Imatges de pÓgina
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at the next meeting: which meeting fall not be sooner than ten days after such ciation.

6. Ai the next meeting of the presbytery, the charges must be read to him, and his answers heard. If it appear necessary to proceed farther, the presbytery cught to labour to bring him to leonfellion. And if he confess, and the matter be base and flagitious; such as drunkennefs, uncleanness, or crimes of a higher nature, howe. ver penitent he may appear, to the fatisfa&ion of all, the presbytery must, without delay, fuspend him from the exercise of his office, or depose him from the ministry; and appoint him a due time to confess publicly before the congregation offended, and to profess his repentance.

7. The prosecutor shall be previously warned, that, if he fail to prove the charges, he must himself be'censured, as a flanderer of the gospel ministry, in proportion to the malignity, or rashness, that shall appear in the profecution.

8. If a minifter, accused of atrocious crimes, being twice duly cited, itiall resuse to attend the presbytery, he must be immediately fufpended And if, after another citation, he still refuse to attend, hë shall be dcposed as contumacious.

9. If the minister, when he appears, will not confess; but denies the facts alledged against him; if, on hearing the witnefles, the charges appear impor.ant and well supported, the presbytery mult, nevertheless, censure him; and fuspend or depose him, according to the nature of the offence.

10. Herefy and schism may be of such a nature as to infer deposition ; but errors ought to be carefully confidered; whether they ítrike at the vitals of religion, and are industriously spread; or whether they arise from the weakness of the human understanding, and are not likely to do much hurt.

11. A minifter, under process for heresy or schism, should be treated with christian and brotherly tenderness. Frequent conferences ought to be held with him, and proper admonitions administered. Yet, for some more dangerous errors, suspension becomes necessary. But a fynod should be consulted in such cases.

12. If the presbytery find, on trial, that the matter complained of amounts to no more than such acts of infirmity as may be amendesi, and the people fatisfied; fo as little or nothing remains to hinder his usefulness; they shall take all prudent measures to remove the offence.

13. A minister, deposed for fcandalous conduct, may not be restored, even on his deepest sorrow for fin, without some time of eminent and exemplary, humble, and edifying conversation, to heal the wound made by his scandal.

14. As soon as a minister is deposed, his congregation thall be declared vacant,

THE

DIRECTORY

FOR THE WORSHIP OF GOD IN THE

PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH IN

THE UNITED STATES

OF AMERICA.

CH A P.

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Of the Sanctification of the Lord's Day,
Sect. I. TT is the duty of every person to

remember the Lord's day; and to prepare for it, before its approach. All worldly business should be so ordered, and seasonably laid afide, as that we may not be hindered thereby from fan&tifying the fabbath, as the hoJy fcriptures require.

Sect. II. The whole day is to be kept holy to the Lord; and to be employed in the public and private exercises of religion. Therefore, it

The fcripture-warrant for what is specified in the varioys articles of this directory, will be found at large in the Confeffion of Faith and Catechisms, in the places where the fame subjeds are treated in a doctrinal form.

is requisite, that there be an holy resting, all the day, from unnecessary labours; and an abstaining from those recreations, which may be law. ful on other days, and also, as much as pollible, from worldly thoughts and conversation.

Sect. III. Let the provisions, for the support: of the family on that day, be so ordered, that fervants or others be not improperly detained from the public worship of God; nor hindered from sanctifying the fabbath..

Sect. IV. Let every person and family, in the morning, by secret and private prayer, for themselves and others, efpecially for the affilance of God to their minister, and for a blessing upon his ministry, by reading the scriptures, and by holy meditation, prepare for comniunion with God in his public ordinances.

Sect. V. Let the people be careful to assemble at the appointed time ; that, being all present at the beginning, they may unite, with one hearty, in all the parts of public worship: and let none unnecessarily depart, till after the blessing be pro. nounced.

Sect. VI. Let the time after the folemn serviceg; of the congregation in public are over, .be spent in reading; meditation ; repeating of fermons catechising; religious conversation prayer for a blefling upon the public ordinances ; "the singing of psalms, hymas, or spiritual songs ; vigiting the : fick; relieving the poor, and in performing such like duties of piety, charity and mercy.

2

CH A P. II.

Of the Assembling of the Congregation, and their

Behaviour during Divine Service.

W

Sect. I. HEN the time appointed for public worship is com>,

let he people enter the church, and take their feats, çin adecent, grave, and reverent manner.

Sect. II. In time of public worship, let all the people attend with gravity and reverence ; forbearing to read any thing, except what the minister is then reading or citing; abstaining from all whisperings; from falutations of persons present, or coming in; and from gazing about, sleeping, smiling, and all other indecent behaviour.

CH A P. III.

Of the public Reading of the Holy Scriptures.

THE

Sect. I. THE reading of the holy scrip.

tures, in the congregation, is a part of the public worship of God, and ought to be performed by the ministers and teachers.

Sect. II. The holy scriptures, of the Old and New Testament, thall be publicly read, from

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