« PrécédentContinuer »
he shall propose to him the following questions, viz:
1. Do you believe the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the word of God, the only infallible rule of faith and practice? I
2. Do you sincerely receive and adopt the confession of faith of this church, as containing the system of doctrine taught in the Holy Scriptures?
3. Do you approve of the government and discipline of the Presbyterian Church in these United States? t
4. Do you promise subjection to your brethren in the Lord? "
5. Have you been induced, as far as you know your own heart, to seek the office of the holy ministry from love to God, and a sincere desire to promote his glory in the gospel of his Son?
6. Do you promise to be zealous and faithful in maintaining the truths of the gospel, and the purity and peace of the church; whatever persecution or opposition may arise unto you on that account? w
7. Do you engage to be faithful and diligent in the exercise of all private and personal du
2 Tim. iii. 16. Eph. ii. 20. 3 2 Tim. i. 13.
t See letter (s) above.
u 1 Pet. v. 5.
1 Cor. ii. 2. 2 Cor. iv. 5.
ties, which become you as a Christian and a minister of the gospel; as well as in all relative duties, and the public duties of your office; endeavouring to adorn the profession of the gospel by your conversation; and walking with exemplary piety before the flock over which God shall make you overseer? *
8. Are you now willing to take the charge of this congregation, agreeably to your declaration at accepting their call? And do you promise to discharge the duties of a pastor to them, as God shall give you strength?
XIII. The candidate having answered these questions in the affirmative, the presiding minister shall propose to the people the following questions:
1. Do you, the people of this congregation, continue to profess your readiness to receive whom you have called
to be your minister?
2. Do you promise to receive the word of truth from his mouth, with meekness and love; and to submit to him in the due exercise of discipline? *
3. Do you promise to encourage him in his arduous labour, and to assist his endeavours for your instruction and spiritual edification ? a
4. And do you engage to continue to him,
See the epistles to Timothy and Titus throughout.
■ James i. 21. Heb. xiii. 17.
while he is your pastor, that competent worldly maintenance which you have promised; and whatever else you may see. needful for the honour of religion, and his comfort among you? b
XIV. The people having answered these questions in the affirmative, by holding up their right hands, the candidate shall kneel down in the most convenient part of the church. Then the presiding minister shall, by prayer, and with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery, according to the apostolic example, solemnly ordain him to the holy office of the gospel ministry. Prayer being ended, he shall rise from his knees; and the minister who presides shall first, and afterward all the members of the presbytery in their order, take him by the right hand, saying, in words to this purpose, "We give you the right hand of fellowship, to "take part of this ministry with us." After which the minister presiding, or some other appointed for the purpose, shall give a solemn charge in the name of God, to the newly ordained bishop, and to the people, to persevere in the discharge of their mutual duties; and shall then, by prayer, recommend them
b 1 Cor. ix. 7 to 15.
c Acts xiii. 2, 3.
d 1 Tim. iv. 14.
• Gal. ii. 9. Acts i. 25.
2 Tim. iv. 1, 2.
Mark iv. 24. Heb. ii. 1. See also letters (y), (z), and (a), page 447.
both to the grace of God, and his holy keeping, and finally, after singing a psalm, shall dismiss the congregation with the usual blessing. And the presbytery shall duly record the transaction.
XV. As it is sometimes desirable and important that a candidate who has not received a call to be the pastor of a particular congregation, should, nevertheless, be ordained to the work of the gospel ministry, as an evangelist to preach the gospel, administer sealing ordinances, and organize churches, in frontier or destitute settlements; in this case, the last of the preceding questions shall be omitted, and the following used as a substitute :-viz.
Are you now willing to undertake the work of an evangelist; and do you promise to discharge the duties which may be incumbent on you in this character, as God shall give you strength?
OF TRANSLATION, OR REMOVING A MINISTER FROM ONE CHARGE TO ANOTHER.
I. No bishop shall be translated from one church to another, nor shall he receive any call for that purpose, but by the permission of the presbytery.
II. Any church, desiring to call a settled minister from his present charge, shall, by commissioners properly authorized, represent to
the presbytery the ground on which they plead his removal. The presbytery, having maturely considered their plea, may, according as it appears more or less reasonable, either recommend to them to desist from prosecuting the call, or may order it to be delivered to the minister to whom it is directed. If the parties be not prepared to have the matter issued at that presbytery, a written citation shall be given to the minister and his congregation, to appear before the presbytery at their next meeting. This citation shall be read from the pulpit in that church, by a member of the presbytery appointed for that purpose, immediately after public worship; so that at least two Sabbaths shall intervene betwixt the citation and the meeting of the presbytery at which the cause of translation is to be considered. The presbytery being met, and having heard the parties, shall, upon the whole view of the case, either continue him in his former charge, or translate him, as they shall deem to be most for the peace and edification of the church; or refer the whole affair to the synod at their next meeting, for their advice and direction.
III. When the congregation calling any settled minister is within the limits of another presbytery, that congregation shall obtain leave from the presbytery to which they belong, to apply to the presbytery of which he is a member: and that presbytery, having cited him