The Wesley family was made famous by the two brothers, John and Charles, who worked together in the rise of Methodism in the British Isles during the 18th century. They were among the ten children surviving infancy born to Samuel Wesley (1662 – 1735), Anglican rector of Epworth, Lincolnshire, and Susanna Annesley Wesley, daughter of Samuel Annesley, a dissenting minister.
In 1735 both John and his brother Charles Wesley accompanied James Oglethorpe to the new colony of Georgia, where John’s attempts to apply his then high-church views aroused hostility. Discouraged, he returned (1737) to England; he was rescued from this discouragement by the influence of the Moravian preacher Peter Boehler.
At a small religious meeting in Aldersgate Street, London, on May 24, 1738, John Wesley had an experience in which
his “heart was strangely warmed.” After this spiritual conversion, which centered on the realization of salvation by faith
in Christ alone, he devoted his life to evangelism. Beginning in 1739 he established Methodist societies throughout the country.