Acts of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland 1638-1842. Originally published by Edinburgh Printing & Publishing Co, Edinburgh, 1843.
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The principal acts of the general assembly, comvened at Edinburgh, May 18, 1797.
I. Sess. 1, May 18, 1797.—The King's Commission to David of Leven and Melville produced, and ordered to be recorded.
The General Assembly, &c.
II. Sess. 1, May 18, 1797.—The King's most gracious Letter to the General Assembly, presented to them by his Majesty's Commissioner.
Geroge, R., &c.
III. Sess. 3, May 20, 1797.—The General Assembly's Answer to the King's most graious Letter.
May it please your Majesty, &c.
IV. Sess. 6, May 24, 1794.—Address to his Majesty on the Marriage of her Royal Highness the Princess-Royal with his Serene Highness the Hereditary Prince of Wirtemberg.
May it please your Majesty,
we, your Majesty's most faithful and loyal subjects, the ministers and elders of the church of Scotland met in the General Assembly, beg leave to approach your throne with our most respectful congratulation on the marriage of her Royal Highness the Princess-Royal of Great Britain, your Majesty's eldest daughter, with his Serene Highness the Hereditary Prince of Wirtemberg Stutgard.
While we sincerely rejoice in every event that may increase your Majesty's domestic comfort, and enlarge the sphere of your paternal affections, we regard every extension of your Royal Family as an additional security to our religion and liberties.
Note.—The Assembly of 1796 had under their consideration certain Overtures relative to the diffusion of the Gospel. The following notice of the subject appears in the Abridgment of the Assembly's Proceedings for that year.—"The Assembly proceeded to consider the Overtures from the Synods of Fife and Moray, relative to the diffusion of the Gospel. After reasoning, a motion was made and seconded, 'That the General Assembly are of opinion, that the object proposed in the Overtures is of the highest importance; but in respect the facts and circumstance, which are necessary for the General Assembly to come to any resollition upon this subject at present, are not sufficiently explained and instructed; therefore, the Assembly appoint a committee to take the subject of them into consideration, and report the result of their inquires to the next General Assembly.' And, after farther reasingin, another motion was made and seconded, 'That the General Assembly, having considered the Overtures, and judging it highly inexpedient, at this time, to appoint a collection over Scotland, by the authority of the General Assembly; and not considering the circumstance of the times as favourable for the General Assembly's Adopting any particular measure, in relation to the object of the Overtures, dismiss the same. At the same time, recommend to all the members of the Church of Scotland, in their different stations, to take every compentent method of promoting, within the sphere of their incluence, the knowledge of the Gospel, a just sense of the inestimable benefits which it conveys to all who embrace it, and the practise of those virtues, by which Christians make their light to shine before others. And while they offer the servent prayers to Almighty God for the fulfilment of his promise, in giving his son the Heathen for an inheritance, they resolve that they will embracnce, with zeal and with thankfulness, any favourable opportunity of contributing, by their exertions, to the propagation of the Gospel of Christ, which Divie Providence may hereafter open. 'The Assembly agreed to the following state of a vote—Appoint or Dismiss.—and the roll being called, and votes marked, it carried Dismiss. Therefore, the Assembly dismissed the Overtures in terms of, and with the recommendation contained in, the second motion according."—Ed. 1843
In the present situation of public affairs, so deeply interesting to the British empire, we feel it to be our duty to renew the warmest expressions of our steady and zealous attachment to your Majesty's sacred person, and to that contitution which was established by the wisdom and virtue of our forefathers, has been improved under your royal ancestors, and is so happily administered by your Majesty, for the security of those laws which give equal protection to all your subjects, and for the advancement of national prosperity. We have the satisfaction of assuring your Majesty, that the great body of the people under our care concur with us in the same sentiments of loyalty, and in the same reverence for the laws and institutions of our country; and that there is no abatement of that spirit which has produced so many voluntary and generous exertions for the preservation of internal order, for the defence of those realms against the secret machinations and open violence of foreign enemies, and for the support of national honour. They continue to feel and to act as becomes Britons, ready to sacrifice every provate consideration in behalf of their beloved Sovereign, of the independence of their country, and of their religion and liberties.
While our people patiently and cheerfully endure the inevitable toils and burdens of a war, they join with us in cherishing the pleasing hope of peace, when peace can be obtained on terms fair and honourable, such as will give full security for the many blessings by which your Majesty's subjects are distinguished. For the attainment of which most desirable object, we rely, under God, with the most entire confidence on the wisdom and vigour of your Majesty's councils.
That Almighty God, whose Providence rules the nations, and determines the issues
of war, may, by the means which he hath chosen, and at his appointed time, turn
the hearts of our enemies; that he may diffuse a spirit of union and loyalty among all
your Majesty's subjects; that he may prosper the measures of government, and may
continue to bless the British empire under the light of his countenance; and that
your Majesty may long reign over a free, happy, and affectionate people, are the earnest prayers of,
May it please your Majesty, your Majesty's most dutiful, most faithful, and most obedient subjects, the Ministers and Elders met in this General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.
Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
John Adamson, Moderator.
V. Sess. 8. May 26, 1797.—Regulations and Overture respecting the Erection of Chapels of Ease.
VI. Sess. 9, May 27, 1797.—Commission of the General Assembly to certain Ministers and Ruling Elders for discussing Affairs referred to them.
The General Assembly, &c.
VII. Sess. 9, May 27, 1797.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for the Reformation of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, and for Managing his Majesty's Royal Bounty for that end.
The General Assembly, &c.
VIII. Sess. ult., May 29, 1797.—New Overture respecting the Licensing of Probationers.
IX. Sess. ult., May 29, 1797.—Overture respecting the attendance of Students on the Divinity Hall. (fn. 1)
The committee on the overture from the Synod of Aberdeen, respecting the attendance of Students on the Divinity Halls, having maturely deliberated on the said overture, report to the venerable Assembly, that, in their opinion, it ought to be expressed in the following terms, viz.:—"It is overtured, that Students in Divinity who purpose to prosecute their studies for six sessions, should be required to give as much partial attendance, during the currency of those sessions, in the Divinity Halls which they respectively attend, as shall, in the whole, amount to six months."
The General Assembly approved of the above report, and ordered the same to be transmitted, as and overture, for the consideration of Presbyteries.
X. Sess. ult., May 29, 1797.—Act appointing the Diet of the next General Assembly.
The next General Assembly of this National Church is appointed to be held within the New Church Aisle of Edinburgh, on Thursday, the 17th day of May 1798.
Collected and extracted from the Records of the General Assembly, by
Adrew Dalzel, Cls. Eccl. Scot.