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INSTITUTION OF MINISTERS
INTO PARISHES OR CHURCHES,
PRESCRIBED BY THE PROTESTANT EPISCOPAL CHURCH IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA; ESTABLISHED IN GENERAL CONVENTION OF THE BISHOPS, THE CLERGY, AND LAITY, 1804; AND SET FORTH, WITH ALTERATIONS, IN GENERAL CONVENTION, 1808.
The Bishop having received due notice of the election of a Minister into a Parish or Church, as prescribed by the Canon, "concerning the Election and Institution of Ministers," and being satisfied that "the person chosen is a qualified minister of this Church," may transmit the following Letter of Institution, for the proposed Rector, Associated Rector, or Assistant Minister, to one of his presbyters, whom he may appoint as the Institutor.
In any State or Diocese the concluding paragraph in the Letter of Institution may be omitted, where it interferes with the usages, laws, or charters of the Church in the same.
To our well-beloved in Christ, A. B., Presbyter, Greeting. WE do by these presents give and grant unto you, in whose learning, diligence, sound doctrine, and prudence, we do fully confide, our license and authority, to perform the office of a Priest in the parish [or church] of E. And also hereby do institute you into said parish, [or church,] possessed of full power to perform every act of sacerdotal function among the people of the same; you continuing in communion with us, and complying with the rubrics and cañons of the Church, and with such lawful directions as you shall at any time receive from us.
And as a canonically instituted Priest into the Office of Rector [Associated Rector or Assistant Minister, as the case may be] of Parish [or church,] you are faithfully to feed that portion of the flock of CHRIST which is now entrusted to you; not as a man-pleaser, but as continually bearing in mind, that you are accountable to us here, and to the Chief Bishop and Sovereign Judge of all hereafter.
And as the LORD hath ordained, that they who serve at the altar should live of the things belonging to the altar; so we authorize you to claim and enjoy all the accustomed temporalities appertaining to your cure, until some urgent reason or reasons occasion a wish in you, or in the congregation committed to your charge, to bring about a separation, and dissolution of all sacerdotal relation between you and them; of all which you will give us due notice : and in case of any difference between you and your congregation, as to a separation and dissolution of all sacerdotal connexion between you and them, we, your Bishop, with the advice of our presbyters, are to be the ultimate arbiter and judge.
In witness whereof we have hereunto affixed our episcopal seal and signature, at year of our consecration.
and in the
In the case of a Minister to be instituted in a State or Diocese in which there is no Bishop, the clerical members of the Standing Committee shall send the following Letter of Institution, for the proposed Minister, to the presbyter whom they may appoint as Institutor.
To our well-beloved in Christ, A. B., Presbyter, Greeting.
WE do by these presents authorise and empower you to exercise the office of a Priest in the parish [or church] of E. And by virtue of the power vested in us, do institute you into said parish, [or church,] possessed of full power to perform every act of sacerdotal function among the people of the same; you complying with the rubrics and canons of the Church.
And as a canonically instituted Priest into the office of Rector [Associated Rector, or Assistant Minister, as the case may be] of Parish [or church,] you are to feed that portion of the flock of CHRIST which is now entrusted to you; not as a man-pleaser, but as continually bearing in mind that you are accountable to the ecclesiastical authority of the Church here, and to the Chief Bishop and Sovereign Judge of all hereafter.
And as the LORD hath ordained that they who serve at the altar should live of the things belonging to the altar; so you have our authority to claim and enjoy all the accustomed temporalities appertaining to your cure, until some urgent reason or reasons occasion a wish in you, or in the congregation committed to your charge, to bring about a separation, and dissolution of all sacerdotal connexion between you and them; of all which you will give us due notice: and in case of any difference between you and your congregation, as to a separation and dissolution of all sacerdotal connexion between you and them, the ecclesiastical authority of the Church in this diocese (taking the advice and aid of a bishop) shall be the ultimate arbiter and judge. In witness whereof we have hereunto set our hands and seals, this in the year
The day being appointed for the new incumbent's Institution, at the usual hour of Morning Prayer, the Institutor, attended by the new incumbent, and one or more presbyters appointed by the Bishop (or, where there is no bishop, by the clerical members of the Standing Committee) for that purpose, shall enter the church. Then, all the clergy present standing without the rails of the altar, except the officiating Priest, who shall go into the desk; the Wardens, (or, in case of their necessary absence, two members of the Vestry) standing on the right and left of the altar, without the rails; the senior Warden, (or the member of the Vestry supplying his place) holding the keys of the church in his hand, in open view, the officiating priest shall read Morning Prayer.
