Imatges de pàgina


[ocr errors]

196 Intelligence.Mr. Vansittart's Letter to Dr. Marsh. aware, before I engaged in the members of this committee, the Society, that it had been repre. Churchmen are equal in number sented as dangerous to the Church, to all the Dissenters of different it appeared to me that this charge sects; so that iu every question the had been so completely refuted, Church must have a constant majothat it is with no less surprise than rity; and in the general meetings, regret that I now learn that you in which alone all points affecting suill think it well founded.

the constitution of the Society The sole and exclusive object of must be decided, the members of the Bible Society, so far as it re. the Church must have a weight in spects the United Kingdom, is proportion to their numbers and THE CIRCULATION OF THE AU- consequence. In proportion, there. THORIZED TRANSLATION OF THE fore, as Churchmen of talents, SCRIPTURES, WITHOUT NOTE rank, and influence join the sucie. OR COMMENT. I should as a ty, this preponderance must in. member of the Church, be very crease. Among the Vice-Presorry to think that the devout SIDENTS are already numbered study of the ScriPTURES could one of the ARCHBISHOPS OF IRElead to the disregard of our li. LAND and FIVE ENGLISH AND TURGY; on the contrary, I should two Irish Bishops. I doubt hope that it would produce a whether the Society FOR PROmore general acknowledgment of MOTING CHRISTIAN Know. its excellence, as it originally, al LEDGE, which now, as you observe, the period of the Reformation, enjoys the countenance of the whole led, through the blessing of Divine episcopal bench, was, at so short Providence, to its establishment. a period from its formation, ho. The Bible, says Chillingworth, noured with the support of so and the BIBLE ONLY, is the large a body of the prelates; and RELIGION TIe Protes. I should hope the time might not TANT; it is the sole basis of the be far distant when the two socie. CHURCH OF ENGLAND, and the ties may equally flourish under the only one on which you, I am sure, general patronage of them all. would wish to place it. But you This would appear to me the most observe, that you can have no effectual remedy for any supposed guarantee, that as the power of danger from the dissenting influence the Bible Society increases, other in the Bible Society. But objects, inimical to the Church, what is the remedy you propose ? will not in time be associated with – That all Churchmen should the main object. To this I an- withdraw themselves from the So. swer, that so long as the members ciety, and leave it wholly in the of the Church take part in the hands of the DISSENTERS. If Bible Society, its very constitution any thing can make the Society will afford such a guarantee as you dangerous, this must do it; bedesire. The PRESIDENT, and all cause there would then be no the Vice-PRESIDENTS without check to any sectarian spirit which exception, are Churchmen, and might introduce itself, and which are constant members of the ma- must be unavoidably irritated by naging committee, in which they so harsh, and I think so unjust an always preside ; and of the other indication of jealousy. But even


[ocr errors]



Intelligence.-Mr. V'ansiltart's Letter to Dr. Marsh. if no sentiment of resentment The evils of either alternative should be excited, one of two con. seem to me equally fatal and ine. sequences must inevitably follow : vitable. I am far from undervalu. either the Society, being deprived ing the efforts of the Society of the hope of further support, For PROMOTING CHRISTIAN and crippled by the loss of its pe. KNOWLEDGB. I am an old mem. cuniary means, and of many of ber of that Suciety, and am heartiits most valuable members, would ly disposed to lend any assistance wholly expire, or sink into insig. in my power to its useful plans, nificance : or else the dissenting But how little, either that, or any interest, making up for these losses other society now existing, would by more extensive sacrifices, and be competent to supply the place an increase of zeal and activity, of the Bible Society, the experi. and availing itself of the assistance ence of above a century has shewn. of the foreign societies already Even supposing (what I think im. formed, would carry on the Insti. possible) that it might be made, tution in nearly the same manner in some considerable degree, to as before.

answer the same purposes, I see In the first case you would have superior advantages in the present crushed an establishinent which constitution of the BIBLE SOCIE. has done more for the diffusion of ty. The co-operation of CHURCH. CHRISTIANITY Ihan has been ef. men and DISSENTERs in religious fected in the same space of time matters, so far as they can conin any age since the Apostolic; scientiously co-operate, seems to which has in sEVEN YEARS been me one of the most efficacious the means of preaching the Gos. means of lessening both the politi. pel in fifty-FOUR LANGUAGES. cal and religious evils of dissent, This would indeed be putting out It dispels prejudices, promotes one of the eyes of Britain, candour and good will, and must

