The Church hath power to decree Rites or Ceremonies, and Authority in Controversies of Faith.
— Article XX, Articles of Religion
We do require and Charge everyone seduced by false Teachers to reform that their Wilfulness, and to submit to the Order of the Church.
— Canon LVII
All Bishops and others with Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, every Man in his place, are to procure these Canons to be in all points duly observed, not sparing Penalties upon any that shall wittingly or wilfully break them, as they tender the Honour of God, and the Peace of the Church.
Constitutions and Canons Ecclesiastical .
Of the Church of England.
The King‘s Supremacy over the Church of England, in Causes Ecclesiastical, to be maintained.
AS our Duty to the King’s most excellent Majesty requireth, We first Decree and Ordain, That the Archbishop of Canterbury (from time to time), all Bishops of this Province, or Deans, Archdeacons, Parsons, Vicars, and all other Ecclesiastical Persons, shall faithfully keep and observe, and (as much as in them lieth) shall cause to be observed and kept of others, all and singular Laws and Statutes made for restoring to the Crown of this Kingdom, the ancient Jurisdiction over the State Ecclesiastical, and abolishing of all Foreign Power repugnant to the same. Furthermore, all Ecclesiastical Persons having Cure of Souls, and all other Preachers and Readers of Divinity Lectures, shall to the uttermost of their Wit, Knowledge, and Learning, purely and sincerely (without any Colour or Dissimulation) teach, manifest, open, and declare Four Times every Year (at the least) in their Sermons and other Collations and Lectures, That all usurped and foreign Power (forasmuch as the same hath no Establishment nor Ground by the Law of God) is for most just Causes taken away and abolished: and that therefore no manner of Obedience or Subjection within His Majesty’s Realms and Dominions, is due unto any such foreign Power; but that the King’s Power within His Realms of England, Scotland and Ireland, and all other his Dominions and Countries, is the highest Power under God, to whom all Men, as well Inhabitants, as born within the same, do by God’s Laws owe most Loyalty and Obedience, afore and above all other Powers and Potentates in Earth.
Impugners of the King’s Supremacy, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That the King’s Majesty hath not the same Authority in Causes Ecclesiastical, that the godly Kings had amongst the Jews, and Christian Emperors in the Primitive Church, or impeach any part of his Regal Supremacy in the said Causes restored to the Crown, and by the Laws of this Realm therein established; let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, and not restored, but only by the Archbishop, after his Repentance, and publick Revocation of those his wicked Errors.
The Church of England, a True and Apostolical Church.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That the Church of England by Law established, under the King’s Majesty, is not a True and an Apostolical Church, teaching and maintaining the Doctrine of the Apostles; let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, and not restored, but only by the Archbishop, after his Repentance and publick Revocation of this his wicked Error.
Impugners of the Publick Worship of God established in the Church of England, Censured.
Whosoever shall hereafter affirm, That the Form of God’s Worship in the Church of England, established by Law, and contained in the Book of Common Prayer and Administration of Sacraments, is a corrupt, superstitious, or unlawful Worship of God, or containeth any thing in it that is repugnant to the Scriptures: Let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, and not restored but by the Bishop of the Place, or Archbishop, after his Repentance and publick Revocation of such his wicked Errors.
Impugners of the Articles of Religion established in the Church of England, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That any of the Thirty Nine Articles agreed upon by the Archbishops, and Bishops of both Provinces, and the whole Clergy in the Convocation holden at London in the Year of our Lord God, One thousand five hundred sixty two, for avoiding diversities of Opinions, and for the establishing of Consent touching true Religion, are in any part Superstitious or Erroneous, or such as he may not with a good Conscience subscribe unto: Let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, and not restored but only by the Archbishop, after his Repentance and publick Revocation of such his wicked Errors.
Impugners of the Rites and Ceremonies established in the Church of England, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That the Rites and Ceremonies of the Church of England by Law established, are Wicked, Antichristian, or Superstitious, or such as being commanded by lawful Authority, Men who are zealously, and godly affected, may not with any good Conscience approve them, use them, or as Occasion requireth, subscribe unto them: Let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, and not restored until he repent and publickly revoke such his wicked Errors.
Impugners of the Government of the Church of England by Archbishops, Bishops, &c. Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That the Government of the Church of England, under his Majesty, by Archbishops, Bishops, Deans, Archdeacons, and the rest that bear Office in the same, is Antichristian, or repugnant to the Word of God: Let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, and so continue until he repent, and publickly revoke such his wicked Errors.
Impugners of the Form of Consecrating and Ordaining Archbishops, Bishops, &c. in the Church of England, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm or teach, That the Form and Manner of Making and Consecrating Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, containeth any thing in it that is repugnant to the Word of God; or that they who are made Bishops, Priests, or Deacons in that Form, are not lawfully made, nor ought to be accounted either by themselves or others, to be truly either Bishops, Priests, or Deacons, until they have some other Calling to those Divine Offices: Let him be Excommunicated ipso facto, not to be restored until he repent, and publickly revoke such his wicked Errors.
Authors of Schism in the Church of England, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter separate themselves from the Communion of Saints, as it is approved by the Apostles Rules in the Church of England, and combine themselves together in a new Brotherhood, accounting the Christians who are conformable to the Doctrine, Government, Rites and Ceremonies of the Church of England, to be profane and unmeet for them to joyn with in Christian Profession: Let them be Excommunicated ipso facto, and not restored, but by the Archbishop after their Repentance and publick Revocation of such their wicked Errors.
Maintainers of Schismaticks in the Church of England, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That such Ministers as refuse to subscribe to the Form and Manner of God’s Worship in the Church of England prescribed in the Communion-Book, and their Adherents, may truly take unto them the Name of another Church not established by Law, and dare presume to publish it, That this their pretended Church hath of long time groaned under the burden of certain Grievances imposed upon it, and upon the Members thereof before mentioned, by the Church of England, and the Orders and Constitutions therein by Law established: Let them be Excommunicated, and not restored until they repent, and publickly revoke such their wicked Errors.
Maintainers of Conventicles, Censured.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm or maintain, That there are within this Realm other Meetings, Assemblies or Congregations, of the King’s born Subjects, than such as by the Laws of this Land are held and allowed, which may rightly challenge to themselves the Name of true and lawful Churches: Let him be Excommunicated, and not restored, but by the Archbishop, after his Repentance, and publick Revocation of such his wicked Errors.
Maintainers of Constitutions made in Conventicles, Censured.
Of Divine Service, and Administration of the Sacraments.
Due Celebration of Sundays and Holy-days.
ALL manner of Persons within the Church of England, shall from henceforth celebrate and keep the Lord’s Day, commonly called Sunday, and other Holy-days according to God’s holy Will and Pleasure, and the Orders of the Church of England, prescribed in that behalf; that is, in hearing the Word of God read and taught in private and publick Prayers, in acknowledging their Offences to God and amendment of the same, in reconciling themselves charitably to their Neighbours where Displeasures have been, in oftentimes receiving the Communion of the Body and Blood of Christ, in visiting of the Poor and Sick, using all godly and sober Conversation.
The Prescript Form of Divine Service to be used on Sundays and Holy-days.
THe Common Prayer shall be said or sung distinctly and reverently upon such days as are appointed to be kept Holy by the Book of Common Prayer, and their Eves, and at convenient and usual times of those Days, and in such place of every Church as the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ecclesiastical Ordinary of the Place shall think meet for the largeness or straitness of the same, so as the People may be most edified. All Ministers likewise shall observe the Orders, Rites, and Ceremonies prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer, as well in reading the holy Scriptures and saying of Prayers, as in Administration of the Sacraments, without either diminishing, in regard of Preaching, or in any other respect, or adding any thing in the Matter or Form thereof.
The Litany to be read on Wednesdays and Fridays.
THe Litany shall be said or sung, when, and as it is set down in the Book of Common Prayer, by the Parsons, Vicars, Ministers or Curates, in all Cathedral, Collegiate, Parish Churches and Chapels, in some convenient Place, according to the Discretion of the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ecclesiastical Ordinary of the Place. And that we may speak more particularly, upon Wednesdays and Fridays weekly, though they be not Holy-days, the Minister at the accustomed Hours of Service, shall resort to the Church and Chapel, and Warning being given to the People by Tolling of a Bell, shall say the Litany prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer: whereunto we wish every Housholder dwelling within half a Mile of the Church, to come or send one at least of his Household fit to joyn with the Minister in Prayers.
Colleges to use the prescript Form of Divine Service.
IN the whole Divine Service, and Administration of the holy Communion, in all Colleges and Halls in both Universities, the Order, Form and Ceremonies shall be duly observed as they are set down and prescribed in the Book of Common-Prayer; without any Omission or Alteration.
Students in Colleges to wear Surplices in time of Divine Service.
ALL Masters and Fellows of Colleges or Halls, and all the Scholars and Students in either of the Universities, shall in their Churches and Chapels upon all Sundays, Holy-days and their Eves, at the time of Divine Service, wear Surplices according to the Order of the Church of England: and such as are Graduates, shall agreeably wear with their Surplices such Hoods as do severally appertain unto their Degrees.
Reverence and Attention to be used within the Church in Time of Divine Service.
IN the time of Divine Service, and of every part thereof, all due Reverence is to be used; for it is according to the Apostles Rule, Let all things be done decently, and according to order: Answerable to which Decency and Order, we judge these our Directions following: No Man shall cover his Head in the Church or Chapel in the time of Divine Service, except he have some Infirmity; in which case, let him wear a Night-cap or Coif. All manner of Persons then present, shall reverently kneel upon their Knees when the General Confession, Litany, and other Prayers are read; and shall stand up at the saying of the Belief, according to the Rules in that behalf prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer: And likewise when in time of Divine Service the Lord Jesus shall be mentioned, due and lowly Reverence shall be done by all Persons present, as it hath been accustomed; testifying by these outward Ceremonies and Gestures, their inward Humility, Christian Resolution, and due Acknowledgment that the Lord Jesus Christ, the true and eternal Son of God, is the only Saviour of the World, in whom alone all the Mercies, Graces, and Promises of God to Mankind, for this Life and the Life to come, are fully and wholly comprised. None, either Man, Woman or Child, of what Calling soever, shall be otherwise at such times busied in the Church, than in quiet Attendance to hear, mark, and understand that which is read, preached, or ministered; saying in their due places audibly with the Minister, the Confession, the Lord’s Prayer and the Creed; and making such other Answers to the publick Prayers as are appointed in the Book of Common Prayer: Neither shall they disturb the Service or Sermon by walking, or talking, or any other way, nor depart out of the Church during the time of Service or Sermon, without some urgent or reasonable Cause.
Loyterers not to be suffered near the Church in time of Divine Service.
THe Church-wardens, or Quest-men, and their Assistants, shall not suffer any idle Persons to abide either in the Church-yard or Church-porch, during the Time of Divine Service, or Preaching; but shall cause them either to come in, or to depart.
Bread and Wine to be provided against every Communion.
THe Church-wardens of every Parish, against the time of every Communion, shall at the Charge of the Parish, with the Advice and Direction of the Minister, provide a sufficient Quantity of fine white Bread, and of good and wholsome Wine, for the number of Communicants that shall from time to time receive there; which Wine we require to be brought to the Communion-Table in a clean and sweet standing Pot, or Stoop of Peuter, if not of purer Metal.
The Communion to be Thrice a Year received.
IN every Parish Church and Chapel where Sacraments are to be administered within this Realm, the holy Communion shall be Administered by the Parson, Vicar, or Minister, so often, and at such Times as every Parishioner may Communicate at the least Thrice in the Year (whereof the Feast of Easter to be one) according as they are appointed by the Book of Common Prayer. Provided, That every Minister as oft as he administereth the Communion, shall first receive the Sacrament himself. Furthermore no Bread or Wine newly brought shall be used: but first the Words of Institution shall be rehearsed when the said Bread and Wine be present upon the Communion Table. Likewise the Minister shall deliver both the Bread and the Wine to every Communicant severally.
Warning to be given before-hand for the Communion.
WHereas every Lay-person is bound to receive the Holy Communion Thrice every Year, and many notwithstanding do not receive that Sacrament once in a Year: We do require every Minister to give Warning to his Parishioners publickly in the Church at Morning Prayer, the Sunday before every time of his administering that holy Sacrament, for their better preparation of themselves: which said Warning we enjoyn the said Parishioners to accept and obey, under the penalty and danger of the Law.
Students in Colleges to receive the Communion Four Times a Year.
IN all Colleges and Halls, within both the Universities, the Masters and Fellows, such especially as have any Pupils, shall be careful that all their said Pupils, and the rest that remain amongst them, be well brought up, and throughly instructed in Points of Religion, and that they do diligently frequent publick Service, and Sermons, and receive the holy Communion; which we ordain to be administered in all such Colleges and Halls the first or second Sundays of every Month, requiring all the said Masters, Fellows and Scholars, and all the rest of the Students, Officers, and all other the Servants there so to be ordered, that every one of them shall communicate four Times in the Year at the least, kneeling reverently and decently upon their Knees, according to the Order of the Communion-Book prescribed in that behalf.
Copes to be worn in Cathedral Churches by those that Administer the Communion.
