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in any other place of devotion. Yet with these convictions, we think we see things in that church which are at variance with the spirit of the age and the Gospel. We think it does not sustain precisely that relation to other churches which it ought to do. We think that it does not recognize other ministers and churches as it should do, and is making use of all its influence to do them injustice. We think the point is to be urged as a matter of simple justice to others, and as conducive to her own permanent prosperity, that she should lay aside her exclusive claims; that she should regard and treat other churches as on the same level with herself; that she should cease to use the language of doubt in regard to the validity of their ministry and ordinances; and that, while she prizes her own ministry and ordinances, as all other denominations may theirs, she should not use language implying the belief that they are left to “the uncovenanted mercies of God.” This we do not ask as a concession on her part, but we claim it as a matter of right on ours; and in all the examination of Episcopacy which we make in reference to this point, we are only vindicating the rights which we believe our Lord Jesus Christ has conferred on other churches as well as those of Episcopal organization. We think, also, that there are some intrinsic evils in the organization of the Episcopal churches, and some things in the Prayer-book which tend to perpetuate error; it is fair that we should watch the development of those things, and announce the result of our observations to the world. If there be an essential tendency to produce reliance on mere forms for salvation, and to counteract the influence of evangelical doctrines; if Puseyism is a fair development of the docrines laid down in the Prayerbook; if the organization of the church be such that the Roman Catholic has a just ground of hope

in regard to that church which it has for no other; and if in any great convocation, where the sentiments of the whole church may be presumed to be expressed, a result is reached which sanctions Puseyism, and which is in fact a declaration that the Oxford doctrines are in entire accordance with the “liturgy, offices and articles” of the church, it is the duty of those who have the ability to do it, to apprise the world of these things. It should not be taken unkindly, if, in these circumstances, we avail ourselves of the privileges conceded by our common religion, and venture to suggest to the Episcopal church what we regard as essential to her own best interests, and what changes in her polity and views are necessary to meet the reasonable demands of the other portions of the Protestant world. Intending, as long as life shall last, to lift up our voice against the spirit of ExclusiveNEss, wherever it may manifest itself, and to utter as loud a note of remonstrance as we can against a spirit so utterly at variance with the genius of Christianity, it is a matter of quite secondary moment whether we find this in our own denomination or in others. We design that it shall never be done in bitterness of feeling or unkindness of manner. The Episcopal church in this country, apart from its distinctive mode of government, has some peculiar features, which, in order to a just view of its position, and of the importance of the action of the late General Convention, it is important briefly to notice. It is not indeed among the largest of the Christian denominations, and there are things in its organization which lead us to suppose that it will ever continue to be among the least of the tribes of Israel. It has indeed increased during a few past years, but its increase is almost nothing comE. with that of the Methodists and aptists; little in comparison with Presbyterians, and is by no means commensurate with the ratio of the increase of the population of the land. With all the glorying of the Episcopal Recorder and other Episcopal papers over its increase, a slight examination of the reports presented at the General Convention, will strike us with some surprise at the comparative feebleness of most of its churches and dioceses. Thus in the diocese of New York, with all the immense patronage of Trinity church, and the advantage of large and wealthy congregations in the city, the whole number of communicants reported to the Convention, as embraced in its 164 congregations, was only 13,436; or less than 82 to each congregation. In the diocese of Pennsylvania, with the advantage of the large churches in Philadelphia, the whole number of communicants in its 117 parishes is reported to be 8,865; or less than 76 to each parish. In the 116 congregations of the diocese of Western New York, the communicants are reported to be 5,369; or but little more than 46 to each congregation. In the diocese of New Jersey are 46 parishes, with only 1,946 communicants; or about 42 to each parish. In the diocese of Delaware, there are 17 parishes and 53S communicants; or an average of less than 32 to each parish. In the diocese of Alabama, there are 20 parishes, and 349 communicants, or about 17 to each parish. Maine has 485 communicants in the whole state ; New Hampshire, 500; Georgia, 700; Mississippi, 297 : Louisiana, 331; Kentucky, 565; and Florida, 182. Many of the pastors in Congregational and Presbyterian churches have under their care, in one congregation, more communicants than the bishops of some of these dioceses have in their whole diocese, and some of them nearly if not quite twice as many. It is to be remembered, also, that in many, if not in all Episcopal

