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q Forasmuch as all mortal men be subječt to many sudden

perils, diseases, and ficknelles, and ever uncertain what time they shall depart out of this life; therefore, to the intent they may be always in a readiness to die, whenfoever it sball please Almighty God to call them, the Curates shall diligently from time to time (but especially in the time of peftilence, or other infe&tious fickness) exhort their pariffioners to the often receiving of the boly Communion of the Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ, when it shall be publickly administered in the Church; that so doing, they may, in case of sudden visitation, bave the less cause to be disquieted" for lack of the same. But if the fick person be not able to come to the Church, and yet is desirous to receive the Communion in bis house ; then be must give timely notice to the Curate, signifying also how many there are 10 communicate with him (which shall be three, or two at the leaft) and having a convenient place in the fick man's house, with all things necessary fo prepared, that the Curate may reverently minister, be shall there celebrate the holy Communion, beginning with the Collect, Epijtle, and Gospel, bere following :

Sick man's house], Though administering the communion in private houses be forbidden by the canons of 1603, as well as by those of ancient times, under the fevereft penalties ; yet there is an exception made in the case of. fickness; upon which occalion, both the canons above men. tioned, and this present rubric, allow the curate (having a convenient place in the sick man's house, with all things neceffary fo prepared, that he may reverently minister) there to celebrate the holy Communion. This indul. gence was rare in the primitive church : however, some instances may be produced, even from thence, of private confecrations upon great emergencies. But, generally speaking, it was usual for the ministers to referve fome part of the elements, that had been consecrated before, in the church, to be always in a readiness upon such like occasions. Agreeably to which in this very rubric (as it was worded in King Edward's first common prayer) it was ordered, that if the fame day (on which the person was to be visited) there was a celebratiop of the holy communion in the church, then the priest was to reserye (at the open communion) so much of the facrament of the body and blood, as would serve the lick person, and so many as were to communicate with him (if there were any :) and fo foon as he conveniently could, after the open communion ended in the church, he was to go and minifter the fame, &c. But then this reserration was not allowed, unless there was a communion at the church on

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The Collect.

ALMIGHTY, everliving God, Maker of mankind,

MY

VER

chastise every one whom thou dost receive; we beseech thee to have mercy upon this thy servant visited with thine hand, and to grant that he may take bis sickness patiently, and recover his bodily health, (if it be thy gracious will;) and whensoever bis foul fall depart from the body, it may be without spot presented unto thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Epistle. Heb. xii. 5.
Y son, despise not thou the chastening of the

Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him. For whom the Lord loveth, he chasteneth ; and scour. geth every son whom he receiveth.

The Gospel. St. John v. 24.
ERILY, verily, I say unto you, he that heareth my

Word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. the same day on which the sick person was to be visited : for by another rubric it was ordered, that if the day were not appointed for the open communion in the church, then (upon convenient warning given) the curate was to go and visit the sick person afore noon; and having a conyenient place in the fick man's house, where he might reverently celebrate, with all things necessary for the fame, and not being otherwise leta ted with the public service, or any other just impediment, there to celebrate the holy communion. And even the elements that were confo crated thus privately were to be reserved, if there was any occafion to adminifter the facrament again that day. For so it was ordered by a third rubric of this office in the fame book, that if there were any more fick persons to be visited the same day that the curate celebrated in any lick man's house, then the curate was there to reserve so much of the facram. ment of the body and blood, as would serve the other lick persons, and such as were appointed to communicate with them, (if there were any) and immediately to carry it and minifter it unto them. So that from all these rubrics compared together, we may observe, first, that though anciently it was usual for the ministers to reserve fome part of the conse crated elements, either in the church or at their houses, to be always in a readiness for any that should want to receive, before the time came to confecrate again ; yet after the reformation it was never allowed to reserve them longer than that day on which they were consecrated, nor indeed to reserve them at all, unless the curate knew before-hand that fome dich Berson was that day to be visited. Wheatley,

After which the Priest shall proceed according to the form before prescribed for the holy Communion, beginning at these words, [Ye that do truly repent, &c.]

At the time of the distribution of the holy Sacrament, the, Priest shall first receive the Communion himself, and after minister unto them that are appointed to communicate with the sick, and last of all to the sick person.

But if a man, either by reason of extremity of sickness, or for want of warning in due time to the Curate, or for lack of company to receive with him, or by any other just impediment, do not receive the Sacrament of Christ's Body and Blood; the Curate shall instruct him, that if he do truly repent him of bis sins, and stedfastly believe that Jesus Christ bath suffered death upon the cross for him, and shed his blood for his redemption, earnestly remembering the benefits be hath thereby, and giving him. hearty thanks therefore, he doth eat and drink the Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ profitably to his soul's health, although he do not receive the Sacrament with his mouth.

When the fick person is visited, and receiveth the holy Communion all at one time, then the Priest, for more expedition, fall cut off the form of the Visitation at the Psalm, [In thee, O Lord, have I put my trust, &c.] and go straight to the Communion.

[ In the time of the Plague, Sweat, or such other like con

tagious times of sickness or diseases, when none of the parish or neighbours can be gotten to communicate with the Sick in their houses, for fear of the infection; upon Special request of the diseased, the Minister may only communicate with him.

Trust, &c.) After these words in Edward the Vith's first book, followed, “ And if the sick desire to be anointed, then shall the priest use the appointed prayer, without the pfalm.” In the time, &c.] This rubric was added at the review 1551.

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The Burial of the Dead.

