The phrase Sunday school dates from 1783. However, it wasn't religious instruction. On the contrary, it was regular school, offered on the one day a week poor children who worked in factories were free--Sunday. It began as a philanthropic movement, meant to educate England's poorest to give them a hope at a better life.
So this school on Sunday would be teaching them reading, writing, and 'rithmetic. Though granted, the Bible was their primer, so there was still some spiritual lessons involved. =) The idea of Sunday School traveled across the pond during the Industrial Revolution and took up work in America too. But it wasn't until the 1870s that it became a school time attached to church, whose sole objective was to teach Biblical principles. That was a change that happened first in America and then worked its way back to England.
Hope everyone has a great week! On my blog this week you have the following to look forward to:
Tuesday - Book Review of The Red Tent
Wednesday - Cover Design post on I Always Cry at Weddings
Hope to see you all back here over the next few days! Stay warm!!