Warfare and Waves: Calvinists and Charismatics in the Church of England

By Peter Herriot

A study of the influence of Calvinism and Charismatism within the Church of England and how the challenges of these movements can be met.

ISBN: 9780718894863


Why is the Church of England perceived by many as homophobic, misogynist, or just plain weird? Because two movements within it, the Calvinists and the Charismatics, have recently achieved a degree of influence disproportionate to their numerical strength. The Calvinists have played the media and ecclesiastical political games with skill and determination, while sternly identifying themselves as guardians of the one true Reformed doctrine. The Charismatics have taken a different approach, embracing many elements of late-modern culture while retaining a distinctly premodern worldview.

Peter Herriot argues that to recover from the opportunity costs and reputational damage that it has suffered at their hands, the Church of England must seize back the agenda from the Calvinists and face outwards rather than inwards. In its efforts to come to terms with globalisation, the church’s leadership will need to sideline the Calvinists and encourage the Charismatics with their recently increased social involvement.

Written by a social psychologist, Warfare and Waves is full of detailed case studies that give a vivid insight into the organisational structures and subcultures of these two very different evangelical movements.

Additional information

Dimensions 229 × 153 mm
Pages 218

Trade Information LPOD

About the Author

Peter Herriot was Professor of Psychology at the City University, London, and at Birkbeck College, University of London. He is the author of Religious Fundamentalism and Social Identity (2008) and Religious Fundamentalism: Global, Local, and Personal (2009).



1. Institutions and Movements
2. Geneva, Lambeth, Los Angeles, and Toronto
3. The Production Line: Calvinist Formation and Leaders
4. Trouble and Strife: Calvinist Organizations
5. The Power House: Calvinist Congregations and Culture
6. Big and Bigger: Charismatic Organization
7. The Charismatic Self
8. Change: Rhetoric and Reality
9. The Days of Miracles and Wonders
10. A Global Institution



Endorsements and Reviews

Herriot’s sage and insightful observations make for compelling reading. This book should be read and studied by all those in the field of ecclesiology and the study of contemporary Christianity. The clarity and cogency of Herriot’s work gives us an unrivalled guide to one of the most fascinating fields in the study of the contemporary church.
Martyn Percy, Dean of Christ Church College, Oxford University

This is an invaluable account of how two influential but little-studied movements have shaped the Church of England in recent times. It brings to bear great psychological and sociological insight, as well as humour and good sense.
Linda Woodhead, Professor of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University

A helpful and informed read in today’s climate and debates.
Marie Paterson, in The Reader, Vol 118, No 1

His experience in organisational studies does offer some interesting insights into two much-publicized movements within the Church of England today – namely, what he terms the Calvinists and the Charismatics.
Robin Gill, in Theology, Vol 121, No 2

Peter Herriot, psychology professor at London’s City University and the University of London, has contributed a work crucial to our understanding of contemporary British Anglicanism. Himself a Methodist, he shows a deep understanding of two major movements that have surfaced in the past several decades, the Calvinists and the Charismatics…The book is clearly written and well researched.
Justus D. Doenecke, Anglican & Episcopal History, Volume, 91, No. 1, 2022