IN all Cathedral and Collegiate Churches, the holy Communion shall be administered upon principal Feast-days, sometimes by the Bishop if he be present, and sometimes by the Dean, and at sometimes by a Canon or Prebendary, the principal Minister using a decent Cope, and being assisted with the Gospeller and Epistler agreeably, according to the Advertisements published An. 7 Eliz. The said Communion to be Administered at such Times, and with such Limitation as is specified in the Book of Common Prayer; provided, that no such Limitation by any Construction shall be allowed of, but that all Deans, Wardens, Masters or Heads of Cathedral and Collegiate Churches, Prebendaries, Canons, Vicars, Petty Canons, Singing-Men, and all others of the Foundation, shall receive the Communion Four Times Yearly at the least.
Surplices and Hoods to be worn in Cathedral Churches when there is no Communion.
IN the Time of Divine Service and Prayers in all Cathedral and Collegiate Churches, when there is no Communion, it shall be sufficient to wear Surplices: saving that all Deans, Masters and Heads of Collegiate Churches, Canons and Prebendaries being Graduates, shall daily at the Times both of Prayer and Preaching, wear with their Surplices such Hoods as are agreeable to their Degrees.
Notorious Offenders not to be admitted to the Communion.
NO Minister shall in any wise admit to the receiving of the Holy Communion, any of his Cure or Flock which be openly known to live in Sin notorious without Repentance; nor any who have maliciously and openly contended with their Neighbours, until they shall be reconciled: Nor any Church-wardens or Side-Men who having taken their Oaths to present to their Ordinaries all such publick Offences, as they are particularly charged to inquire of in their several Parishes, shall (notwithstanding their said Oaths, and that their faithful discharging of them is the chief Means whereby publick Sins and Offences may be reformed and punished) wittingly and willingly, desperately and irreligiously incur the horrible Crime of Perjury, either in neglecting, or in refusing to present such of the said Enormities and publick Offences as they know themselves to be committed in their said Parishes, or are notoriously offensive to the Congregation there, although they be urged by some of their Neighbours, or by their Minister, or by their Ordinary himself, to discharge their Consciences by presenting of them, and not to incur so desperately the said horrible Sin of Perjury.
Schismatics not to be admitted to the Communion.
NO Minister when he celebrateth the Communion, shall wittingly administer the same to any but to such as kneel, under pain of Suspension, nor under the like pain to any that refuse to be present at publick Prayers, according to the Orders of the Church of England, nor to any that are common and notorious Depravers of the Book of Common Prayer, and Administration of the Sacraments, and of the Orders, Rites and Ceremonies therein prescribed, or of any thing that is contained in any of the Articles agreed upon in the Convocation, One thousand five hundred sixty and two, or of any thing contained in the Book of Ordering Priests and Bishops, or to any that have spoken against and depraved His Majesty’s Sovereign Authority in Causes Ecclesiastical; except every such Person shall first acknowledge to the Minister before the Church-Wardens, his Repentance for the same, and promise by Word (if he cannot write) that he will do so no more; and except (if he can write) he shall first do the same under his Hand-writing, to be delivered to the Minister, and by him sent to the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ordinary of the Place. Provided, That every Minister so repelling any (as is specified either in this or in the next precedent Constitution) shall upon Complaint, or being required by the Ordinary, signifie the Cause thereof unto him, and therein obey his Order and Direction.
Strangers not to be admitted to the Communion.
THe Church-Wardens or Quest-Men, and their Assistants shall mark as well as the Minister, whether all and every of the Parishioners come so often every Year to the Holy Communion, as the Laws and our Constitutions do require: And whether any Strangers come often and commonly from other Parishes to their Church, and shall show their Minister of them, lest perhaps they be admitted to the Lord’s Table amongst others, which they shall forbid, and remit such home to their own Parish-Churches and Ministers, there to receive the Communion with the rest of their own Neighbours.
Fathers not to be Godfathers in Baptism, nor Children not Communicants.
NO Parent shall be urged to be present, nor be admitted to answer as Godfather for his own Child: nor any Godfather or Godmother shall be suffered to make any other Answer or Speech, than by the Book of Common Prayer is prescribed in that behalf: Neither shall any Person be admitted Godfather or Godmother to any Child at Christning or Confirmation, before the said Person so undertaking hath received the Holy Communion.
The lawful Use of the Cross in Baptism, explained.
WE are sorry that His Majesty’s most Princely Care and Pains taken in the Conference at Hampton-Court, amongst many other Points, touching this One of the Cross in Baptism, hath taken no better Effect with many, but that still the Use of it in Baptism is so greatly stuck at and impugned. For the further Declaration therefore of the true Use of this Ceremony, and for the removing of all such Scruple as might any ways trouble the Consciences of them who are indeed rightly Religious, following the Royal Steps of our most worthy King, because he therein followeth the Rules of the Scriptures, and the Practice of the Primitive Church; We do commend to all the true Members of the Church of England, these our Directions and Observations, ensuing.
First, It is to be observed, That although the Jews and Ethnicks derided both the Apostles, and the rest of the Christians, for Preaching and Believing in him who was Crucified upon the Cross; yet all, both Apostles and Christians, were so far from being discouraged from their Profession by the Ignominy of the Cross, as they rather rejoyced and triumphed in it. Yea, the Holy Ghost by the Mouths of the Apostles, did honour the Name of the Cross, (being hateful among the Jews) so far, that under it he comprehended not only Christ Crucified, but the Force, Effects, and Merits of His Death and Passion, with all the Comforts, Fruits and Promises, which we receive or expect thereby.
Secondly, The Honour and Dignity of the Name of the Cross, begat a reverend Estimation even in the Apostles Times (for ought that is known to the contrary) of the sign of the Cross; which the Christians shortly after used in all their Actions, thereby making an outward Show and Profession even to the Astonishment of the Jews, that they were not ashamed to acknowledge him for their Lord and Saviour, who died for them upon the Cross. And this Sign they did not only use themselves with a kind of Glory, when they met with any Jews, but signed therewith their Children when they were Christned, to dedicate them by that Badge to his Service, whose Benefits bestowed upon them in Baptism, the Name of the Cross did represent. And this Use of the Sign of the Cross in Baptism was held in the Primitive Church, as well by the Greeks as the Latins, with one Consent and great Applause. At what time, if any had opposed themselves against it, they would certainly have been censured as Enemies of the Name of the Cross, and consequently of Christ’s Merits, the Sign whereof they could no better endure. This continual and general Use of the Sign of the Cross, is evident by many Testimonies of the ancient Fathers.
Thirdly, It must be confessed, that in process of Time, the Sign of the Cross was greatly abused in the Church of Rome, especially after that Corruption of Popery had once possessed it. But the Abuse of a thing doth not take away the lawful Use of it. Nay, so far was it from the purpose of the Church of England to forsake and reject the Churches of Italy, France, Spain, Germany, or any such like Churches, in all things which they held and practised, that as the Apology of the Church of England confesseth, it doth with Reverence retain those Ceremonies which do neither endamage the Church of God, nor offend the Minds of sober Men; and only departed from them in those particular Points, wherein they were fallen both from themselves in their ancient Integrity, and from the Apostolical Churches which were their first Founders. In which respect, amongst some other very ancient Ceremonies, the Sign of the Cross in Baptism hath been retained in this Church, both by the Judgment and Practice of those Reverend Fathers, and great Divines in the Days of King Edward the Sixth, of whom some constantly suffered for the Profession of the Truth: and others being exil’d in the Time of Queen Mary, did after their return, in the beginning of the Reign of our late dead Sovereign, continually defend and use the same. This Resolution and Practice of our Church, hath been allowed and approved by the Censure upon the Communion Book in King Edward the Sixth’s Days, and by the Harmony of Confessions of later Years; because indeed the Use of this Sign in Baptism was ever accompanied here with such sufficient Cautions and Exceptions against all Popish Superstition and Error, as in the like Cases are either fit or convenient.
First, The Church of England since the abolishing of Popery hath ever held and taught, and so doth hold and teach still, That the Sign of the Cross used in Baptism, is no Part of the Substance of that Sacrament: For when the Minister dipping the Infant in Water, or laying Water upon the Face of it (as the manner also is) hath pronounced these Words, I baptize thee in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, the Infant is fully and perfectly Baptized: So as the Sign of the Cross being afterwards used, doth neither add any thing to the Vertue or Perfection of Baptism, nor being omitted, doth detract any thing from the Effect and Substance of it.
Secondly, It is apparent in the Communion Book, that the Infant Baptized is by Vertue of Baptism, before it be signed with the Sign of the Cross, received into the Congregation of Christ’s Flock as a perfect Member thereof, and not by any Power ascribed unto the Sign of the Cross. So that for the very remembrance of the Cross, which is very precious to all them that rightly believe in Jesu Christ, and in the other respects mentioned, the Church of England hath retained still the Sign of it in Baptism: following therein the Primitive and Apostolical Churches, and accounting it a lawful outward Ceremony and honourable Badge, whereby the Infant is dedicated to the Service of him that died upon the Cross, as by the words used in the Book of Common Prayer it may appear.
Ministers, their Ordination, Function and Charge.
Four Solemn Times appointed for the making of Ministers.
FOrasmuch as the ancient Fathers of the Church, led by Example of the Apostles, appointed Prayers and Fasts to be used at the solemn ordering of Ministers, and to that purpose alotted certain Times, in which only sacred Orders might be given or conferred: We following their holy and religious Example, do constitute and decree; That no Deacons or Ministers be ordained and made, but only upon the Sundays immediately following Jejunia quatuor temporum, commonly called Ember-weeks, appointed in ancient Time for Prayer and Fasting (purposely for this Cause at their first Institution) and so continued at this day in the Church of England: And that this be done in the Cathedral or Parish Church where the Bishop resideth, and in the time of Divine Service, in the presence not only of the Archdeacon, but of the Dean and two Prebendaries at the least, or (if they shall happen by any lawful Cause to be let or hindred) in the presence of Four other grave Persons, being Masters of Arts at the least, and allowed for publick Preachers.
None to be made Deacon and Minister both in one Day.
THe Office of Deacon being a Step or Degree to the Ministry, according to the Judgment of the ancient Fathers, and the Practice of the Primitive Church; We do ordain and appoint, That hereafter no Bishop shall make any Person, of what Qualities or Gifts soever, a Deacon and a Minister both together upon one Day; but that the Order in that behalf prescribed in the Book of making and consecrating Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, be strictly observed. Not that always every Deacon should be kept from the Ministry for a whole Year, when the Bishop shall find good Cause to the contrary; but that there being now four Times appointed in every Year for the Ordination of Deacons and Ministers, there may ever be some time of Trial of their Behaviour in the Office of Deacon, before they be admitted to the Order of Priesthood.
The Titles of such as are to be made Ministers.
IT hath been long since provided by many Decrees of the ancient Fathers, that none should be admitted either Deacon or Priest, who had not first some certain Place where he might use his Function. According to which Examples we do ordain, That henceforth no Person shall be admitted into sacred Orders, except he shall at that time exhibit to the Bishop of whom he desireth Imposition of Hands, a Presentation of himself to some Ecclesiastical Preferment then void in that Diocess; or shall bring to the said Bishop a true and undoubted Certificate, that either he is provided of some Church within the said Diocess, where he may attend the Cure of Souls, or of some Minister’s Place vacant, either in the Cathedral Church of that Diocess, or in some other Collegiate Church therein also scituate, where he may execute his Ministry: or that he is a Fellow, or in right as a Fellow, or to be a Conduct or Chaplain in some College in Cambridge or Oxford; or except he be a Master of Arts of five Years standing, that liveth of his own Charge in either of the Universities: or except by the Bishop himself that doth Ordain him Minister, he be shortly after to be admitted either to some Benefice or Curateship then void. And if any Bishop shall admit any Person into the Ministry that hath none of these Titles as is aforesaid, then he shall keep and maintain him with all things necessary, till he do prefer him to some Ecclesiastical Living. And if the said Bishop shall refuse so to do, he shall be suspended by the Archbishop, being assisted with another Bishop, from giving of Orders by the space of a Year.
The Quality of such as are to be made Ministers.
NO Bishop shall henceforth admit any Person into sacred Orders, which is not of his own Diocess, except he be either of one of the Universities of this Realm, or except he shall bring Letters Dimissory, (so termed) from the Bishop of whose Diocess he is, and desiring to be a Deacon, is Three and twenty Years old, and to be a Priest, Four and twenty Years compleat, and hath taken some Degree of School in either of the said Universities, or at the least, except he be able to yield an Account of his Faith in Latin, according to the Articles of Religion approved in the Synod of the Bishops and Clergy of this Realm, One thousand five hundred sixty and two, and to confirm the same by sufficient Testimonies out of the holy Scriptures: And except moreover, he shall then exhibit Letters Testimonial of his good Life and Conversation, under the Seal of some College in Cambridge or Oxford, where before he remained, or of three or four grave Ministers, together with the Subscription and Testimony of other credible Persons, who have known his Life and Behaviour by the space of Three Years next before.
The Examination of such as are to be made Ministers.
THe Bishop before he admit any Person to holy Orders, shall diligently examine him in the presence of those Ministers that shall assist him at the Imposition of Hands: And if the said Bishop have any lawful Impediment, he shall cause the said Ministers carefully to examine every such Person so to be Ordained. Provided that they who shall assist the Bishop in Examining and Laying on of Hands, shall be of his Cathedral Church, if they may conveniently be had, or other sufficient Preachers of the same Diocess, to the Number of Three at the least: And if any Bishop or Suffragan shall admit any to sacred Orders, who is not so qualified and examined as before we have ordained; the Archbishop of his Province having notice thereof, and being assisted therein by one Bishop, shall suspend the said Bishop or Suffragan so offending, from making either Deacons or Priests for the space of two Years.
