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“All praise and thanks be to thee, O Lord, for that thou hast vouchsafed to look down out of thy holy heavens in this vale of misery, on us thy miserable creatures, and hast saved us this day from all dangers and assaults of our enemies : Forgive us, most gracious God, where we have offended thy divine majesty in word, thought, or deed, and strengthen us by thy Holy Spirit, that we never fall more from thee: and as thou hast ordained the day for man to travel and labour in, and the night to rest and refresh our feeble bodies ; so we beseech thy fatherly goodness, that thou wilt defend and keep us from all perils of this night, that, our bodies taking rest and sleep, which is the image of death, our minds may think on thee which only giveth life, and not be overcome with any temptations of the devil; that we may afterwards cheerfully rise, and painfully labour in our vocations to the praise of thy holy name, and the profit of thy people; and that lastly, both in body and soul, we may be partakers of that kingdom, which Christ thy dearly beloved Son, our Lord and Redeemer, hath wrought for us with the shedding of his precious blood : to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be praise in all congregations for ever. Amen."
Then he shall say the Lord's prayer, “ Our Father, which art in heaven,” &c. And so commending himself and all christian people to God's goodness and merciful keeping, he may lie down and take his rest. But it is not sufficient only to use these prayers evening and morning, but every one shall learn more such out of the psalms and other godly prayer books, being not popish.
Chap. v. p. 165-71.
I, A. B., appointed to be schoolmaster (or usher) of this grammar school in Rivington, do swear and promise here afore God and the world, that I will unfeignedly, unto the uttermost of my power, teach all such sorts of those that I have to do withal, the true fear of God, as it is written in his holy word, and shall set forward no other religion nor worship of God, but that which shall be contained in the Holy Bible, and agreeing therewith ; all Romish superstition, doctrine, and idolatry, I
shall not only in conscience abhor, and in deed flee from, but also shall diligently exhort, persuade, and teach my hearers to do the same.
I shall also teach my scholars, and bring them up in learning and good nurture, according to these orders and statutes, which the governours of this school, with the assent of James Pilkington, bishop of Durham, have appointed us for that purpose, and so diligently as they may in short time proceed to higher kinds of learning.
The goods belonging at any time to this school, I shall not only save as they were my own, and suffer none other to spoil or waste them to my power; but I shall counsel and persuade others to give more thereto; and if any waste be made of them, I shall declare it to the governours of the school, so soon as I know it and conveniently may, and help that it may be restored or recompensed with speed. All which things aforesaid I shall keep to my power, as I shall answer God at the dreadful day of judgment, and hope to be saved by the death of Jesus Christ, or look for the comfort of the Holy Ghost in this life.
Chap. vii. p. 193-4.
VI. Morning and Evening Prayers in the School.
As soon as the scholars be assembled in the school in the morning, at the master's or usher's appointment they shall all fall on their knees to common prayer openly, and begin first with some general confession, as that which is set forth in the common book, and appointed to be said before the receipt of the communion, “ Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Maker of all things, Judge of all men,” &c. or this confession that followeth, or other such like, not being superstitious:
“ Most terrible and merciful God, we do acknowledge before thy divine majesty, that we are miserable sinners, not only conceived and born in sin and blindness, but are daily lieaping great wickedness in thy sight. We cannot for shame lift up our eyes and minds to thee, whom we have so often and so grievously offended; yet thy infinite goodness and mercy, shewed in all ages to them that repent, embolden and encourage us to present ourselves before thy goodness, to beg and crave some drops of thy
manifold gifts and graces. Let not our miseries overcome thy mercies, nor our blind ignorance deface the brightness of thy gifts in us. We are unapt unto all goodness, until thou hast fashioned us anew by thy Holy Spirit, to understand some part of our duty to thee. We forget our bounden duties to thee and to thy people, until it please thy fatherly mercy to enlighten our minds with thy heavenly grace: frame us anew, most merciful Lord, from henceforth to serve and fear thee ; stir up our dull and sluggish nature to the obedience of thy holy word ; enlighten our blind and ignorant minds, that we may learn such things as may help us more plainly to behold the treasures thou hast laid up for us in Christ, thy dearly beloved Son; to whom, with the Father and the Holy Ghost, be praise for ever, in all congregations. Amen."