The other alternative would be prepare the mind for the reception to transfer to the body of Dissen. of that truth which every one per. TERS all the honour and influence ceives to be no less the object of of whatever has been done, and those who differ from him than whatever may be done, by an In- his own. From such a commustitution, of which the dawn has nication, the Church of England been so glorious, but which is visi- has nothing to fear, and every bly rising into brighter day. Shall thing to hope: as holding (in our it be said that the Dissenters judgments at least) that middle ALON I have carried the Word line of truth in which all opposite or GOD TO EVERY NATION UN. opinions have a natural tendency DER HEAVEN? or shall the to coincide. And is that truth CHURCH OF ENGLAND continue more likely to be acknowledged to claim the leading part in this and embraced by minds embittered important work? And can the by mutual jealousy and aversion, Church of England stand so secure or by such as have been previous. upon a narrow and exclusive po. ly softened by conciliation ? licy,

DESERVING THE The existence of dissent will per. BLESSINGS, AND UNITING THE haps be inseparable from religious PRAYERS OF ALL PEOPLE, NA- freedom, so long as the mind of TIONS, AND LANGUAGES ? man is liable to error; but it is





Intelligence.Unitarianism in America. not unreasonable to hope that lately on a visit from America to hostility may cease where perfect Engiand. As this letter is on the agreement cannot be established. subject of our own statement, as If we cannot RLCONCILE ALL much as Mr. Grundy's, candour OPINIONS, let us endeavour to induces us to give it to our readers.

We shall first insert as much of the I ought, perhaps, to apologize note as is animadverted on by the for troubling you with arguments, letter-writer. It may be proper which must probably have been to premise that we are well.assured already brought before you, as I of our correspondent's correctness know your opinions are not taken in describing his own impressions; up hastily and lightly. But I and it is but justice to Mr. Grundy have thought it necessary to state to state, that he received his insuch as have chiefly induced me formation from “a friend who has to consider my taking a part in been a considerable tiine resident the concerns of the Bible Society in the United States” ED. not only as consistent with, but as a proof of the sincerity and

Extract from a Note in Mr. warmth of my attachment to the

Grundy's Sermon. Church of England; and which “ It may be interesting," (Mr. still, on reflection, seem to me to Grundy is here quoting from his have so much weight, that, far friend's Letter] to the friends of from repenting of what I have Unitarianism, to be informed, that done, I feel convinced I shall the doctrines which they consider least of all repent of it as I ap- as consonant to the genuine prinproach THAT STATE IN Which ciples of Christianity, have already THE DISTINCTION OF Church. made very considerable progress AND DISSENTER SHALL in the northern and eastern parts

of the United States. For several I am, &c.

years, these doctrines have been

spreading rapidly in the town of (Signed) N. VANSITTART.

Boston ; and at present, an open Great George Street,

profession of them is made by the 4th Dec, 1811.

most popular and influential a-
mong the clergy there.—Nor is

this change by any means conUnitarianism in America.

fined to the teachers of religion, In our article of intelligence, inasmuch as a gentleman of much under this head, we alluded (p. 57,) talent and very high celebrity in to a note in Mr. Grundy's Ser. America, in speaking on this submon, at Liverpool, (reviewed in ject to the writer of this article, our last number, pp. 107, 108,) said that he did not think there as corroborating the statement of were two persons in Boston who our correspondent, We have since believed in the doctrine of the received from a friend, a letter Trinity. This assertion, though addressed to Mr. Grundy, on the it certainly cannot be intended to subject of the note referred to, by lee literally understood, may serve a respectable young clergyman, to shew the great prevalence of



[ocr errors]

