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and crown a firmer establishment in that kingdom, the Act for CHARLES Uniformity passed this year. The preamble of this statute, being somewhat remarkable, shall be transcribed. It stands thus :
“ Whereas nothing conduceth more to the honour of God, The subthe settling the peace of a nation, which is desired of all good English Act men, or to the advancement of religion, than an universal of Uniagreement in the public worship of Almighty God; and to the passed in the intent that we his majesty's subjects of this his kingdom of at Dublin. Ireland
in this Church of Ireland hold the same conformity of common prayers and administration of the sacraments, and other the rites and ceremonies of the Church, according to the use of the Church of England, together with the Psalter or Psalms of David, pointed as they are to be sung or said in churches, and the form or manner of making, ordaining, or consecrating of bishops, priests, and deacons, which was recommended unto both houses of convocation here assembled in Ireland; to consider whether the same form of public worship might not be profitably received as the public form of divine service in this your majesty's kingdom of Ireland.
Whereupon both houses of convocation did diligently consider the same, and after mature consideration, well weighing the great advantages that must necessarily arise unto the whole kingdom from the uniformity of public prayers, did fully approve and allow the same.”
The substance of the act, being the same with that passed in England in the fourteenth year of this reign, shall be omitted.
The same session, an act passed in the parliament at Dublin, Charles 2. for disabling spiritual persons from holding bishoprics, bene- cap. 6. fices, or ecclesiastical dignities, in England and Ireland at the same time.
17 & 18 Mr. Calamy, in his “ Abridgment of Baxter's Life,” reports, that the lord-keeper Bridgman desired to discourse with Dr. Manton and Baxter upon the subject of a “comprehension and toleration.” At their waiting upon him, it was agreed to go first upon the business of comprehension. Dr. Wilkins and one Mr. Burton were consulted upon this occasion. The point
SHEL- of re-ordination stuck most between them. At last, sir Abp. Cant. Matthew Hale suggested a temper to adjust the difference.
The expedient was, that those Nonconformists who had been ordained before should be admitted into the ministry of the Church of England with this form :
A. D. 1668.
An essay to
“Take thou legal authority to preach the Word of God and date the dif- administer the holy sacraments, in any congregation of England ference be
where thou shalt be lawfully appointed thereunto.” Nonconformists of England.
It was likewise agreed, that ceremonies should be left indif895. ferent, the liturgy altered, and that those who could not be
comprehended should be indulged: and, for security to the
government, the names of the teachers and all the members of It miscar- the congregation were to be registered. A bill was accordingly
drawn by the chief-justice Hales against the ensuing parliament; but, when the houses sat, the episcopal party crushed
the design, and carried a vote against bringing in a bill of this Calamy's nature.
In September, the next year, the Dissenters were informed
that a public acknowledgment of the clemency of his majesty's A.D. 1669. government, and the liberty enjoyed under it, would be an
acceptable application. Upon this, an address was presented by Dr. Manton, Dr. Bates, Dr. Jacomb, and Mr. Inness. The king received them graciously, in the earl of Arlington's
apartments, and promised to do his utmost to get them comId. p. 589. prehended within the public establishment.
This year, at the parliament at Edinburgh, the Assertory Act of the king's spiritual supremacy was made. It is penned in strong comprehensive language. The words are these :
The As- “ His majesty, with advice and consent of his estates of sertory Act
parliament, doth hereby enact, assert, and declare, that his of the
parliament at majesty hath the supreme authority and supremacy over all Nov. 1669. persons, and in all causes ecclesiastical, within his kingdom;
and that, by virtue thereof, the ordering and disposal of the external government and policy of the Church doth properly belong to his majesty and his successors, as an inherent right to the crown ; and that his majesty and his successors may settle, enact, and emit such constitutions, acts, and orders, concerning the administration of the external government of the Church and the persons employed in the same, and con- CHARLES cerning all ecclesiastical meetings and matters to be proposed and determined therein, as they in their royal wisdom shall think fit."
Charles 2. parl. 2.
By virtue of this act, -—whether strained or not I shall not The archexamine,--Burnet, archbishop of Glasgow, was dispossessed of Glusgow his see, and Dr. Leighton put in his place. This remove was by this act, made by the high-commissioner Lauderdale. However, the and restored. court, being sensible this was pushing the regale to an unusual extent, gave Leighton only the title of “commendator of Glasgow,” till archbishop Burnet was prevailed with to sign a resignation. But this being looked on
But this being looked on as an involuntary cession, the Scottish bishops were shocked at it. The archbishop of Canterbury likewise, and the English prelates, thought the common interest of their order affected, and that the episcopal authority was struck at in the Glasgow precedent.
In short, they solicited so heartily in the cause, and represented the business in so persuasive a manner to the king, that his majesty revoked his proceedings, and archbishop Burnet was restored.
