The first of this section is here.
Certainly the idea that we should love our neighbor seems uncontroversial enough for a Christian. But the question of how that love works out in practice has often been controversial. Nevertheless, very many Christians in many traditions would share the loving values that also seem common sense to the Wesleyan tradition.
For example, one of the distinctives of John Wesley's ministry was the attention he gave to coal miners and others that many of his social status deemed beneath them. He was a key participant in a movement within England that not only ended in the abolition of slavery not long after his death, but that very well may have saved England from the bloody revolution that took place in France near the end of his life. In the 1800s, the ongoing Wesleyan tradition gave birth to the Salvation Army, whose mission to the poor is so well known that few realize it is also a denomination in the Wesleyan tradition.
It is fascinating how so many Christians not only ignore the clear and consistent principle of helping the needy in Scripture, but have actually convinced themselves that those who do are almost evil. Perhaps some of this push back goes back to the early twentieth century in America, when those who most pushed a "social gospel" were Christians who had largely stopped believing in things like the virgin birth or Jesus' bodily resurrection. But a key perspective is to see this group's concern for the poor as all that was left of their Christianity rather than some substitute for it. Proponents of a social gospel looked to Jesus as their supreme moral example, even though they did not consider him to be God. We can feel free to critique their rejection of orthodox faith, but how deeply ironic to critique their moral impulse to ask, "What would Jesus do?"
Bringing good news to the poor and the dis-empowered thus remains a core Wesleyan value. It is not only a key value of the Pentateuch, where Israel was to help the needy in its land (e.g., Deut. 15:11). The need for "social justice" was also a key point of God's critique of Israel in the prophets (e.g., Isa. 10:2; Amos 2:7). A key element of Jesus' announcement of the coming kingdom was "good news to the poor," so much so that Luke makes it the inaugural message of Jesus' earthly ministry (Luke 4:16-21, quoting Isaiah 61:1-2). The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats assigns eternal destinies based on whether a person has fed the hungry, given drink to the thirsty, and clothed the naked (Matt. 25:31-46).
And helping the poor and dis-empowered was a key value of the early church (Acts 2:44-45; Gal. 2:10; Jas. 2:15-17; 1 John 3:17). Understandably, the majority of these examples and instructions are directed toward the needy within the church. However, the principle is to love everyone, to do good to everyone, even if the needy within the church are a focal concern (e.g., Gal. 6:10).
The application of principles must take into account the complications of life. Today we would identify many more types of people as needy than only those who are hungry. There are the addicted, the generationally poor, the abused. The goal of loving them remains, of moving them to healthy forms of life. We want not only to give out fish but to teach to fish and to help others want to fish in the first place.
Yet it is also the nature of things for us to come up with excuses for not following through on what we need to do. And thus things like the abuse of help for the needy or setting up an artificial tension between social and spiritual gospels can get in the way. The principles remain clear. The sins or abuses of others has nothing to do with our impulse to love and serve them. And the social gospel is not in competition with the spiritual gospel. They are the same gospel, and a person probably will not receive your word of "salvation" if they are hungry or greatly in need.