Subscriptions required of such as are to be made Ministers.
NO person shall hereafter be received into the Ministry, nor either by Institution or Collation admitted to any Ecclesiastical Living, nor suffered to Preach, to Catechise, or to be a Lecturer or Reader of Divinity in either University, or in any Cathedral or Collegiate Church, City or Market Town, Parish-Church, Chapel, or in any other place within this Realm, except he be Licensed either by the Archbishop, or by the Bishop of the Diocess (where he is to be placed) under their Hands and Seals, or by one of the two Universities under their Seal likewise; and except he shall first subscribe to these three Articles following, in such manner and sort as we have here appointed.
I. That the King’s Majesty under God, is the only Supream Governour of this Realm, and of all other his Highness Dominions and Countries, as well in all Spiritual or Ecclesiastical Things or Causes, as Temporal, and that no Foreign Prince, Person, Prelate, State or Potentate, hath or ought to have any Jurisdiction, Power, Superiority, Pre-eminence or Authority Ecclesiastical or Spiritual within His Majesty’s said Realm, Dominions and Countries.
II. That the Book of Common Prayer, and of Ordering of Bishops, Priests and Deacons, containeth in it nothing contrary to the Word of God, and that it may lawfully so be used, and that he himself will use the Form in the said Book prescribed in publick Prayer, and Administration of the Sacraments, and none other.
III. That he alloweth the Book of Articles of Religion agreed upon by the Archbishops, and Bishops of both Provinces, and the whole Clergy in the Convocation holden at London, in the Year of our Lord God, One thousand five hundred sixty and two: and that he acknowledgeth all and every the Articles therein contained, being in number Nine and thirty, besides the Ratification, to be agreeable to the Word of God.
To these three Articles whosoever will subscribe, he shall for the avoiding of all Ambiguities, subscribe in this Order and Form of Words, setting down both his Christian and Sirname, viz. I N. N. do willingly, and ex animo, subscribe to these Three Articles above mentioned, and to all Things that are contained in them. And if any Bishop shall Ordain, Admit, or License any as is aforesaid, except he first have subscribed in Manner and Form as here we have appointed, he shall be suspended from giving of Orders and Licenses to Preach for the space of twelve Months. But if either of the Universities shall offend therein, we leave them to the Danger of the Law and His Majesty’s Censure.
Subscription before the Diocesan.
NOne Licensed as is aforesaid, to Preach, Read Lecture, or Catechise, coming to reside in any Diocess, shall be permitted there to Preach, Read Lecture, Catechise or Minister the Sacraments, or to execute any other Ecclesiastical Function (by what Authority soever he be there unto admitted) unless he first consent and subscribe to the Three Articles before mentioned, in the presence of the Bishop of the Diocess, wherein he is to Preach, Read Lecture, Catechise, or Administer the Sacraments as aforesaid.
Revolters after Subscription, Censured.
IF any Minister, after he hath once subscribed to the said Three Articles, shall omit to use the Form of Prayer, or any of the Orders or Ceremonies prescribed in the Communion Book, let him be suspended; and if after a Month he do not reform and submit himself, let him be Excommunicated; and then if he shall not submit himself within the space of another Month, let him be deposed from the Ministry.
Cautions for Institution of Ministers into Benefices.
NO Bishop shall institute any to a Benefice who hath been ordained by any other Bishop, except he first show unto him his Letters of Orders, and bring him a sufficient Testimony of his former good Life and Behaviour, if the Bishop shall require it: and lastly, shall appear upon due Examination to be worthy of his Ministry.
An Oath against Simony at institution into Benefices.
TO avoid the detestable Sin of Simony, because buying and selling of Spiritual and Ecclesiastical Functions, Offices, Promotions, Dignities and Livings, is execrable before God; therefore the Archbishop, and all and every Bishop or Bishops, or any other Person or Persons, having Authority to Admit, Institute, Collate, Install, or to Confirm the Election of any Archbishop, Bishop, or other Person or Persons, to any Spiritual or Ecclesiastical Function, Dignity, Promotion, Title, Office, Jurisdiction, Place, or Benefice with Cure or without Cure, or to any Ecclesiastical Living whatsoever, shall before every such Admission, Institution, Collation, Installation or Confirmation of Election, respectively minister to every Person hereafter to be Admitted, Instituted, Collated, Installed or Confirmed in or to any Archbishoprick, Bishoprick, or other Spiritual or Ecclesiastical Function, Dignity, Promotion, Title, Office, Jurisdiction, Place or Benefice with Cure or without Cure, or in or to any Ecclesiastical Living whatsoever, this Oath in Manner and Form following, the same to be taken by every one whom it concerneth in his own Person, and not by a Proctor: I, N. N. do Swear, That I have made no Simoniacal Payment, Contract or Promise, directly or indirectly, by my self, or by any other to my Knowledge, or with my Consent, to any Person or Persons whatsoever, for or concerning the Procuring and Obtaining of this Ecclesiastical Dignity, Place, Preferment, Office or Living, [respectively and particularly naming the same whereunto he is to be Admitted, Instituted, Collated, Installed or Confirmed] nor will at any Time hereafter perform or satisfie any such kind of Payment, Contract or Promise made by any other without my Knowledge or Consent. So help me God, through Jesus Christ.
Licenses for Pluralities of Benefices limited, and Residence enjoyned.
NO License or Dispensation for the keeping of more Benefices with Cure than one, shall be granted to any, but such only as shall be thought very well worthy for his Learning, and very well able and sufficient to discharge his Duty; that is, who shall have taken the degree of a Master of Arts at the least in one of the Universities of this Realm, and be a publick and sufficient Preacher Licensed. Provided always, that he be by a good and sufficient Caution bound to make his Personal Residence in each his said Benefices for some reasonable Time in every Year; and that the said Benefice be not more than Thirty Miles distant asunder: And lastly, That he have under him in the Benefice where he doth not reside, a Preacher lawfully allowed, that is able sufficiently to teach and instruct the People.
Residence of Deans in their Churches.
EVery Dean, Master, or Warden, or chief Governour of any Cathedral or Collegiate Church, shall be resident in his said Cathedral or Collegiate Church Fourscore and ten days Conjunctim or Divisim in every Year at the least, and then shall continue there in Preaching the Word of God, and keeping good Hospitality, unless he shall be otherwise let with weighty and urgent Causes to be approved by the Bishop of the Diocess, or in any other lawful sort dispensed with. And when he is present, he, with the rest of the Canons or Prebendaries resident, shall take special Care, that the Statutes and laudable Customs of their Church (not being contrary to the Word of God, or Prerogative Royal) the Statutes of this Realm being in Force concerning Ecclesiastical Order, and all other Constitutions now set forth and confirmed by his Majesty’s Authority, and such as shall be lawfully enjoyned by the Bishop of the Diocess, in his Visitation, according to the Statutes and Customs of the same Church, or the Ecclesiastical Laws of this Realm, be diligently observed, and that the Petty Canons, Vicars Choral, and other Ministers of their Church, be urged to the Study of the holy Scriptures, and every one of them to have the New Testament not only in English, but also in Latin.
Deans and Prebendaries to Preach during their Residence.
THe Dean, Master, Warden or chief Governour, Prebendaries, and Canons in every Cathedral and Collegiate Church, shall not only Preach there in their own Persons, so often as they are bound by Law, Statute, Ordinance, or Custom, but shall likewise Preach in other Churches of the same Diocess where they are Resident, and especially in those places whence they or their Church receive any yearly Rents or Profits. And in Case they themselves be sick, or lawfully absent, they shall substitute such licensed Preachers to supply their Turns, as by the Bishop of the Diocess shall be thought meet to Preach in Cathedral Churches. And if any otherwise neglect or omit to supply his Course, as is aforesaid, the Offender shall be punished by the Bishop, or by him or them to whom the Jurisdiction of that Church appertaineth, according to the Quality of the Offence.
Prebendaries to be Resident upon their Benefices.
NO Prebendaries nor Canons in Cathedral or Collegiate Churches, having one or more Benefices with Cure (and not being Residentiaries in the same Cathedral or Collegiate Churches) shall under Colour of their said Prebends, absent themselves from their Benefices with Cure above the space of one Month in the Year, unless it be for some urgent Cause, and certain Time to be allowed by the Bishop of the Diocess. And such of the said Canons and Prebendaries as by the Ordinances of the said Cathedral or Collegiate Churches do stand bound to be resident in the same, shall so among themselves sort and proportion the Times of the Year, concerning Residence to be kept in the said Churches, as that some of them always shall be personally Resident there: and that all those who be, or shall be Residentiaries in any Cathedral or Collegiate Church, shall after the Days of their Residency appointed by their local Statutes or Customs expired, presently repair to their Benefices, or some one of them, or to some other Charge where the Law requireth their Presence, there to discharge their Duties according to the Laws in that Case provided. And the Bishop of the Diocess shall see the same to be duly performed and put in Execution.
Beneficed Preachers being Resident upon their Livings, to Preach every Sunday.
EVery Beneficed Man allowed to be a Preacher, and Residing on his Benefice, having no lawful Impediment, shall in his own Cure, or in some other Church or Chapel where he may conveniently, near adjoyning (where no Preacher is) preach one Sermon every Sunday of the Year, wherein he shall soberly and sincerely divide the Word of Truth to the Glory of God, and to the best Edification of the People.
Beneficed Men, not Preachers, to procure Monthly Sermons.
EVery Beneficed Man not allowed to be a Preacher, shall procure Sermons to be preached in his Cure once in every Month at the least, by Preachers lawfully Licensed, if his Living in the Judgment of the Ordinary, will be able to bear it. And upon every Sunday when there shall not be a Sermon preached in his Cure, he or his Curate shall read some one of the Homilies prescribed, or to be prescribed by Authority to the intents aforesaid.
Absence of Beneficed Men to be supplied by Curates that are allowed Preachers.
EVery Beneficed Man Licensed by the Laws of this Realm, upon urgent Occasions of other Service not to reside upon his Benefice, shall cause his Cure to be supplied by a Curate that is a sufficient and Licensed Preacher, if the Worth of the Benefice will bear it. But whosoever hath Two Benefices, shall maintain a Preacher Licensed, in the Benefice where he doth not reside, except he Preach himself at both of them usually.
None to be Curates, but allowed by the Bishop.
NO Curate or Minister shall be permitted to serve in any Place, without Examination and Admission of the Bishop of the Diocess or Ordinary of the place having Episcopal Jurisdiction, in Writing under his Hand and Seal, having respect to the greatness of the Cure, and meetness of the Party. And the said Curates and Ministers, if they remove from one Diocess to another, shall not be by any means admitted to serve without Testimony of the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ordinary of the Place as aforesaid, whence they came, in Writing, of their Honesty, Ability, and Conformity to the Ecclesiastical Laws of the Church of England: Nor any shall serve more than one Church or Chapel upon one Day, except that Chapel be a Member of the Parish-Church, or united thereunto; and unless the said Church or Chapel where such a Minister shall serve in two Places, be not able in the Judgment of the Bishop or Ordinary as aforesaid, to maintain a Curate.
Ministers not allowed Preachers may not Expound.
NO Person whatsoever not examined and approved by the Bishop of the Diocess, or not Licensed as is aforesaid, for a sufficient or convenient Preacher, shall take upon him to Expound in his own Cure or elsewhere, any Scripture, or Matter, or Doctrine, but shall only study to read plainly and aptly (without glossing or adding) the Homilies already set forth, or hereafter to be published by lawful Authority, for the Confirmation of the true Faith, and for the good Instruction and Edification of the People.
Strangers not admitted to Preach without showing their License.
NEither the Minister, Church-Wardens, nor any other Officers of the Church, shall suffer any Man to Preach within their Churches or Chapels, but such as by showing their License to Preach, shall appear unto them to be sufficiently Authorized thereunto as is aforesaid.
Strangers not admitted to Preach in Cathedral Churches without sufficient Authority.
THe Deans, Presidents, and Residentiaries of any Cathedral or Collegiate Church, shall suffer no Stranger to Preach unto the People in their Churches, except they be allowed by the Archbishop of the Province, or by the Bishop of the same Diocess, or by either of the Universities. And if any in his Sermon shall publish any Doctrine, either strange or disagreeing from the Word of God, or from any of the Articles of Religion agreed upon in the Convocation-House, Anno 1562, or from the Book of Common Prayers, the Dean or the Residents shall by their Letters subscribed with some of their Hands that heard him, so soon as may be, give Notice of the same to the Bishop of the Diocess, that he may determine the Matter, and take such Order therein as he shall think convenient.
The Names of strange Preachers to be noted in a Book.
THat the Bishop may understand (if Occasion so require) what Sermons are made in every Church of his Diocess, and who presume to Preach without License, the Church-Wardens and Side-Men shall see that the Names of all Preachers which come to their Church from any other Place, be noted in a Book, which they shall have ready for that purpose, wherein every Preacher shall subscribe his Name, the Day when he Preached, and the Name of the Bishop of whom he had License to Preach.
No publick Opposition between Preachers.
