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On the 08 November 1779, the Society’s declared aim and mission statement were recorded in its first Minute Book: “For purchasing Bibles to be distributed among British Soldiers and Seamen of the Navy, to spread abroad (by the blessing of God) Christian knowledge and reformation of manners.” George and John were supported by John Thornton, a Christian philanthropist. Many early meetings where held in John and Charles Wesleys’ West Street Chapel.