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would it not rather disorganize both by creating perpetual disputes, variance and discontent amongst captains and their subalterns. It is not unfair now and then to put the argument ad hominem; and to try people by the rule they would forge for others. Supposing, at any future time, the state should think proper to resume church livings and to provide for the clergy in another way, than what they do at present; (and this I apprehend has created alarm more than once lately; but, I deprecate the hour when such a measure shall be resorted to, as it would be pregnant with ruin to religion and learning :) and they should place the clergy on voluntary contributions for a maintenance, as it was formerly; when out of the fourfold division made of these contributions the clergy shared one, (which was equally divided amongst them,) another was given to the bishops, the other two being appropriated to the relief of the poor and the reparation ot churches: or which is still more in point, supposing a sweeping act should pass the houses of parliament to deprive the beneficed clergy of the freehold tenure of their livings, and leave the composition and collection of tithes to the breast of bishops, and not allow the beneficed clergy to intermeddle about the tithes, and only to receive such portions as their merits should entitle them to: would rectors and vicars be content with what depended on the will of their immediate superiors, with no other tie on them for a provision, than what a sense of duties of imperfect obligation would secure? I think not; Sir, we are made of the same flesh and blood with yourself, allow us what you would wish in the fame situation and let our condition be spiced only with a little of that independence yours is, and we {hall not complain* If we were reduced to the deplorable situation the Rector pleads for, it would tend, I conceive, to the extinction of our order: who would fend his son to the university, with no other prospect for him than a curacy? would any man. with the feelings of a gentleman lay out in his education ^8oa in order to make him the bare ihpendiary of a rector; to be subject to wait his nod, or stand be* hind his'chair? we feel often, under the present act, every oppression, and accumulated would be the ill we should have to labour under,, if the Curates' Act should be repealed. Even now-the whose force of injurious competition is allowed to find its way into every bargain made between the rector and curate: it is not one time in a hundred that the bishop settles the salary: no rector will grant a title to those

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who would leave it to the diocesan to determine the amount of the stipend. Wben a rector wants an assistant, from whatever cause, he opens his bargain warily, chaffers, rings all the changes of chapmanfhip to beat down the salary, and pro

fiortionably extols the profits of pig, goose, and honey, and urplice fee?, to make amends for deficiency on the other Soint: and frequently when he has a man of principle to eal with, he leaves the business in its half matured state, and recurs to some venal hireling, who serves two or three churches besides at £20 or ^30 per annum each; of whom nothing more remarkahle perhaps is known, than the speed of his horse, excepting it be the rapidity with which he gallops Over the service of the day, and his discourse, which mav be; deemed truly admirable indeed!!! In point of emolument our order is much beneath any class of preachers whatever: none among the baptists, independents,or arminian methodisls have less, in one way and another, than/~ioo for their salaries, and when incapable through age or infirmities of discharging the ministerial functions, they have a superannuated annuity granted them, and their wives and children provided for after their decease. When we look at the Curates' Act, and examine the extent that our stipends, may be raised to, we find it £75, an extent alarming truly, unconstitutional and arbitrary beyond any thing endurable! But, Sir, there are only a happy few who enjoy it to this enviable extent; the golden Jhower falls on onlyjfl^ chosen few. One solitary instance is the only one I know of, where it has been granted, and that on a living worth £"]00 per annum. If a curate, in the ordinary way gets £50 a year and the surplice fees, he is in a state ot affluence, and an object of human felicity not verycommon among us: when old and incapable of doing duty he is reduced to the most forlorn situation; destitute of all support from any superannuated fund, he sees the partner of his cares pining in distress, and his children not crowding his table like green and nourishing olive branches, but wan, and famishing with hunger, with not a soul to take care of them. This is no ideal picture, dressed up to win the sympathy of the pitying few, but exists in more cafes than one to my certain knowledge: and isa reality for the British senate to consider and extend their protection to when in their wisdom and goodness they shall reconsider our case. Little 01 nothing as yet has been done for us; nothing at least has been done, but what underhand and injurious contracts, with an overbearing bearing and scandalous competition, will render of none effect.

