Journal of the House of Lords: Volume 9, 1646. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1767-1830.
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DIE Mercurii, 12 Januarii.
Ds. La Warr.
Answer from the H. C.
That to the Petition of the Lady Brooke, they have taken it into Consideration, and will return Answer: That to the Ordinance for Five Thousand Pounds to be raised for Ireland out of the Estates to be mortgaged, and to that Petition of Mr. Thayne, they will return Answer by Messengers of their own.
Trustees for Impropriations for Charitable Uses, Petition, to have a Decree against them reversed.
Upon reading the Petition of the Trustees for the disbursing of such Monies as were contributed for the Increase and Maintenance of Six Lectures in the Parish Church of St. Antholin's, London, and other pious and charitable Uses; complaining against a Decree made against them in the Exchequer Chamber:
It is Ordered, That the King's Counsel shall attend this House on Tuesday next, and give an Account thereof; and that the Decree shall be brought into this House, and then further Direction shall be given.
Message from the H. C. with an Order.
A Message was brought from the House of Commons, by Sir John Temple, &c.; who brought up an Order, That the Money that is to come in upon the Ordinance of 1 Decembris, 1647, may be re-paid to the Sub-treasurer of Wars for Ireland. (Here enter it.)
Symonds and Wells, in Error.
Upon hearing the Counsel of Wells Defendant, in a Writ of Error against Symonds, neither the Plaintiff nor his Counsel appearing, though he was served with the Order of this House for hearing this Day, as appeared by Oath at this Bar: It is Ordered, That the Judgement shall be affirmed, without further Order or Motion, if Cause be not shewed to the contrary to this House by Monday next.
Evelyn and Sir J. Brook.
Message to the H. C. with Gen Sterling's Petition;— and with Brent's and the Taynton Ordinance.
Petition from the Provincial Assembly of London:
And being withdrawn, were called in again, and thanked for their Care therein expressed; and that the Lords will take the said Petition into speedy Consideration: And therefore they have appointed a Committee more particularly to consider of the Particulars, who are to report the same; that such further Directions may be given therein as (fn. 1) shall be meet.
Committee to consider of it.
Harriot and Fitzhugh.
Order for Monies, come in for Ireland, to be issued.
"Ordered, by the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, That the Monies that are come in, or shall come in, upon the late Ordinance, ordered to be printed, 1 Decembris, 1647, for Adventurers for Ireland, be paid to the Vice Treasurer of Ireland, to be issued out by Order of both Houses."
Trustees for Impropriations for Charitable Uses, Petition to have a Decree in the Exchequer against them reversed.
"The humble Petition of Dr. William Gouge, Samuell Browne Esquire, Charles Ofspring, John Geering, and Richard Davies, surviving Trustees for the disbursing of such Monies as had been or should be contributed, for the Increase and Maintenance of the Six Lectures in the Parish Church of St. Antholin's, London, and other pious and charitable Uses;
"That divers well-affected Persons having given and contributed several Sums of Money to the Ten Trustees, Richard Sibbs, William Gouge, Doctors in Divinity, Sir Thomas Crew Knight Serjeant at Law, Christopher Sherland Esquire, Alderman Healinge, and your Petitioners, and others since deceased, to the End that Lands, Tenements, Rectories, Advowsons, Portions of Tithes, might be purchased by the said Trustees, to be employed for the Increase of the Maintenance of Preaching Ministers, and other pious, good, and charitable Uses directed by the Donors, and, for Want of their Direction, for such good Uses as the greater Part of the Feoffees and Donors should think meet; and in particular, the Rents, Issues, and Profits, of the Rectory of Presteyne, in the County of Hereford, were to be employed for the Increase of Maintenance of the Six Morning Lectures in the said Parish of St. Antholine's, to make up in certain for the Maintenance of each Lecturer Thirty Pounds per Annum, and Ten Pounds per Annum to the Parson of the said Parish.