Unitarianism ; in farther proof of opening of a chapel in Liverpool. It which, it may be well to mention, contains, towards the close, a note, that a very large and expensive respecting the supposed progress of place of worship, which has been Unitarianism in the norihern and recently erected to enforce Calvin- castern parts of the U. States, istic doctrines, has completely and particularly in Boston. As I failed, and it was expected would am a native of that place, and, be sold to its opponents. An in. excepting a short visit in this telligent bookseller in Boston, has country, have constantly resided republished Griesbach's Greek Tes. there, and from my acquaintance tamentga the first work in that as a student of divinity, with most characker which has been printed of its ministers, and attendance in Coerica,) and the Improved upon their preaching, have had · Versilh of the New Testament, the best opportunity of knowing One thousand copies of the former their sentimenis, as well as the work were subscribed for by Har- general state of religious opinions vard College--an academic insti- among us, I hope you will pardon, tution, which is deservedly consi- dear Sir, the liberty I am taking, dered as the first in the United of mentioning some misstatements States. The office of President of in your note. The account it gives that college having lately become of the general progress of Unitari. vacant, Dr. Kirkland, a professed anism in America, is certainly in. Unitarian, was elected by a great correct. I will first mention a majority of votes. -- Until very few facts, for which I can answer, recently Unitarianism has been with respect to Boston ; and i confined to the town of Boston, think you will see, that the gentle. but at the last · annual meeting man, who gave you the informaof the congregational clergy of the tion, on which you relied, in his states of Massachusets and Con- zeal for Unitarianism, has imagined necticut, it appeared that upwards occasions for triumph, which do of 100 ministers, declared them. not exist. selves converts to the new doc We have, in Boston, twenty-one trines. The town of Boston con. places for public worship. Of these, tains (according to the last census) ien are Congregational or Indepen. upwards of 33,000 inhabitants. dant. But there are also two Episco

.. Out of nine congregational palian, in which the service of the ministers in this town," says ano. Church of England is read, with no ther friend,“ eight are either Ari. other alterations, than those, which ans or Humanitarians. Nothing are <dapted to the different state of like Calvinism is to be heard.”- the country. Of course, all the pp. 26, 27.

Trinitariandoxologies, the addressLetter to the Rev. Mr. Grundy, of One of the clergymen is an high

es of the Litany, &c. are used. Manchester.

churchman; and I believe I am London, Feb. 20, 1812. correct in saying, that both are de Rev. & DEAR SIR,

cided Trinitarians. There are also Mr. - was kind enough three Baptist churches, the minis. to lend me a sermon, which you ters of which, and their leading delivered a short time since, at the hearers are Calvinists, and Cal


Intelligence.-Unitarianism in America. vinism is uniformly maintained. I was in Boston, did not preach Besides these, there are two Meth. Unitarianism systematically. I odist meetings. I will not undere never heard bim express such views take 10 say, whether they are of the person of Christ, and it was Arminian or Calvinistic, for I rather from inference, that I could scarcely ever attended them, and say he held them. Many of his indeed, I believe, the distinction, people are widely different from so common in this country, be- him; and, with the exception of tween the Wesleian and the Whit- iwo or three, or, at most, four or fieldian Methodists is very little five heads of families, I may known in ours. At least, in com- safely say, that there is crarcely mon with the Baptists they are a parishioner in Boston, why would decided Trinitarians, and both not be shocked at hearisri

his pray, and preach as if this were a minister preach the peculacrues doctrine absolutely essential to of Unitarianism. Christianity. This certainly is There is one church in Boston, not consistent with your friend's which may perhaps be said to be very wide declaration, that “ he founded on Unitarian principles., did not think there were two per. Dr. Freeman, of King's Chapel sơns in Boston, who believed in with his church, about thirty years the Trinity." You see, that of ago, adopted an amended Liturgy. our twenty-one churches, there But if you will admit, wbat Mr. are seven, at least, that are Cal. Belsham himself very fairly stated, vinistic, or Trinitarian. Indeed, “ that no man can justly be called you would hardly look for Uni- by the name of a party, unless he tarianism among our Methodists willingly, and (if he be a minister) or Baptists.

to a certain degree, openly, acBut it is, I presume, to the knowledge himself of that party,” congregational churches, that your Dr. Freeman can hardly be confriend's account must chiefly refer. sidered as an exception to the great With the ministers of these I am majority of his brethren. For well acquainted. I have always though on other subjects he is as heard their preaching, and, as a explicit and unreserved, as he is student of divinity, I constantly able and intelligent, I never heard attended for two or three years him express an Unitarian senti. their monthly meetings, when they ment; and I believe, he carefully frequently converse upon their re. avoids it in the pulpit, because it ligious opinions. This “ Associ. might unnecessarily disturb some ation” is composed not only of of his hearers. There is now, ono the ministers of Boston, but of more gentleman in Boston, who several of the neighbouring towns. with his intimate friends may, per. Of these gentlemen, about twenty haps, be considered an Unitarian; in number, there is only one, but he maintains the same cautious whom, from any thing I ever heard reserve; and from neither his ser. bim offer either in private ur in mons, his prayers, nor his private his pulpit, I, or any body else, conversation, could I infer, that would have a right to call an Unita. he was an Unitarian.- Now even Larian. Even this gentleman, when admitting, what I hardly think I

« AnteriorContinua »