The principal acts of the general assembly, convened at Edinburgh, May 18, 1809.
I. Sess. 1, May 18, 1809.—The King's Commission to Francis Lord Napier produced,
and ordered to be recorded.
The General Assembly, &c.
II. Sess. 1, May 18, 1809.—The King's most gracious Letter to the General Assembly,
presented to them by his Majesty's Commissioner.
George, R., &c.
III. Sess. 3, May 20, 1809.—The General Assembly's Answer to the King's most gracious
May it please your Majesty, &c.
IV. Sess. 3, May 20, 1809.—Address to his Majesty on the present Arduous Situation
of Public Affairs.
May it please your Majesty,
We, your Majesty's dutiful and loyal subjects, the ministers and elders of the
Church of Scotland, met in General Assembly, beg leave to approach the throne
with sentiments of the warmest attachment to your person, family, and government.
In the present alarming situation of the affairs of Europe we rejoice in the pledges
of national safety which, under Heaven, we enjoy in your Majesty's paternal solicitude, and in the wisdom and vigour of your councils. From a view of the subversion of
ancient government, and the wreck of nations, we frequently turn our eyes, with
heart-felt joy and exultation, to our unimpaired constitution in Church and State,
the best which human wisdom ever devised, and administered by a Sovereign who
is at once a pattern of religion, the guardian of liberty, and the father of his people.
While we have beheld your Majesty employed in promoting national happiness,
and in extending equal protection to all your subjects, we have lately contemplated,
with the deepest interest and anxiety, your magnanimous and humane interposition
in favour of the injured and oppressed nations of Spain and Portugal. To resist the
shock of that power, before which almost all others have been swept away, as by a
torrent, and to interpose between suffering nations and universal subjugation, was a
measure worthy of a generous people, under the government of a wise and patriotic
King. We observed, therefore, with delight, that your Majesty's liberal offers of assistance to these oppressed States were unanimously approved of, and warmly seconded
by your people, and that admiration and affection mingled with their loyalty to the
best of Sovereigns.
We beg leave to congratulate your Majesty on the various enterprises, both by sea
and land, in which the admirable discipline and steady courage of the British forces
have lately triumphed over superior numbers; achievements which reflect signal
honour on those who were more immediately concerned, and glory on the British
name. Whatever effect they may have on the fate of our allies, they give us ground
to trust that, under the protection of Heaven, we shall be able to resist the fiercest attacks of our enemies, and to transmit unimpaired to posterity those invaluable blessings which, as a nation, we have so long enjoyed.
As subjects of the Prince of Peace, we pray for the termination of that destructive
war in which we are involved; but, in the mentime, we submit, without murmur
or complaint, to those burdens and privations which it necessarily imposes. Sensible
that not only our safety, but our existence as a nation, depends on our firm and perservering exertions against the common enemy; and looking for success to the Ruler
of nations, we will not cease to cherish in our people that unanimity and public
spirit which become those who are contending for their most valuable and dearest
rights. We will teach them to make a wise improvement of those judgments which
are abroad in the earth, and to cultivate that righteousness which exalteth a nation,
that God may avert from our country those clamities which our iniquities have
That the Lord of Hosts may crown the heads of our brave countrymen, by sea
and land, with victory and honour;—that their success may be the means of securing
to us a lasting and an honourable peace;—that your Majesty may long reign over a free,
a loyal, and happy people;—and that you may hereafter receive a heavenly crown,
are the 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 General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.
Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
Francis Nicol, Moderator.
V. Sess. 9, May 27, 1809.—Commission of the General Assembly to certain Ministers and
Ruling Elders for discussing Affairs referred to them.
The General Assembly, &c.
VI. Sess. 9, May 27, 1809.—Interim Act and Overture respecting the Licensing of
VII. Sess. 9, May 27, 1809.—Overture anent the Ordination of Elders.
VIII. Sess. 9, May 27, 1809.—Order and Injunction of the General Assembly to the Presbyteries of the Church, concerning Teachers and Schoolmasters.
The General Assembly called for the Report of the Committee appointed to class
returns respecting the regular Examination of Schools, which was given in and read.
The Assembly enjoin Presbyteries to be more attentive and particular in reporting
their obedience to the Act of Assembly, 1799 and 1800, upon this important subject,
and direct the clerks to see that this injunction be printed along with the Acts of
Assembly. And to secure attention to said injunction, the General Assembly
recommend to Presbyteries to take it along with the above overtures under their
consideration on the day they meet to elect their representatives to the General Assembly, and to send up their opinion anent the said overtures, whatever that opinion
may be, and at the same time to report their obedience to this injunction.
(Follows the injunction of the General Assembly, 1799 and 1800.—See Act 12th,
1799, and 11th, 1800.)
IX. Sess. ult., May 29, 1809.—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 to that end.
The General Assembly, &c.
X. Sess. ult., May 29, 1809.—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
Extracted from the Records of the General Assembly, by
Andrew Duncan, Cls. Eccl. Scot.