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they who refuse the 5th of November service on the ground of its coming from the King only, have neither convocation to rest on, nor can they bring with any fairness the act of uniformity as conflicting with the King's authority in this case.
Now, without meaning, for one moment, to go into such a wide question as this,-ought the crown to have the power of appointing holidays, thanksgivings, and sanctioning the use of certain services on these days ?-it may be well to add a word or two about the actual exercise of the power of such appointment. There are many instances in Queen Elizabeth's reign where this was done, (just after an act of uniformity, too, had been passed,) and where, in the preface or preamble, it is directly asserted to be part of the royal prerogative to do this. There were many instances, again, in Charles II.'s reign, just after the last act of uniformity. Johnson, too,* who is tolerably high in his doctrine, observes, that it is sufficient, in his opinion, that parliament owns this authority, by observing the days so appointed, and sometimes petitioning the crown to order them. And the facts just mentioned, as to Queen Elizabeth and Charles II.'s reigns, shew that there was not supposed to be any infringement of the prerogative by the acts of uniformity. Indeed, although at this moment book authority for the doctrine cannot be pointed out, any one who will inquire of ecclesiastical lawyers will find that they hold the doctrine, that the king's prerogative cannot be interfered with by any act of parliament, unless specially named. Therefore, if this authority ever was in the crown--as Johnson allows that it was—the last act of uniforinity does not take it away. It must be left to others to dispute or disprove the existence of the prerogative in this matter. They who feel conscientiously jealous about it would do well to give their just weight to Mr. Palmer's most excellent remarks at the beginning of his second volume of Origines Liturgicæ, on the interference of " chief governors” in matters ecclesiastical, and to consider whether it is well, on the highest church grounds, to make the throne nothing in such points—thus wholly to do away the rights of kings in church matters. There remains only one more point to be noticed, - viz.,
, Alpha's remark, that what is done in the act for the change of style, as to this point, is an obiter dictum. With all respect for him, it must be said, that a more direct, complete, or full enactment, could not be made. The facts are these :- In the convocation of 1662, a calendar was prepared, (a notice of it will be found in the proceedings of the upper house, in the Synodus Anglicana ;) and this calendar of 1662 expressly notes November 5 as one of the days for which there is a particular service, and the service in question was revised by that convocation, and, as we have seen, appended by the King's authority to the Common Prayer Book, Now, the authority of this calendar, as a sort of general rubric, must be allowed; for though not specifi
It was observed in the last Number, that Johnson afterwards did not act on this, but the opposite opinion. He was prosecuted, and, for a time, the cause slept ; but afterwards it was renewed, and he submitted, withdrew his plea, and promised not to offend again. So that his first was also his final opinion.
cally mentioned in the act of aniformity, yet the daily service established by that act not only cannot be celebrated without the use of this calendar, but the rubrics expressly refer the minister to this calendar for directions. In process of time, the difficulties, as to the reckoning of time, which caused the change of style, were attended to; and when the act on this subject passed, as it was seen that the old calendar would become erroneous, a long and full enactment was introduced, establishing a new calendar, which is appended to the act, and not only enforcing its use, but expressly ordering that those days which had been ordered by any act of parliament to be observed should be still observed on the days marked in the new calendar. This new calendar marks the 5th of November as one of the days for which a particular service is ordered ; and the particular parts of that particular service, to which “ Alpha” objects, must then have been in nse about fifty years. This act of parliament, then, to say the very least, surely gives all the authority of the old calendar of 1662 to the new one ; and in consequence, by that new calendar only, every minister ministers the Common Prayer. Is it meant to deny rubrical authority to the old calendar? If not, does not that calendar establish the service as it then existed, published only by the King's authority? If so, and if less force cannot be ascribed to the new calendar than the old, it follows at least that this new calendar, established by act of parliament, means to order the use of that service which we now have. It is for those who use this new calendar every Sunday, or every day, and celebrate divine service by it, to shew why they accept part of its directions and reject others.
ALPHA'S LETTER. SIR,-Allow me to lay before you and your readers the grounds which influenced me, and I believe others, in the course which we took respecting the Service for the fifth of November, which I trust may assure you that we are not wholly deserving the severe censures which your article, and the extract from Dr. Elrington, conveyed : for that we acted, as we imagined, according to duty and principle, and not in dereliction of both, as that article assumes.
