« PreviousContinue »
cumbents ; by which the least part, many times not above CHARLES forty shillings, rarely ten pounds in the year, is reserved for him that should serve at the altar; insomuch that it is affirmed that by all or some of these means one bishop in the remoter parts of the kingdom doth hold three-and-twenty benefices with cure. Generally their residence is as little as their livings. Seldom any suitor petitions for less than three vicarages at a time. And it is a main prejudice to his majesty's service, and an hindrance to the right establishment of this Church, that the clergy have in a manner no dependence upon the lord deputy, nor he any means left to prefer those that are deserying amongst them: for besides all those advowsons which were given by that great patron of the Church, king James, of happy memory, to bishops, and the college here, many also were conferred upon the plantations (never wa
the plantations (never was so good a gift so infinitely abused); and I know not how, or by what order, even in these blessed days of his sacred majesty, all the rest of any note, have been given or passed away in the time of the late lord deputy.
Lastly, for the revenues, how small care hath been taken for the service of his majesty, or the good of the Church, is hereby apparent, that no officer, or other person, can inform my lord what deanery or benefices are in his majesty's gift, and about three hundred livings are omitted out of the book of tax for first-fruits, and twentieth parts; sundry of them of good value, two or three bishoprics, and the whole diocese of Kilfannore. The alienations of Church possessions by long leases and deeds are infinite; yea, even since the act of state to restrain them, it is believed that divers are bold, still to practise in hopes of secrecy and impunity, and will adventure until their hands be tied, by act of parliament, or some of the. delinquents censured in the Star-chamber. The earl of Cork holds the whole bishopric of Lismore at the rent of forty shillings, or five marks, by the year; many benefices that ought to be presentative, are by negligence enjoyed as though they were appropriate.
“For the remedying of these evils, next to God and his sacred majesty, I know my lord depends on your fatherhood's wisdom, and zeal for the Church. My duty binds me to pray for a blessing upon both your good endeavours. For the
present, my lord hath pulled down the deputy's seat in his own
LAUD, chapel, and restored the altar to its ancient place, which was Abp. Cant. thrust out of doors. The like is done in Christ's-church. The
purgation and restitution of the stable to the right owners and uses will follow next, and strict mandates to my lords the bishops, to see the churches repaired, adorned, and preserved from profanation through the whole kingdom.
“For the clergy and their revenues, my lord is careful that no petitions be admitted without good certificate and diligent inquiry (thought a strange course here), and to enable himself, and the succeeding deputies, to encourage such as shall deserve well in the Church, his lordship intends, as well in the commission for defective titles, as for the plantations, to reserve
the right of advowsons to his majesty, and as well by diligent 760.
search in the records, as by a selected commission of many branches, to regain such advowsons as have been usurped through the negligence of officers, change of deputies, or power
of men; and by the same to inform himself of the true state of the Church and clergy, to provide for the cures and residence, to perfect his majesty's tax, to prevent and remedy alienations, to restore illegal impropriations, to dispose, by way of lapse, of all those supernumerary benefices, which are held unjustly, and not without infinite scandal, under the pretence of commendams and dispensations; and to settle as much as in present is possible the whole state of the Church. This testimony I must give of his care, that it is not possible for the intentions of a mortal man to be more serious and sincere than his in those things that concern the good of the poor Church.
“ It is some comfort to see the Romish ecclesiastics cannot laugh at us, who come behind none in point of disunion and scandal.
“ I know my tediousness will be offensive, unless your lordship’s licence, and my lord deputy's command, procure my pardon. I will not add a word more, but the profession of my humble thanks, and bounden service, and so being ready to receive your lordship's commands, I desire to remain, as your noble favours have ever bound me,
“ Your lordship’s daily and devoted servant, " Dublin Castle,
66 John BRAMHALL. “August the 10th, 1633."
On the 14th of October, the king's second son, James, duke CHARLES of York, was born, and christened by archbishop Laud the 24th of November.
It has been observed, the remissness of Abbot introduced a The archnegligent latitude, not to say profaneness, in Divine service. deavours to The churches had neither ornament or decency, or so much as negligences
reform some reparation bestowed on them; and the sacraments were admi- in Churches. nistered where the people had most mind to receive them. Lord ClaThis profane indifference the archbishop was resolved to re- Hist. vol. 1. form, and called upon his suffragans for their concurrence. The recovering of the churches from a condition of offensiveness and scandal, and bringing the circumstances of devotion to an uniformity, was without question a commendable undertaking : but whether through the obstinacy of the people, the expence of the execution, or want of temper in the management, the design miscarried in some places, and made the discontents against the hierarchy run higher.
