Acts
1762

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Institute of Historical Research

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Church Law Society (editors)

Year published

1843

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Pages

746-752

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'Acts: 1762', Acts of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland 1638-1842 (1843), pp. 746-752. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=60164 Date accessed: 01 August 2014.


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The principal acts of the general assembly, convened at Edinburgh, May 20, 1762
I. Sess. 1, May 20, 1762.—The King's Commission to Charles Lord Cathcart produced, and ordered to be recorded. II. Sess. 1, May 20, 1762.—The King's most gracious Letter to the General Assembly, presented to them by his Majesty's Commissioner. III. Sess. 3, May 22, 1762.—The General Assembly's Answer to the King's most gracious Letter. IV. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—Act appointing the Act of Parliament against Murdering of Children to be read from the Pulpits. V. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—The General Assembly's congratulatory Address to the King, on the happy event of his Marriage. VI. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—The General Assembly's congratulatory Address to the Queen, on the happy event of her Marriage. VII. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—The General Assembly's congratulatory Address to the Princess of Wales, on the happy event of the King's Marriage. VIII. Sess. 8, May 28, 1762.—Act against the Dilapidation of Stipends, and for ascertaining the extent of Glebes. IX. Sess. ult., May 31, 1762.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for discussing Affairs referred to them. X. Sess. ult., May 31, 1762.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for Reformation of the Highlands and Islands, and for Managing his Majesty's Royal Bounty for that end. XI. Sess. ult., May 31, 1762.—Act appointing the Diet of the next General Assembly. May 31, 1762.—Overture for Repealing that part of the Form of Process anent Exculpations. May 31, 1762.—Overture anent Members of Inferior Courts Judging in Causes appealed from them. May 31, 1762.—Overture anent sending up Opinions on Overtures transmitted by the Assembly. Footnotes

The principal acts of the general assembly, convened at Edinburgh, May 20, 1762

I. Sess. 1, May 20, 1762.—The King's Commission to Charles Lord Cathcart produced, and ordered to be recorded.

The General Assembly, &c.

II. Sess. 1, May 20, 1762.—The King's most gracious Letter to the General Assembly, presented to them by his Majesty's Commissioner.

George, R.
Right Reverend and well-beloved, we greet you well. Experience has strengthened and confirmed in us those favourable dispositions towards the Church of Scotland, of which we gave assurances to the last General Assembly. We are happy, therefore, in this opportunity of repeating our fixed resolution to support it, as by law established, in all its rights and privileges.

We confide in you who are the present representatives of that, Church, that, by the prudence of your conduct, you will afford us reason to increase our affection towards it: and that, avoiding all unnecessary debates and contentions, you will apply yourselves with temper and moderation to promote the good ends for which you are assembled, the advancement of religion, and the service of Almighty God; and you may be assured that your laudable endeavours in these respects shall not want our steady concurrence and support.

We doubt not but you will agree with us that we ought, in the present moment, to pay a more than ordinary attention to our respective religious duties. The blessings with which Providence has of late, in so wonderful a manner, distinguished these our kingdoms, require of us and our subjects, that, by a conduct suitable to the occasion, we should show a due sense of gratitude for them. We trust, therefore, that you will infuse into the minds of our people committed to your charge, such a zeal for the interests of religion, and such a spirit of piety and devotion, as can alone make us worthy of those favours which the Almighty has been pleased to bestow upon us, and may contribute to the continuance of them.

We have appointed our right trusty and well-beloved Charles Lord Cathcart to represent our royal person in this Assembly, being well satisfied with his loyalty, integrity, and zeal for our service; and we have reason to believe that our choice of him will be most agreeable to you, as you have already had so frequent experience of his abilities for the discharge of the important trust we now confer on him, and such repeated proofs of his particular affection for the Church of Scotland, and his concern for its prosperity.

There is nothing more remaining but to express our hopes, that, by proceeding in the business before you with that charity, brotherly love, and unanimity, which we have recommended to you, you may bring this meeting to as happy a conclusion as that of any former Assembly. And so we bid you heartily farewell.

Given at our Court at St James's, the 19th day of April 1762, in the 2d year of our reign.

By his Majesty's Command,
Bute.

III. Sess. 3, May 22, 1762.—The General Assembly's Answer to the King's most gracious Letter.

May it please your Majesty,
We received your Majesty's most gracious letter with the respect and gratitude that was due for so condescending a mark of your royal favour.