IF any Preacher shall in the Pulpit particularly, or namely of purpose impugn or confute any Doctrine delivered by any other Preacher in the same Church, or in any Church near adjoyning, before he hath acquainted the Bishop of the Diocess therewith, and received Order from him what to do in that Case, because upon such publick Dissenting and Contradicting, there may grow much Offence and Disquietness unto the People; the Church-Wardens or Party grieved shall forthwith signifie the same to the said Bishop, and not suffer the said Preacher any more to occupy that Place which he hath once abused, except he faithfully promise to forbear all such matter of Contention in the Church, until the Bishop hath taken further Order therein; who shall with all convenient Speed so proceed therein, that publick Satisfaction may be made in the Congregation where the Offence was given. Provided, that if either of the Parties offending do appeal, he shall not be suffered to Preach pendente lite.
The Licenses of Preachers refusing Conformity to be void.
IF any Man Licensed heretofore to Preach, by any Archbishop, Bishop, or by either of the Universities, shall at any time from henceforth refuse to conform himself to the Laws, Ordinances, and Rites Ecclesiastical established in the Church of England, he shall be admonished by the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ordinary of the Place, to submit himself to the Use and due Exercise of the same: And if after such Admonition, he do not conform himself within the space of one Month, We determine and decree, That the License of every such Preacher shall thereupon be utterly void, and of none effect.
The Form of a Prayer to be used by all Preachers before their Sermons.
BEfore all Sermons, Lectures, and Homilies, the Preachers and Ministers shall move the People to joyn with them in Prayer, in this Form or to this Effect, as briefly as conveniently they may. Ye shall pray for Christ’s holy Catholick Church; that is, for the whole Congregation of Christian People dispersed throughout the whole World, and especially for the Churches of England, Scotland and Ireland. And herein I require you most especially to pray for the King’s most excellent Majesty, our Sovereign Lord James King of England, Scotland, France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, and Supream Governour in these his Realms, and all other his Dominions and Countries, over all Persons, in all Causes, as well Ecclesiastical as Temporal. Ye shall also pray for our gracious Queen Anne, the noble Prince Henry, and the rest of the King and Queen’s Royal Issue. Ye shall also pray for the Ministers of God’s holy Word and Sacraments, as well Archbishops and Bishops, as other Pastours and Curates. Ye shall also pray for the King’s most Honourable Council, and for all the Nobility and Magistrates of this Realm, that all and every of these in their several Callings, may serve truly and painfully to the Glory of God, and the edifying and well governing of his People, remembring the Account that they must make. Also ye shall pray for the whole Commons of this Realm, that they may live in true Faith and Fear of God, in humble Obedience to the King, and brotherly Charity one to another. Finally, Let us praise God for all those which are departed out of this Life in the Faith of Christ, and pray unto God that we may have Grace to direct our Lives after their good Example; that this Life ended, we may be made Partakers with them of the glorious Resurrection in the Life everlasting; always concluding with the Lord’s Prayer.
Preachers and Lecturers to read Divine Service, and administer the Sacraments Twice a Year at the least.
EVery Minister being possessed of a Benefice that hath Cure and Charge of Souls, although he chiefly attend to Preaching, and hath a Curate under him to execute the other Duties which are to be performed for him in the Church, and likewise every other stipendary Preacher that readeth any Lecture, or Catechiseth or Preacheth in any Church or Chapel, shall Twice at the least every Year, read himself the Divine Service, upon two several Sundays publickly, and at the usual Times, both in the Forenoon and Afternoon in the Church which he so possesseth, or where he Readeth, Catechiseth or Preacheth as is aforesaid, and shall likewise as often in every Year administer the Sacraments of Baptism (if there be any to be Baptized) and of the Lord’s Supper, in such Manner and Form, and with the Observation of all such Rites and Ceremonies as are prescribed by the Book of Common Prayer in that behalf; which if he do not accordingly perform, then shall he that is possessed of a Benefice (as before) be suspended; and he that is but a Reader, Preacher, or Catechiser, be removed from his Place by the Bishop of the Diocess, until he or they shall submit themselves to perform all the said Duties in such manner and sort as before is prescribed.
The Sacraments not to be refused at the Hands of unpreaching Ministers.
WHereas divers Persons seduced by false Teachers, do refuse to have their Children Baptized by a Minister that is no Preacher, and to receive the Holy Communion at his Hands in the same respect, as though the Vertue of those Sacraments did depend upon his Ability to Preach; forasmuch as the Doctrine both of Baptism, and of the Lord’s Supper is so sufficiently set down in the Book of Common Prayer, to be used at the Administration of the said Sacraments, as nothing can be added unto it that is material and necessary: We do require and Charge every such Person seduced as aforesaid, to reform that their Wilfulness, and to submit himself to the Order of the Church in that behalf, both the said Sacraments being equally effectual, whether they be ministered by a Minister that is no Preacher, or by one that is a Preacher. And if any hereafter shall offend herein, or leave their own Parish Churches in that respect, and Communicate, or Cause their Children to be Baptized in other Parishes abroad, and will not be moved thereby to reform that their Error and unlawful Course; Let them be presented to the Ordinary of the Place by the Minister, Church-Wardens, and Side-Men or Quest-Men of the Parishes where they dwell, and there receive such Punishment by Ecclesiastical Censures, as such Obstinacy doth worthily deserve; that is, Let them (persisting in their Wilfulness) be Suspended, and then after a Month’s further Obstinacy, Excommunicated. And likewise, if any Parson, Vicar, or Curate, shall after the publishing hereof, either receive to the Communion any such Persons which are not of his own Church and Parish, or shall Baptize any of their Children, thereby strengthning them in their said Errors; Let him be Suspended, and not released thereof, until he do faithfully promise that he will not afterwards offend therein.
Ministers reading Divine Service, and administering the Sacraments, to wear Surplices, and Graduates therewithal Hoods.
EVery Minister saying the Publick Prayers, or Ministering the Sacraments, or other Rites of the Church, shall wear a decent and comely Surplice with Sleeves, to be provided at the charge of the Parish. And if any Question arise touching the Matter, decency, or comeliness thereof, the same shall be decided by the discretion of the Ordinary. Furthermore, such Ministers as are Graduates, shall wear upon their Surplices at such times, such Hoods as by the Orders of the Universities are agreeable to their Degrees, which no Minister shall wear (being no Graduate) under pain of Suspension. Notwithstanding it shall be lawful for such Ministers as are not Graduates, to wear upon their Surplices instead of Hoods, some decent Tippet of Black, so it be not Silk.
Ministers to Catechise every Sunday.
EVery Parson, Vicar or Curate, upon every Sunday and Holy-day before Evening Prayer, shall for half an hour or more, examine and instruct the Youth, and ignorant Persons of his Parish, in the Ten Commandments, the Articles of the Belief, and in the Lord’s Prayer: and shall diligently hear, instruct, and teach them the Catechism set forth in the Book of Common Prayer. And all Fathers, Mothers, Masters and Mistresses, shall cause their Children, Servants and Apprentices, which have not learned the Catechism, to come to the Church at the time appointed, obediently to hear, and to be ordered by the Minister, until they have learned the same. And if any Minister neglect his Duty herein, let him be sharply reproved upon the first Complaint, and true Notice thereof given to the Bishop or Ordinary of the Place. If after submitting himself, he shall wilfully offend therein again, let him be suspended. If so the third time, there being little hope that he will be therein reformed, then Excommunicated, and so remain until he will be reformed. And likewise, if any of the said Fathers, Mothers, Masters or Mistresses, Children, Servants, or Apprentices shall neglect their Duties, as the one sort in not causing them to come, and the other in refusing to learn as aforesaid; let them be suspended by their Ordinaries (if they be not Children) and if they so persist by the space of a Month, then let them be Excommunicated.
Confirmation to be performed once in Three Years.
FOrasmuch as it hath been a solemn, ancient and laudable Custom in the Church of God, continued from the Apostles times, that all Bishops should lay their hands upon Children baptized and instructed in the Catechism of Christian Religion, praying over them, and blessing them, which we commonly call Confirmation, and that this holy Action hath been accustomed in the Church in former Ages, to be performed in the Bishops Visitation every third Year: We will and appoint, that every Bishop, or his Suffragan in his accustomed Visitation, do in his own Person carefully observe the said Custom. And if in that Year, by reason of some Infirmity, he be not able personally to Visit, then he shall not omit the execution of that Duty of Confirmation the next Year after, as he may conveniently.
Ministers to prepare Children for Confirmation.
EVery Minister that hath Cure and Charge of Souls, for the better accomplishing of the Orders prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer concerning Confirmation, shall take such especial Care, that none may be presented to the Bishop for him to lay his hands upon, but such as can render an account of their Faith according to the Catechism in the said Book contained. And when the Bishop shall assign any Time for the Performance of that Part of his Duty, every such Minister shall use his best endeavour to prepare and make able, and likewise to procure as many as he can, to be then brought, and by the Bishop to be Confirmed.
Ministers not to Marry any Persons without Banns or License.
NO Minister upon Pain of Suspension per triennium ipso facto, shall celebrate Matrimony between any Persons, without a Faculty or License granted by some of the Persons in these our Constitutions expressed, except the Banns of Matrimony have been first published three several Sundays or Holy-days in the time of Divine Service, in the Parish Churches or Chapels where the said Parties dwell, according to the Book of Common Prayer. Neither shall any Minister upon the like pain under any Pretence whatsoever, joyn any Persons so Licensed in Marriage at any unseasonable Times, but only between the Hours of Eight and Twelve in the Forenoon, nor in any private Place, but either in the said Churches or Chapels where one of them dwelleth, and likewise in Time of Divine Service: Nor when Banns are thrice asked (and no License in that respect necessary) before the Parents or Governours of the Parties to be married, being under the Age of Twenty and one Years, shall either personally, or by sufficient Testimony, signifie to him their Consents given to the said Marriage.
Ministers of Exempt Churches, not to Marry without Banns or License.
EVery Minister who shall hereafter celebrate Marriage betwixt any Persons contrary to our said Constitutions, or any part of them, under Colour of any peculiar Liberty or Privilege claimed to appertain to certain Churches and Chapels, shall be suspended per triennium by the Ordinary of the Place where the Offence shall be committed. And if any such Minister shall afterwards remove from the Place where he hath committed that Fault before he be suspended, as is aforesaid, then shall the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ordinary of the Place where he remaineth, upon Certificate under the Hand and Seal of the other Ordinary from whose Jurisdiction he removed, execute that Censure upon him.
Ministers solemnly to bid Holy-days.
EVery Parson, Vicar or Curate shall in his several Charge declare to the People every Sunday, at the time appointed in the Communion-Book, whether there be any Holy-days, or Fasting-days the Week following. And if any do hereafter wittingly offend herein, and being once admonished thereof by his Ordinary, shall again omit that Duty, let him be censured according to Law, until he submit himself to the due performance of it.
Ministers solemnly to denounce Recusants and Excommunicants.
ALL Ordinaries shall in their several Jurisdictions carefully see and give Order, that as well those who for obstinate refusing to frequent Divine Service established by publick Authority within this Realm of England, as those also (especially of the better Sort and Condition) who for notorious Contumacy or other notable Crimes stand lawfully Excommunicate (unless within three Months immediately after the said Sentence of Excommunication pronounced against them, they reform themselves, and obtain the Benefit of Absolution) be every six Months ensuing, as well in the Parish Church as in the Cathedral Church of the Diocess in which they remain, by the Minister openly in Time of Divine Service upon some Sunday, denounced and declared Excommunicate, that others may be thereby both admonished to refrain their Company and Society, and excited the rather to procure out a Writ De excommunicatio capiendo, thereby to bring and reduce them into due Order and Obedience. Likewise the Register of every Ecclesiastical Court, shall Yearly between Michaelmas and Christmas, duly certify the Archbishop of the Province, of all and singular the Premises aforesaid.
Ministers to confer with Recusants.
EVery Minister being a Preacher, and having any Popish Recusant or Recusants in his Parish, and thought fit by the Bishop of the Diocess, shall labour diligently with them from Time to Time, thereby to reclaim them from their Errors. And if he be no Preacher, or not such a Preacher, then he shall procure, if he can possibly, some that are Preachers so qualified, to take pains with them for that Purpose. If he can procure none, then he shall inform the Bishop of the Diocess thereof, who shall not only appoint some neighbour Preacher or Preachers adjoyning to take that Labour upon them; but himself also (as his important Affairs will permit him) shall use his best endeavour by Instruction, Perswasion and all good Means he can devise, to reclaim both them and all other within his Diocess so affected.
Ministers to Visit the Sick.
WHen any Person is dangerously sick in any Parish, the Minister or Curate (having knowledge thereof) shall resort unto him or her (if the Disease be not known, or probably suspected to be infectious) to instruct and comfort them in their distress, according to the Order of the Communion Book, if he be no Preacher: or if he be a Preacher, then as he shall think most needful and convenient. And when any is passing out of this Life, a Bell shall be Tolled, and the Minister shall not then slack to do his last Duty. And after the Parties Death (if it so fall out) there shall be rung no more than one short Peal, and one other before the Burial, and one other after the Burial.
Ministers not to refuse to Christen or Bury.
