Obrazy na stronie

cent islands in the Pacific ocean, ance and faith, which the scriptures may be said, according to the pro require as prerequisite qualificaphecy,“ to be born in a day.” The tions for admittance into the church, Baptists leave their children in the in order that we may have a fuller visible kingdom of darkness, where view of her structure and real dethere is no promise nor provision sign.

SAMUEL RALSTON. for their regeneration; and if a gracious and sovereign God regenerates them, well and good. But

Summary of the Proceedings of the

General Assembly of the PresbyPædobaptists consider it their duty

terian Church in the United and privilege to plant their children

States, in May, 1821. by baptism in the vineyard of the Lord; hoping that in his own time, The Assembly convened in the and according to his own promise, Seventh Presbyterian Church, in he will " pour out his spirit on their this city, on Thursday the 17th seed, and his blessing upon their of May last, and was opened at 11 offspring,” “ that they may be trees o'clock A. M., by the Rev. John of righteousness, the planting of the M'Dowell, D.D., moderator of the Lord, that his name may be glori- preceding Assembly, with a very fied.” Those Baptists who have appropriate and animating sermon, embraced the whole of Mr. C.'s sys

from Mark xvi. 15: “ And he said tem, degrade the Old Testament unto them, Go ye into all the world, dispensation of grace, by denying and preach the gospel to every creathat there was a church of God in ture.” His object was chiefly to the Jewish nation; and consequent impress on Christian ministers their ly must consider the ordinances ap duty of preaching the gospel as unipointed by Jehovah, from the time versally as possible; and on private of Abraham to the completion of the members of the church, their obligatemple service, at best, as an un tions to promote by their prayers, meaning inefficient mummery; but contributions, and benevolent assoPædobaptists consider them as un ciations the multiplication of well equivocal proofs of the existence of educated preachers, the establisha church amongst that people, as or ment of missions, and the diffusion dinances “ for the service of God," of the gospel among all the people are involved in the very idea of a

on earth. church, and belong to her essence; At the opening of the Assembly, and also as precious means of grace

more than one hundred commissuited to that day, and graciously sioners were present. They elected intended for interesting them in the the Rev. William Hill, Ď. D., of Redeemer's righteousness. From a Winchester, Virginia, Moderator view of the whole of this system; for the present year, and the Rev. as a father of a family, and with the

Robert Cathcart, D. D., Temporary Bible before me, I must say

of such Clerk. Baptists and their system, “O my On proper inquiry, it was ascersoul, come not thou into their secret; tained that the Revised Forms of unto their ' ASSEMBLY'mine honour Government and Discipline, sent be not united.” I say this only of down to the presbyteries last year, those Baptists who have embraced had been adopted by a majority of the whole of Mr. C.'s system; for them. Thirty-seven was the smallthere are Baptists whom I esteem est number of presbyteries which for their piety and intelligence, and approved of any one article. The who, I am persuaded, abhor some of whole was, therefore, ratified and his principles as much as I do. adopted by the Assembly, and has

In my next letter I shall minutely now become a part of the constituexamine the nature of that repent tion of our church.

The Assembly resolved, in future Cushing. These two committees to publish the whole of their minutes, met in joint committee, with great with the exception of such parts, as cordiality; and having resolved, may be restricted by a vote of the unanimously, that an union of the Assembly, passed during the final two churches is both desirable and reading of them.

practicable, adopted the following An overture from the Synod of articles as the basis of the same: North Carolina, recommending that

“1. The different presbyteries of the As. all our congregations should annu sociate Reformed Church shall either really employ the afternoon or even tain their separate organization, or shall be ing of the Wednesday preceding amalgamated with those of the General the meeting of each Assembly, as a

Assembly, at their own choice. In the for. season of special prayer to Almighty

mer case, they shall have as full powers

and privileges as any other presbyteries in God for his blessing on the Gene the united body, and shall attach themral Assembly, was adopted.