Psalm cxxii. Psalm cxxxii. cxxxiii.
FIRST. Ezek. Chap. xxxiii. verse 1 to
SECOND. St. John, Chap. x. verse 1 to
Morning Prayer ended, the Priest who acts as the Institutor, standing within the rails of the altar, shall say,
DEARLY beloved in the LORD, we have assembled for the purpose of instituting the Rev. A. B. into this parish, For church] as Priest and Rector [or Associated Rector, or Assistant Minister] of the same; and we are possessed of your vote that he has been so elected; as also of the prescribed Letter of Institution. But if any of you can show just cause why he may not be instituted, we proceed no further, because we would not that an unworthy person should
minister among you.
If any objection be offered, the Priest who acts as the Institutor shall judge whether it afford just cause to suspend the service. No objection being offered, or the Priest who acts as the Institutor choosing to go on with the service, he shall next read the Letter of Institution; and then shall the senior Warden, (or the member of the Vestry supplying his place) present the keys of the church to the new incumbent, saying,
IN name and behalf of
Let us pray.
DIRECT us, O LORD, in all our doings, with thy most gracious favour, that in all our works begun, continued, and further us with thy continual help, holy name, and finally by thy mercy and ended in thee, we may glorify thy obtain everlasting life, through JESUS CHRIST our Lord: who hath taught us to pray unto thee, O Almighty Father, in his prevailing name and words,
Hallowed be thy Name; Thy kingdom OUR Father, who art in heaven, come; Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven; Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; And lead us not into temptation ; But deliver us from evil: For thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
parish [or church], I do receive and
Then the new Incumbent shall say,
Here the Instituting Minister shall begin the
Min. The LORD be with you.
Then shall the Priest who acts as the Institutor receive the incumbent within the rails of the altar, and present him the Bible, Book of Common Prayer, and Books of Canons of the General and State Convention, saying as follows:
RECEIVE these books; and let them be the rule of thy conduct in dispensing the divine word, in leading the devotions of the people, and in exercising the discipline of the Church; and flock committed to thy care. be thou in all things a pattern to the
Then shall be said or sung the following
O PRAISE the LORD, laud ye the Iname of the LORD: praise it, O ye servants of the LORD. Psalm cxxxv. verse 1.
2 Ye that stand in the house of the LORD; in the courts of the house of our GOD. Verse 2.
3 O praise the LORD, for the LORD is gracious: O sing praises unto his name, for it is lovely. Verse 3.
4 The LORD is gracious and merciful, long-suffering and of great goodness. Psalm cxlv. verse 8.
5 The LORD is loving unto every man; and his mercy is over all his works. Verse 9.
6 All thy works praise thee, O LORD; and thy saints give thanks unto thee. Verse 10.
7 The LORD doth build up Jerusalem; and gather together the outcasts of Israel. Psalm cxlvii. verse 2.
8 He healeth those that are broken in heart, and giveth medicine to heal their sickness. Verse 3.
9 The LORD's delight is in them that fear him, and put their trust in his mercy. Verse 11.
10 Praise the LORD, O Jerusalem; praise thy GOD, O Zion. Verse 12.
11 For he hath made fast the bars of thy gates; and hath blessed thy children within thee. Verse 13.
12 He maketh peace in thy borders; and filleth thee with the flour of wheat. Verse 14.
13. He is our GOD, even the GOD of whom cometh salvation; GOD is the LORD by whom we escape death. Psalm lxviii. verse 20.