NO Minister shall refuse or delay to Christen any Child according to the Form of the Book of Common Prayer, that is brought to the Church to him upon Sundays or Holy-days to be Christned, or to bury any Corps that is brought to the Church or Church-yard (convenient warning being given him thereof before) in such manner and form as is prescribed in the said Book of Common Prayer. And if he shall refuse to Christen the one, or Bury the other, except the Party deceased were denounced Excommunicated Majori Excommunicatione, for some grievous and notorious Crime (and no Man able to testifie of his Repentance) he shall be suspended by the Bishop of the Diocess from his Ministry by the space of Three Months.
Ministers not to defer Christning, if a Child be in Danger.
IF any Minister being duly without any manner of Collusion, informed of the Weakness and Danger of Death of any Infant unbaptized in his Parish, and thereupon desired to go or come to the place where the said Infant remaineth, to Baptize the same, will either wilfully refuse so to do, or of purpose, or of gross Negligence shall so defer the time, as when he might conveniently have resorted to the place, and have Baptized the said Infant, it dieth through such his Default Unbaptized; the said Minister shall be suspended for three Months, and before his Restitution shall acknowledge his Fault, and promise before his Ordinary, that he will not wittingly incur the like again. Provided, That where there is a Curate or Substitute; this Constitution shall not extend to the Parson or Vicar himself, but to the Curate or Substitute present.
Ministers to keep a Register of Christnings, Weddings and Burials.
IN every Parish-Church and Chapel within this Realm, shall be provided One Parchment-Book at the Charge of the Parish, wherein shall be written the Day and Year of every Christning, Wedding, and Burial, which have been in that Parish since the Time that the Law was first made in that behalf, so far as the ancient Books thereof can be procured, but especially since the beginning of the Reign of the late Queen. And for the safe keeping of the said Book, the Church-Wardens at the Charge of the Parish, shall provide one sure Coffer with three Locks and Keys; whereof the one to remain with the Minister, and the other two with the Church-Wardens severally; so that neither the Minister without the two Church-Wardens, nor the Church-Wardens without the Minister, shall at any time take that Book out of the said Coffer. And henceforth upon every Sabbath-day, immediately after Morning or Evening Prayer, the Minister, and Church-Wardens, shall take the said Parchment-Book out of the said Coffer, and the Minister in the presence of the Church-Wardens shall write and record in the said Book, the Names of all Persons Christned, (together with the Names and Sirnames of their Parents) and also the Names of all Persons Married and Buried in that Parish, in the Week before, and the Day and Year of every such Christning, Marriage, and Burial: And that done, they shall lay up that Book in the Coffer as before: and the Minister and Church-Wardens unto every Page of that Book, when it shall be filled with such Inscriptions, shall subscribe their Names. And the Church-Wardens shall once every Year, within One Month after the Five and twentieth Day of March, transmit unto the Bishop of the Diocess, or his Chancellor, a true Copy of the Names of all Persons Christned, Married, or Buried in their Parish in the Year before (ended the said Five and twentieth Day of March) and the certain Days and Months in which every such Christning, Marriage, and Burial was had, to be subscribed with the Hands of the said Minister and Church-Wardens, to the end the same may faithfully be preserved in the Registry of the said Bishop: which Certificate shall be received without Fee. And if the Minister or Church-Wardens shall be negligent in performance of any thing herein contained, it shall be lawful for the Bishop or his Chancellor to convent them, and proceed against every of them as Condemners of this our Constitution.
Ministers not to Preach or Administer the Communion in Private Houses.
NO Minister shall Preach or Administer the Holy Communion in any private House, except it be in Times of Necessity, when any being either so impotent, as he cannot go to the Church, or very dangerously sick, are desirous to be partakers of that Holy Sacrament, upon pain of Suspension for the first Offence, and Excommunication for the Second. Provided, that Houses are here reputed for private Houses, wherein are no Chapels dedicated and allowed by the Ecclesiastical Laws of this Realm. And provided also under the Pains before expressed, that no Chaplains do preach or Administer the Communion in any other Places, but in the Chapels of the said Houses, and that also they do the same very seldom upon Sundays and Holy-days: So that both the Lords and Masters of the said Houses and their Families shall at other Times resort to their own Parish Churches, and there receive the Holy Communion at the least once every Year.
Ministers not to appoint Publick or Private Fasts or Prophecies; or to Exercise, but by Authority.
NO Minister or Ministers shall without the License and Direction of the Bishop of the Diocess first obtained and had under his Hand and Seal, appoint or keep any solemn Fasts either publickly or in any private Houses, other than such as by Law are, or by publick Authority shall be appointed, nor shall be wittingly present at any of them, under pain of Suspension for the first Fault, of Excommunication for the second, and of Deposition from the Ministry for the third. Neither shall any Minister not Licensed, as is aforesaid, presume to appoint or hold any Meetings for Sermons, commonly termed by some, Prophecies, or Exercises, in Market-Towns, or other places, under the said pains: Nor without such License to attempt upon any pretence whatsoever, either of Possession or Obsession, by Fasting and Prayer to cast out any Devil or Devils, under the pain of the Imputation of Imposture or Cosenage, and Deposition from the Ministry.
Ministers not to hold Private Conventicles.
FOrasmuch as all Conventicles and secret Meetings of Priests and Ministers, have been ever justly accounted very hurtful to the state of the Church wherein they live: We do now Ordain and Constitute, That no Priests or Ministers of the Word of God, nor any other Persons, shall meet together in any private House, or elsewhere, to consult upon any Matter or Course to be taken by them, or upon their Motion or Direction by any other, which may any way tend to the impeaching or depraving of the Doctrine of the Church of England or of the Book of Common Prayer, or of any part of the Government and Discipline now established in the Church of England, under pain of Excommunication ipso facto.
Decency in Apparel enjoyned to Ministers.
THe true, ancient, and flourishing Churches of Christ being ever desirous, that their Prelacy and Clergy might be had as well in outward Reverence, as otherwise regarded for the worthiness of their Ministry, did think it fit by a Prescript Form of decent and comely Apparel, to have them known to the People, and thereby to receive the Honour and Estimation due to the special Messengers and Ministers of Almighty God: We therefore following their grave Judgment, and the ancient Custom of the Church of England, and hoping that in time newfangleness of Apparel in some factious Persons will die of it self, do constitute and appoint, That the Archbishop and Bishops shall not intermit to use the Accustomed Apparel of their Degrees. Likewise all Deans, Masters of Colleges, Archdeacons and Prebendaries in Cathedral and Collegiate Churches (being Priests or Deacons) Doctors in Divinity, Law and Physick, Batchelors in Divinity, Masters of Arts, and Batchelors of Law having any Ecclesiastical Living, shall usually wear Gowns with standing Collars, and Sleeves strait at the Hands, or wide Sleeves as is used in the Universities, with Hoods or Tippets of Silk or Sarcenet, and Square Caps. And that all other Ministers admitted, or to be admitted into that Function, shall also usually wear the like Apparel as is aforesaid, except Tippets only. We do further in like manner ordain, That all the said Ecclesiastical Persons above-mentioned, shall usually wear in their Journeys Cloaks with Sleeves, commonly called Priests Cloaks, without Guards, Welts, long Buttons or Cuts. And no Ecclesiastical Person shall wear any Coif or wrought Night-cap, but only plain Night-caps of Black Silk, Sattin or Velvet. In all which particulars concerning the Apparel here prescribed, our meaning is not to attribute any Holiness, or special Worthiness to the said Garments, but for Decency, Gravity and Order, as is before specified. In private Houses, and in their Studies, the said Persons Ecclesiastical may use any comely and Scholar-like Apparel, provided that it be not cut or pinkt; and that in publick they go not in their Doublet and Hose, without Coats or Cassocks; and that they wear not any light-coloured Stockings. Likewise poor Beneficed Men and Curates (not being able to provide themselves long Gowns) may go in short Gowns, of the fashion aforesaid.
Sober Conversation required in Ministers.
NO Ecclesiastical Person shall at any time, other than for their honest Necessities, resort to any Taverns or Ale-houses, neither shall they Board or Lodge in any such places. Furthermore, They shall not give themselves to any base or servile Labour, or to Drinking or Riot, spending their time idlely by Day or by Night, playing at Dice, Cards, or Tables, or any other unlawful Game: but at all times convenient, they shall hear or read somewhat of the Holy Scriptures, or shall occupy themselves with some other honest Study or Exercise, always doing the things which shall appertain to Honesty, endeavouring to profit the Church of God, having always in mind, that they ought to excel all others in Purity of Life, and should be Examples to the People to live Well and Christianly, under pain of Ecclesiastical Censures to be inflicted with severity, according to the Qualities of their Offences.
Ministers at no time to forsake their Calling.
None to Teach School without License.
NO man shall Teach either in publick School, or private House, but such as shall be allowed by the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ordinary of the Place, under his hand and Seal, being found meet as well for his Learning and Dexterity in Teaching, as for sober and honest Conversation, and also for right understanding of God’s true Religion, and also except he shall first subscribe to the first and third Articles before mentioned simply, and to the two first Clauses of the Second Article.
Curates desirous to Teach, to be Licensed before others.
IN what Parish-Church or Chapel soever there is a Curate which is a Master of Arts, or Batchelor of Arts, or is otherwise well able to teach youth, and will willingly so do, for the better increase of his Living, and training up of Children in principles of true Religion: We Will and Ordain, That a License to teach Youth of the Parish where he serveth, be granted to none by the Ordinary of that place, but only to the said Curate. Provided always, That this Constitution shall not extend to any Parish or Chapel in Country Towns, where there is a publick School founded already: In which Case we think it not meet to allow any to teach Grammar, but only him that is allowed for the said publick School.
The Duty of School-Masters.
Things appertaining to Churches.
The Great Bible, and Book of Common Prayer, to be had in every Church.
THE Church-Wardens or Quest-Men of every Church and Chapel, shall at the Charge of the Parish provide the Book of Common Prayer, lately explained in some few Points by His Majesty’s Authority according to the Laws and his Highness Prerogative in that behalf, and that with all convenient speed, but at the furthest within two Months after the publishing of these our Constitutions. And if any Parishes be yet unfurnished of the Bible of the largest Volume, or of the Books of Homilies allowed by Authority, the said Church-Wardens shall within convenient Time provide the same at the like Charge of the Parish.
A Font of Stone for Baptism in every Church.
ACcording to a former Constitution, too much neglected in many places, we appoint, That there shall be a Font of Stone in every Church and Chapel where Baptism is to be Ministered; the same to be set in the ancient usual places. In which only Font the Minister shall Baptize publickly.
A decent Communion-Table in every Church.
WHereas we have no doubt, but that in all Churches within the Realm of England, convenient and decent Tables are provided and placed for the Celebration of the holy Communion, We appoint that the same Tables shall from time to time be kept and repaired in sufficient and seemly manner, and covered in time of Divine Service with a Carpet of Silk or other decent Stuff thought meet by the Ordinary of the place, if any question be made of it, and with a fair Linen Cloth at the Time of the Ministration, as becometh that Table, and so stand, saving when the said holy Communion is to be Administered. At which Time the same shall be placed in so good sort within the Church or Chancel, as thereby the Minister may be more conveniently heard of the Communicants in his Prayer and Administration, and the Communicants also more conveniently and in more number may communicate with the said Minister: and that the Ten Commandments be set up upon the East-end of every Church and Chapel where the people may best see and read the same, and other chosen Sentences written upon the Walls of the said Churches and Chapels in places convenient: And likewise, that a convenient Seat be made for the Minister to read Service in. All these to be done at the Charge of the Parish.
A Pulpit to be provided in every Church.
The Church-Wardens or Quest-Men at the common Charge of the Parishioners in every Church, shall provide a comely and decent Pulpit, to be set in a convenient place within the same, by the Discretion of the Ordinary of the place, if any Question do arise, and to be there seemly kept for the preaching of God’s Word.
A Chest for Alms in every Church.
THe Church-Wardens shall provide and have within three Months after the publishing of these Constitutions, a strong Chest, with a Hole in the upper part thereof, to be provided at the Charge of the Parish (if there be none such already provided) having three Keys; of which one shall remain in the custody of the Parson, Vicar, or Curate, and the other two in the custody of the Church-Wardens for the time being: which Chest they shall set and fasten in the most convenient place, to the intent the Parishioners may put into it their Alms for their Poor Neighbours. And the Parson, Vicar, or Curate shall diligently from time to time, and especially when Men make their Testaments, call upon, exhort, and move their Neighbours, to confer, and give as they may well spare to the said Chest, declaring unto them, That whereas heretofore they have been diligent to bestow much Substance otherwise than God commanded, upon superstitious Uses, now they ought at this time to be much more ready to help the Poor and Needy, knowing that to relieve the Poor, is a Sacrifice which pleaseth God: And that also whatsoever is given for their Comfort is given to Christ himself, and is so accepted of him, that he will mercifully reward the same. The which Alms and Devotion of the People, the keepers of the Keys shall Yearly, Quarterly, or oftner (as need requireth) take out of the Chest, and distribute the same in the presence of most of the Parish, or six of the chief of them, to be truly and faithfully delivered to their most poor and needy Neighbours.
Churches to be kept in sufficient Reparation.
