British-based association of Christian churches, societies, and individuals that is active in evangelical work. It was organized in London in 1846 at an international conference of Protestant religious leaders after preliminary meetings had been held by Anglican and other British churchmen in reaction against the Oxford Movement in the Church of England, which emphasized the Roman Catholic heritage of that church. It was decided to form an international association of Protestant churches that would confront the encroachments of Catholicism and uphold the religious liberty and evangelical activities of reformed churches worldwide. Some 800 delegates from 50 denominations in Europe and America attended the 1846 founding convention, and international conventions were subsequently held every few years. Branches were formed in several countries, although the Alliance was always most active in Great Britain. The American branch, organized in 1867, was superseded in 1908 by the Federal Council of Churches, which it had helped establish. In the 19th century the Alliance was actively concerned with the furtherance of Christian liberty and religious toleration. It was successful in lessening the persecution of individual Christians in many parts of the world
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