John Kensit

1853-1902. Protestant preacher and controversialist. Born in London of working-class parents, he was successively draper's assistant, stationer, and subpostmaster. From his youth an ardent Protestant, he was deeply incensed by the romanizing trends within the Anglican Church, and founded successively a Protestant book depot in 1885, the Churchman's Magazine, and the Protestant Truth Society (1890). The strong antiritualist agitation of 1898-1900 led him to establish the Wycliffe Preachers to bear staunch witness to Protestant principles. He fought against the consecration of liberal and ritualistic bishops, and was charged by his enemies, especially Bishop Creighton of London, with fanaticism. While conducting a Protestant crusade in Liverpool and Birkenhead in 1902, he was assaulted by a Catholic mob and died in hospital a few days later. He is generally regarded as the founder of what is known in Britain as “Political Protestantism.”