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assured that the parliament of they consider episcopal ordination Great Britain, after mature in- as necessary to qualify the servants vestigation, acknowledged the Uni- of the church for their respective tas Fratrum to be a Protestant functions, they allow to their episcopal church; and in 1794 an bishops no elevation of rank or act was certainly passed in their pre-eminent authority; their church છે.
having from its first establishment This sect, like many others, has been governed by synods, consistbeen shamefully misrepresented, ing of deputies from all the conand things laid to their charge of gregations, and by other subordiwhich they never were guilty. It nate bodies, which they call Conmust, howerer, be acknowledged, ferences. The synods, which are that some of their converts having generally held once in seven years previously imbibed extravagant are called together by the elders notions, propagated them with zeal who were in the former synod apamong their new friends in a phra- pointed to superintend the whole seology extremely reprehensible; unity. In the first sitting a presiand that count Zinzendorf himself ident is chosen, and these elders sometimes adopted the very im- lay down their office ; but they do proper language of those fanatics, not withdraw from the assembly; whom he wished to reclaim from for they, together with all bishops, their errors to the soberness of seniores civiles, or lay elders, and truth; but much of the extrava- | those ministers who have the gegance and absurdity which has neral care or inspection of several been attributed to the count is not congregations in one province, have to be charged to him, but to those seats in the synod without any parpersons, who, writing his extem- ticular election. The other mempore sermons in short hand, print-bers are, one or more deputies ed and published them without sent by each congregation, and his knowledge or consent. such ministers or missionaries as
This eminent benefactor to the are particularly called to attend. United Brethren died in 1760, and Women, approved by the congreit is with reason that they honour gations, are also admitted as hearhis memory, as having been the lers, and are called upon to give instrument by which God restor- | their advice in what relates to the ed and built up their church. Butministerial labour aniong their they do not regard him as their sex; but they have no decisive vote head, nor take his writings, nor in the synod. The votes of all the the writings of any other man, as other members are equal. the standard of their doctrines, In questions of importance, or which they profess to derive im- of which the consequences cannot mediately from the Word of God. be foreseen, neither the majority
It has been already observed, lof votes nor the unanimous conthat the church of the United sent of all present can decide ; Brethren is episcopal ; but though but recourse is had to the lot.
For adopting this unusual mode of synod a kind of executive board is deciding in ecclesiastical affairs, chosen, and called The Elders Conthe Brethren allege as reasons ference of the Unity. At present it the practices of the ancient Jews consists of thirteen elders, and is and the apostles ; the insufficien- divided into four committees, or cy of the human understanding departments.--. The Missions amidst the best and purest inten- department, which superintends all tions to decide for itself in what the concerns of the missions into concerns the administration of Heathen countries.—2. The HelpChrist's kingdom ; and their ownersdepartment, which watchesover conlident reliance on the comfort-the purity of doctrine and the moable promises that the Lord Jesus ral conduct of the different congrewill approve himself the head and gations.-3. The Servants departruler of his church. The lot is ment to which the economical connever made use of but after ma cerns of the Unity are committed. ture deliberation and fervent pray- -4. The Overseers department, of er; nor is any thing submitted to which the business is to see that its decision which does not, after the constitution and discipline of being thoroughly weighed, appear the Brethren beevery where mainto the assembly eligible in itself. tained. No resolution, however,
In cvery synod the inward and of any of these departments has outward state of the unity, and the smallest force till it be laid the concerns of the congregations before the assembly of the whole and missions are taken into con- Elders Conference, and have the sideration. If errors in doctrine approbation of that body. The or deviations in practice have powers of the Elders Conference crept in, the synod endeavours are, indeed, very extensive : benot only to remove them, but, by sides the general care which it is salntary regulations, to prevent commissioned by the synods to them for the future. It considers take of all the congregations and how many bishops are to be con- missions, it appoints and removes secrated to fill up the vacancies every servant in the Unity as ciroccasioned by death ; and every cumstances may require ; authorimember of the synod gives his zes the bishops to ordain presbyvote for such of the ciergy as he ters or deacons, and to consecrate thinks best qualified. Those who other bishops; and, in a word, hare the majority of votes are though it cannot abrogate any of taken into thë lot, and they who the constitutions of the synod, or are approved are consecrated ac-enact new ones itself, it is possescordingly; but, by consecration, sed of the supreme executive they are vested with no superiority power over the whole body of the over their Brethren, since it be- United Brethren. hoves him who is the greatest to
Besides this general Conference be the servant of all.