We esteem it as our greatest honour, that your Majesty's experience has confirmed your favourable dispositions towards us, and led you to repeat your fixed resolution to support the Church of Scotland, as by law established, in all its rights and privileges.

The confidence your Majesty is pleased to express in the prudence of our conduct, and the hopes of obtaining an increase of your paternal affection, are additional and most engaging motives to make us avoid all unnecessary debates and contentions, and apply ourselves with temper and moderation, to promote the advancement of religion, and the service of Almighty God; and we thankfully acknowledge it as one of our greatest blessings, and as the happiest presage of success, that our endeavours in these respects are sure of your Majesty's ready concurrence and support.

We listen, with the most profound reverence, to the call your Majesty is pleased to give us, to pay a particular attention to our religious duties in the present moment; and we count it our honour and happiness to be ready to follow our King in sentiments so becoming the father of his people.

The hand of God, so piously traced by your Majesty in the wonderful success of these your kingdoms in war, will, in due time, we trust, distinguish your reign by a blessing more agreeable to the wishes of your royal heart, the enabling your Majesty to give a lasting peace to all your faithful subjects.

Warmed by your Majesty's most religious sentiments, we feel in our minds the deepest gratitude to Almighty God, for giving us a prince whose virtue must interest the care of Providence in behalf of his kingdoms; and, encouraged by your great example, we will not fail to infuse into the minds of your people committed to our charge such a zeal for the interests of religion, and such a spirit of piety and devotion, as may promote the great ends your Majesty has in view, the rendering your people worthy of those favours the Almighty has already bestowed, and may contribute to the continuance of them.

We beg leave to express our humble thanks to your Majesty for your attention to the Propagation of Christian Knowledge, and the principles of the reformed reli gion in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, parts of your Majesty's dominions in which the interests of religion and of government coincide in a particular manner. It is our duty and inclination at all times to apply your Majesty's royal donations with the most prudent care; but we think ourselves called upon at present to double our attention to an object that has so much engaged your Majesty's zeal, and for which you have expressed so particular a concern.

Lord Cathcart's loyalty, integrity, and zeal for your Majesty's service, is so well known to us, and we have had such frequent experience of his abilities to discharge the important trust which your Majesty has reposed in him, and are so fully convinced of his particular affection to the Church of Scotland, that we look on your Majesty's choice of him to represent your royal person in this Assembly as a most obliging mark of your favour; for which we beg leave to make our most thankful acknowledgments to your Majesty.

Permit us to assure your Majesty that, next to the favour of that God whom we serve, your royal approbation, from affection no less than duty, is our constant aim; and that we will proceed in the business before us with that charity, brotherly love, and unanimity, which your Majesty so strongly recommends, and which you have had the rare felicity, by your most just and merciful government, to establish in a high degree among all your subjects.

That the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ may long preserve your Majesty, to reign in the hearts of an affectionate people, and to be the watchful guardian of religion and liberty; that he may continue to bless your arms with success; and that your magnanimity and moderation, in the midst of so much glory, may be crowned with the power of giving lasting peace to Europe; that he may bless and long preserve your Royal Consort the Queen, and make her the happy mother of a race of kings to sway the sceptre of these realms; that he may bless the Princess Dowager of Wales, and all the royal family; and that, after having reigned over a free and happy people, he may bestow upon you the crown of glory that fadeth not away, are, and shall be, the constant prayers of,
May it please your Majesty, your Majesty's most faithful, most obedient, and most loyal subjects, the Ministers and Elders met in this National Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
R. Traill, Moderator.

IV. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—Act appointing the Act of Parliament against Murdering of Children to be read from the Pulpits.

The General Assembly appoints that the Act of Parliament against Murdering of Children be read from the pulpits of each parish in this Church, at least twice every year, and that the Presbyteries, at their privy censures, make inquiry if the same be done; and the Assembly appoints the several ministers of this Church to cause engross the said Act into their session records, to the end the same may always be at hand and not lost,

V. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—The General Assembly's congratulatory Address to the King, on the happy event of his Marriage.

May it please your Majesty,
We, your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the ministers and elders met in the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, embrace with joy this first oppor tunity of congratulating your Majesty on your happy nuptials with a Princess of illustrious descent, and most eminent virtues.

