G. I. Butler
G. I. Butler
By Denis Fortin

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While George Ide Butler is not a household name among Adventists today, that was not true for those who lived in the second half of the 1800s. Twice president of the General Conference, Butler is probably better known for aggressively resisting A. T. Jones and E. J. Waggoner at the 1888 Minneapolis General Conference Session.

In G. I. Butler, Denis Fortin puts readers into Butler’s shoes, revealing his heart, understanding his arguments, and viewing the young church through his lens. Yet, Fortin presents much more than a volume about Butler himself. The work provides a dynamic stream of Adventist history from Butler’s perspective as the denomination faced new stresses and strains—including complex family relationships and opposing power centers—as it sought to define itself and how it would operate.

It is a messy yet encouraging picture of Adventist leaders living in the real world as they sought to move the church into the future. That less-than-ideal historical picture helps us understand that even exceptional church leaders can be complex and fallible. Step into Butler’s shoes for a fascinating walk through early Adventist history.