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the Canadas as regards dissent; but the more dissent abounds, the more important it is to inculcate sound Church principles, and not to unchurch those who by a true faith may be one with the mystical body of all true believers. “Hence,” says Bishop MʻIlvaine, “ the pains taken by our old Anglican divines, of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, to make plain the distinction between the church visible and invisible, 'for lack of diligent observance of which (says Hooker) the oversights are neither few nor light that have been committed ;'" adding that he “ has observed in many ministers of our Protestant Church of the United States, a great lack of the diligent observing of that difference: and he thinks that the oversights which have ensued, and do still increase, are neither few nor light, but so many and weighty as to affect in a very important degree the great interests of gospel truth. The whole matter concerning regeneration and justification, as connected with the sacraments, and all the language of the scriptures, the early fathers, and the early Anglican divines, would be much more correctly and easily understood, were that difference well seen and forcibly fixed on the mind.” Whether Dr. Strachan, the good bishop of Toronto, is a diligent observer of this important distinction, we much doubt. We fear rather that he is deeply imbued with the taint derived from his American brethren, and which Bishop M'Ilvaine has here so clearly indicated. The greater or less prevalence of similar views among our colonial bishops must occasion no slight anxiety to the sincere friends of an unadulterated Christianity.
3. But, again, the independence of the colonial bishops is another occasion of anxiety. This, however, in the view of a large class of Churchmen, is its greatest recommendation-its real strength, the best guarantee for the success of our missions. "If Missionary Societies," writes Dr. Hook, “ acting on primitive principles, instead of assuming a kind of episcopal authority, and sending out clergy to act in subordination, not to these bishops, but to committees at home, would enable the English prelates to send out independent missionary bishops to foreign parts, who might create a church around them, missionary labours would doubtless be attended with primitive success." We need not repeat the parallel sayings of Archdeacons Manning, Grant, and others, or remind our readers of the depreciating terms in which the Church Missionary Society is still spoken of, as 'no Church society,' though patronized by almost the entire bench-or of the little accession there has been to the ranks of its supporters in consequence of that patronage. The truth is, the individuals in question are worshippers of a theory—a theory baseless as
the “ fabric of a vision !”—and which has no claim whatever to be received as a primitive principle. But upon this principle it is that the said party rally around the colonial scheme, and are intending, if we mistake not, to work it against the Church Missionary and all similar societies. We must however conjare the conductors of that society in particular, not to recognize the dangerous principle, the unscriptural theory, of episcopal independence
"The Bishop of Oxford, though entering, we need not say, with much sympathy, into the views of the stricter class of American Episcopalians, has deliberately censured those members of the first Ainerican Convention who " would have deprived the laity of that power of co-ordinate deliberation and assent, which appear to have been in the earliest times their Christian birthright." “ The pleas of the Eastern churchmen," he observes, " would have excluded from conventions all lay deputies, and confined deliberation on things ecclesiastical to those in holy orders.” (History of the Protestant Episcopal Church in America, p. 212.) We quite agree with the bishop that there is a certain independence which belongs to the bishop's office and position of right, and the maintenance of which is highly important. All we contend for is, that the bishop's independence should not absorb that of the other constituent members of Christ's body the Church, and the birthright of one and all be absolutely sacrificed at the shrine of episcopal supremacy. Till matters therefore can be adjusted, lay societies, as certain institutions are sometimes contemptuously termed, must be allowed their just claims, and bishops demean themselves (as we are persuaded most of them desire to do) with a due consideration of the present anomalous state of the Church, and a sincere concern to use their power for edification and not for destruction. We observe that the Bishop of London, in speaking of societies as the Church's instruments, does not invidiously distinguish one from another, but very properly seems to regard them as alike (to some extent) anomalous and peculiar in their constitution. Whatever may be the true theory as to religious associations in the existing state of things (and we are sure none can plead above another binding prescription or authority), there is much in the following remarks of the bishop which deserves attention. We quote from his lordship's speech at the Mansion House :
“ The truth is," he observes, “ that in the present condition of society in this country, much as we may object to the agency of other associations than the great association of all, the Church of Christ itself, as a means of accomplishing some of the duties laid upon us by its Divine Head, we must be content to accept their services, as substitutes for that which has not the means, however much it has the will, of doing its duty in that respect ....... And when I said that an objection might be raised, as indeed it oftentimes has been raised-an objection not entirely without foundation in principle-to availing ourselves of the assistance of associated bodies, for the purpose of carrying into effect the great designs of the Church itself, I ought in fairness to state, that, practically considered, the g
ch have in view the diffusing of the light of spiritual truth over the world, are to be considered, at all events, its most important auxiliaries, if they are not members of the Church. But they are, in truth, the arms by which she is executing her missionary purposes; for the Church is, in fact, the great missionary society. The first commission given to its apostles was that of missions. Go, teach all nations, &c. And in the execution of that task no difficulties, which do not involve insuperable objections in point of principle, are to be permitted to interfere ; and therefore I call upon you with confidence to assist this society, and tell you, that in so doing you will most effectually assist the Church itself, of which you are members, diffusing to others those principles which, I trust, by the mercy of God, you have been led to profit by yourselves.”—(p. 5.)
