In the 19th century Methodism identified itself with the 'total abstinence' temperance movement. This was at a time when social evils such as poverty and domestic violence were greatly exacerbated by drunkenness.

Strong drink was cheap, and many suffered. By encouraging and helping people to abstain, many lives were improved.

Methodism has retained a reputation for temperance, but today, alcohol consumption for Methodists is a matter of personal choice. See the view of the Church on alcohol.

However the Church is still concerned to help those who might put themselves in danger. 

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