Page images
PDF
EPUB

The proceedings to be instituted for this purpose depended upon the preliminary question, whether Great Britain was inclined to allow justice to be done to the independence and national honour of the German Evangelical Church, and to treat this affair in full harmony with Prussia upon the firm basis that Evangelical Christianity should present itself under the protection of England and Prussia to the Turkish Government as an unity, and thus become a partaker of all the advantages of legal recognition on the part of that Government.

The steps which have been taken in order to settle this preliminary question, have had the most gratifying result. Not only the Government of Great Britain showed a decided readiness to approach the question upon the grounds proposed, but also the heads of the English Church entered with warm interest into the proposition. There was an agreement in the conviction that the diversities of Christian worship according to tongues and races, and according to the peculiarities and historical development of each nationthat is to say, in the Evangelical Churchare upheld by a higher unity-the Lord of the Church himself. And that in this unity, to which all diversities refer themselves as to their point of junction, rests the ground of true Christian toleration. Besides this conviction, his Majesty the King, however, participates in the national religious sympathies, which connect themselves with the origin of the Augsburg Confession, and the memory of the heroes of faith in the German Evangelical Church, too sincerely ever to allow him to give up any part of this fixed common foundation of the United German National Church of Evangelical Faith.

By means of a cordial co-operation directed by this spirit, a distinct Bishopric has now been established in Jerusalem, in which all Evangelical Christians may find a common support and point of union, in the face of the Turkish Government, and in a place where it otherwise needed an entrance into the unity of a Church; therewith, however, the German Protestants in particular vindicate the independence of their Church in reference to their peculiar Confession and Liturgy. His Majesty the King furnishes half the of the foundation of the Bishopric out of his royal privy purse, and shares accordingly the right of nominating the Bishop with the Crown of England.

The immediate ecclesiastical necessities of the new Bishopric would thus have been provided for. As, however, a Church community can only gain a richly blessed prosperity in connection with the education of youth and the care of the sick, there may be expected for these purposes more extended support from the pious

expenses

interest and benevolence of the Evangelical Christians of Prussia and other German countries.

The foundation of an hospital is particularly important, in which travellers, whom scientific pursuits, religious interest, or any other aims, will continually lead to Jerusalem in increasing numbers, may be able to find a reception in case of their needing assistance. To this in particular refer the following circular rescripts of the minister of spiritual affairs to the Royal Governments and Consistories :

“ The Royal Consistory will gather from the enclosed copy of the circular order to the Royal Government for what weighty purpose his Royal Majesty has resolved to order a general collection in the Evangelical Churches of the kingdom. Inasmuch as this object lies near to his Majesty's heart, in proportion as it at once concerns the honour and the advancement of the Evangelical Churches, together with a provision for the needy of the same faith, the Royal Consistory will readily take measures to stir the hearts of the Evangelical believers. This will not be difficult if the clergy consider what an important element for the development of the German Evangelical Church is therein included, -namely, that after so many centuries the Gospel in the Confession, and with the use of the Liturgy, of that Church, according to the pattern of the first Christian communities, will be openly published in the cradle of Christianity, and at the grave of the Redeemer.

The Royal Consistory is, in order to carry out his Majesty's views, to dispatch suitable instructions to all the superintendents and preachers, and to send a copy thereof for information to the Ministry. The Royal Consistory is to fix the Sunday upon which the collection is to be made, and to give notice thereof to the Royal Governments of the Province.

Berlin, the 14th November, 1841.
The Minister of Spiritual Affairs, &c. &c.

(Signed) EICHHORN.

To

all the Royal Consistories.

His Majesty has made use of the opportunity afforded by his participation in the maintenance of peace in the East, in order to secure to the Evangelical Church in all future times the same legal recognition in Turkey, which the Greek and Latin Churches in those parts have long enjoyed. Since, with such a recognition of Ecclesiastical independence, the most important political rights are connected, the want of which has hitherto exposed Evangelical Christians to arbitrary oppression on the part of the local Turkish authorities, the benefit, which his Majesty has sought through his great influence to procure for Evangelical believers, is so much the greater from the circumstance, that, irrespective of the increased impulses of scientific research and Ecclesiastical interests, the greater intercourse which will take place among all nations will in future lead Evangelical Christians to those countries in greater numbers than at present, and, perhaps, on account of the attained enjoyment of political rights, will also occasion important settlements there. In the prospect of this development and extension of commerce, and also the facilitation of immigration, his Majesty, in connection with the Crown of Great Britain, has not hesitated to make a considerable sacrifice from his Privy Purse, in order to secure for all future time to the Evangelical Church of the German nation, as the Mother of all Evangelical Confessions, in the land of the origin of Christianity, rights commensurate to its dignity and greatness beside the Latin and Greek Churches. Before long a Church of German Protestants will rise in Jerusalem, and divine service will be performed according to her Confession and Liturgy. But in order to foster and secure this new settlement, an essential want remains, viz. the erection of an hospital for the accommodation of indigent Evangelical travellers, who may repair to Jerusalem for scientific pursuits, from motives of Christian edification, or other objects; and further, the establishment of a School. How intimately connected these institutions are with Ecclesiastical efficiency needs not to be explained.

