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to win souls to Christ; I beseech your honour to pity our case, and use your utmost endeavours to secure unto us our liberty.” What effect this generous letter produced, we are not able to learn. Mr. W. was a man of an excellent character and admirable abilities. This was well known at court. Therefore, some time after his settlement at Durham, Secretary Cecil being made lord treasurer, he was nominated to the secretary's place; and, says Wood, if he had sought after this office, and made interest with his noble friend, the Earl of Leicester, he might have obtained it; but he was not in the least anxious for court preferment." During the severities inflicted upon the nonconformists, in the former part of Queen Elizabeth's reign, when good men were obliged to conform, or be deprived of their livings and ministry, it is said that Mr. Whittingham at first refused, but afterwards subscribed. And in the year 1571, by the instigation of Archbishop Parker, he was cited before Grindal, archbishop of York; but the particular cause of his citation, or what prosecution he underwent, at least at that time, does not appear.t While Grindal lived, who, towards the close of life, connived at the nonconformists, Mr. Whittingham and his brethren in the province of York, were not much interrupted; but Dr. Sandys was no sooner made archbishop, than he was brought into troubles, from which the stroke of death alone could deliver him. In the year 1577, the new archbishop resolved to visit the whole of his province, and to begin with Durham, where Dean Whittingham had obtained a distinguished reputation, but had been ordained only according to the reformed church at Geneva, and not according to the English service book. The accusations brought against him contained thirty-five articles, and fort nine interrogatories; but the principal charge was his Geneva ordination. Mr. Whittingham refused to answer the charge, but stood by the rites of the church of Durham, and denied the archbishop's power of visitation in that church, upon which his grace was pleased to excommunicate him. Mr. Whittingham then appealed to the queen, who directed a commission to the archbishop, Henry Earl of Huntington, lord president of the north, and Dr. Hutton, dean of York, to hear and determine the validity of his ordination, and to inquire into the other misdemeanours contained in the articles. The president was a zealous favourer of the puritans, and Dr. Hutton was of Whittingham's principles, and boldly declared, “That Mr. Whittingham was ordained in a better sort than even the archbishop himself.” The commission, therefore, came to “o - Sandys being sorely vexed at this disappointment, as well as Whittingham's calling in question his right of visitation, obtained another commission directed to himself, the Bishop of Durham, the Lord President, the Chancellor of the Diocese, and some others in whom he could confide, to visit the church of Durham. The chief design of this was to deprive Mr. Whittingham, as a mere layman. Upon his appearance before the commissioners, he produced a certificate under the hands of eight persons, signifying the manner of his ordination, in these words:—“It pleased God, by the “suffrages of the whole congregation (at Geneva) orderly “ to choose to Mr W. Whittingham, unto the office of “ preaching the word of God and ministering the sacra“ments; and he was admitted minister, and so published, “ with such other ceremonies as are there used and accus“tomed.” It was then objected, that there was no mention made of bishops or superintendants, nor of any external solemnities, nor even of imposition of hands. Mr. Whittingham replied, that the testimonial specified in general the ceremonies of that church, and that he was able to prove his vocation to be the same as all other ministers of Geneva. Upon this the lord president said, “I cannot in conscience agree to deprive him for that cause alone. This,” he added owould be is taken by all the godly and learned, both at home and abroad, that we allow of popish massing priests in our ministry, and disallow of ministers made in a reformed church.” The commission was, therefore, adjourned, and never renewed: ,The archbishop's proceedings against Mr. Whittingham, were evidently invidious; and they greatly sunk his reputation, both in town and country. His calling Whittingham's ordination in question was expressly contrary to the statute of 13 Eliz. by which, says Mr. Strype, “The ordination of foreign reformed churches was made valid; and those who had no other orders, were made of like capacity with others, to enjoy any place of ministry in England.” Indeed, the Öxford historian says, Mr. Whittingham di good service to his country, not only against the popish rebels in the north, but in repelling the Archbishop of York, from visiting the church of Durham. Yet he denominates him a lukewarm conformist, an enemy to the habits and ceremonies, and an active promoter of the Geneva doctrine and discipline; and he brings many severe charges against him, styling them works of impiety. He caused several stone coffins, belonging to the priors, and laid in the cathedral of Durham, to be taken up, and appointed them
* Bishop Pilkington of Durham wrote a letter, at the same time, to the same noble person; in which he addressed him as follows:—“Consider, I “beseech your honour, how that all countries, which have reformed “religion, have cast away the popish apparel with the pope; and yet we, “ who would be taken for the best, contend to keep it as a holy relic. “Mark, also, how many ministers there be here in all countries, who are “so zealous, not only to forsake the wicked doctrine of popery, but ready “to leave the ministry and their livings, rather than be like the popish “teachers of such superstitions, either in apparel or behaviour. This “realm has such scarcity of teachers, that if so many worthy men should “be cast out of the ministry, for such small matters, many places would be “ destitute of preachers; and it would give an incurable offence to all the “favourers of God’s truth, in other countries. Shall we make that so “precious, which other reformed churches esteem as vile God forbid. “If we forsake popery, as wicked, how shall we say their apparel “ becomes saints and professors of true holiness? St. Paul bids us refrain “from all outward shew of evil; but, surely, in keeping this popish “apparel, we forbear not an outward shew of much evil, if popery be “judged evil. How christian peace shall be kept in this church, when so “many, for such small things, shall be thrust from their ministry and “livings, it passes my simple wit to conceive. We must not so subtilly “ dispute what christian liberty would suffer us to do, but what is most “meet and edifying for christian charity, and promoting true religion. “But, surely, how popish apparel should edify, or set forth the gospel “ of Jesus Christ, cannot be seen of the multitude. How much it rejoices “ the adversaries, when they see what we borrow of them, and contend for, “as things necessary. The bishops wearing their white rockets began first “ by Sisinius, an heretic bishop of the Novatians; and these other have the “like foundation. They have so long continued and pleased popery, “ which is beggarly patched up of all sorts of ceremonies, that they could “ never be rooted out since, even from many professors of the truth. “Though things may be borne with for christian liberty's sake for a time, “in hope to win the weak; yet, when liberty is turned to necessity, it is “evil, and no longer liberty ; and that which was for winning the weak, is “ become the confirming of the froward. Paul used circumcision for a “ time as of liberty; but when it was urged of necessity, he would not “bend unto it. Bucer, when he was asked why he did not wear the “square cap, made answer, because my head is not square. God be mer“ciful to us, and grant us uprightly to seek his honour with all simplicity “ and earnestness.” This prelate, who had been an exile in the days of Queen Mary, was a man of great learning, piety, and moderation, and a constant friend to the persecuted puritans. – Strype's Parker, Appen. p. 40, 41.