My view of the case was this : that on the fifth of November we had presented to our choice no less than three services and three sets of rubrics, on three different authorities.
1. The ordinary service and rubrics for the 24th Sunday after trinity as appointed by “the Book of Common Prayer," sanctioned by convocation, the parliament, and the crown, in 1661, enjoined by act of uniformity, and to which we have made declaration of conformity.
2. The church of England service (as I will venture to call it till otherwise informed) which, as an exception to the Book of Common Prayer, (and forming no part of it, but merely appended to it,) was drawn up in convocation, and sanctioned by the crown in 1662, for the commemoration of the discovery of the Gunpowder Plot; to which VOL. XIII.-January, 1838.
service, by the principles of our church, and our subscription to the 2nd article in the 36th canon, I conceive we are virtually, if not literally, under obligation.
3. The service for the commemoration of Gunpowder Treason, and for the accession of the Prince of Orange to the throne by conquest, (“ we bless thee for giving his late majesty King William a safe arrival here, and for making all opposition fall before him, till he became our king and governor,") appointed by the crown alone, without either parliament or convocation.
I conceive that, by the conduct of convocation, and of the crown, subsequent to 1661, the ordinary service on that day rests now on the authority of parliament alone; that by the conduct of the crown subsequent to 1688, the church of England service rests now upon the authority of convocation alone; and that the service, as it now stands, rests on the authority of the crown alone. Such being, at least apparently, the case, I cannot but think that there is room for allowance for difference of opinion as to which service is most obligatory upon us, and that reproof and censure on any side are out of place.
If indeed the obiter dictum, of the 24 Geo. II. c. 23, in which the fifth of November is recognised as one having a particular form of service appointed, (of which you speak) is tantamout to a repeal, quoad hoc, of the act of uniformity, and is construable into a law obliging the use of a special service ; then certainly the ordinary service for the day, as appointed by the Book of Common Prayer, is abrogated. But nothing but a high legal opinion will convince me that sach force can be put upon that allusion or recognition; certainly Burp does not appear to have entertained this opinion. Even then it will be open to a question at least, which of the two special services is to be considered the one appointed, whether that which had received the consent of convocation and the crown, and had therefore, I conceive, the force of ecclesiastical law, or that which the crown without convocation (and therefore, I speak with deference, without due regard to the liberties of the church, and to her principles of ecclesiastical government,) has substituted for that which the church and crown had provided.
But Dr. Elrington says, that the thanksgivings for the accession of William III. received the sanction of convocation. It is the first time I have heard the assertion; and as I have looked for any trace of it in vain, and believe it would have been morally impossible to have carried those additions through convocation in that reign, he must excuse me if I doubt the accuracy of his statement. If he is correct, and I shall be really much obliged to him to state the grounds of his assertion, then I will at once acknowledge myself to be in error, and that the service as it now stands has every desirable authority. If otherwise, then I trust I may be held excused if, in vindication as I conceive of the constitutional privileges and liberties of the church of England, I refuse to make any such acknowledgment.
The question as to the nature of the additions to the service made by King William does not of course affect the point of principle and authority; still it will serve to explain why a more than usual jealousy
is entertained by many persons on this subject. It is one thing to thank God for deliverance, and another to make the particular means employed by him in effecting it a subject of rejoicing and thanksgiving. I trust I am not insensible to the mercy of God in defending the evil machinations of an infatuated popish monarch, and saving his true religion from the evil which that monarch sought to inflict upon it. But when I consider the means by which it was effected, I must confess, they seem to me to call much more for national humiliation than for national rejoicing. For if to suffer our country to be forcibly invaded, and our throne violently seized by a foreigner,-if to suffer in the highest places of the earth an open breach of the fifth commandment and disregard for our Lord's reproof of “ Corban,”—if to suffer our metropolitan, and our most eminent bishops, (who were confessors under both reigns, but suffered worse from the Dutch presbyterian than they did from the English papists,) with many hundreds of our clergy, to be deprived by the arbitrary power of the civil government, because they regarded an oath,-if to suffer the whole church of Scotland to be overthrown, and the presbyterian dissenters, by the brute force of the civil government, to be exalted in their stead, -if all these things combined are not proofs of Divine displeasure, (who yet, for the truth's sake which we retained, would not wholly cast us off, nor suffer it to be utterly put out,) then I must confess that I have read history and the scriptures to little profit. And therefore, if the case is as you have stated it to us, and there is every imaginable and every possible authority for the new service, I would suggest to all my brethren who take the same view of the matter that I do, the propriety and duty of presenting petitions, and praying to be released from the obligation of offering in the house of God prayers and thanksgivings which seem indirectly to countenance and to commend guilt and evil of the most appalling kinds.