of Elders, which superintends the Towards the conclusion of every affairs of the whole Unity, there
is another conference of elders er to preside over one or more belonging to each congregation, congregations; and a bishop can which directs its affairs, and to discharge no office but by the apwhich the bishops and all other pointment of a synod, or of the ministers, as well as the lay mem- Elders Conference of the Unity. bers of the congregation, are sub- Presbyters among them can perject. This body, which is called form every function of the bishop, the Elders Conference of the Con- except ordination. Deacons are gregation, consists, 1. Of the Mi- assistants to the presbyters much nister, as president, to whom the in the same way as in the church ordinary care of the congregation of England; and in the Brethren's is committed, except when it is churches, deaconnesses are retained very numerous, and then the ge- || for the purpose of privately adneral inspection of it is entrusted monishing their own sex, and vito a separate person, called the siting them in their sickness; but Congregation Helper.-2. Of the though they are solemnly blessed Warden, whose office it is to super- to this office, they are not perintend, with the aid of his coun-mitted to teach in public, and far cil, all outward concerns of the less to administer the sacraments. congregation, and to assist every They have likewise seniores civiles individual with his advice.-3. or lay elders, in contradistinction Of a Married Pair, who care par- to spiritual elders, or bishops, who ticularly for the spiritual welfare are appointed to watch over the of the married people.-4. Of al constitution and discipline of the Single Clergyman, to whose care Unity of the Brethren, over the the young men are more particu- observance of the laws of the counlarly committed.-And, 5. Of try in which congregations or misthose Women who assist in caring sions are established, and over the for the spiritual and temporal wel privileges granted to the Brethren fare of their own sex, and who in by the governments under which this conference have equal votes they live. They have economies, with the men. As the Elders Con-or choir houses, where they live ference of each Congregation is an- together in community: the single, swerable for its proceedings to the men and single women, widows Elders Conference of the Unity, vi- | and widowers, apart, each under sitations from the latter to the the superintendance of elderly performer are held from time to time, sons of their own class. In these that the affairs of each congrega- houses every person who is able,and tion, and the conduct of its im- has not an independent support, mediate governors, may be inti-labours in their own occupation, mately known to the supreme exe- || and contributes a stipulated sum cutive government of the whole for their maintenance. Their chilchurch.
