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These females are also to be regarded as among the
founders of the church. Their names are, therefore, here inserted, from the book of “ Admissions.”
The names of the several Pastors, and the dates of
their ordination or installation, and of their decease or dismission, are as follows ::
Thomas Thatcher, inst'd Feb. 16, 1670, deceased Oct. 15, 1678. Æ 58
do. Sept. 25, 1771, do. Feb. 8, 1775.
been chosen one of the Secretaries of the American Board of Commis. sioners for Foreign Missions.
He died Feb. 9, 1835, aged 40. Samuel H. Stearns, ord'd April 16, 1834, dismissed March 8, 1836. George W. Blagden, inst'd Sept. 28, 1836.
The following persons have sustained the office of
Ruling Elder or of Deacon of this Church.
[This list, from the manner in which the early records were kept, cannot be relied on as being perfact and entire.]
Edward Raynsford, Ruling Elder.*
do. Nov. 24, 1693. Daniel Henchman, do.
deceased in 1761 Jonathan Simpson, do. Aug. 7, 1733, do.
1763 Thomas Hubbard, do. April 9, 1739, resigned Jan. 23, 1764 Samuel Sewall,
do. Sept. 16, 1763, deceased, Jan.19, 1771 David Jeffries, do. Sept. 16, 1763, do. Sept.
1786 William Phillips,
do. Feb. 27, 1764, resigned Nov. 1793
* Most of the churches of New England, for some time after the settlement of the country, had, besides a pastor and a teacher, and two or more deacons, a ruling elder, or ruling elders, whose “business," says the author of Ratio Disciplinæ, "it was to assist the pastor in visiting the distressed, instructing the ignorant, reducing the erroneous, comforting the afflicted, rebuking the unruly, discovering the state of the whole flock, exercising the discipline of the gospel upon offenders, and promoting the desirable growth of the church.”
The name of but one ruling elder is mentioned in the Records of the Old South Church. This does not prove, however, that none others were ever chosen. There is no mention in the records of any deacon having been chosen till Nov. 1685.
t In the early periods of the New England churches, the deacons were ordained with prayer, and the laying on of the hands of the pastor.
Jonathan Mason, elected Deacon, Aug. 20, 1770, deceased May 5, 1798 Thomas Dawes, do. Oct. 20, 1786,
do. Jan. 2, 1809 Samuel Salisbury, do, March 24, 1794, do. May 2, 1818 William Phillips, Jr. do. March 24, 1794,
do. May 26,
1827 Josiah Salisbury,
do. May, 8, 1817, do. Feb. 10, 1826 Edward Phillips,
do. May, 8, 1817, do. Nov. 4, 1826 Pliny Cutler,
do. April 29, 1826. Thomas Vose,
do. April 29, 1826, deceased, Oct. 3, 1840 Samuel T. Armstrong, do. May 18, 1829. Charles Stoddard,
do. Dec. 31, 1840.
THE OLD SOUTH CHURCH.
MARCH 27, 1826. Voted, That hereafter the following shall be the method of proceeding in relation to applications for admission to this church on dismission and recommendation from other churches, viz: The applicants shall be conversed with by the pastor for the purpose of ascertaining whether they approve of the covenant, and are disposed to conform to the faith and government of this church, and their letters of dismission and recommendation shall be examined and approved by the committee already appointed for that purpose, agreeably to a vote of this church passed January 1, 1816. If the pastor and the committee are satisfied with the results of their examinations, the names of the applicants shall be mentioned, as applying for admission to this church on dismission and recommendation from other churches, at the same times at which persons applying for admission on profession are propounded. At the expiration of a fortnight from the time of their application being thus mentioned before the congregation, if no objection to their admission has, in the mean time, been stated to the pastor, their testimonials shall be read to the church and the vote taken upon their application, immediately before the usual proceedings in relation to the admission of those who are to be received on profession.
Voted, That in conformity with the spirit of a resolution adopted by this church January 1, 1816, it be a standing rule of this church, that members, who shall absent themselves from the communion of this church and associate in attendance on divine ordinances with other churches, be expected to apply for a dismission from this church in order to their regular admission to the churches with which they statedly worship and commune, within two years from the time of their thus ceasing regularly to commune with this church, or sooner if convenient; and that when members of this church so worshipping and communing statedly with other churches, shall not apply for dismission till after the expiration of two years from the time of their ceasing regularly to attend on Christian ordinances with this church, they be required to accompany their application for a dismission and recommendation with a certificate, from the pastor, and when there is no pastor, from one of the other officers of the church with which they have been in the habit of communing and to which they wish to be recommended, testifying to