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Of hope, in that glad moment when it springs From deep despair? O, can there be a
That never, at its foot, poured out itself
But, bush, my fears! it rests not on the sand;
Feels immortality begun within,
And his din vision cleared from every mist
From thee thy uncreated glory wrest,
One step from thee, thy Godhead, and thy
Inseparable, and down a steep descent, Down, down they go, with bold and bolder strides,
Till, all restraint thrown off, one desperate plunge
Sinks them below the light of truth and heaven,
In the dread gulf of infidelity,
The fatal gulf. Between this rayless depth, And that celestial height, from which they leap
Who once from thee depart, exists no ground On which to rest; all is but empty air;
In which wide void each pause the falling inake,
Is but a transient hovering on the wing.
""Tis when the cross is preached, and
Men of illustrious name. that have employed
And, at the end, with grief and self-reproach,
Convinced, at length, of this its impotence,
To the besotted Greenlander, and lead
All, to the least, twinkling with vivid beams,
Of his long wintry night; and to the sun,
To these and objects visible like these,
What though the cross, presented to the view
With all the humbling but momentous truths
When one who traverses some polar waste,
Cruel the tenderness, that whispers peace
In travelling merrily on the high way
Cheering and cheered, deceiving and deceived,
Undoing and undone! Learn'd he may be,
Against the sweet simplicity of truth,
Whose eloquence is that of piety
That takes supreme possession of the soul,
AN abstract of the proceedings of the Biennial Convention of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Eastern Diocese, holden at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September 25, 1822.
THE Convention was attended by the right reverend Alexander V. Griswold, D. D. bishop of the diocese, eight clerical and three lay deputies.
The meeting was opened by the celebration of divine service and a sermon, which were followed by the administration of the
holy rite of confirmation, and the sacrament of the Lord's supper.
The reverend Asa Eaton was chosen secretary of the convention.
The reverend Mr Crocker, reverend Mr. Burroughs, reverend Mr. Bronson, reverend Mr. Ten Broeck, reverend Dr. Jarvis, reverend Mr. Eaton, reverend Mr. Morss, Dudley A. Tyng, and George Brinley, esquires, were chosen the standing committee of the diocese.
The reverend Dr. Jarvis was appointed chairman of the standing committee.
The alterations in the constitution proposed at the last meeting of the convention were unanimously adopted.*
The following alterations in the constitution were proposed and ordered to lie over for consideration at the next meeting of the convention; viz. in the second article, that the words, "each of the states by rotation," be erased, and the words, "such place as shall be agreed upon at the preceding convention," be inserted: also, that after the words lay delegate," the words, delegates, not exceeding three," be inserted. In article tenth, that the word annual be substituted for the word "biennial."
Agreeably to the provisions of the 45th canon the bishop delivered an address exhibiting a view of the state of the church in the diocese and an account of his official duties since the last convention. Whereupon it was
Resolved, That so much of the bishop's address as relates to the supply of vacant parishes, the support of the episcopate, and a uniform system of catechetical instruction for the diocese, be referred to the reverend Dr. Jarvis, reverend Mr. Morss, and reverend Mr. Leonard.
The above committee reported the following resolutions, which were unanimously adopted.
Resolved, That the bishop be, and he hereby is requested to assign to the several rectors of parishes within the diocese, such missionary duties as he shall think expedient: and that it be, and it hereby is recommended to the several parishes to form missionary societies, auxiliary to such societies for that purpose, as have been or may be formed by the authority of the state conventions.
Resolved, That a committee of three of the laity in each state in the diocese be appointed by this convention to solicit subscriptions and donations to the Episcopal fund.
Resolved, That a committee of three of the clergy, in connexion with the bishop, and under his direction and superintendance, be appointed by the authority of this convention, to set forth a uniform system of catechetical instruction for the use of the diocese.
Conformably to the resolution on the support of the episcopate, the following committees were appointed in the several states composing the diocese.
* By these alterations, the state of Maine is recognised as a part of the Eastern diocese, and the meetings of the convention are to be held annually, instead of biennially, to be composed of all the clergy of the diocese and a lay delegate from each church.
In Massachusetts, Dudley A. Tyng, Thomas L. Winthrop, and George Brinley, esquire.
În Rhode Island, Alexander Jones, Henry De Wolf, and Stephen Northum, esquires. In New Hampshire, the Hon. James Sheafe, Hon. John Harris, and Ezra Jones, esquire.