THe Church-Wardens or Quest-Men shall take care, and provide that the Churches be well and sufficiently repaired, and so from time to time kept and maintained, that the Windows be well glazed, and that the Floors be kept paved, plain, and even, and all things there in such an orderly and decent sort, without dust, or any thing that may be either noisome or unseemly, as best becometh the House of God, and is prescribed in an Homily to that effect. The like Care they shall take, that the Church-Yards be well and sufficiently repaired, fenced and maintained with Walls, Rails, or Pales, as have been in each Place accustomed at their Charges unto whom by Law the same appertaineth: but especially they shall see that in every meeting of the Congregation, Peace be well kept, and that all Persons Excommunicated, and so denounced, be kept out of the Church.
Churches to be Surveyed, and the Decays certified to the High Commissioners.
EVery Dean, Dean and Chapter, Archdeacon, and others which have Authority to hold Ecclesiastical Visitations by Composition, Law, or Prescription, shall survey the Churches of his or their Jurisdiction, once in every Three Years in his own Person, or cause the same to be done, and shall from time to time within the said Three Years, certifie the High Commissioners for Causes Ecclesiastical every Year, of such Defects in any the said Churches, as he or they do find to remain unrepaired, and the Names and Srnames of the Parties faulty therein. Upon which Certificate we desire, that the said high Commissioners will ex officio mero send for such Parties, and compel them to obey the just and lawful Decrees of such Ecclesiastical Ordinaries making such Certificates.
A Terrier of Glebe-Lands, and other Possessions belonging to Churches.
WE ordain, That the Archbishops, and all Bishops within their several Diocesses, shall procure (as much as in them lieth) that a true Note and Terrier of all the Glebes, Lands, Meadows, Gardens, Orchards, Houses, Stocks, Implements, Tenements, and Portions of Tythes, lying out of their Parishes (which belong to any Parsonage, or Vicarage, or Rural Prebend) be taken by the view of honest Men in every Parish, by the appointment of the Bishop, whereof the Minister to be one, and be laid up in the Bishops Registry there to be for a perpetual Memory thereof.
Churches not to be profaned.
Church-Wardens, or Quest-Men, and Side-Men, or Assistants.
The Choice of Church-Wardens, and their Account.
ALL Church-Wardens or Quest-Men in every Parish, shall be chosen by the joynt Consent of the Ministers and the Parishioners, if it may be: But if they cannot agree upon such a Choice, then the Minister shall chuse one, and the Parishioners another: and without such a joynt or several Choice, none shall take upon them to be Church-Wardens, neither shall they continue any longer than one Year in that Office, except perhaps they be chosen again in like manner. And all Church-Wardens at the end of their Year, or within a Month after at the most, shall before the Minister and the Parishioners, give up a just Account of such Money as they have received, and also what particularly they have bestowed in Reparations, and otherwise for the Use of the Church. And, last of all, going out of their Office, they shall truly deliver up to the Parishioners whatsoever Money or other things of right belonging to the Church or Parish, which remaineth in their hands, that it may be delivered over by them to the next Church-Wwardens by Bill indented.
The Choice of Side-Men, and their Joynt-Office with the Church-Wardens.
Parish-Clerks to be chosen by the Minister.
Ecclesiastical Courts belonging to the Archbishops Jurisdiction.
None to be Cited into divers Courts for Probate of the same Will.
FOrasmuch as many heretofore have been by Apparitors both of inferiour Courts, and of the Courts of the Archbishops Prerogative, much distracted, and diversly called, and summoned for Probate of Wills, or to take Administrations of the Goods of Persons dying Intestate, and are thereby vexed and grieved with many causless and unnecessary Troubles, Molestations, and Expences: We constitute and appoint, That all Chancellors, Commissaries or Officials, or any other exercising Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction whatsoever, shall at the first, charge with an Oath all persons called, or voluntarily appearing before them for the Probate of any Will or the Administration of any Goods, whether they know, or (moved by any special Inducement) do firmly believe, that the Party deceased (whose Testament or Goods depend now in Question) had at the Time of his or her Death, any Goods or good Debts in any other Diocess or Diocesses, or peculiar Jurisdiction within that Province, than in that wherein the said party died, amounting to the Value of Five Pounds. And if the said Person cited, or voluntarily appearing before him, shall upon his Oath affirm, That he knoweth, or (as aforesaid) firmly believeth, that the said party deceased, had Goods or good Debts in any other Diocess or Diocesses, or peculiar Jurisdiction within the said Province, to the Value aforesaid, and particularly specifie and declare the same: then shall he presently dismiss him, not presuming to intermeddle with the Probate of the said Will, or to grant Administration of the Goods of the Party so dying Intestate: neither shall he require or exact any other Charges of the said Parties more than such only as are due for the Citation, and other Process had and used against the said Parties upon their further Contumacy; but shall openly and plainly declare and profess, That the said Cause belongeth to the Prerogative of the Archbishop of that Province, willing and admonishing the Party to prove the said Will, or require Administration of the said Goods in the Court of the said Prerogative, and to exhibit before him the said Judge, the Probate or Administration, under the Seal of the Prerogative within Forty Days next following. And if any Chancellor, Commissary, Official, or other exercising Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction whatsoever, or any their Register shall offend herein, let him be ipso facto suspended from the Execution of his Office, not to be absolved or released until he have restored to the Party all Expences by him laid out contrary to the Tenour of the Premises: and every such Probate of any Testament or Administration of Goods so granted, shall be held void and frustrate to all effects of the Law whatsoever.
Furthermore, We charge and enjoyn, that the Register of every inferiour Judge do without all Difficulty or Delay, certifie and inform the Apparitor of the Prerogative Court, repairing unto him once a Month, and no oftner, what Executors or Administrators, have been by his said Judge, for the Incompetency of his own Jurisdiction, dismissed to the said Prerogative Court within the Month next before, under pain of a Month’s suspension from the Exercise of his Office, for every Default therein. Provided that this Canon, or any thing therein contained, be not prejudicial to any Composition between the Archbishop, and any Bishop or other Ordinary, nor to any inferiour Judge that shall grant any Probate of Testament or Administration of Goods to any Party that shall voluntarily desire it, both out of the said inferiour Court, and also out of the Prerogative. Provided likewise that if any Man die in itinere, the Goods that he hath about him at that present, shall not cause his Testament or Administration to be liable unto the Prerogative Court.
The Rate of Bona Notabilia liable to the Prerogative Court.
FUrthermore we decree and Ordain, That no Judge of the Archbishops Prerogative shall henceforward Cite, or cause to be Cited ex Officio, any Person whatsoever to any of the aforesaid intents, unless he have knowledge that the party deceased was at the Time of his Death possessed of Goods and Chattels in some other Diocess or Diocesses, or peculiar Jurisdiction within that Province, than in that wherein he died, amounting to the Value of Five Pounds at the least: decreeing and declaring, that whoso hath not Goods in divers Diocesses to the said Sum or Value, shall not be accounted to have Bona Notabilia. Always provided, That this Clause here, and in the former Constitution mentioned, shall not prejudice those Diocesses where by Composition or Custom Bona Notabilia are rated at a greater Sum. And if any Judge of the Prerogative Court, or any his Surrogate, or his Register or Apparitor, shall Cite or cause any Person to be Cited into his Court contrary to the Tenour of the Premises, he shall restore to the Party so Cited, all his Costs and Charges, and the Acts and Proceedings in that behalf shall be held void and frustrate. Which Expences if the said Judge, or Register, or Apparitor shall refuse accordingly to pay, he shall be suspended from the Exercise of his Office, until he yield to the Performance thereof.
None to be cited into the Arches or Audience, but Dwellers within the Archbishops Diocess or Peculiars.
NO Dean of the Arches, nor Official of the Archbishops Consistory, nor any Judge of the Audience, shall henceforward in his own Name, or in the Name of the Archbishop, either ex Officio, or at the instance of any Party, originally Cite, Summon, or any way Compel, or procure to be Cited, Summoned, or Compelled, any Person which dwelleth not within the particular Diocess or Peculiar of the said Archbishop, to appear before him or any of them, for any Cause or Matter whatsoever belonging to Ecclesiastical Cognizance, without the License of the Diocesan first had and obtained in that behalf, other than in such particular Cases only as are expressly excepted and reserved in and by a Statute Ann. 23. Hen. 8. cap. 9. And if any of the said Judges shall offend herein, he shall for every such Offence be suspended from the Exercise of his Office, for the space of Three whole Months.
The Restraint of Double Quarrels.
ALbeit by former Constitutions of the Church of England, every Bishop hath had Two Months Space to enquire and inform himself of the Sufficiency and Quality of every Minister after he hath been presented unto him to be Instituted into any Benefice: Yet for the avoiding of some Inconveniences, we do now abridge and reduce the said Two Months unto Eight and twenty Days only. In respect of which abridgment, we do ordain and appoint, that no double Quarrel shall hereafter be granted out of any of the Archbishops Courts, at the Suit of any Minister whosoever, except he shall first take his personal Oath, That the said Eight and twenty Days at the least are expired, after he first tendered his Presentation to the Bishop, and that he refused to grant him Institution thereupon: or shall enter into Bonds with sufficient Sureties to prove the same to be true, under pain of Suspension of the Granter thereof from the Execution of his Office, for half a Year, toties quoties, to be denounced by the said Archbishop, and Nullity of the double Quarrel aforesaid, so unduly procured, to all intents and purposes whatsoever. Always provided, that within the said Eight and Twenty Days, the Bishop shall not institute any other to the prejudice of the said Party before presented, Sub poena nullitatis.
Inhibitions not to be granted without the Subscription of an Advocate.
THat the Jurisdiction of Bishops may be preserved (as near as may be) entire and free from Prejudice, and that for the behoof of the Subjects of this Land, better Provision be made, that henceforward they be not grieved with frivolous and wrongful Suits and Molestations: It is ordained and provided, that no Inhibition shall be granted out of any Court belonging to the Archbishop of Canterbury at the instance of any Party, unless it be subscribed by an Advocate practising in the said Court: which the said Advocate shall do freely, not taking any Fee for the same, except the Party prosecuting the suit, do voluntarily bestow some Gratuity upon him for his Counsel and Advice in the said Cause. The like Course shall be used in granting forth any Inhibition at the Instance of any Party, by the Bishop or his Chancellor against the Archdeacon, or any other Person exercising Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction: And if in the Court or Consistory of any Bishop there be no Advocate at all, then shall the Subscription of a Proctor practising in the same Court be held sufficient.
Inhibitions not to be granted until the Appeal be exhibited to the Judge.
IT is further ordered and decreed, That henceforward no Inhibition be granted by occasion of any Interlocutory Decree, or in any cause of Correction whatsoever, except under the Form aforesaid: And moreover, That before the going out of any such Inhibition, the Appeal it self, or a Copy thereof (avouched by Oath to be just and true) be exhibited to the Judge, or his lawful Surrogate, whereby he may be fully informed both of the quality of the Crime, and of the cause of the Grievance, before the granting forth of the said Inhibition. And every Appellant, or his lawful Proctor, shall before the obtaining of any such Inhibition, show and exhibit to the Judge or his Surrogate in writing, a true Copy of those Acts wherewith he complaineth himself to be aggrieved, and from which he appealeth, or shall take a Corporal Oath, that he hath performed his Diligence, and true Endeavour for the obtaining of the same, and could not obtain it at the hands of the Register in the Country, or his Deputy, tendring him his Fee. And if any Judge or Register shall either procure or permit any Inhibition to be sealed, so as is said, contrary to the Form and Limitation above specified, let him be suspended from the Execution of his Office, for the space of Three Months: If any Proctor, or other Person whatsoever by his appointment, shall offend in any of the Premises, either by making or sending out any Inhibition, contrary to the Tenour of the said Premises, let him be removed from the Exercise of his Office, for the space of a whole Year, without hope of release or restoring.
Inhibitions not to be granted to factious Appellants, unless they first Subscribe.
FOrasmuch as they who break the Laws cannot in reason claim any Benefit or Protection by the same: We decree and appoint, That after any Judge Ecclesiastical hath proceeded judicially against obstinate and factious Persons, and Condemners of Ceremonies, for not observing the Rites and Orders of the Church of England, or for Condemners of Publick Prayer, no Judge ad quem, shall admit or allow any of his or their Appeals, unless he having seen the Original Appeal, the Party Appellant do first personally promise and avow, that he will faithfully keep and observe all the Rites and Ceremonies of the Church of England, as also the prescript Form of a Common Prayer, and do likewise subscribe to the Three Articles formerly by us specified and declared.
None to Marry within the Degrees prohibited.
NO Person shall Marry within the Degrees prohibited by the Laws of God, and expressed in a Table set forth by Authority in the Year of our Lord God 1563, and all Marriages so made and contracted, shall be adjudged incestuous and unlawful, and consequently shall be dissolved as void from the beginning, and the Parties so married shall by course of Law be separated. And the aforesaid Table shall be in every Church publickly set up and fixed at the Charge of the Parish.
None to Marry under xxi Years, without their Parents Consent.
NO Children under the Age of One and Twenty Years compleat, shall contract themselves, or marry without the Consent of their Parents, or of their Guardians and Governours, if their Parents be deceased.
By whom Licenses to Marry without Banns shall be granted, and to what sort of Persons.
NO Faculty or License shall be henceforth granted for Solemnization of Matrimony betwixt any Parties, without Thrice open Publication of the Banns, according to the Book of Common Prayer, by any Person exercising any Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, or claiming any Privileges in the Right of their Churches; but the same shall be granted only by such as have Episcopal Authority, or the Commissary for Faculties, Vicars-General of the Archbishops, and Bishops, Sede plena, or Sede vacante, the Guardian of the Spiritualties, or Ordinaries exercising of Right Episcopal Jurisdiction in their several Jurisdictions respectively, and unto such Persons only as be of good State and Quality, and that upon good Caution and Security taken.
