial because she really had not done anything illegal, but because of the notion that women should be submissive to men in the colonies, and her defying the church were strongly frowned open especially by men. It was also a male dominated society, so Anne Hutchinson did not ever really have a chance for a totally unbiased trial. Such as the one Roger Williams received, he was tried for some of the same things Hutchinson was tried for, but because of his gender probably received more of a fair trial because of his gender.Williams was not banished from his colony, where Hutchinson was banished from the Massachusetts Bay colony on the charges of blasphemy. She was convicted of this because in the beliefs by the Puritan preachers only preachers and other church leaders could receive any type of divine inspiration, so being a woman it was impossible for her to receive any divine inspiration. Anne Hutchinson was still very important though as she helped found the colony of Rhode Island with her beliefs.She was a very strong confident woman taking care of her 15 kids in the Rhode Island wilderness. And even though she did not receive a totally fair trial, because in that time period it was frowned upon for anyone to speak out against the church especially a woman she had a lasting impact on the way men thought about the intelligence of women. Anne Hutchinson was a woman who had a bold personality and although being a Puritan herself believed that Puritan preachers were wrong, and was eventually banished to Rhode Island for it.

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