selves to the synods most convenient. From the reports of the presby

“2. The Theological Seminary at Princeteries represented in this Assembly

ton, under the care of the General Assemthis year, it appeared that there

bly, and the Theological Seminary of the

Associate Reformed Church, shall be conare seventy-three young men as solidated. sisted by them, in different stages of “3. Whereas monies, to the amount of their education for the gospel mi

between nine and ten thousand dollars, nistry.

which were given to the General Synod of

the Associate Reformed Church, and of Monday, May 21, 1821, was which the interest or product only was to principally occupied by the Assem

be applied to the support of the Theologibly in receiving reports from the cal Seminary, were necessarily used in the presbyteries and associations on the current expenses thereof; which monies state of religion within their bounds;

so expended were assumed by the Synod

as its own debt, at an interest of 7 per cent.; a summary of which may be found

the united body agree to make a joint efin the narrative inserted in this

fort to repay the same, and will apply the number of the Magazine. On this interest accruing thereon to the mainteauspicious day, however, the As nance of a Professorship of Biblical Litera. sembly unanimously adopted the

ture, in the Seminary at Princeton, analo

gous to that which now exists in the Assofollowing minute:

ciate Reformed Church: and until such " Whereas the Associate Reformed

professorship shall be established, the said Church and the Presbyterian Church, in

interest or product shall be used for the the United States of America, are one in

general purposes of the Seminary. their confession of faith and form of go

“4. The theological library and funds,

belonging to the Associate Reformed vernment; and whereas the Assembly

Church, shall be transferred, and belong knows of no reason why these two ecclesiastical bodies should not become visibly

to the Seminary at Princeton.” one Church, as we trust we are one in On the 23d of May, the foregoing Christ Jesus, to the glory of God:-There

articles were reported to the Genefore resolved, that Dr. Green, Dr. Blatchford, Dr. M‘Dowell, Mr. Benjamin Strong,

ral Assembly, and by that body and Mr. Henry Southard, be a commit unanimously adopted. With this tee to confer on this subject with a simi auspicious result, the Assembly's lar committee from the Associate Reform committee of conference were sent ed Synod now in session in this city, if they shall see fit to appoint one; and that

to the Synod; and soon after the said committee report the result of their

Assembly received the correspondconference as soon as convenient.”

ing committee of the Synod, who by The Associate Reformed Synod

their chairman, Dr. Mason, deliver

ed the following communication. on the next day appointed a similar committee, consisting of the Rev. “In General Synod of the Associate ReJohn M. Mason, D. D., Rev. Ebene

formed Church, Resolved that this Synod

approve of the plan of union agreed upon zer Dickey, Rev. John Lind, Mr.

by the joint committees, and refer the William Wilson, and Mr. Joseph same to the consideration of the different Vol. I.

2 L

presbyteries, with an injunction to report total number, now in communion, to their judgment to this Synod at its next

be 71,364. Three hundred and sevenmeeting. By order.

ty-three congregations have reportR. M'CARTEE, Clerk of General Synod, &c."

ed the instances of adult baptisms Philadelphia, May 23, 1821.

in them during the last year, which

amount to 2,101; and 494 the cases Here the matter must rest, until of infant baptisms, which amount to the five presbyteries of the Associate

8,105. The 50 presbyteries, which Church have acted on the overture

have reported, contain 546 minissent down to them; but we confi

ters of the gospel who have pastoral dently expect that they will adopt charges, and 188 who have not ; the articles of union, and appoint giving a total of 734: and have un.. commissioners to our next General der their care 103 licentiates and Assembly; so that their Synod may 101 candidates. The congregations be dissolved, and all its constituent within the bounds of these 50

presbranches be incorporated with us. byteries, which are statedly, supSuch a union is devoutly to be plied, are 793; vacant and able to. wished; and if the Associate

support a pastor, 103; united, able, Church, and the Reformed Presby 20; and unable, in their present terian Church would only consent condition, 318. It is to be regretto let us sing the versifications of ted that 12 presbyteries should have Watts, while

they are at liberty to made no returns; and that other sing Rouse, without molestation, large presbyteries should have rethey too might unite with us, and

ported little else than the names of we rejoice in them as sound mem their ministers and churches. Not bers of a large, powerful, and happy half of the 1300 congregations rebranch of the Church of Christ in ported, have stated their increase the world. So far as we can learn, during the last year; we may warnothing but psalmody can keep us rantably conclude therefore, since asunder; and on this subject we the whole number of communicants say, Let every man be fully per in 651 congregations is upwards of suaded in his own mind ; and are 71,000, that the whole number in all willing to indulge others in the

our congregations cannot be less liberty which we claim for our than 142,000. The number of orselves.