As our duty and affection to the best of Kings do not permit us to behold unmoved the completion of your Majesty's domestic felicity, so our sense of your mild and equitable reign, and of the great blessings we enjoy under your auspicious government, make us, on this happy event, look forward to posterity, and rejoice in the goodness of Providence, who gives us the prospect of a race of kings descended from your Majesty, to inherit the virtues of your royal line, and perpetuate the happiness of these your kingdoms.

We beg leave, at the same time, to congratulate your Majesty on the amazing success with which it has pleased Almighty God to bless your reign. When we consider the rapid and uninterrupted conquests of your Majesty's arms, your undisputed empire of the sea, your constitutional establishments for internal defence, your mild administration of government, your felicity in abolishing ancient factions and animosities, and in gaining the hearts of your people; when we behold your Majesty's magnanimity and moderation, amidst such a tide of prosperity; when, in such a situation, we perceive religious veneration for Divine Providence, and tender concern for the welfare of your people, to be the reigning passions of your heart, we bless the God of our fathers, not less for giving us a King who adorns the most exalted state of human greatness, than for the present distinguished glory of our country; and we fervently pray that he may render us a people worthy of such conspicuous marks of his favour.

We should be wanting in our duty on this occasion, if we did not assure your Majesty, that our fellow-subjects are not insensible of the blessings of which they partake, under your benign and prosperous government. The members of this Established Church, always remarkable for their zeal for religion and liberty, are not less distinguished for their loyalty to your Majesty and their love of the consittution: and if, in the course of this war, prolonged by a new combination of your enemies, your Majesty should think it proper to call them out in defence of your sacred person, their religion and liberties, we are persuaded they would be found inferior to none of their fellow-subjects, in the exertion of that spirit which becomes a free people, and members of the British community.

That Almighty God may establish your throne in righteousness, and in the hearts of your subjects; that, after having brought your kingdoms to the summit of glory in war, he may honour your Majesty to confer on them the blessings of a lasting peace, that you may daily behold the increasing felicity of your people; that the King and Queen may be long preserved to each other, and to an affectionate and grateful nation; and that, when they shall be exalted to an heavenly kingdom, their posterity may reign over ours to the latest ages, are the earnest prayers of,
May it please your Majesty, your Majesty's most faithful, most obedient, and most loyal subjects, the Ministers and Elders met in this National Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
R. Traill, Moderator.

VI. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—The General Assembly's congratulatory Address to the Queen, on the happy event of her Marriage.

May it please your Majesty,
We, his Majesty's most dutiful subjects, the ministers and elders met in the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, beg leave to take this first opportunity of congratulating your Majesty on your arrival in these kingdoms, and your auspicious marriage with a monarch who, by his eminent virtues and happy government, has acquired the full affection and confidence of all his subjects.

Our gracious Sovereign's choice alone would have endeared your Majesty to us, even though we had not been informed of your amiable and distinguished qualities; but experience having confirmed early report, and given us the strongest proofs of your wisdom and virtue, and of your firm attachment to the Protestant religion, we, with grateful hearts, bless Almighty God, who has brought so accomplished a Princess to share the throne of our beloved Sovereign. We humbly offer to your Majesty our most respectful duty and cordial affection, and earnestly beg that our most gracious Queen would honour the Church of Scotland with her countenance and favour.

That God Almighty may ever have your Majesty under his gracious tuition; that the may long preserve you to the King and to the people, to soothe the cares of government, and bless us with a hopeful progeny; and that, very late, you may exchange this earthly crown for the crown of righteousness that endureth for ever, are the prayers of,
May it please your Majesty, your Majesty's most faithful, most obedient, and most devoted servants, the Ministers and Elders met in this National Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
R. Traill, Moderator.

VII. Sess. 6, May 26, 1762.—The General Assembly's congratulatory Address to the Princess of Wales, on the happy event of the King's Marriage.

May it please your Royal Highness,
We, his Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the ministers and elders met in the National Assembly of the Church of Scotland, take this first opportunity of addressing your Royal Highness on an event that must have given you the highest pleasure, the happy marriage of our beloved Sovereign, your son, with a Princess of illustrious birth, and most amiable endowments.

Not insensible of what we owe to the mother of our King, nor of what she must feel on such an occasion, we beg leave to assure your Royal Highness of our unfeigned joy for an union that cannot fail to give you entire satisfaction, and continually implore the Almighty to pour down such blessings on the royal pair, as may fulfil all the wishes of your maternal heart.