* Wood's Athenae Oxon. vol. i. p. 153. + Strype's Grindal, p. 98. # Ibid. p. 170.-Strype's Parker, p. 326. § Strype's Annals, vol. ii. p. 481,519–521.
to be used as troughs for horses and swine, and their covers to pave his own house. He defaced all the brazen pictures and imagery work, and used the stones to build a washinghouse for himself. The two holy water stones of fine marble, very artificially engraven, with hollow bosses very curiously wrought, he took away, and employed them to steep beef and salt fish in. He caused the image of St. Cuthbert, and other ancient monuments, to be defaced. And the truth is, he could not endure any thing that appertained to a monastic life." How far Mr. Whittingham was concerned in these works of impiety, it is not in our power to ascertain; and how far he is censurable for these things, is left with the reader to determine. With an evident design to reproach his memory, Dr. Bancroft says, that Mr. Whittingham, with the rest of his Geneva accomplices, urged all states to take arms, and reform religion themselves by force, rather than suffer such idolatry and superstition to remain in the land. And a late writer, with the same ill design, observes, “ that when he returned from exile, he imported with him, much of the leaven of Geneva.”f He was, however, a truly pious man, opposed to all superstition, an excellent preacher, and an ornament to religion and learning. He died while the cause of his deprivation, for not being ordained according to the rites of the English church, was depending, June 10, 1579, in the sixty-fifth year of his age. %. informs us, though without the smallest evidence, that he unwillingly submitted to the stroke of death. His remains were interred in the cathedral at Durham. - This learned divine wrote prefaces to the works of several learned men: as, Mr. Goodman's book, entitled “How superior powers ought to be obeyed,” &c. He published the translations of several learned works, and he turned part of the Psalms of David into metre. These are still used in the church of England. Those which he did, have W. W. prefixed to them, among which is Psalm czix.; a may be seen in the Common Prayer Book.] * Wood’s Athenae Oxon. vol. i. p. 154. + Bancroft's Dangerous Positions, p. 62. Edit. 1640. † Churton's Life of Nowell, p. 114. § Athenae, p. 155. | The other persons concerned in turning the Psalms into metre, were Messrs. Thomas Sternhold, John Hopkins, and Thomas Norton, all eminent in their day, and zealous in promoting the reformation of the church. The parts which they performed have the initials of their names prefixed to Mr. LAwRANce was a man of great piety, an admired reacher, and incumbent in the county of Suffolk. He §...a great modesty, was unblameable in his life, sound in doctrine, and a laborious and constant preacher. He was first employed in the ministry in the above county, about the year 1561, where he continued to labour about six years with great acceptance and usefulness. But in the year 1567, he was silenced by Archbishop Parker's visitors for nonconformity. The good man having received the ecclesiastical censure, several persons of quality in that county, who knew his excellent character and great worth, wrote a letter to the archbishop, earnestly soliciting his restoration. This letter, dated October 27, 1567, was as follows:
them, as may be seen in the Common Prayer Book.-Wood's Athenae, vol. i. p. 62,63, 153.
“Our humble commendations and duties remembered to your grace. Great necessity doth occasion us to write to you for one Mr. Lawrance, lately a preacher; of whose great modesty, unblameable life, and sound doctrine, we have good experience, having with great diligence been well exercised among us these five or six years. He commonly preached twice every Lord's day, and many times on the working days, without ever receiving any thing. His enemies cannot accuse him of any thing worthy of reproach, as we testified to your grace's visitors, and desired them that he might still continue his preaching; for we knew very well that we should have great need of him. Now we see it more evident. For there is not one preacher within a circuit of twenty miles, in which circuit he was wont to
reach. * .
“Thus we have thought good to certify your grace of the necessity of our country, and diligence and good behaviour of the man; trusting that your grace will either restore him again, or send us some other in his room; which wenost earnestly desire. Commending the same to Almighty God, and praying that he may preserve your grace. Your grace's to command,
“Robert WING FIELD, Thom As Perton,
Though it does not appear what success attended their application, nor yet how long Mr. Lawrauce remained
* MS. Register, p. 889,890,