dained ministers in our connexion From the compendious view of we estimate at 1000. the statistical reports presented to The Assembly divided the Synod the Assembly, it appears, that there of Geneva, and constituted the

12 Presbyteries of Niagara, Genessynods and 62 presbyteries. Fifty see, Rochester and Ontario, into the of these presbyteries sent up re Synod of Genessee. ports to this Assembly, but they Wednesday evening was occuwere not all perfect. Forty-eight pied by the Assembly as a special only reported on the number of com season of

prayer, and the narrative municants added the last year, and on the state of religion was read by forty-nine on the whole number of the Rev. Stephen N. Rowan, of communicants. Forty-eight have New York, the writer of the same, reported on the number of bap to a large and attentive audience. tisms. Of thirteen hundred

congre The address of the Rev. John Trugations, the whole number reported air, of the Presbytery of Otsego, by 50 presbyteries, five hundred was animating, and all the other and seventy-eight have reported the exercises appropriate. number of communicants added to Concerning the publication of the them during the last year, to be Revised Constitution of the Pres7,186; and 651 congregations the byterian Church, the Assembly re

any eccle

solved to have the copyright se. dained the Rev. William L. M.Cal. cured, and to appoint in each Synod la, contrary to presbyterial order; a committee of three ministers, he having been suspended from the which is to contract for the pay privileges of the church by the Presment to the treasurer of the Assem bytery bringing the complaint, in bly of three cents on each copy pub consequence of a reference on the lished, by any printer or printers, subject from the session of the or booksellers, who may be disposed church in Chilicothe. While in this to print the work; to correct the state of suspension, Mr. M.Calla proof sheets; and to authenticate had not only refused to make any the edition by their signatures. The confession of the fault alleged profits arising from the publication, against him, but had undertaken, are to be equally divided between without


license from the missionary funds of the Assem siastical body, to preach the gospel; bly, and the funds of the Theologi and had actually officiated as chapcal Seminary at Princeton.

lain to the army under the command The members of the several com of Major General Andrew Jackson, mittees, respectively, are held re at New Orleans. It appeared on the sponsible to the Church, for the ac examination of the case, that Mr. curacy of the editions which


be M'Calla was originally a member in published under their superinten full communion in the church in dency. The committee of the Synod Lexington, Kentucky, under the of Philadelphia is charged with pre pastoral care of the Rev. Mr. Cunparing an index to the volume; and ningham, from which he had not, at is required to publish the work as the time of being licensed, been disspeedily as possible, that other edi missed by any written or verbal contions may be copied from it. sent of the pastor or session. He To the constitution is to be ap

had, however, in consequence of pended a System of General Rules marriage, taken up his residence in for Judicatories, designed to pro

Chilicothe in Ohio, and had asked mote uniformity in the transaction for the privilege of communion with of business. I'hese rules have not that church ; which request was been adopted by the presbyteries, granted by the pastor, who gave and therefore form no part of the him a token for admission to the Constitution of the Church; but the Lord's table. While entitled, as Assembly approves of the same, and the writer of this article judges, to recommends them to all inferior ju- nothing more than occasional comdicatories to be adopted by them, if munion with the urch in Chilicothey think

proper, ,
for their own go-

the, and while liable only to have vernment.

