[19 August, 1645.]
Ordinance for the Election of Elders.
1. That the Ruling Elders of a Parochial and Congregational
Eldership shall be chosen by the several Ministers and Members
of their Congregation respectively, being of such as have taken
the National Covenant, and are not Persons under Age, nor
Servants that have no families.
2. That Notice of such Election, and of the Day when, shall
be given, by the Minister, in the Public Assembly the next
Lord's-day but One before; and on the said Lord's-day a
Sermon be preached preparatory to that weighty Business.
3. That no Man be chosen for a Ruling Elder, but only for
One Congregation; and that in the Place where his most settled
Dwelling and Employment doth lie.
4. That it shall be lawful for the Congregations respectively,
or any other Person, to exhibit Exceptions against any Person
elected as aforesaid, touching the Right of his Election, or touching Matter of Ignorance or Scandal hereafter mentioned, within
Fourteen Days next after the said Election, to such Persons,
Ministers, and others, as shall be appointed by Authority of
Parliament to receive the said Exceptions; which said Persons
shall have Power to receive, hear, and determine, all Complaints
against any Elder, of Ignorance and Scandal, within the Description of Ignorance and Scandal hereafter mentioned; and shall
have Power to approve the Person so elected, in case no just
Exception as aforesaid shall be proved against him; but if he
shall, upon just Proof, be found ignorant or scandalous as aforesaid, then to remove him; and if any of the said Elders shall be
adjudged to be removed as aforesaid, then another shall be
chosen in his Place as aforesaid.
5. That such shall be chosen for Ruling Elders, as are Men
of good understanding in Matters of Religion, sound in Faith,
prudent, discreet, grave, and of unblameable Conversation, and
willing to undergo the said Office.
6. That all Parishes and Places whatsoever (as well privileged
Places and exempt Jurisdictions as others) be brought under the
Government of Congregational, Classical, Provincial, and
National Assemblies: Provided, That the Chapels or Places in
the Houses of the Peers of this Realm shall continue free for
the Exercise of Divine Duties, to be performed according to the
7. That the Chapel of the Rolls, the Two Serjeants Inns, and
Four Inns of Court, shall be each of them a Congregational
Presbytery within themselves, and make a Classical Presbytery
in the whole.
8. That the Province of London shall be divided into Twelve
Classical Elderships, according to the Distributions hereafter following:
1. The First Classis to contain,
Bennett Paul's Wharffe.
Mary Le Bow.
2. The Second Classis to contain
Anthonie's, vulgò Antholin's.
Bennett Shere Hogg.
James Garlicke Hithe.
Martin in The Vintrie.
Mary Magd., Old Fishstreete.
Mary Mounthannt, vulgò Mounthaw.
Michaell Queene Hithe.
Nicholas Old Abbey.
3. The Third Classis to contain,
Alhallowes the Greater.
Alhallowes the Lesser.
Steven's in Walbrooke.
4. The Fourth Classis to contain,
Bennett Grase Church.
Clement's in Eastcheape.
Dyonis Back Church.
George Buttolph Lane.
Leonard East Cheape.
Margaret New Fishstreete.
Michaell Crooked Lane.
5. The Fifth Classis to contain
Leonard Foster Lane.
Michaell in the Corne, vulgo Querne
Vedast, alias Fosters.
6. The Sixth Classis to contain
Alhallows Hony Lane.
Lawrence in The Jury.
Martin in Iremonger Lane.
Mary Magd. Milke-streete
Michaell in Wood-streete.
Mildred in The Poultrey.
Olave's in the Jewry.
7. The Seventh Classis to contain
Alhallowes by the Wall,
Stephen's Coleman Streete
8. The Eighth Classis to contain,
James Duke's Place.
Katherin Cree Church.
Martin's Oteswich, vulgo Outwich.
Mary Newington, alias Soke Newington.
9. The Ninth Classis to contain,
Dunstan's in the East.
Peter's in The Tower
10. The Tenth Classis is to contain,
Mary Magdalen Bermondsey.
Rotherhithe, vulgo Redriff.
11. The Eleventh Classis to contain,
Giles in The Fields.
Martin's in The Fields.
Paule's Chappell in Covent Garden
12. The Twelfth Classis to contain,
Bartholomew the Greater.
Bartholomew the Lesser.
Dunstan's in the West.
9. That all the several Parishes and Places, within the Cities
of London and Westminster and the Parts adjacent, according as
they are distinguished into Twelve several Classes, shall be the
Extent and Bounds of the Province of London.
Concerning the Members of the Classical and Congregational
Assemblies in the several Counties.
That, in the several Counties, certain Persons, Ministers and
others, shall be appointed by Authority of Parliament, who shall
consider how their several Counties respectively may be most
conveniently divided into distinct Classical Presbyteries, and
what Ministers and others are fit to be of each Classis; and they
shall accordingly make such Division and Nomination of
Persons for each Classical Presbytery, which Divisions, and
Persons so named for every Division, shall be certified up to the
That the Chancellors, Vice-chancellors, and Heads of the
Universities, shall consider how the Colleges may be most
conveniently put into Classical Presbyteries, and do certify the
same up unto the Parliament.
And the said several Classes respectively, being approved by
Parliament, within their several Precincts, shall have Power to
constitute Congregational Elderships, where a competent Number
of Persons so qualified for Elders as aforesaid, shall be found;
and where no Persons shall be found fit to be Elders as aforesaid,
then that Congregation shall be immediately under the Classical
Presbytery, until that Congregation shall be enabled with
Members fit to be Elders as aforesaid.
The Congregational Assembly shall meet Once every Week,
and Oftener if Occasion shall serve.
The Classical Assembly shall meet once every Month.
Concerning Members of the Provincial Assembly.
The Provincial Assembly shall be constituted of Members sent
from every Classis within the Province: The Number of the
Members sent from each Classis shall be so proportioned, as that
the Provincial Assembly may be more in Number than any
Classical Presbytery within that Province; and to that End,
there shall be at least Two Ministers and Four Ruling Elders
out of every Classis; and that, where there shall be Need, the
Number may be increased, as to the Persons appointed for the
bounding of the Provincial Assembly shall seem meet: Provided,
That the Number do not exceed Nine of each, Ministers and
Ruling Members, from any One Classis; and that there be always
Two Ruling Elders to One Minister.
That the Provincial Assembly, being constituted, shall meet
Twice every Year; the first Meeting shall be determined by the
Persons appointed for the bounding of the Provincial and Classical Assemblies.
Concerning the National Assembly.
That the National Assembly shall be constituted of Members
sent from the several Provinces aforesaid: The Number of the
Members from each Province to the National Assembly shall be
Two Ministers and Four Ruling Elders.
The National Assembly is to meet when they shall be summoned by Parliament, and to sit and continue as the Parliament
shall Order, and not otherwise.