Evangelical Alliance, a religious association among different denominations of Protestants in Europe and America. A convention, called for the formation of such an alliance, met in Freemason's hall, London, England, Aug. 19, 1846. It consisted of about 800 clergymen and laymen from France, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Turkey, Great Britain and Ireland, the United States, and Canada, representing 50 denominational connections. The convention sat 13 days, and adopted the basis of the religious doctrines held in common by evangelical Protestants, viz.: the inspiration and sufficiency of the Scriptures; the right of private judgment in interpreting the Scriptures; the unity and trinity of the Godhead; human depravity; the incarnation and atonement of Christ; justification by faith alone; conversion; eternal rewards and punishments; the divine institution of the ministry, and of baptism and the Lord's supper. It was declared that this summary of doctrines was not to bo regarded in any formal or ecclesiastical sense as a creed or confession, nor its adoption as an assumption of the right to define the limits of Christian brotherhood, or that the doctrines adopted embrace the whole of important truth.
The convention recommended the formation of national branches in the different countries of Europe and America; the object of the association being to display the substantial union of Protestants of different countries and names, and to strengthen and enlarge that union. The recommendation was followed by the formation of coordinate societies, independent of each other, but united in object and sympathy, in Great Britain and Ireland, France, Germany, Holland, Switzerland, Sweden, America, and among the missionaries in Turkey, Persia, the East and West Indies, Palestine, Australia, New Zealand, and Africa. Besides the convention in which the alliance was formed, six international conferences have been held at irregular intervals: in London, 1851; Paris, 1855; Berlin, 1857; Geneva, 1861; Amsterdam, 1867; and New York, 1873. These conferences have been largely attended, the last (Oct. 2-12, 1873) especially so, and have embraced many of the most distinguished members of the respective denominations, both of the clergy and laity. Besides the regular sessions of the conferences, during their progress special meetings have been held with reference to particular countries, in which the languages of these countries were used, and their wants brought before the Christian world.
At the Geneva conference in 1861 a special meeting was held with reference to the civil war in America, for the purpose of bringing the true aspects of the war before European Christians. The alliance has for several years united, through its committees, in recommending a time and subjects for special prayer, which have been generally observed by those in sympathy with the alliance throughout the world; the first week in January being the time selected, and the subjects for each day of the week being considered in all lands. The alliance has exerted an influence in favor of religious liberty in Spain, Italy, Austria, Sweden, and Turkey; and in 1871 a committee representing different branches in Europe and America proceeded to Russia, and memorialized the czar in behalf of the Protestants in the Baltic provinces. - Reports of the proceedings of the several conferences have been published under the following titles: "The Religious Condition of Christendom" (London, 1852); "The Religious Condition of Christendom " (London, 1859); " The Geneva Conference of the Evangelical Alliance " (Edinburgh and London, 1862); and Evangelische Alliantie (Rotterdam, 1867), and "Proceedings of the Amsterdam Conference " (London, 1868).