The next session an act passed against “ Invaders of Ministers," as the title runs. And here it is enacted and declared, “ That whatsoever person or persons should be found guilty of An act the assaulting of the lives of the ministers, or robbing their those who houses, or actually attempting the same, shall be punished assaulted the with the pain of death, and the confiscation of their goods.” Charles 2. How well this act has been since regarded, the period of my sess. 2. history will not give me leave to inquire.
To return to England. In the parliament at Westminster, A.D. 1670. an act passed “ for preventing and suppressing Seditious Conventicles.” By this statute, • if any person upwards of sixteen An act for should be present at any assembly, conventicle, or meeting, seditious under colour or pretence of any exercise of religion, in any
conventicles. other manner than according to the liturgy and practice of the Church of England, where there were five persons or more besides those of the said household ; or if they met in the fields, where there were five persons met for the purposes abovementioned ; in such cases the offenders were to be fined five shillings for the first offence, and ten shillings for the second.
SHEL. And the preachers and teachers in any such meetings were to Apb. Cant. forfeit twenty pounds for the first, and forty for the second
offence. And lastly, those who knowingly suffered any such
conventicle in their houses, barns, yards, &c. were to forfeit 22 Charles 2. twenty pounds.”
To say something concerning promotions in the Church : Promotions the honourable Nathanael Crew, son to the lord Crew, and Church.
clerk of the closet to his majesty, bishop elect of Oxon; and Dr. Thomas Wood, late dean of Lichfield, bishop elect of Coventry and Lichfield, were on Sunday, July the second, solemnly consecrated in the chapel at Lambeth, by the lord
archbishop of Canterbury, assisted by the bishops of London, A.D. 1671. Ely, Lincoln, Worcester, and Rochester. On Sunday, Octo
ber 1, Dr. Henry Bridgeman, dean of Chester, was, in the cathedral of that city, elected bishop of Man, by the bishop of Chester, deputed for that purpose by Stern, archbishop of York; the bishops of St. Asaph, Bangor, and Clogher, assisting at the solemnity.
On February the 12th following, John Cosens, lord bishop of Durham, remarkably eminent for his loyalty and learning, departed this life. Besides his “Devotions," already mentioned, he wrote a “ Scholastical History of the Canon of the Scriptures.” This tract, written at Paris, is a very learned and solid justification of the Church of England, as to this branch of the controversy; the extending the canon by the council of Trent, being sufficiently disproved from the Fathers and Catholic tradition. After the see of Durham had been kept vacant for some time, Crew, lord bishop of Oxon, was translated thither.
When the war broke out a second time between England and Holland, the king, who seemed inclined to favour the Dissenters, thought this a proper juncture to quiet the minds of his subjects, and set them at ease in matters of religion. To this purpose, by the advice of his privy council, he published the declaration following :
The king's declaration for an indulyence.
“ CHARLES Rex,
“ Our care and endeavours for the preservation of the rights and interest of the Church, have been sufficiently manifested to the world by the whole course of our government since our happy restoration, and by the many and frequent
ways of coercion that we have used for reducing all erring or CHARLES dissenting persons, and for composing the unhappy differences in matters of religion, which we found among our subjects upon our return; but it being evident, by the sad experience of twelve years, that there is very little fruit of all those forcible
896. courses, we think ourself obliged to make use of that supreme power in ecclesiastical matters, which is not only inherent in us, but hath been declared and recognized to be so by several statutes and acts of parliament: and therefore we do now accordingly issue this our declaration, as well for the quieting the minds of our good subjects in these points, for inviting strangers in this conjuncture to come and live under us, and for the better encouragement of all to the cheerful following of their trade and callings, from whence we hope, by the blessing of God, to have many good and happy advantages to our government; as also for preventing, for the future, the danger that might otherwise arise from private meetings and seditious conventicles.
" And, in the first place, we declare our express resolution, meaning, and intention, to be, that the Church of England be preserved, and remain entire in its doctrine, discipline, and government, as now it stands established by law; and that this be taken to be, as it is, the basis, rule, and standard, of the general and public worship of God, and that the orthodox conformable clergy do receive and enjoy the revenues belonging thereunto; and that no person, though of a different opinion and persuasion, shall be exempt from paying his tithes, and other dues whatsoever. And farther we declare, that no person shall be capable of holding any benefice, living, or ecclesiastical dignity, or preferment of any kind, in this our kingdom of England, who is not exactly conformable.
“ We do, in the next place, declare our will and pleasure to be, that the execution of all and all manner of penal laws in matters ecclesiastical, against whatsoever sort of Nonconformists, or Recusants, be immediately suspended ; and they are hereby suspended. And all judges, judges of assize, and gaol delivery, sheriffs, justices of the peace, mayors, bailiffs, and other officers whatsoever, whether ecclesiastical or civil, are to take notice of it, and pay due obedience thereunto.
“ And that there may be no pretence for any of our subjects to continue their illegal meetings and conventicles, we do