Then shall be sung or said a psalm or two in prose, if they be not long, at the discretion of the master or usher, in English, in order as they stand in the psalter, and then begin again continually; and when the psalm is ended, with the Lord's prayer, the schoolmaster or usher shall say the collect appointed in the morning prayer, “O Lord, our heavenly Father, almighty and everlasting God, who hast safely brought us to the beginning of this day,” &c. and then this prayer following:
“ Most loving God and merciful Father, which of thine own free good will hast stirred up the minds of some of thy well beloved servants to have a care and respect to thy church and people after them, and hast moved them to provide some places where youth may be brought up in learning and virtue ; we give thee most hearty thanks for all such, but especially for this school, which of thy goodness thou hast provided for us. Make us, we beseech thee, profitable members of thy church and people, and as thou hast given us wit and aptness to take learning, so make us to take pleasure and to prosper in the same. Enlighten our ignorant minds, and stir up our dull and sluggish natures, to the learning and understanding of such things as may please thee, and serve to the setting forth of thy glory and the edifying of thy people. Bless and increase, we pray thee, the ministers of thy church; grant that their labours be not in vain. Send forth many diligent workmen into thy harvest, and of thy goodness accept our bounden duty and service, and frame us to serve thec; that we may apply our whole study and labour, so that out of this school may proceed a number of faithful and true ministers, that by their labours and study thy holy name may be better had in reverence among all people ; and that learning and virtue may so appear in us, that we may serve thee as our Master, fear thee as our God, and love thee as our Father ; to whom, with Jesus Christ thy Son our only Saviour, and the Holy Ghost the Comforter, be praise for ever. Amen."
Then shall they go to their lectures, and so continue till eleven o'clock, at which time, after the rehearsal of the ten commmandents, by a scholar appointed thereto in order through them all, they shall sing a psalm in English metre, in order through them as they stand, or part of one, if it be too long; and so every one go to dinner, after the master or usher hath read openly in English a common prayer drawn out of the psalms, gathered into the form of prayers by Peter Martyr, or some such like; that so the scholars may learn to gather the effect of the psalms into prayers, and use them to their comfort.
Likewise in the evening, before they depart from the school, they shall sing or say a psalm or two in English prose all together, if they be not too long, at the discretion of the master or usher ; which being done, with the Lord's prayer and the articles of our faith said openly, the master or usher shall pray openly as followeth :
“O Lord, our God and only Saviour, which hast ordained all creatures to serve and obey us for our health and comfort, grant us, we pray thee, such plenty of thy grace, that we may never abuse them, nor be found unthankful unto thee: turn and subdue our stubborn and froward minds to the obedience of thy holy will. Save and defend, we humbly beseech thee, our realm and commonwealth ; relieve the oppressed and comfort the heavy hearted. Protect our king and the honourable council; grant unto him and them, and all that be in authority under them, such godly wisdom, fear, love, and reverence of thy godly majesty, that they may maintain peace with justice, and punish sin. Set forward and advance pure religion; suppress idolatry and superstition ; and of thy goodness make us, O Lord, thy poor servants, profitable members of this commonwealth. Bless our studies so in learning and good nurture, that we may be profitable to many others; and that by our travail and labour thy glory may shine and appear to the comfort of thy chosen
people, through Christ our Lord, thy Son; to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, three Persons and one God, be praise and thanksgiving throughout all ages. Amen."
Chap. viii. p. 199-204.
VII. Catechising. On Saturdays and holyday eves the usher shall exercise his younger sort in learning their short catechism in English, in the common book; and the same days to all sorts the master shall read Mr Nowell's' or Calvin's Catechism, taught in Calvin's Institutions, willing the elder sort both to learn it by heart, and examine them briefly the next day after, when they come to school again, before they go to other things, how they can say it, and shall commend them that have done well, and encourage others to do the like.
Chap. x. p. 215-6.
VIII. Nature and end of their Studies. But above all things both the master and the usher shall continually move their scholars to godliness, both in manners and conditions; and prosper their studies, that they may serve God and the commonwealth diligently, as becometh Christians and faithful members of his church; teaching and noting unto them such wise and godly sentences out of the scriptures, and other authors, as may stir them up more earnestly thereto, and will them to learn them by heart, and oft to think upon them.
IX. Commemoration of the Founder. Every year once, on that day in which it shall please God to take James Pilkington, now bishop of Durham, out of this wretched 'life to a better with himself, the scholars shall have liberty to play, so that they exercise themselves in making verses, orations, or declamations severally in praising God, that moved him and others to prepare this school for the bringing up of youth, and profit of his church.
Likewise the schoolmaster shall yearly, on the same day openly in the school, or rather the next holiday in the church,
[ See Nowell. Catechismus, p. xxix. Oxon. 1935. En.]