"That the Trustees, according to the Trust reposed in them, did purchase, with the Monies to them given, divers Rectories, Advowsons, and other Hereditaments, and settle them upon able painful Preachers, in divers Places of this Kingdom, where little Preaching had been formerly; and did dispose of the Premises conferred and given, as was intended by those who did confer or give the same, until Easter Term, in the Eighth Year of His now Majesty's Reign; when William Noy, His Majesty's then Attorney General, did, by the Procurement of the Archbishop of Canterbury, exhibit an Information in the Exchequerchamber, against your Petitioners and others the Trustees aforesaid, thereby pretending that the said Trustees had of their own Authority made themselves a Society, or Body Corporate, and did the Acts of a Body Politic; and, under Colour thereof, had gotten into their Hands divers Sums of Money, given for necessary Relief and Sustenance of Men of the Clergy, and other pious Uses, and with Part of it had purchased several Rectories, a Prebend, divers Lands, Tenements, and Hereditaments, which they had misemployed, and converted to their own Uses; and that it pertained to His Majesty's Care, that Lands and Goods given for pious or charitable Uses should be rightly employed and distributed.
"That your Petitioners and other the then Trustees put in their Answer, and set forth the Trust; denied the Mis-employment; and, for their Proceedings, referred themselves to certain Books kept for that Purpose.
"That, in Hillary Term, in the said Eighth Year of His now Majesty's Reign, the Cause was heard in the Exchequer-chamber, upon the Information, the Defendants Answer, and the said Books which the Petitioners were ordered to bring in: And, upon Pretence that the said Trustees Proceedings were to draw a Dependency of the whole Clergy of this Realm upon them, introducing Novelties of dangerous Consequence both to the Church and Commonwealth, and were a Usurpation upon His Majesty's Regality; and that the said Trustees had not performed the Trust, albeit the Court did forbear to punish them; it was Decreed, That the Trustees from thenceforth should hold no further Assemblies, nor make any Orders or Constitutions touching the Premises, nor make any Alteration or Limitation of any Estate or Interest in any of the Premises whereof they were seised or interested; and directed a Commission to be awarded, for enquiring what Revenues were purchased by the Trustees, and of all Leases and Sums of Money that were given for the Purchasing of Impropriations; and declared, upon the Return of such Certificate, the same should be conferred upon perpetual Incumbents, as His Majesty in His Wisdom should think fit: And as touching the Advowsons and Nomination of School-masters purchased by the said Trustees, it was ordered, They should be presented unto and disposed of by His Majesty; and that the Trustees should account for their Receipts and Disbursements, before such Auditors of that Court as the Court should appoint. And afterwards some of the said Trustees were, in Pursuance of the said Decree, enforced to make some Conveyance of the said Rectories and Premises to the King's Majesty.
"Forasmuch as the said Decree (as the Petitioners humbly conceive), as to the said Mis-employment by the Trustees, was made contrary to their Oaths, upon their Answers, without any Proof to ground the same; and thereby the Trust reposed in the said Trustees changed; the Disposition of the said Advowsons and Nominations to Churches and Schools ordered to the King's Majesty, and the said Trustees enforced to convey the said Rectories and Premises contrary to the Intent of the Donors; a godly and pious Work, for the setting up of the Preaching of God's Word, subverted, to the great Dishonour of God, and Scandal of the Justice of this Nation, and contrary to the Rules of Law and Equity.
"The Petitioners humbly pray your Lordships, That the King's Counsel may be called before your Lordships, and that the said Decree, for divers (fn. 2) Years therein contained, may be reversed; the said Trustees restored to the Premises and all the Profits of the same, and may be permitted, notwithstanding the said Decree and Conveyance, to perform the Trust in them reposed, in so good and pious a Work.
Petition from the Provincial Assembly of London, to increase the Number of Delegates;—to expedite the settling those Classis not yet formed;—to provide Encouragement for a godly Ministry;—to prevent Clandestine Marriages, &c.— and for improper Persons to be excluded from the Sacrament.