The Rector has made some observations on private patron, age, and livings held by patrons, as if these were the sole pause of all the irregularities that invade the church. All the livings in this kingdom are in the hands of lay, ecclesiastical, crown and lay corporation patronage, and though the first is as extensive as all the others put together; yet I can never consider it as the sole cause of the abuse the Rector complains of. Are all the other sources of patronage more pure than this? Are ecclesiastics more careful of selecting persons who take pleasure in clerical duties? Has not the fame regard to private motives and ministerial influence as evident weight in their choice, as in the cafe of bishops? Have not rotten boroughs made as many rectors and vicars, as is insinuated they have bishops? Is it not a notorious fact, that the greatest pluralists in this kingdom, are those, whose interest emanated from the sink of borough corruption and election influence, whose lives have been tinctured at the source whence they procured their preferment? I could name, if I chose it, the sons of prelates, who have most abused their preferment and most degraded their profession ;. which has been secured to them when children, when possibly in the womb, from the way in which chapters and bishops sometimes play the cards into each other's hands by exchanging turns and giving up or conferring a present interest, in order to secure the like favour at some distant period to serve domestic views. Borough managers as well as their friends, who have been preferred through their interest, often with a couple of livings and a canonry, live aloof from their charge, pursue their old occupation, lor that is indispenfible; their preferment not only being the remuneration of past services but of future too. So that it is clear all the abuses crept into the church do not rest solely with private patronage. Wouldto God, Sir, matters were different amongst us! Would ta God, there was no other road to preferment but talents, integrity, and piety, united; we should then have no reason to complain! As the matter stands at present, there is no order pf merit in the church; literature and genius will now and then command attention: piety will sometimes find a patron among laymen, never elsewhere. Destroy private patronage, and the curate has no friend on earth: it is only through this interest, that we find men who imitate primitive purity and simplicity, being bright examples of the doctrine they preach,

sometimes sometimes holding preferment. This the Rector doubtless knows, which makes him appear to be as hostile to private patronage, as he is to the whole order of curates. The Rector hopes that no one will suspect him of a desire to oppress a person of liberal education and good principles: I should be sorry to suspect any one unjustly; but professions must ever be held cheap, when arguments operate at direct variance with them. And I may fay to the Rector, you have been liberal, it is possible, to your curates; and they may be. able to fay all that is good of you; but Sir, yours is an isolated Case, a particular instance; and so far as your conduct goes, you may have been a good sample of rectorial liberality towards curates; though your remarks on the Curates' Act seem to prove the contrary: all knowledge we have of human nature, however, forbids us to apply particular instances, to general rules, especially in a matter of such importance •where it is to deprive the general claim of curates to adequate provision from the state, on a solitary instance of rectorial be« evolence. The law, thank God, recognizes in us servants of the state, and as such considers us entitled to a maintenance^ though not as yet to an adequate one. If at any future time, our legislators should think us unnecessary appendages of the priesthood, let them dismiss us and allow us to resort to some secular employment for a maintenance; but I intreat them not to deliver us up to oppression, or to the uncertain benevolence of the beneficed clergy, with no other title to a provision, than what beggars and menials enjoy.

You have, Sir, mentioned your own cafe, as an instance of benevolent worth to your curates. I give you credit for all

J'ou have said on that head, it is highly honourable to your eelings; I only ask the same credit in, what I am about to say concerning myself. I have been now serving the culacy on which I was ordained deacon and priest 14 years: I have ever directed my attention tathe eternal-welfare of my flock; I am constantly in the habit of visiting the sick, insomuch, that I have one or two under my care constantly K sometimes four or five at a time: I have paid visits to all ray 'parishioners at their houses at various times, to exhort them to come to church and to practise the duties they owe to God and man, though the inhabitants of my parish are in number 4000, and the parish 8 miles in length: I have exerted all the poor talents it has pleased God to bellow upon me, in exhorting them "to flee from the wrath to come," and have advanced their temporal good, as far as my scanty purse will

allow i allow: I have spent much, and am, by God's grace, ready to spend more, and to be myself spent for the kingdom of heaven, whenever his gracious will shall require. I have a good attendance at my church, where before I came, there were empty walls. And I am as firm to the Church of England in discipline and doctrine as the earth on which J stand: and in this I am not a solitary instance, for many of my own order in this neighbourhood are brighter examples of the clerical character than myself, whom I would humbly endeavour to imita*e. But on this account still, none of us presume to ground our expectation on any source of patronage for preferment: we would not be guilty of such folly* seeing how matters go in the church; we expect not to be treated so well as others, we know it is not usual to notice piety or industry in our order; we expect to go through life in indigence, and when disabled by age and infirmities, to be sent empty away. As to my cafe, so far as it relates to the conduct of my rector, this is strictly true: I received of him for the first eight years £40 as my salary and surplice fees, though a great part of that time by my license I was intitled to more, and this I did because he was involved, with an income accruing from two livings of nearly j£iooo: by which I have given up j£i2o though I could badly afford it. This voluntary renunciation has never been considered by himself or friends, though they are well able to make me ample com-» penfation: and doubtless long since I should have been dismissed, if my diocesan, acting by virtue of the Curates' Act, had not interfered. Before I take my leave of the Rector, I must again repeat, I give him credit for his benevolence to his curates, and the harmony in which they have always lived together, and congratulate him on never having had but one brawler. But still I must observe, with all these ad. vantages and two substantial livings, I think he his little reason to be in the foremost ranks to call the equity ol the Curates' Act in question.

I am very averse, in these times, when union amongst us was never so necessary, to utter any language like disrespect, on any order of the priesthood: but it is no cordial to our hard condition, that with stipends beneath the salaries of merchant's clerks or. the head servants in noblemen's families, we should be reduced to the most humiliating state of servitude! with regard to our beneliced brethren, I suivey in many of them emirjence of talent and virtue; men who are an honour to their profefliun, and are ready, to alleviate


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