dren are educated with peculiar In their opinion, episcopal con-care; their subjection to their susecration does not confer any pow-periors and elders is singular, and
appears particularly striking in one observes, “ are all of them their missions and marriages. In volunteers; for it is an inviolable the former, those who have offered maxim with them to persuade no themselves on the service, and are man to engage in missions. They approved as candidates, wait their are all of one mind as to the docseveral calls, referring themselves trines they teach, and seldom entirely to the decision of the lot; make an attempt where there are and, it is said never hesitate when not half a dozen of them in the that hath decided the place of mission. Their zeal is calm,steady, their destination. (See p. 165.) persevering. They would reform In marriage, they may only form the world, but are careful how aconnexion with those of their own they quarrel with it. They carry communion. The brother who their point by address and the inmarries out of the congregation is sinuations of modesty and mildimmediately cut off from church ness, which commend them to all fellowship. Sometimes a sister, by men, and give offence to none. express licence from the Elders The habits of silence, quietness, Conference, is permitted to marry and decent reserve, mark their a person of approved piety in character. If any of their misanother communion, yet still to sionaries are carried off by sickjoin in their church ordinances as ness or casualty, men of the same before. A brother may make his stamp are ready to supply their own choice of a partner in the place.” society; but as all intercourse be As they stand first on the list tween the different sexes is care- of those who have engaged in fully avoided, very few opportu- missionary exertions, we shall nities of forming particular at- here insert a farther account tachments are found, and they of them and their missions, with usually rather refer their choice which I have been favoured by to the church than decide for a most respectable clergyman themselves. And as the lot must of their denomination; “ When be cast to sanction their union, brethren or sisters find themselves each receives his partner as a Di-disposed to serve God among the vine appointment; and, however Heathen, they communicate their strange this method may appear wishes and views to the committee to those who consult only their appointed by the synods of the passions or their interests, it is ob- Brethren to superintend the misservable, that no where fewer un- sions in a confidential letter. If, happy marriages are found than on particular enquiry into their among the Brethren. But what circumstances and connections, characterizes the Moravians most, no objection is found, they are and holds them up to the atten- considered as candidates. As to tion of others, is their missionary mental qualifications, much eruzeal. In this they are superior to dition is not required by the any other body of people in the Brerhren. To be well versed in world. “ Their missionaries,” as the sacred scriptures, and to have
an esperiinental knowledge of tre t'ements in St. Elizabeth's parist. truths they contain, is juuged in- :--In 1756: In Antigua ; at St. dispensably necessary. And it has' John's, Grace Hill, Grace Bay been found, by experience, that a' In 1760: Near Tranquebar, in good understanding joined to a' the East Haies; Brethren's Garfriendly disposition, and, above all, den.--Iu 17.4: On the coast of a heart filled with the love of Labrador; Nain, Okkak, HopeGod, are the best and the only 'dale.-In 1765: In Barbadoes ; essential qualifications of a mis- | Sharon, near Bridgetown.--In sionary. Nor are in general the 1765: In the Russian part of habits of a student so well calcu- Asia ; Sarepta. In 1775: In St. lated to form his body for a la- Kitt's; at Basseterre.--In 1789: borious life as those of a mecha- In Tobugo: Signal Hill (renewed nic. Yet men of learning are not in 1798). excluded, and their gists have “ The Brethren had three flou. been made useful in various ways. rishing Settlements on the river When vacancies occur, or new Muskingum, Salem, Gnadenhuetmissions are to be begun, the list ten, and Schoenbrun, before the of candidates is examined; and late American war, during which those who appear suitable are call these places were destroyed, and ed upon, and accept or decline the inhabitants partly murdered, the cóll as they find themselves partly dispersed. The settlement disposed.”
Fairfiell, in Canada, was made by “ The following are the names those of the Indiau converts, who of the settlements of the United were again collected by the misBrethren in Heathen countries. sionaries. In 1798, a colony of
“ Begun in 1732, in the Danish Christian Indians went from thence West India islands. In St. Tho-to take possession of their former
New Herrnhut, Nisky settlements on the Muskingum, In St.Croix; Friedensberg, Fried-which have been given to them ensthal. In St. Jan; Bethany, by an act of Congress, and built a Emmaus-In 1733: In Green-new town, called Goshen. Part land; New Herrnhut, Lichten-" of the Indian congregation will fels, Lichtenau.---In 1734: In remain at Fairfield, in Canada, as North America; Fairfield in Up- a good seed; our missionaries enper Canada, Goshen on the ri- tertaining hopes that the Gospel ver Muskingum.---- In 1756: At may yet find entrance among the the Cape of Good Hope; Bavians wild Chippeway tribe inhabiting Kloof (renewed in 1792).- In those parts. 1738 : In South America ; among The mission among the llotthe negro slaves at Paramaribo tentots at the Cape of Good Hope and Sommelsdyk; among the free was begun in 1736, by George negroes at Bambey, on the Sara-Schmidt, a man of remarkable meca; among the native Indians zeal and courage, who laboured at Hope, on the river Corentyn. successiully among these people, --In 1751: In Fmaica ; two set-li till he had formed a small con