"That they do with all unfeigned Thankfulness acknowledge the indefatigable Labour and Pains of the Honourable Houses, as in the Civil Affairs of the Kingdom, so also in Matters Ecclesiastical; and that not only a putting down the High Commission Court, the Common Prayer Book, and Prelacy, but also in establishing the Directory for Worship, and settling in some Measure the Presbyterial Government, and in removing some Impediments which were observed to hinder the putting of it in Execution, in providing a Way of Ordination, and declaring against those that preach unordained, and in constituting a Provincial Assembly in this City. And though they are not ignorant of the great Distractions which have befallen you and the Kingdom, and how far the Peace thereof is yet unsettled, so as it is the less to be admired that we have not yet attained that desired Uniformity which is mentioned in your and our Covenant; yet they humbly crave Leave to represent the State and Condition of their Province, in a few Particulars:
"1. That (the Quorum of the Province for so great a City being already little enough, that is to say, Twelve Ministers and Four and Twenty Ruling Elders) the Number of Delegates is so small, there being yet but Eight Classis formed of the Twelve, besides the Casualties of Sickness, Journies, and Employments otherwise, that it is hard to have the full Meeting of Thirty-six at any Time; and the Number of Ministers is greater in some Classis than in the Provincial Meeting, which seems to be besides the Intention of the Houses, declared in their Directions of August 19, 1645.
"2. The Reasons why the other Four Classis, that is, the Second, the Ninth, Eleventh, and Twelfth, are not formed, and send no Delegates (as we humbly conceive), are, either Want of settled Ministers to join with the People in chusing Elders, or Want of Triers to approve those who are chosen, or because some Elders and Triers are removed. And this in the Particulars your Petitioners are ready to declare, if to the Wisdom of the Houses it shall seem meet.
"3. The Number of settled Ministers in the Province is very small; and there wants in the Whole, as we are informed, about a Third Part; some of those who have been settled are upon Removal, or ready for it upon Occasion; those who abide by their Charge are discouraged: All which ariseth partly because disaffected Ministers are entertained in some Congregations, and suffered to intrude without an orderly Approbation in such Manner as the Parliament hath ordained; but especially by reason that the People do withhold not only the voluntary Contribution which they have some Time given, but also that necessary Maintenance which is settled upon them by Law and Custom.
"4. There are some Ministers who baptize Children in Private Houses; the same or others marry without publishing the Purpose of Marriage between the Parties, and Consent of Parents, or those who are in their Stead; which tends to the Ruin of the Parties themselves, the Grief of their Friends, Scandal of the Godly, and may prove mischievous, not only to Noble Families, but to the Commonwealth in general; as in other respects, so in this, that Fornications, Adulteries, forced Marriages, are sometimes smothered up, and the ill Effects of them made remediless; and others who admit all Sorts to the Sacrament, without taking in the Elders to join with them in the Examination of such as for their Ignorance or Scandal ought to be suspended, according to the Ordinance of Parliament; all which is contrary and prejudicial to the good Order and Government prescribed and enjoined by the Houses.
"5. There are likewise other Obstructions which hinder the Progress of the Government in this Province; as, that many conceive it only to be settled for Three Years, and in most Parts of the Kingdom not settled at all, and so not probable long to continue; that Church Censures are not established; that divers Churchwardens, in sundry Places, set themselves to oppose both the Government and the Power of Godliness.
"2. To quicken the settling of those Classis which are not formed, by enjoining People to provide themselves Ministers within a Time prefixed; and, in case of their Neglect, to require the Classis or Province wherein they are to supply them, as in the Case of Suspension of a Minister for Scandal is already in Part provided for, in the Ordinance of the Fourteenth of March, 1645; and by appointing Triers where they want, or enabling the Classis where it is formed, and Province while it sits, to supply their Defect, where there are neither Triers nor Classis.
"3. To provide some seasonable and effectual Encouragement for a godly, learned, and well-affected Ministry, that the Defects of the Law, which are pretended in the Case of the City Ministers, for their Maintenance, may be supplied.
"4. That those which practise contrary to the Directions and Ordinances of Parliament may be brought to reform themselves; lest, by their evil Example, others be emboldened to the like Neglect of Order, and to Disobedience.
"Particularly, That some more effectual Means may be provided to prevent Clandestine Marriages, and for the Punishment of Fornication and Adultery, and such other Uncleanness as ought not to be named among Christians.
"5. That the Business of Churchwardens may be taken into serious Consideration; that there may be a Choice of Deacons; that the Church Censures be so established, that notorious and scandalous Offenders, continuing obstinate, may be excluded from Church Communion; and that the Government may be settled throughout the Kingdom, according to the Word of God, and the Example of the best Reformed Churches.