churches, the terms of communion are much less strict than they are in most of the other denominations. It is but saying what no one will doubt to be true, that if, in many of these churches, and probably in entire dioceses, the same qualifications were required for admission to membership, which are in the body of Congregational or Presbyterian churches, the number of communicants would be much reduced. This is not said as implying that there are none in other churches who are strangers to evangelical religion, or that there is no laxness of views in them in regard to qualifications for communion ; but simply as implying that the views entertained of the proper qualifications for communion in the Episcopal church, are different from those which prevail in many other churches, and that the pastors of many of those churches are much less rigid in requiring evidence of a change of heart. The Episcopal church is less adapted to the country than it is to cities and large towns. Whatever may be the cause, the strength of the Episcopal church is in cities, and we think this is destined to continue. It makes slow progress in places of sparse settlement; it has iittle adaptedness to the habits and modes of thinking of a country population; it is entirely unfitted to go forward as a pioneer in the spread of the Gospel, as population rolls on to occupy hitherto unex. plored regions; it is its nature to follow other and more enterprising denominations in their rear, and to establish itself where they have already laid the foundations of reli. gion, and it is the most ill fitted of all denominations for missionary operations. A slight examination of any of the journals of the diocesan conventions, it is probable, would show - that the Episcopal church in this country has comparatively little strength, except in cities and large towns. The diocese of Pennsylvania, embracing a large city, and a large territory, as well cultivated and flourishing as almost any part of the Union, may be referred to as an illustration of this. In that large diocese, in which the Episcopal church has had every advantage for entire freedom of operations; a diocese which was for many years under the episcopate of the venerable Bishop White, and which has been commonly regarded as having had as large tokens of prosperity as any in the Episcopal connection, there were, in 1844, according to the reports to the General Convention, 8,865 communicants. p. 212. Of these communicants, there were reported, according to the Journal of the Convention of the diocese of Pennsylvania, in 1844, as belonging to the churches in the city and Liberties of Philadelphia, 4,537 communicants. From two of the largest churches in the city there are no reports, and on the supposition that these two churches embrace 300 each—which is probably below the real number— the whole number of communicants in the churches of the city would be 5,137, leaving 3,728 for the remainder of the great State of Pennsylvania. In that State there are 117 parishes reported; that is, besides those referred to in the city of Philadelphia, 100, making the average of the communicants in those parishes a fraction over 37. Now there is no other denomination of Christians in that State, whose churches bear any proportion to this, in regard to the smallness of the numbers of the communicants. When the large number of the communicants in some of the churches in the city is considered, and the entire disproportion between the numbers of the communicants in the Episcopal parishes and other churches, the conclusion seems to be clear, that there is something in Episcopacy which adapts it to a growth only in a city Vol. III. 43

population, and that it is certain that it is not destined to spread over the country, so as ever to become the religion of the mass of the people. The same thing would probably be apparent from the examination of other dioceses. In the whole diocese of Virginia, for example, where Episcopacy has flourished longer than in any other part of our country, and where it has had the finest advantages for development, there are but 5,000 communicants in all ; in the diocese of Western New York, the very garden of our country, there are but 5,369 communicants to 116 parishes, or less than fifty to a parish, while in the diocese of New York, embracing the great cities of the State, there are more than 13,000 communicants. Whatever conclusions may follow from this, we regard it as certain, that the influence of Episcopacy is to be confined mainly to large cities and towns. We see little encouragement for Episcopalians to appoint “missionary bishops” for the West, nor do we anticipate much success for them in their labors any where, until a permanent population shall have

“built them towns and cities there.'

Indeed, nothing can be well.conceived of more unwieldy and cumbersome, in conducting pioneer operations in religion, than the arrangements in the Episcopal church. The pioneer Methodist goes into the woods, or into a log barn or log cottage, with no books but a hymn book and a Bible, often boasting a glorious independence of the latter, and his apparatus for his work is complete. He needs no altar, and no pulpit, and no change of vestments. It matters not to him how many say, “Amen,” or when they happen to say it. It is indifferent to him where he kneels, or in what garment he appears, or whether he preach with a coat on or without one. He is at home in every place, and to him one grove or one house is as much consecrated as another. The genuine Episcopalian must always have his Prayer-book. He is not fitted for his work without appropriate changes of vestments. He must have regular responses in the right places, and, to go through the service in a proper manner, to be able to find the proper “lesson' and prayer, to know when to bow, and when to kneel, and when to rise, and when to sit, and when to read, and when to chant, demands a degree of discipline which is the result of no little careful training. To Paul, these would have been sad obstructions in spreading the Gospel ; and whatever the system may do in a regularly organized community, it is little adapted to pioneer missionary operations. Thus we find in the noble State of Indiana, that there are but 379 communicants; and in the great diocese of Illinois, under the auspices of the venerable senior Bishop Chase, there are even now but 710 communicants in all.—Jourmal, p. 212. There are obvious reasons, we think, why things should be, and will be, as the statistics show that they are. There are things about the Episcopal church which, in a population modeled as that of the United States is, will always confine its influence to quite a limited class, though we are by no means certain that that class will not be more prof. ited, and become better Christians, and be more useful, in connection with an Episcopal organization, than they would if united with any other. In a country like ours—so full of life, and energy, and action, there is a large class, constituting pioneers, who plunge into the vast forest—the hardy, adventurous, unsettled, rolling, mingled population, embracing all views and opinions; disliking restraint, and having slight notions of order, and a feeble desire of any thing fixed and permanent. This class will have a religion of enthu