Security to be taken at the granting of such Licences, and under what conditions.
THE Security mentioned shall contain these Conditions: First, That at the time of the granting every such License, there is not any Impediment, of Precontract, Consanguinity, Affinity, or other lawful Cause to hinder the said Marriage. Secondly, That there is not any Controversie or Suit depending in any Court before any Ecclesiastical Judge touching any Contract or Marriage of either of the said Parties with any other. Thirdly, That they have obtained thereunto the express Consent of their Parents, (if they be living) or otherwise of their Guardians or Governours. Lastly, That they shall celebrate the said Matrimony publickly in the Parish Church or Chapel where one of them dwelleth, and in no other Place, and that between the Hours of Eight and Twelve in the Forenoon.
Oaths to be taken for the Conditions.
FOr the avoiding of all fraud and collusion in the obtaining of such Licenses and Dispensations: We further constitute and appoint, That before any License for the Celebration of Matrimony, without Publication of Banns be had or granted, it shall appear to the Judge by the Oaths of Two sufficient witnesses, One of them to be known either to the Judge himself, or to some other Person of good Reputation then present, and known likewise to the said Judge, that the express Consent of the Parents or Parent, if one be dead, or Guardians or Guardian of the Parties is thereunto had and obtained. And furthermore, that one of the Parties personally swear, that he believeth there is no Let or Impediment of Precontract, Kindred, or Alliance, or of any other lawful Cause whatsoever, nor any Suit commenced in any Ecclesiastical Court, to bar or hinder the proceeding of the said Matrimony, according to the Tenour of the aforesaid License.
An Exception for those that are in Widow-hood.
IF both the Parties which are to marry being in Widow-hood, do seek a Faculty for the forbearing of Banns, then the Causes before mentioned requiring the Parents Consents, may be omitted; but the Parishes where they both dwell shall be expressed in the License, as also the Parish named where the Marriage shall be celebrated. And if any Commissary for Faculties, Vicars-General, or other the said Ordinaries shall offend in the Premises, or any part thereof, he shall for every time so offending, be suspended from the Execution of his Office for the Space of Six Months; and every such License or Dispensation shall be held void to all effects and purposes, as if there had never been any such granted, and the Parties marrying by vertue thereof, shall be subject to the Punishments which are appointed for Clandestine Marriages.
No Sentence for Divorce to be given upon the sole Confession of the Parties.
FOrasmuch as Matrimonial Causes have been always reckoned and reputed among the Weightiest, and therefore require the greater Caution when they come to be handled and debated in Judgment, especially in Causes wherein Matrimony having been in the Church duly solemnized, is required upon any suggestion or pretext whatsoever to be dissolved or annulled: We do straitly Charge and Enjoyn, that in all Proceedings to Divorce and Nullities of Matrimony, good Circumspection and Advice be used; and that the Truth may (as far as is possible) be sifted out by the Deposition of Witnesses, and other lawful Proofs and Evictions, and that Credit be not given to the sole Confession of the Parties themselves, howsoever taken upon Oath either within or without the Court.
No Sentence for Divorce to be given but in Open Court.
NO Sentence shall be given either for Separation a thoro & mensa, or for annulling of pretended Matrimony, but in open Court, and in the Seat of Justice, and that with the Knowledge and Consent either of the Archbishop within his Province, or of the Bishop within his Diocess, or of the Dean of the Arches, the Judge of the Audience of Canterbury, or of the Vicars General, or other principal Officials, or sede vacante, of the Guardians of the Spiritualities, or other Ordinaries to whom of Right it appertaineth, in their several Jurisdictions and Courts, and concerning them only, that are then dwelling under their Jurisdictions.
In all Sentences for Divorce, Bond to be taken for not Marrying during each others Life.
IN all Sentences pronounced only for Divorce and Separation a thoro & mensa, there shall be a Caution and Restraint inserted in the Act of the said Sentence, That the Parties so separated, shall live chastly and continently: neither shall they, during each others Life, contract Matrimony with any other Person. And for the better Observation of this last Clause, the said Sentence of Divorce shall not be pronounced, until the Party or Parties requiring the same, have given good and sufficient Caution and Security into the Court, that they will not any way break or transgress the said Restraint or Prohibition.
The Penalty for Judges offending in the Premises.
Ecclesiastical Courts belonging to the Jurisdiction of Bishops, and Archdeacons and the Proceedings in them.
Notorious Crimes and Scandals to be Certified into Ecclesiastical Courts by Presentment.
IF any offend their Brethren either by Adultery, Whoredom, Incest, or Drunkenness, or by Swearing, Ribaldry, Usury, and any other Uncleanness and Wickedness of Life, the Church-Wardens, or Quest-Men and Side-Men in their next Presentments to their Ordinaries, shall faithfully present all and every of the said Offenders, to the intent that they and every of them may be punished by the severity of the Laws, according to their Deserts: and such notorious Offenders shall not be admitted to the holy Communion, till they be reformed.
Schismaticks to be Presented.
IF the Church-Wardens, or Quest-Men or Assistants, do or shall know any Man within their Parish, or elsewhere, that is a Hinderer of the Word of God to be Read or sincerely Preached, or of the Execution of these our Constitutions, or a Fautor of any usurped or foreign Power, by the Laws of this Realm justly rejected and taken away, or a Defender of Popish and Erroneous Doctrine; they shall detect and present the same to the Bishop of the Diocess, or Ordinary of the Place, to be censured and punished according to such Ecclesiastical Laws as are prescribed in that behalf.
Disturbers of Divine Service to be Presented.
IN all Visitations of Bishops and Archdeacons, the Church-Wardens or Quest-Men and Side-Men, shall truly and personally present the Names of all those which behave themselves rudely and disorderly in the Church, or which by untimely ringing of Bells, by walking, talking, or other noise shall hinder the Minister or Preacher.
Not Communicants at Easter to be Presented.
THE Minister, Church-Wardens, Quest-Men, and Assistants of every Parish-Church and Chapel, shall yearly within Forty Days after Easter, exhibit to the Bishop or his Chancellor, the Names and Sirnames of all the Parishioners, as well Men as Women, which being of the Age of Sixteen Years, received not the Communion at Easter before.
Ministers may Present.
BEcause it often cometh to pass, that the Church-Wardens, Side-Men, Quest-Men, and such other Persons of the Laity as are to take Care for the suppressing of Sin and Wickedness in their several Parishes, as much as in them lieth, by Admonition, Reprehension, and Denunciation to their Ordinaries, do forbear to discharge their Duties therein, either through fear of their Superiors, or through negligence, more than were fit, the licentiousness of these Times considered: We Ordain, That hereafter every Parson and Vicar, or in the lawful Absence of any Parson or Vicar, when their Curates and Substitutes may joyn in every Presentment with the said Church-Wardens, Side-Men, and the rest above mentioned, at the Times hereafter limited, if they the said Church-Wardens and the rest, will present such Enormities as are apparent in the Parish: or if they will not, then every such Parson and Vicar, or in their absence as aforesaid, their Curates may themselves present to their Ordinaries at such Times, and when else they think it meet, all such Crimes as they have in charge, or otherwise, as by them (being the Persons that should have the chief Care for the suppressing of Sin and Impiety in their Parishes) shall be thought to require due Reformation. Provided always, That if any Man confess his secret and hidden Sins to the Minister for the unburdening of his Conscience, and to receive spiritual Consolation and Ease of Mind from him: We do not any way bind the said Minister by this our Constitution, but do straitly charge and admonish him, that he do not at any time reveal and make known to any Person whatsoever, any Crime or Offence so committed to his Trust and Secrecy (except they be such Crimes as by the Laws of this Realm, his own Life may be called into question for concealing the same) under pain of Irregularity.
Ministers shall present Recusants.
EVery Parson, Vicar, or Curate, shall carefully inform themselves every Year hereafter, how many Popish Recusants, Men, Women and Children above the Age of Thirteen Years; and how many being Popishly given, (who though they come to the Church, yet do refuse to receive the Communion) are Inhabitants, or make their abode either as Sojourners or common Guests in any of their several Parishes, and shall set down their true Names in Writing (if they can learn them) or otherwise such Names as for the time they carry, distinguishing the absolute Recusants from half Recusants: and the same so far as they know or believe so distinguished and set down under their Hands, shall truly present to their Ordinaries before the Feast of the Nativity next ensuing, under pain of Suspension to be inflicted upon them by their said Ordinaries, and so every Year hereafter upon the like pain, before the Feast of Saint John Baptist. Also we ordain, That all such Ordinaries, Chancellors, Commissaries, Archdeacons, Officials, and all other Ecclesiastical Officers to whom the said Presentments shall be exhibited, shall likewise within one Month after the Receipt of the same, under pain of Suspension by the Bishop from the Execution of their Office for the space of Half a Year (as often as they shall offend therein) deliver them, or cause to be delivered to the Bishop respectively; who shall also exhibit them to the Archbishop within Six Weeks, and the Archbishop to his Majesty within other Six Weeks, after he hath received the said Presentments.
Ministers and Church-Wardens not to be Sued for Presenting.
WHereas for the reformation of criminous Persons, and Disorders in every Parish, the Church-wardens, Quest-men, Side-men, and such other Church Officers are sworn, and the Minister charged to present as well the Crimes and Disorders committed by the said Criminous Persons, as also the Common Fame which is spread abroad of them, whereby they are often maligned, and sometimes troubled by the said Delinquents or their Friends: We do admonish and exhort all Judges both Ecclesiastical and Temporal, as they regard and reverence the fearful Judgment-seat of the highest Judge, that they admit not in any of their Courts, any Complaint, Plea, Suit or Suits, against any such Church-Wardens, Quest-Men, Side-Men, or other Church-Officers, for making any such Presentments, nor against any Minister for any Presentments that he shall make: all the said Presentments tending to the restraint of shameless Impiety; and considering that the Rules both of Charity and Government, do presume that they did nothing therein of Malice, but for the discharge of their Consciences.
Church-Wardens not bound to Present oftner than Twice a Year.
NO Church-Wardens, Quest-Men, or Side-Men of any Parish shall be inforced to exhibit their Presentments to any having Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, above once in every Year, where it hath been no oftner used, nor above twice in any Diocess whatsoever, except it be at the Bishop’s Visitation. For the which Presentments of every Parish-Church or Chappel, the Register of any Court where they are to be exhibited, shall not receive in one Year above Four pence, under pain for every Offence therein of Suspension from the execution of his Office for the space of one Month toties quoties. Provided always, that as good occasion shall require, it shall be lawful for every Minister, Church-Wardens and Side-Men, to present Offenders as oft as they shall think meet. And likewise, for any godly disposed Person, or for any Ecclesiastical Judge, upon knowledge or notice given unto him or them, of any enormous Crime within his Jurisdiction, to move the Minister, Church-Wardens or Side-Men, as they tender the glory of God and reformation of Sin, to present the same, if they shall find sufficient cause to induce them thereunto, that it may be in due time punished and reformed. Provided, that for these voluntary Presentments, there be no Fee required or taken of them under the pain aforesaid.
Church-Wardens not to be troubled for not Presenting oftner than Twice a Year.
NO Church-Wardens, Quest-Men, or Side-Men shall be called or cited, but only at the said time or times before limited, to appear before any Ecclesiastical Judge whatsover, for refusing at other times to present any faults committed in their Parishes, and punishable by Ecclesiastical Laws. Neither shall they, nor any of them, after their Presentments exhibited at any of those times, be any further troubled for the same, except upon manifest and evident proof it may appear, that they did then willingly and wittingly omit to present some such publick Crime or Crimes, as they knew to be committed, or could not be ignorant that there was then a publick Fame of them, or unless there be very just Cause to call them for the Explanation of their former Presentments. In which case of wilful omission, their Ordinaries shall proceed against them in such sort as in Causes of wilful Perjury in a Court Ecclesiastical, it is already by Law provided.
The Old Church-Wardens to make their Presentments before the New be Sworn.
THe Office of all Church-wardens and Side-men shall be reputed ever hereafter to continue, until the New Church-Wardens that shall succeed them, be Sworn, which shall be the first Week after Easter, or some Week following, according to the direction of the Ordinary. Which time so appointed, shall always be one of the Two times in every Year, when the Minister and Church-Wardens, and Side-men of every Parish shall exhibit to their several Ordinaries, the Presentments of such Enormities as have hapned in their Parishes since their last Presentments. And this Duty they shall perform, before the newly chosen Church-Wardens and Side-Men be Sworn, and shall not be suffered to pass over the said Presentments to those that are newly come into Office, and are by intendment ignorant of such Crimes, under pain of those Censures which are appointed for the Reformation of such Dalliers and Dispensers with their own Consciences and Oaths.
Convenient Times to be assigned for framing Presentments.