And now to look over the affairs of the Church in Scotland. The king had observed the orders in the late reign for officiating in the English liturgy at Holyrood-house had been discontinued ; and being resolved to attempt the bringing the whole island to an uniformity of worship, he conceived the use of the English Common Prayer in the chapel royal might prove a serviceable introduction. For the trial of this expedient, he ordered Ballantine, bishop of Dumblain, and dean of the chapel there, the following instructions for Holyrood
6. CHARLES Rex. “ I. Our express will and pleasure is, that the dean of our The king's chapel that now is, and his successors, shall be assistant to the for offiright reverend father in God, the archbishop of St. Andrew's, ciating in the
English at the coronation, so often as it shall happen.
the chapel in “ II. That the book of the form of our coronation, lately Holyroodused, be put in a little box, and laid into a standard, and committed to the care of the dean of the chapel successively.
“ III. That there be prayers twice a day with the choirs, as well in our absence as otherwise, according to the English Liturgy, till some other course be taken for making one that may fit the customs and constitutions of that Church.
“ IV. That the dean of the chapel look carefully that all
LAUD, that receive the blessed sacrament there, receive it kneeling; Abp. Cant. and that there be a communion held in that our chapel the
first Sunday of every month.
“ V. That the dean of our chapel that now is, and so successively, come duly. thither to prayers upon Sundays, and such holidays as the Church observes, in his whites, and preach so whensoever he preach there, and that he be not absent thence but upon necessary occasion of his diocese, or otherwise, according to the course of his preferment.
66 VI. That these orders shall be our warrant to the dean of our chapel, that the lords of our privy council, the lords of the session, the advocate, clerk, writers to the signet, and members of our college of justice, be commanded to receive the holy communion once every year, at the least, in that our chapel royal, and kneeling for example sake to the kingdom. And we likewise command the dean aforesaid to make report yearly to us how we are obeyed therein, and by whom ; as also if any man shall refuse, in what manner he doth so, and why.
" VII. That the copes which are consecrated for the use of our chapel be delivered to the dean to be kept upon inventory by him, and in a standard provided for that purpose, and to be used at the celebration of the sacrament in our chapel
royal. Oct. 8, “ To these orders we shall hereafter add others, if we find Bibl. Regia. others more necessary for the service of God there.”
sec. 2. num, 2.
And the king, possibly being apprehensive Ballantine might be warping toward the Presbyterian persuasion, gave the archbishop a warrant in writing to correspond with this bishop of
Dumblain, and transmit his majesty's directions to him for the Id. sec. 11. management of the chapel.
Notwithstanding archbishop Laud exerted himself for retrieving the usages of the Church, he found the Puritan novelties very difficult to deal with. Calvin, and some others of that complexion, were in many places the idols of the people : insomuch, that to practise up to the primitive Church, to worship God “in the beauty of holiness,” and guard the solemnities from contempt, was interpreted to be superstition. To give an instance of the undistinguishing obstinacy of these men. The parishioners of St. Gregory's, in St. Paul's Church
yard, had been at a considerable expence in ornamenting their CHARLES church : amongst other furniture they had prepared a table for the holy eucharist. Now the dean and chapter of St. Paul's A contest being ordinaries of the place, directed them to set it at the of the pa
rishioners of east end of the chancel, that by this situation it might recover St. Gregory its ancient standing, and be conformable to the mother-church. and the dean About five of the parishioners contesting this order, appealed of St. Paul's
about placing to the dean and the arches; and the dean and chapter, to the commucountermine them, referred the decision to the king. On the niom-talle. 3d of November the matter was brought before the councilboard, the king being present. After the cause had been pleaded at length on both sides, his majesty, having first declared his dislike of all innovation, gave sentence for the dean and chapter: the parishioners had urged the eighty-second canon to prove the liberty of placing the communion-table in a 761. situation of most conveniency. But here the king's decision takes notice, “That this liberty is not to be so understood, as if it was left to the direction of the parish, and much less to the singular fancy of every humoursome person, to over-rule this matter. To make this inference, was a wide misconstruction of the canons: for these circumstanees, both of place and time, were to be governed by the direction of the ordinary.” Bibl. Reg. This judgment in behalf of the dean and chapter was a ser- num. 17. viceable precedent, and encouraged the ordinaries in other dioceses to go through with the same regulation. Towards the latter end of this year the king wrote to the archbishop for encouraging the printing of Greek manuscripts: and because the letter may not be unacceptable to the reader, I shall insert it in the records. Farther, to promote the interest of oriental Num. 110. learning, the following letter was sent to the Turkey merchants :
Trusty and well-beloved, we greet you well.
Regist. “We have of late taken into our princely care, how to fur- Laud, par. 1. nish the Greek press within our kingdom, that such of our The king's subjects as are learned in that language might be able to set Turkey merforth some of those divers manuscripts in Greek, with which chants, for
promoting our own library, and the libraries in our universities, are well oriental
learning. furnished ; which course, if it be well followed (as we doubt not but it will), must needs bring a great deal of profit and honour both to Church and State. With the consideration of