Here’s a story about John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist church. It was told by one of his followers, Thomas Rutherford, in the 1808 edition of Methodist Magazine.
The event related occurred in 1736 or 1737, but was told to Ruthorford by Wesley in 1776, in Glasgow, Scotland.
[Picture from Wikipedia.]
A circumstance occurred as we [Rutherford and Wesley] rode along, that led him to relate an anecdote, which I shall never forget, and which I thought highly characteristic. We overtook a little girl without stockings and shoes; (a thing very common in Scotland in spring and summer) he called her to him, and gave her a shilling, with a few words of advice. He then took notice of the custom, and added, “When I was in America, I taught one school at Savannah, and Mr. Delamott taught another. He told me one day, that a part of the boys belonging to his school wore stockings and shoes, and the others did not; and that the former laughed at and ridiculed the latter, and thereby discouraged them; and that, though he prevented their doing so when they were under his eye, they did it when out of school: so that, notwithstanding all the pains he had taken, it appeared to be a growing evil, and he did not know how to cure it. I told him,” said Mr. Wesley, “‘I thought I could cure it;’ and added, ‘If you will take the care of my school next week, I will take care of your’s, and try;’ which he readily consented to do. Accordingly, on Monday morning I went into his school without either stockings or shoes. The children looked with surprise, first at me, and then at each other. I took no notice, but kept them to their work. I soon observed, however, that those who were without stockings and shoes, began to gather courage, and look with an air of consequence, now they had the master on their side. I did the same every day during the week; before the end of which, several of those who used to wear stockings and shoes, came to school without them. Thus the evil was effectually cured!”
I think we need to find our very own John Wesley.