In Vermont, the Hon. Daniel Chipman, Hon. Jonathan H. Hubbard, and Alexander Fleming, esquire.
In the state of Maine, Robert H. Gardiner, Simon Bradstreet, and Stephen Wait, esqr's. The next meeting of the convention is to be held at Windsor, Vermont, on the last Wednesday of September, 1823.
WE present, with great pleasure, to our readers, an abstract of the journals of Vermont, for the years 1820, 1821, and 1822. This, if we mistake not, is the first printed journal of any of the conventions of the states which compose the eastern diocese. Though small and humble in its appearance, it is not more so than were the first journals of those churches which now annually exhibit reports of 40 or 50 pages. It is a good example, and we hope it will be followed. We insert the constitution of the church in Vermont, as revised and adopted at the convention, in 1820.
I. The various churches in Vermont shall be considered as united in one convention in subordination to the general convention of the United States.
II. The said convention shall meet annually on the fourth Wednesday in June, at such place as shall be appointed at a previous meeting; and all clergymen of the protestant Episcopal church, residing in this state, shall be entitled to seats in convention; and lay delegates from the several churches in this state, shall be entitled to seats in the said convention, in the following proportion, to wit: Each church shall have the privilege of sending at least one member; if it consists of ten or more communicants, then it may send two members, and for every twenty-five communicants, excepting the numbers above specified, the said churches shall be entitied to one additional member.
III. The convention shall deliberate and act in one body; but shall vote in distinct orders, when any member shall call for such a division on any one question; and in such case a concurrence of a majority of both orders shall be necessary to constitute a vote.
IV. A president, secretary, and standing committee, shall be chosen at every annual meeting of the convention; and when there is to be a session of the general convention
within the ensuing year, the requisite delegations shall be appointed to represent this state in that body; also as long as this state shall belong to the Eastern diocese,a delegation shall be appointed to attend each diocesan convention at the next preceding annual convention, or at some meeting specially warned for that purpose. Provided, however, that no person shall be a member of the standing committee, or shall represent this state in the general or diocesan convention, unless he be a regular communicant in the church. Provided, also, that when the bishop of the diocese shall be present in convention, he shall, ex-officio, be president. The convention may, from time to time, if deemed expedient, appoint a prudential committee to superintend the prudential concerns of the church.
V. If, at any time, a bishop is to be elected by this convention, the secretary, by order of the president or standing committee, shall write to the minister, or one of the wardens of each church, at least six weeks before the election is to take place, and give notice of the time and place appointed for such election, and request, that delegates may attend the convention for the purpose; and in every such election, the convention shall vote in distinct orders-the clerical order shall make a nomination by ballot, and a majority of the lay delegates, shall approve the appointment, before the person shall be considered elected.
VI. No alteration shall be made in this constitution, except in annual convention; nor unless proposed and reduced to writing at a previous convention.
VII. The bishop, or standing committee, shall have power to call a special convention, by giving six weeks previous notice to the minister or one of the wardens of each particular church.
Parochial reports in 1820, were from eleven churches, as follows: baptisms, 99; deaths, 35; whole number of communicants, 391. Parochial reports in 1821, from thirteen churches, baptisms, 101; marriages, 14; deaths, 32; whole number of communicants, 592. Ín several of the churches, flourishing Sunday schools.
Parochial reports in 1822, from thirteen churches, baptisms, 73; marriages, 21; deaths, 32; number of communicants 557.
Standing committee, for the year ensuing, Rev. Abraham Bronson, Rev. George Leo nard, Rev. Carlton Chase, Rev. Joel Clapp. Prudential committee, Hon. Daniel Chipman, George Cleveland, Esq. Hon. J. H.
Delegates to the general convention, Rev.
Abraham Bronson, Rev. George Leonard, Rev. Carlton Chase, Rev. Joel Clapp; clerical :-Joshua Isham, Esq. George Cleve land, Esq. Mr. Alexander Fleming, and Dr. Elisha Sheldon, lay.
Rev. Abraham Bronson, was nominated by this convention, as a trustee of the general theological seminary of the protestant Episcopal church, in the United States of America, agreeable to the third article of the constitution of said seminary.
A communication from the secretary of the general convention, containing a proposed alteration of the constitution of that convention, relative to the time of holding its triennial meetings, and investing the presiding bishop, in certain cases, with the power to alter the place where the same shall be held, was read; and the convention voted, that this convention does not approve of the proposed alteration.