While adverting to the powers of bishops, and the independence now-a-days assumed for them, and grounded on primitive sanction, it occurs to us just to give the following quotation from Bede, touching the state of things in lona at a period somewhat nearer the times and specimens of primitive practice than our own. This venerable historian, writing of that island of saints, says : -" Habere autem solet ipsa insula rectorem semper Abbatem Presbyterum, cujus juri et omnis provincia, et ipsi etiam Episcopi, ordine inusitato, debeant esse subjecti, juxta exemplum primi doctoris illius (scil. Columbæ), qui, non Episcopus, sed Presbyter, extitit et Monachus." Bed. Eccles. Hist. lib. iii. c. 4. There have always been anomalies, as we call them, and probably always will be.
in the distant field of colonial and missionary labour. Their respect for a just episcopal jurisdiction we can entirely trust: the colonial episcopate would have had no warmer supporters than the friends of the Church Missionary Society, if established at the very outset of its career: and we believe that now they will be found to pay it more respectful deference than many of their traducers : but we trust they will never worship an idol, or sacrifice the just claims of the entire body, out of a false deference to one branch, of the Church--or with the design of compassing ends opposed to the very being of the Church as a true spiritual communion. It is no primitive doctrine that bishops are independent: nor can anything be more arrogant than to unchurch Christian societies because they do not admit this hollow theoryor to claim the sole credit of Churchmanship and orthodoxy for societies of their own, which have no one attribute to constitute them authoritative Church-societies. The assertions too in regard to the failure of past missions are as baseless as is the theory in question; and equally so is the assumption that an independent colonial episcopate will be the most likely means to secure the success desired. But we must not enter upon this wide field. We had wished to do so, but must reserve ourselves (should we resume the subject), and be satisfied for the present with entering our protest against episcopal independence in the sense intended by its advocates—as also against the deceptive cry still so loudly raised against one of our most laborious and useful institutions, because its conductors and friends will not concur in the slavish unqualified cry “Scire debes episcopam in ecclesia, et ecclesiam in episcopo, et si qui cum episcopo non sit in ecclesia non esse.” The day be far distant which shall hear this as the general war-note either at home or in the colonies. We believe it to be one of the subtlest devices of the devil--the earliest germ of that awful apostacy which has so long hid
.“ the glorious sky From half the nations, till they own
No holier name, no mightier throne,” than that of a self-styled Infallible. “ That vision,” we had hoped, was “ passing by ”—but, alas, we have fears; and hence our solicitude to lift up a warning voice against the theory of episcopal independence. At home it may be comparatively harmless in practical operation; for though our ecclesiastical position is truly anomalous, and the episcopal powers but imperfect and limited, through the abeyance of all ecclesiastical synods, yet the counteracting influence of circumstances is on the whole sufficiently effective. It would be too much to expect a similar state of things in
the distant sphere of colonial labour, if the principle is once con. ceded, and bishops are encouraged to regard themselves as absolute and irresponsible. In regard to societies, we have great pleasure in again quoting our old friend, Dr. Wolff. He says, “ It is utterly absurd to say that all benevolent societies are to be under the directions of the bishops : even the Church of Rome, in her powerful discipline, has never followed this plan—that all benevolent societies are necessarily to be placed under episcopal control, --nor does the Church of Armenia." In regard to the plantation and working of churches, the following, which we quote from the interesting Journal of Bishop Mountain (No. 3 on our list), is nearer the truth than the high episcopal theory we have been exposing. This excellent missionary bishop says;
“ The Church, in the early days of Christianity was planted in new region's by seating, at a central point, the bishop with his cathedral and his college of presbyters, who ranged the country here and there under his direction. And this, or the nearest approach to this of which the times are susceptible, is what is wanted now.”—(p. 173.)