this occasional communion withheld The Assembly accepted the re

from him, the session in Chilicothe port of the Board of Missions, and undertook to exercise discipline directed the Treasurer to


upon him, to which he refused subsum of $2275.52 to the missiona

misssion. When he would not apries employed during the last year. pear

and answer before the session The monthly consideration to be al for withdrawing from the worship lowed to the missionaries of the of that church, his case was referred board, in future, was by act of As to the Presbytery of Washington sembly reduced to 833.

in Ohio, which judicature, without A complaint of the Presbytery of citing Mr. M.Calla to appear and Washington, Ohio, against the Pres answer to any charge brought against bytery of West Lexington, was re him, proceeded to pass

him ceived and considered. The com tence of suspension. With this act plainants state, that the last named of suspension the Presbytery of Presbytery had licensed and or West Lexington were made ac




quainted ; but they nevertheless however informal that reception proceeded to license and ordain may have been. Our new forin of Mr.M.Calla, and the Synod of Ken government is so explicit on this tucky approved of their conduct. subject, that we hope all similar

The Assembly finally came to difficulties will be precluded in futhe following decision in the case. ture, and that every member of the

Presbyterian church will know to “Resolved, that while the Assembly disapprove the conduct of Mr. M'Calla in whom, under God, he is amenable preaching the gospel before he was regu

for his conduct. larly licensed, and while they regret that In acting on the report of the the Presbytery of West Lexington in the

directors of the Theological Semifinal trials of Mr. M'Calla for licensure, did

nary, the Assembly approved of the not pay sufficient attention, either to his irregularity in preaching as just mentioned, employment of Mr. Charles Hodge, or to the proceedings in the Session of the by the professors, as a teacher of the church of Chilicothe and of the Presbytery original languages of scripture in of Washington in his case; they never the seminary, for the last year ; theless judge that the proceedings of the Presbytery of West Lexington in licensing

and authorized the professors to and ordaining Mr. M‘Calla, be sustained,

employ him, or any other person and that Mr. M‘Calla be considered as a whom they might judge qualified, minister in good and regular standing in for the same purpose, for the year the Presbyterian church.

ensuing, at a salary of $400. In ad“ The Assembly, moreover, cannot forbear expressing their regret, that the Pres

dition to the unexpended balance bytery of Washington should have passed

of the last year's appropriation, a vote of censure upon Mr. M'Calla, with amounting to $448.44, the Assemout citing him to appear before them, or bly appropriated $4,200 for the giving him any opportunity of making a defence, since this mode of proceeding

current expenses of the present seems to have occasioned a portion of the

year. With a view to the holding irregularity in the Presbytery of West

of the real estate of the General Lexington, of which the Presbytery of Assembly, in the commonwealth of Washington have complained.

New Jersey, more securely than “Nor can the Assembly forbearto regret,

could otherwise be done, the directhat the Session of Chilicothe had not acted in a more formal manner, in receiving Mr.

tors of the seminary were authoM‘Calla; and had not required a regular rized to apply to the legislature of certificate of dismission from the church to said commonwealth, for an act of which Mr. M'Calla belonged before they || incorporation, to be reported to the received him.”

next Assembly for adoption. The It is often said, Behold how great Assembly moreover assumed the a fire a little spark kindleth! and payment of 82,150 due for the prowe say, Behold how much mischief fessor's house in Princeton, togeis done by the neglect of a simple || ther with 8850 for out houses, form! If communicants may pass

fences, and a well; and directed from the government and care of the trustees of the General Assemone particular church to another, bly to borrow on the best terms in without any form of dismission from their power, the sum of 83000 for one, which shall be the ground of the purpose of discharging the debt. reception in another, it will be im At a meeting of the trustees soon possible to say where multitudes after the adjournment of the Asbelong, and there will be an end of sembly, Alexander Henry, Esq. discipline. Had Mr. M.Calla been loaned the said sum, on the bond dismissed at all, from the church in of the trustees, at an interest of six Lexington, and then received by the church in Chilicothe, there could From the report of the Board of have been no objection against their

Education to the Assembly, it apjurisdiction, or that of the Presby-pears, that only five auxiliary socitery of Washington, in his case, eties have made returns of their

per cent.

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