Resolved, That the clergy of this state be requested to preach in their several churches, and to solicit contributions, once or more in each year for the benefit of the protestant Episcopal missionary society in this state ;and that they be requested to perform similar duties in the several vacant parishes in this state.
The Rev. Carlton Chase is appointed to preach before the next convention, to be holden at St. Albans.
The following canons were passed in 1821. I. Of the mode of trying clergymen accused of misdemeanor.--Whenever the standing committee shall have reason to suspect a clergyman of this church to be guilty of infidelity, heresy, vice, or irregularity of any kind, it shall be their duty to inquire into the circumstances of the case; and, if upon investigation, they consider the crime worthy of notice, they shall report thereupon to the bishop, who may summon a council of his clergy, not less than three; a copy of the charge, and due notice of the time and place of trial being likewise communicated to the party accused; and after a full and fair investigation of the subject, the bishop may pronounce sentence in the case. And if any minister, degraded agreeable to this canon, shall consider himself aggrieved, he shall be allowed an appeal to the house of bishops.
II. Of the mode of forming and organizing churches.-Whenever any number of persons in this state shall form themselves into a regular society of the persuasion of the protestant Episcopal church, in such a manner, as that they will become a body corporate according to law, and their proceedings shall be sanctioned by the bishop of the diocese, or, in case of no bishop, by the standing committee of the state convention, they shall
Ar a quarterly meeting of the standing committee of the protestant Episcopal church of this state, September 18, 1822, the fol lowing resolution was passed, viz.
The rules of order of the standing committee of the state of Massachusetts not hav ing been published, in consequence of which, the candidates for orders have not been made acquainted with them,
Resolved, That the secretary of this board be directed to send an attested copy of the rules of order for insertion in the Gospel Advocate, which shall be considered as a sufficient publication of them, and that in future no dispensation of the sixth rule he admitted. RULES OF ORDER,
Of the Standing Committee of the State of Massachusetts.
1. The standing committee of the state of Massachusetts shall meet on the last Wednesday of the months of January, April, July, and October, at such time and place as shall be determined on at the preceding meeting. 2. A quorum to transact business shall consist of at least two clergymen and two laymen, or of three clergymen.
3. No testimonials of any kind whatsoever shall be signed by any member of the committee, unless when the committee is duly convened, and after full discussion and deliberation.
4. Agreeably to the provisions of the 8th canon of the general convention of 1820, every candidate for orders must be required to present to the committee a satisfactory diploma or certificate from the instructers of some approved literary institution, or a certificate from two presbyters, appointed by the ecclesiastical authority of the diocese to examine him, in the words following:
"We, whose names are hereunder written, being appointed by to examine A. B. do hereby certify, that we have accordingly
examined him, and that we find he possesses such academical learning as will enable him to enter advantageously on a course of theology, and we do accordingly recommend him to the standing committee.
C. D. Examining Presbyters.
In case of the dispensation of academical learning, provided for by canon ix, the candidate is required to lay before the commit. tee a testimonial signed by at least two presbyters of the church, in the words following, viz.
"We, whose names are hereunder written, do solemnly testify that, in our opinion, A. B. possesses such extraordinary strength of natural understanding, such a peculiar aptitude to teach, and so large a share of prudence, as renders it advisable, for the edification of the church, to dispense, in his case, with a knowledge of the Latin and Greek languages, and other branches of learning not strictly ecclesiastical." C. D. Presbyters. E. F. S
5. The testimonials, required by the standbe recommended as a candidate for holy ing committee of every person who wishes to orders, agreeably to the vii. canon, must be as follows. I, C. D. do solemnly testify that I have been personally acquainted with A. B. for years, (or months,) last past, during which time I have had constant opportunities of knowing his general character and conduct; and I fully believe that, during that time, he hath lived piously, soberly, and honestly, and is attached to the doctrines, discipline, and worship of the proI further believe testant Episcopal church. that he possesses such qualifications as will render him apt and meet to exercise the ministry to the glory of God, and the edifying of the church."
6. The standing committee shall in no case grant testimonials for orders, until the examinations required in canons x. and xi. have been made; and a certificate from the examiners, that they are satisfied with the result of the several examinations shall form a part of the testimonials laid before the standing committee, on which, their testimonials to the bishop are to be predicated.
7. Special meetings of the board shall be called by the president at the request, or by the consent, of any two members, which request or consent shall be communicated by the president to the secretary, who shall forthwith issue the necessary notifications.
A true copy from the records of the standing committee. Attest,
ISAAC BOYLE, Secretary.