This, however, is perhaps sufficiently refined, and we much question whether a perfected organization in the wide field of missionary labour may not be prematurely attempted. But we can fully enter into the bishop's appeal as regards the particular case—and, though a digression, we cannot help quoting one more passage from his pages.
“ I feel,” he says, “ with an indescribable force, the necessity of establishing a bishop in these territories (Prince Rupert's Land). Perhaps I need not disclaim such an idea as that all the virtue of the gospel is centered in the episcopate, because I happen to hold that thorny office myself: but it is the Episcopal Church of England which is specially, distinctly, and loudly called to occupy that open field—it is the Episcopal Church of England which took the lead, and gave the impulse to other parties, in whatever has yet been done of any note, for planting and extending any of the forms of Christianity in that land-it is the Episcopal Church of England, its interests being represented upon the spot by the Church Missionary Society, which has been conspicuously successful, by the fruits of its schools and missions, in diffusing blessings among the people : and an Episcopal Church without a bishop, is an anomaly upon the face of it-a contradiction in terms: it is like a monarchy without a king: A bishop is necessary even for the existing establishment of clergy, and the existing congregations: who, in their extreme remoteness, and utter severance from all the rest of the world, afford a sort of revived exlibition of the ancient sect of the acephali, against their own wills." -(pp. 169, 170.)
Hence the bishop's zealous and Christian appeal (supported by the Committee of the Church Missionary Society), for the endowment of a bishopric for Prince Rupert's Land. Whatever profits may arise from the sale of his Journal are to be devoted to this object; and we may here observe, that, concurring in the views of the excellent bishop, and feeling a more than common interest in
the mission, with which a beloved friend of our own (the late Mr. Jones), was so long and successfully connected, we should much rejoice to hear that the object had been attained, and another of the Society's stations formed into a regularly-organized branch of our Church-hoping, however, that the appointment of a bishop, whenever it is made, will show a due consideration for the views and principles of those by whom the infant church has been planted and cherished.
4. The length of this article urges us to our last remark, which is, that the projected auxiliary to the colonial episcopate—we mean the college of St. Augustine, Canterbury-must, in all fairness, clear itself of the suspicions which at present hang over it, or there will with this great colonial scheme be connected another cause of deep anxiety. We observe that at the late meeting held in the Egyptian Hall“ to increase the means of religious instruction for the Emigrants and Settlers in the British Colonies,” Mr. Archdeacon Manning thus alludes to it
“* Within the last two or three months,' he says, ' I have received from an unknown hand in India, a remarkable printed statement. It is an urgent appeal to the Church of England to found a missionary college. Little did the writer of this paper know, at the time he put it forth, that at this very moment, on the site which is consecrated by the memory of the restoration of Christianity in England, there is rising a collegiate institution worthy of the great purpose for which it is designed: and that the foundations of that work bave been laid in individual munificence, unequalled by any of this day. Little did the writer know what an answer I could have sent to him, had 'I known the hand from which I received the appeal."'-(pp. 21, 22.)
With all our respect for the venerable Archdeacon and his accomplished friends, we must take leave to say, that the college of St. Augustine has not yet established its claims as an institution of the Church, or as a safe and sound seminary for colonial training. Where is the responsibility lodged ? who are to be the tutors and active managers ? what the class of students to be admitted as candidates for missionary service? These and similar inquiries may fairly be proposed—and must be answered, before general confidence can be conciliated, or anxiety removed. It would also, in our opinion, have been much more modest and graceful to have sought to provide additional means of missionary training without the invidious, and, to some extent, groundless remark—" Another great and signal defect in our missionary system has been the want of any institution for the education and discipline of a body of clergy and catechists for the work of Christ among the heathen. It is literally true to say that no such thing has existed. The institution formed of late years by the Church Missionary Society is no exception : for that institution is no work of the Church
sought to provided, to some extent, onary system h