14 O GOD, wonderful art thou in thy holy places, even the GOD of Israel; he will give strength and power unto his people. Blessed be GOD.
Glory be to the FATHER, and to the SON, and to the HOLY GHOST;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end.
Min. The Law was given by Moses. Peo. But grace and truth came by JESUS CHRIST.
Min. & Peo. Who is GOD over all, blessed for evermore. Amen.
Let us pray.
MOST gracious GOD, the giver of all good and perfect gifts, who, of thy wise providence hast appointed divers Orders in thy Church; give thy grace, we beseech thee, to thy servant, to whom the charge of this congregation is now committed; and so replenish him with the truth of thy doctrine, and endue him with innocency of life, that he may faithfully serve before thee, to the glory of thy great name, and the benefit of thy holy Church, through JESUS CHRIST, our only Mediator and Redeemer.
O HOLY JESUS, who hast purchased to thyself an universal Church, and hast promised to be with the ministers of apostolic succession to the end of the
world; be graciously pleased to bless the ministry and service of him, who is now appointed to offer the sacrifices of prayer and praise to thee in this house, which is called by thy name. May the words of his mouth, and the meditation of his heart be always acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, our strength and our Redeemer. Amen.
O GOD, HOLY GHOST, sanctifier of the faithful, visit, we pray thee, this congregation with thy love and favour; enlighten their minds more and more with the light of the everlasting Gospel; graft in their hearts a love of the truth; increase in them true religion; nourish them with all goodness; and of thy great mercy keep them in the same, O blessed SPIRIT, whom with the FATHER and the SON together we worship and glorify as one GOD, world without end. Amen.
THE GOD of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord JESUS CHRIST, the great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through JESUS CHRIST; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Then shall the instituted Minister kneel at the Altar to present his supplication for himself-in this form:
O LORD my GOD! I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof; yet thou hast honoured thy servant with appointing him to stand in thy house, and to serve at thy holy altar. To thee and to thy service I devote myself, soul, body, and spirit-with all their powers and faculties. Fill my memory with the words of thy law; enlighten my understanding with the illumination of the HOLY GHOST; and may all the wishes and desires of my will centre in what thou hast commanded. And, to make me instrumental in promoting the salvation of the people now committed to my charge, grant that I may faithfully administer thy holy sacraments, and by my life and doctrine set forth thy true and lively word. Be ever with me in the performance of all the duties of my ministry; in prayer, to quicken my devotion; in praises, to heighten my love and gratitude; and in preaching, to give a readiness of thought and
expression suitable to the clearness and excellency of thy holy word. Grant this for the sake of JESUS CHRIST thy Son our Saviour.
pride come nigh to hurt them, nor the hand of the ungodly to cast them down. And grant that the course of this world Imay be so peaceably ordered by thy governance, that thy Church may joy
¶ The instituted Minister, standing up, shall say, fully serve thee in all godly quietness
The LORD be with you.
Let us pray.
O ALMIGHTY GOD, who hast built thy Church upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, JESUS CHRIST himself being the chief corner stone; grant that, by the operation of the HOLY GHOST, all Christians may be so joined together in unity of spirit, and in the bond of peace, that they may be an holy temple acceptable unto thee. And especially, to this congregation present, give the abundance of thy grace; that with one heart, they may desire the prosperity of thy holy apostolic Church, and with one mouth, may profess the faith once delivered to the saints. Defend them from the sins of heresy and schism; let not the foot of
that so they may walk in the ways of
Then shall follow the Sermon: and after that the instituted Minister shall proceed to the Communion Service, and to administer the holy Eucharist to his congregation; and after the Benediction, (which he shall always *pronounce,) the Wardens, Vestry, and others shall salute and welcome him, bidding him GOD speed.
When the Bishop of the Diocese is present at the institution of a Minister, he shall make to him the address prescribed in this Office in the form of a letter; and may perform such other duties herein assigned the Instituting Minister as he may choose.