siasm, of noise, of excitement—a religion in which there is the least possible approximation to forms of any kind—and this class will be gratified in the thousand and one sects that spring up amidst the heaving surges of population that roll through the vast forests and over the prairies of the West. These kinds of religion vanish, and the sects to which they give rise disappear, as civilization, intelligence and refinement advance, and as a more fixed population occupies the territory from which these pioneers recede. Among this class, it matters not how many missionary bishops Episcopalians consecrate for their special benefit, it is out of the question that they can hope for success. There are none of the elements of Episcopacy in their being, and whatever else they may become, it is certain that they will have no affinity for any thing that savors of a religion of forms. There is, in a country like ours, a much larger and much more respectable portion that demand a warm-hearted, zealous, ardent religion, and that are comparatively indifferent about the amount of intelligence that shall be incorporated with it; a religion that shall allow quite a free vent to the feelings, and that shall be also quite impatient of the restraints of forms; and that class will find its feelings gratified in the principles of the Methodist persuasion, and in some of the modes in which the views of the Baptist develop themselves. Episcopacy has little to hope from this large class of our population. It is too staid, too cold, too formal, too much under restraint; and it allows too little indulgence to the warm and gushing emotions of the soul. This class is destined to comprise the largest portion of the people of this land ; and though there is, in the main, a strong sympathy between them and Episcopalians in regard to doctrines—both being substantially Arminian—yet the rent made by the Wesleys was of such a character that time will never heal it. It will be impossible to bring this great mass under Episcopal influence, and in comparison with it the Episcopal church will be always small. Then there is a large, and we trust an increasing class, that dermands a more intellectual religion united thoroughly with evangelical principles, where there shall be nothing in the forms of worship which will endanger the fair influence of the evangelical feeling on the soul. This class finds its appropriate place in connection with the Presbyterian and Congregational churches, and with an increasing number of the Baptist and Methodist churches. It is developing itself in the establishment of colleges and seminaries; in the extension of Sunday schools; and in permanent arrangements for the diffusion of great principles of truth around the world. Episcopacy has not much to hope for from this class of our population. It is friendly indeed to learning. It is the patron of colleges and schools. It seeks like those other denominations a permanent and settled influence. To a great extent it would go with this portion of the population in its demands of an intellectual kind of religion. But there are two difficulties in the way of its acquiring a strong hold on this class of our citizens. One is, that there is somehow in this portion of the community a strong Calvinistic tendency—which there is not in the Episcopal church; and the other is, that there is a conviction which is constantly increasing, that there is an insuperable difficulty in the way of blending evangelical religion with the religion of forms. This conviction has been strengthening for years; and the recent prostration of the evangelical or low-church party in the meeting of the General Convention; the entire triumphs of the Oxford principles in that body; and the acquiescence of the low-church

party in these results—which we propose to describe in full,—will do more probably to fasten this conviction permanently on the minds of this portion of our population, than any thing which has hitherto occurred in our country. There is another class, less numerous by far, but still respectable as to influence, who demand an intellectual religion, but without the evangelical principle. Many of this class, who would otherwise find a home in the bosom of the Episcopal church, are repelled by the forms of that church, because they are opposed to all the early habits in which they are trained, and to the stern views of the simplicity of religion which their fathers embraced. They therefore find a home in the bosom of the Unitarian churches—churches which embrace a large portion of the intelligence and fashion of those places in which that religion prevails. In other places, not a few who would be Unitarians in other circumstances, and who have no particular repugnance to the forms of religion, find in high-church Episcopacy all that they desire. They find a kind of religion which embraces a considerable portion of those who are supposed to occupy the more elevated walks of life in intelligence and refinement; a religion divested as entirely as they could desire of the evangelical principle ; a religion which lays no more restraint on fashionable indulgences than the laxest Unitarianism; a religion which requires them to make no more sacrifices for the spread of the Gospel than is known to be expected in the Unitarian churches. From this class Episcopacy may hope to have constant accessions; and the more entire the triumph of the Oxford party over the evangelical party, the more rapid will be the increase from this quarter. Connected with this, we are not disposed to deny that there is, more in cities and large towns than in country places, a class of

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