It is the same with the service for the 30th of January; the expressions which many men of liberal politics find so offensive, and which have occasioned many to shrink from using the service, were not appointed by the church in convocation, but were added by King James II. See Burn's Ecclesiastical Law, “ Holidays."
I hope I have said nothing in this justly offensive to you or Dr. Elrington; for, though I have made bold to vindicate myself from your reproof, I have endeavoured to do so with that courtesy which can alone give a satisfactory issue to differences of opinion. As Dr. Elrington writes in his own name, you are free to communicate mine to him, should he desire it.
Yours truly, ALPHA.
DR. MILL AND BISHOP'S COLLEGE, The following documents will be read with the most lively interest not only by every friend of the excellent Dr. Mill, but by all who venerate the memory of Bishop Middleton. They well know what were his views as to Bishop's College, and what were his expectations from it. And here we have the testimony of the bishop, and, with one exception, every clergyman of Calcutta, as to the extraordinary ser
vices which it has rendered, and, if its efficiency shall be maintained, will, by God's blessing, render to the Christian cause in India. The testimony is the more striking and valuable from the fact, that the present bishop is understood not to agree with Bishop Middleton, or with Dr. Mill, on many matters of opinion. Many, doubtless, of Dr. Mill's early friends will gladly join in the testimonial to him, to which the bishop and others have already subscribed most liberally; and all who know his worth will cordially concur in the wish, that he may long be spared, as being one whose great learning and high principles make him an ornament and a blessing to the church. A Valedictory Address from the Bishop, Archdeacon, and Clergy, of Calcutta
and its Neighbourhood, to the REVEREND W. H. Mill, D.D., PRINCIPAL of Bishop's College, on his final departure from India : presented on the
1st of September, 1837. With his Reply. On the evening of Friday, September 1st, Dr. Mill having been invited to meet the clergy at the Bishop's Palace—the Lord Bishop, in the presence of the archdeacon and the greater part of the clergy whose names are subscribed, read to him, in his own name and theirs, the following address :To The Reverend William Hlodge Mill, D.D., PRINCIPAL OF
Bishop's College, Calcutta. 1. The Bishop, Archdeacon, and Clergy, of Calcutta and its neighbourhood, have learned, with extreme regret, the fact of your approaching departure from amongst them; and are anxious to assure you, that you will carry to your retirement in England the warmest affections and most hearty good wishes and prayers
your clerical brethren, as well as of your numerous other friends, in British India.
2. They cannot but reflect with gratitude to Almighty God, on the long course of arduous service which you have sustained, and on the success which has attended your efforts for now more than sixteen years, in a field of service before untried in our reformed apostolical church.
3. To have been the first principal of the only missionary college connected with that church in this land of idolatry and darkness; to have opened the several branches of the pious design which was formed by its distinguished founder; and to have witnessed the beginning of the Divine mercy in all the various subdivisions of it, is, as we think, no slight subject of congratulation.
4. It seems to us that all the expectations of Bishop Middleton have already been accomplished, so far as opportunities have presented themselves, in this favourite project of that eminent prelate.
5. You have seen the foundation scholarships filled up; you have established a matured course of collegiate discipline : you have reproduced in India the pious usages of daily prayers which distinguish our colleges at home; you have guided and assisted in the sittings of the college council, and its ordinary and extraordinary syndicates. You have sustained and defended the college during its years of probation, difficulty, and conflict; you have beheld a considerable number of your pupils admitted to holy orders in our Indo-Anglican church. You have the satisfaction of knowing that some of these youths are amongst the most pious and useful of the servants of Christ in the southern missions of the incorporated society; whilst, in the neighbourhood of Calcutta, one of the most fruitful spots of missionary labour has been cultivated by those who had been entirely educated under your superintendence.
6. In the meantime, several other pious students have left the college, and are learning, in the capacity of catechists, those initiatory duties which may prepare them to become candidates also for holy orders.
1. There remained only one division of the original plan of Bishop Middleton to be entered upon—the foundation of a native ministry. This has, under the