His Majesty has been pleased, for the establishment and maintenance of the same, to order that a general collection be made throughout the Evangelical Churches of the Prussian Monarchy; and the Royal government is consequently called upon to make arrangements for this collection, and to remit the monies received, together with particulars of the sums, to the General Treasury of the Office entrusted to me.

With respect to the Sunday to be appointed for this purpose, and the more immediate instructions to be given to the Clergy in whose congregations the collection is to be ordered, an especial instruction is issued to the Royal Consistory.

Berlin, 14th November, 1841.
The Minister of Spiritual Affairs, &c. &c.

(Signed) EICHHORN.
To
all the Royal Consistories.

APPENDIX, No. II.

5 VICT. CAP. VI.

c. 81.

An Act to amend an Act made in the Twenty-sixth Year of the Reign

of his Majesty King George the Third, intituled An Act to empower the Archbishop of Canterbury, or the Archbishop of York for the Time being, to consecrate to the Office of a Bishop Persons being Subjects or Citizens of Countries out of his Majesty's Dominions."

[5th October, 1841.] WHEREAS in and by an act passed in the twenty-sixth year of the reign of his late Majesty King George the Third, intituled “ An 26 Geo. 3, Act to empower the Archbishop of Canterbury, or the Archbishop of York for the Time being, to consecrate to the Office of a Bishop Persons being Subjects or Citizens of Countries out of his Majesty's Dominions,” after reciting that “there are divers persons, subjects or citizens of countries out of his Majesty's dominions, and inhabiting and residing within the said countries, who profess the public worship of Almighty God according to the principles of the Church of England, and who, in order to provide a regular succession of ministers for the service of their Church, are desirous of having certain of the subjects or citizens of those countries consecrated Bishops according to the form of consecration of the Church of England," it is amongst other things enacted, that from and after the passing of the said act it should and might be lawful to and for the Archbishop of Canterbury, or for the Archbishop of York for the time being, together with such other Bishops as they should call to their assistance, to consecrate persons being subjects or citizens of countries out of his Majesty's dominions Bishops for the purposes in the said act mentioned, without the King's licence for their election, or the royal mandate under the great seal for their confirmation and consecration, and without requiring them to take the oaths of allegiance and supremacy, and the oath of due obedience to the Archbishop for the time being : And whereas it is expedient to enlarge the powers given by the said Act; be it therefore enacted by the Queen's most excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and

of Canterbury and York may conse

Countries without the

cence for

risdiction of such Bishops.

consent of the lords spiritual and temporal, and commons, in this

present parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, Archbishops that it shall and may be lawful to and for the Archbishop of Can

terbury, or the Archbishop of York for the time being, together crate British with such other Bishops as they shall call to their assistance, to Foreigners to consecrate British subjects, or the subjects or citizens of any foreign be Bishops in Foreiga

kingdom or state, to be Bishops in any foreign country, whether

such foreign subjects or citizens be or be not subjects or citizens of Royal Li

the country in which they are to act, and without the Queen's licence Election, &c. for their election, or the royal mandate under the great seal for their

confirmation and consecration, and without requiring such of them as may be subjects or citizens of any foreign kingdom or state to take the oaths of allegiance and supremacy, and the oath of due

obedience to the Archbishop for the time being. Spiritnal Ja

II. And be it further enacted, that such Bishop or Bishops so consecrated may exercise, within such limits as may from time to time be assigned for that purpose in such foreign countries by her Majesty, spiritual jurisdiction over the ministers of British congregations of the united Church of England and Ireland, and over such other Protestant congregations as may be desirous of placing

themselves under his or their authority. Archbishops

III. Provided always, that no person shall be consecrated a Majesty's Li- Bishop in the manner herein provided until the Archbishop of

Canterbury, or the Archbishop of York for the time being, shall and to ascer- have first applied for and shall have obtained her Majesty's licence, ness of Per- by warrant under her royal signet and sign manual, authorizing and consecrated. empowering him to perform such consecration, and expressing the

name of the person so to be consecrated, nor until the said Archbishop has been fully ascertained of the sufficiency of such person in good learning, of the soundness of his faith, and of the purity of his manners.

IV. Provided always, and be it hereby declared, that no person and the Pero' consecrated to the office of a Bishop in the manner aforesaid, nor crated or or. any person deriving his consecration from or under any Bishop so them, not to consecrated, nor any person admitted to the order of Deacon or

Priest by any Bishop or Bishops so consecrated, or by the sucIreland,

to obtain Her

cence for Consecration,

act within England or

cessor or successors of any Bishop or Bishops so consecrated, shall than accord. be thereby enabled to exercise his office within her Majesty's do

minions in England or Ireland, otherwise than according to the provisions of an act of the third and fourth years of her present Majesty, intituled “ An Act to make certain Provisions and Regulations in respect to the Exercise within England and Ireland of

otherwise

to 4 Vict. c. 33.

« PreviousContinue »