That the King and Queen may live long for their mutual happiness, and to bless their people; that your Royal Highness may see yourself repaid for your tender care of your illustrious son, by their no less tender care of their royal offspring; and that, sprung of you, and inheriting you virtues, a race of kings, who shall fear God and love the people, may never be wanting to these kingdoms, are the earnest prayers of,
May it please your Royal Highness, your most faithful and devoted servants, the Ministers and Elders met in this National Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
R. Traill, Moderator.

VIII. Sess. 8, May 28, 1762.—Act against the Dilapidation of Stipends, and for ascertaining the extent of Glebes.

Upon report of the Committee for Overtures, the General Assembly enjoin the several Presbyteries of this Church to take an exact account on the place of the extent of the stipend, glebe, grass, and other emoluments, belonging to every minister within their bounds, and record the same with accuracy in the Presbytery books, so that every succeeding incumbent may see at once what he is entitled to, and Presbyteries may be better able to give check to any dilapidations which may be attempted; and the Assembly appoint that the respective incumbents shall, in case any persons liable in payment of stipends refuse or withhold any part thereof, report the same to the next Presbytery after such refusal, who are to give such directions for recovery of the same as the nature of the case may require; and that where a minister is possessed of more glebes than one, and has been in use of setting the glebe or glebes most remote from his manse, that such glebe or glebes shall, in all time coming, after the boundary and limits thereof are ascertained, as above directed, be let only by tack, in which the extent and marches thereof shall be particularly set forth, and the same lodged with the Presbytery clerk.

IX. Sess. ult., May 31, 1762.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for discussing Affairs referred to them.

The General Assembly, &c.

X. Sess. ult., May 31, 1762.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for Reformation of the Highlands and Islands, and for Managing his Majesty's Royal Bounty for that end.

The General Assembly do hereby nominate and appoint the Rev. Dr Robert Traill, Professor of Divinity in the College of Glasgow, their Moderator, &c.; to be a committee of this Assembly for reformation of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, &c. (The powers and instructions of the Commission are the same as in the immediately preceding years; and no change takes place for a considerable time.)

XI. Sess. ult., May 31, 1762.—Act appointing the Diet of the next General Assembly.

The next General Assembly of this National Church is appointed to be held in this place, upon the fourth Thursday of May next, being the 26th day of that month, in the year 1763.

Collected and extracted from the Records of the General Assembly, by
George Wishart, Cls. Eccl. Scot.

May 31, 1762.—Overture for Repealing that part of the Form of Process anent Exculpations. (fn. *)

The Committee for Overtures transmitted an overture for repealing that part of the Form of Process anent exculpation; which overture being read, the General Assembly agreed to transmit the same to the several Presbyteries of this Church, and appoint that they send up their opinions thereon to the next General Assembly, of which overture the tenor follows, viz:—"The General Assembly,considering that by Form of Process, chap. ii. sect. 13, the judicatories of this Church are enjoined to consider and sustain the relevancy of the exculpation offered by the defender, before they give warrant to cite witnesses for the proof thereof; and considering, likewise, that a practice more equitable obtained in the Supreme Civil and Criminal Courts of this part of the United Kingdom, viz., that the defender is always allowed to prove all facts and circumstances which he may apprehend to have any tendency, either to his entire exculpation, or to the alleviation of the crime charged in the libel against him, and that before the Court proceed to consider the relevancy of the grounds of exculpation offered by the defender; therefore, the General Assembly did, and hereby do, repeal the article in the Form of Process above referred to, and enact and appoint all judicatories in this Church to grant warrant to cite such witnesses as the defender, or his procurator, shall name, for proving all facts and circumstances which the said defender or his procurator may judge to be of use for exculpating the defender from the crime or crimes libelled, or for alleviating the same, without giving any previous judgment on the relevancy of the grounds or articles of exculpation; and, further, they appoint the said judicatories, before pronouncing final sentence, to weigh deliberately, not only the relevancy and proof of the libel, but likewise the relevancy of the said exculpation, and the proof thereof".

May 31, 1762.—Overture anent Members of Inferior Courts Judging in Causes appealed from them.

(The Overture of 1754 again transmitted.)

May 31, 1762.—Overture anent sending up Opinions on Overtures transmitted by the Assembly.

(Re-transmitted.)

Footnotes

* This overture was transmitted for several years, but does not appear to have been passed.—Ed. 1843.


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