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Here is to be noted, that the Office ensuing is not to be used for any that die unbaptized, or excommunicate, or have laid violent hands upon themselves.

The Priest and Clerks meeting the Corpse at the entrance
of the Church-yard, and going before it, either into the
Church, or towards the grave, shall say, or fing,
AM the resurrection and the life, faith the Lord: he

that believeth ia me, though he were dead, yet thall he live; and whosoever liveth and believeth in me, shall never die. St. John xi. 25, 26.

The order, &c.] The end of funeral duties is to fhew that love to wards the party deceased which nature requireth; then to do him that honour which is fit generally for man, and particularly for the qualities of his perfon; laft of all to testify the care which the church hath to comfort the living, and the hope which we all have concerning the resurrection of the dead.—Hooker's Ecc. Pol. b. v. sec. 75. It may tend to the illustration of this service, and the entertainment of the reader, if we make a few remarks on the places where, and the ceremonies with which, the an. cient Chriftiaos buried the bodies of deceased believers. It was an admirable regulation of the Roman law, that no corpse should be buried or burned within the city; (in urbe ne sepelito, neve urito; Cic. de Leg. lib. 8. n. 58;) and the Christians, for the space of 300 years living in subjection to the Roman laws, paid the stricteft obedience to this falutary ordinance. They, like their masters, buried their dead by the side of the great roads without the city; or in vaults excavated in the neighbouring fields. Even when Christianity became the religion of the state, the fame wise custom remained in force; and the believing Emperors for several years prohibited all interments in cities or churches. But towards the clote of the fourth century, in compliment to the memory of martyrs, their ashes were either permitted to be translated into places of worship; or churches were de. voutly built over the spots where their bones reposed. This privilege, in a short time, very naturally was transferred to emperors and princes, whose remains were permitted to be deposited in the (nieovæos) atrium, or church porch, and other outer buildings attached to the facred edifice. The fa. vour, however, did not long continue to be exclusively claimed by those of royal blood; the lefs dignified orders were generally indulged with it; and in the beginning of the 6th century the atrium, or church porch, was open for the sepulture of the people; and kings, bishops, and founders of churches, were allowed by law to be buried within the church. But tine, who imperceptibly weakens or destroys all regulations, at length permitted the middling classes to be buried within the church, if they had the sanction of the bilhops and presbyters so to do; and though after this indulgence had been granted, (which took place in the 9th century) laws were occalionally made to prevent inhumation in churches, yet the practice gained such strength by use, and was so much corroborated by Pope Leo III.'s decree for an hereditary right of fepulture in churches to the descendants of those who had been formerly buried there, that towards the cloíc of the 13th century the original wholefome laws against this I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that he hall after my skin, worms destroy this body; yet in my flesh thall I see God: whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another. Job xix. 25, 26, 27, practice were entirely laid aside. Perhaps the general desire of the great, in the early ages, to be buried in churches, arose from the circumitance that church-yards were not confecrated by any religious form, till the latter end of the 6th century; and the superstition of ignorant ages, occasioned a natural preference to places of interment hallowed by these folemn rites. Sepulchral spots were indeed esteemed sacred by the heathens, and guarded from violation by those civil laws, which continue in force to the present day; (Cod. Juftin. lib. 9; tit. 19, leg. 1;) but this did not Sanerify them fufficiently to gratify the feelings of Chriftians; and confe. quently the church was earneftly desired as the place for the final rest of their remains. The early believers also varied their made, as well as their place of burial as much as pollible from the heathens. With the latter it was customary, as is sufficiently known, to burn the dead; a practice which the former diligently avoided, and instead thereof buried the body whole in the ground. As the Christians, however, were a perfecuted feet for 300 years, it feems probable that they might be frequently compelled by their malignant enemies to forego their own accustomed mode of sepulture, and to comply with the heathen practice of burning their dead; to which inftances of compulsory cremation, it appears to me thefe remarkable words in our burial fervice, “athes to ashes,” obviously refer. Another marked difference between the Chriftians and the heathens in their ceremonies of burial was, that whereas the latter buried their dead in the night, the former performed this pious work in the day; and the diffimi. larity was rendered ftill more remarkable by the solemn psalmody which was fung at the funeral proceffions of the Chriftians, in contra-dístinction to the nenia, or burial ode of the heathens, accompanied by the music of pipes and trumpets. Having reached the church, if the interment were performed in the morning, the congregation went through the whole of that service, adding to it the facrament of the Eucharist; an ancient praczice which was preserved by our reformers, and retained in Edward the VIth's first book, but omitted in his second. If it were an afternoon funeral, the service was as follows: hymns and thanksgivings to God for the victorious end of the deceased, and a prayer for a similar death; a prayer by the bishop, of grateful thanks to God for the grace He had bestowed on the departed, to enable him to endure unto the end; a portion of scripture, read by the deacon, containing the promises of a resurrection; and a hymn on the same fubject. This was the firft service, on the performance of which the catechifts departed; and this seems to have been very similar to what we at present use. The remaining part of the service consisted of the following particulars, some of which were continued by the Romanists quite to the Reformation, but reje&ed by our Reformers as superstitious:-a commemoration, by a chief deacon, of all saints departed, attributing to them titles and praises, and exhorting all to follow their example: a prayer for the deceafed, by the bifhop; after which the bishop gave him the kiss of peace, anointed him with holy oil, and then committed him to the earth. All the above privileges were enjoyed, (amongst the ancient Christians) by

every defoription of believers, except the three following clafles, 40 whose exclusion from Christian Sepulture our own church has founded

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