FOr the avoiding of such Inconveniences as heretofore have hapned by the hasty making of Bills of Presentments, upon the days of the Visitation and Synods; it is ordered, That always hereafter, every Chancellor, Archdeacon, Commissary and Official, and every other Person having Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, at the ordinary Time when the Church-Wardens are sworn: and the Archbishop and Bishops when he or they do summon their Visitation, shall deliver, or cause to be delivered to the Church-Wardens, Quest-Men and Side-Men of every Parish, or to some of them, such Books of Articles as they or any of them shall require for the Year following, the said Church-Wardens, Quest-Men and Sidemen, to ground their presentments upon, at such Times as they are to exhibit them. In which Book shall be contained the Form of the Oath which must be taken immediately before every such Presentment: to the intent that having beforehand, time sufficient, not only to peruse and consider what their said Oath shall be, but the Articles also whereupon they are to ground their Presentments, they may frame them at home both advisedly and truly to the discharge of their own Consciences, after they are Sworn, as becometh honest and godly Men.
None to be cited into Ecclesiastical Courts by Process of Quorum Nomina.
NO Bishop, Chancellor, Archdeacon, Official, or other Ecclesiastical Judge, shall suffer any general Processes of Quorum Nomina, to be sent out of his Court; except the Names of all such as thereby are to be cited, shall be first expressly entred by the hand of the Register, or his Deputy, under the said Processes, and the said Processes and Names be first subscribed by the Judge, or his Deputy, and his Seal thereto affixed.
None to be cited into several Courts for one Crime.
IN places where the Bishop and Archdeacon do by Prescription or Composition Visit at several times in one and the same Year; lest for one and the self-same Fault any of his Majesty’s Subjects should be challenged and molested in divers Ecclesiastical Courts: We order and appoint, That every Archdeacon or his Official, within one Month after the Visitation ended that Year, and the Presentments received, shall certifie under his Hand and Seal, to the Bishop or his Chancellor, the Names and Crimes of all such as are detected and presented in his said Visitation, to the end the Chancellor shall thenceforth forbear to convene any Person for any Crime or Cause so detected or presented to the Archdeacon. And the Chancellor within the like time after the Bishops Visitation ended, and Presentments received, shall under his Hand and Seal signifie to the Archdeacon or his Official, the Names and Crimes of all such Persons which shall be detected or presented unto him in that Visitation, to the same intent as is aforesaid. And if these Officers shall not certifie each other, as is here prescribed, or after such Certificate shall intermeddle with the Crimes or Persons detected and presented in each others Visitation; then every of them so offending shall be suspended from all Exercise of his Jurisdiction, by the Bishop of the Diocess, until he shall repay the Costs and Expences which the Parties grieved, have been at, by that Vexation.
No Sentence of Deprivation or Deposition to be pronounced against a Minister, but by the Bishop.
WHen any Minister is complained of in any Ecclesiastical Court belonging to any Bishop of his Province, for any Crime, the Chancellor, Commissary, Official, or any other having Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction to whom it shall appertain, shall expedite the Cause by Processes and other Proceedings against him; and upon Contumacy for not appearing, shall first suspend him, and afterwards his Contumacy continuing, Excommunicate him. But if he appear and submit himself to the Course of Law, then the Matter being ready for Sentence, and the Merits of his Offence exacting by Law, either Deprivation from his Living, or Deposition from the Ministry, no such Sentence shall be pronounced by any Person whosoever, but only by the Bishop, with the Assistance of his Chancellor, the Dean, (if they may conveniently be had) and some of the Prebendaries, if the Court be kept near the Cathedral Church, or of the Archdeacon if he may be had conveniently, and Two other, at the least, grave Ministers and Preachers to be called by the Bishop, when the Court is kept in other Places.
No Act to be Sped but in open Court.
NO Chancellor, Commissary, Archdeacon, Official, or any other Person using Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction whatsoever, shall Speed any Judicial Act, either of Contentions, or voluntary Jurisdiction, except he have the ordinary Register of that Court, or his lawful Deputy; or if he or they will not, or cannot be present, then such Persons as by law are allowed in that behalf to Write or Speed the same, under pain of Suspension, ipso facto.
No Court to have more than One Seal.
NO Chancellor, Commissary, Archdeacon, Official, or any other, exercising Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, shall without the Bishop’s Consent, have any more Seals than One, for the Sealing of all Matters incident to his Office: which Seal shall always be kept either by himself, or by his lawful Substitute exercising Jurisdiction for him, and remaining within the Jurisdiction of the said Judge, or in the City or principal Town of the County. This Seal shall contain the Title of that Jurisdiction, which every of the said Judges or their Deputies do execute.
Convenient Places to be chosen for the keeping of Courts.
ALL Chancellors, Commissaries, Archdeacons, Officials, and all other exercising Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, shall appoint such meet Places for the keeping of their Courts by the assignment or approbation of the Bishop of the Diocess, as shall be convenient for Entertainment of those that are to make their appearance there, and most indifferent for their travel. And likewise they shall keep and end their Courts in such convenient time, as every Man may return homewards in as due Season as may be.
Peculiar and Inferiour Courts to exhibit the Original Copies of Wills into the Bishop’s Registry.
Judges Ecclesiastical, and their Surrogates.
The Quality and Oath of Judges.
NO man shall hereafter be admitted a Chancellor, Commissary or Official, to exercise any Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, except he be of the full Age of Six and twenty Years at the least, and one that is learned in the Civil and Ecclesiastical Laws, and is at the least a Master of Arts, or Batchelor of Law, and is reasonably well practised in the Course thereof, as likewise well affected, and zealously bent to Religion, touching whose Life and Manners no evil Example is had, and except before he enter into or execute any such Office, he shall take the Oath of the King’s Supremacy in the presence of the Bishop, or in the open Court, and shall subscribe to the Articles of Religion agreed upon in the Convocation in the Year One thousand five hundred sixty and two, and shall also swear, that he will to the uttermost of his Understanding, deal uprightly and justly in his Office, without respect or favour of reward: the said Oaths and Subscription to be recorded by a Register then present. And likewise all Chancellors, Commissaries, Officials, Registers, and all other that do now possess or execute any places of Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, or Service, shall before Christmas next, in the presence of the Archbishop or Bishop, or in open Court, under whom or where they exercise their Offices, take the same Oaths, and subscribe as before is said; or upon refusal so to do, shall be suspended from the execution of their Offices, until they shall take the said Oaths, and subscribe as aforesaid.
The Quality of Surrogates.
NO Chancellor, Commissary, Archdeacon, using Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, shall at any time substitute in their absence any to keep any Court for them, except he be either a grave Minister and a Graduate, or a licensed publick Preacher, and a Beneficed Man near the place where the Courts are kept, or a Batchelor of Law, or a Master of
Proctors not to retain Causes without the lawful Assignment of the Parties.
NOne shall procure in any Cause whatsoever, unless he be thereunto constituted and appointed by the Party himself, either before the Judge, and by Act in Court, or unless in the beginning of the Suit, he be by a true and sufficient Proxy thereunto warranted and enabled. We call that Proxy sufficient, which is strengthned and confirmed by some Authentical Seal, the Parties Approbation, or at least his Ratification therewithal concurring. All which Proxies shall be forthwith by the said Proctors exhibited into the Court, and be safely kept and preserved by the Register in the publick Registry of the said Court. And if any Register or Proctor shall offend herein, he shall be secluded from the Exercise of his Office for the space of two Months, without hope of release or restoring.
Proctors not to retain Causes without the Counsel of an Advocate.
FOr lessening and abridging the multitude of Suits and Contentions, as also for preventing the Complaints of Suitors in Courts Ecclesiastical, who many times are overthrown by the oversight and negligence, or by the ignorance and insufficiency of Proctors, and likewise for the furtherance and increase of Learning, and the advancement of Civil and Canon Law, following the laudable Customs heretofore observed in the Courts pertaining to the Archbishop of Canterbury, We Will and Ordain, That no Proctor exercising in any of them shall entertain any Cause whatsoever, and keep and retain the same for two Court Days, without the Counsel and Advice of an Advocate, under pain of a Years Suspension from his Practice: neither shall the Judge have power to release or mitigate the said Penalty, without express Mandate and Authority from the Archbishop aforesaid.
Proctors not to conclude in any Cause without the knowledge of an Advocate.
NO Judge in any of the said Courts of the Archbishop, shall admit any Libel, or any other matter, without the Advice of an Advocate admitted to practice in the same Court, or without his Subscription: neither shall any Proctor conclude any Cause depending, without the knowledge of the Advocate retained and fee’d in the Cause: which if any Proctor shall do, or procure to be done, or shall by any colour whatsoever defraud the Advocate of his Duty or Fee, or shall be negligent in repairing to the Advocate, and requiring his Advice what course is to be taken in the Cause, he shall be suspended from all Practice for the space of six Months, without hope of being thereunto restored before the said term be fully compleat.
Proctors prohibited the Oath In animam Domini sui.
FOrasmuch as in the Probate of Testaments and Suits for Administration of the Goods of Persons dying Intestate, the Oath usually taken by Proctors of Courts, In animam constituentis, is found to be inconvenient: We do therefore decree and ordain, That every Executor or Suitor for Administration, shall personally repair to the Judge in that behalf, or his Surrogate, and in his own person (and not by Proctor) take the Oath accustomed in these Cases. But if by reason of Sickness or Age, or any other just lett or impediment, he be not able to make his personal Appearance before the Judge, it shall be lawful for the Judge (there being Faith first made by a credible Person, of the truth of his said hindrance or impediment) to grant a Commission to some grave Ecclesiastical Person abiding near the Party aforesaid, whereby he shall give Power and Authority to the said Ecclesiastical Person, in his stead, to minister the accustomed Oath abovementioned, to the Executor or Suitor for such Administration, requiring his said Substitute, that by a faithful and trusty Messenger he certifie the said Judge truly and faithfully what he hath done therein. Lastly, We ordain, and appoint, That no Judge or Register, shall in any wise receive for the Writing, Drawing, or Sealing of any such Commission, above the Sum of Six Shillings and Eight Pence; whereof one Moiety to be for the Judge, and the other for the Register of the said Court.
Proctors not to be Clamorous in Court.
Abuses to be Reformed in Registers.
IF any Register, or Deputy, or Substitute whatsoever, shall receive any Certificate without the knowledge and consent of the Judge of the Court, or willingly omit to cause any Person cited to appear upon any Court Day to be called, or unduly put off, and defer the Examination of Witnesses to be examined by a Day set and assigned by the Judge, or do not obey and observe the judicial and lawful Monition of the said Judge, or omit to write, or cause to be written such Citations and Decrees as are to be put in execution, and set forth before the next Court Day, or shall not cause all Testaments exhibited into his Office to be Registred within a convenient Time, or shall set down or enact as decreed by the Judge any thing false, or conceited by himself, and not so ordered or decreed by the Judge, or in the transmission of Processes to the Judge Ad quem, shall add, or insert any falshood or untruth, or omit any thing therein either by cunning, or by gross negligence, or in cause of Instance, or promoted of Office, shall receive any reward in favour of either Party, or be of Counsel directly or indirectly with either of the Parties in Suit, or in the Execution of their Office, shall do ought else maliciously, or fraudulently, whereby the said Ecclesiastical Judge or his Proceedings may be slandered or defamed: We will and ordain, That the said Register or his Deputy or Substitute, offending in all, or any of the Premises, shall by the Bishop of the Diocess be suspended from the Exercise of his Office, for the space of one, two, or three Months, or more, according to the quality of his Offence, and that the said Bishop shall assign some other Publick Notary to execute and discharge all things pertaining to his Office, during the Time of his said Suspension.
A certain Rate of Fees due to all Ecclesiastical Officers.
NO Bishop, Suffragan, Chancellor, Commissary, Archdeacon, Official, nor any other exercising Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction whatsoever, nor any Register of any Ecclesiastical Courts, nor any Minister belonging to any of the said Offices or Courts, shall hereafter for any Cause incident to their several Offices, take or receive any other or greater Fees, than such as were certified to the most Reverend Father in God, John late Archbishop of Canterbury, in the Year of our Lord God 1597, and were by him ratified and approved, under pain that every such Judge, Officer or Minister offending herein, shall be suspended from the Exercise of their several Offices for the space of six Months for every such Offence. Always provided, That if any Question shall arise concerning the certainty of the said Fees, or any of them: then those Fees shall be held for lawful, which the Archbishop of Canterbury for the Time being shall under his Hand approve, except the Statutes of this Realm before made, do in any particular Case express some other Fees to be due. Provided furthermore, That no Fee or Money shall be received either by the Archbishop, or any Bishop or Suffragan, either directly or indirectly, for admitting of any into Sacred Orders, nor that any other Person or Persons under the said Archbishop, Bishop or Suffragan, shall for Parchment, Writing, Wax, Sealing, or for any other respect thereunto appertaining, take above Ten Shillings, under such Pains as are already by Law prescribed.
A Table of the Rates of Fees to be set up in Courts and Registries.
WE do likewise constitute and appoint, That the Registers belonging to every such Ecclesiastical Judge, shall place Two Tables, containing the several Rates and Sums of all the said Fees; one in the usual Place or Consistory where the Court is kept, and the other in his Registry, and both of them in such sort, as every Man whom it concerneth, may, without Difficulty, come to the view and Perusal thereof, and take a Copy of them; the same Tables to be set up before the Feast of the Nativity next ensuing. And if any Register shall fail to place the said Tables according to the Tenour hereof, he shall be suspended from the Execution of his Office, until he cause the same to be accordingly done: and the said Tables being once set up, if he shall at any time remove or suffer the same to be removed, hidden, or any way hindred from sight, contrary to the true meaning of this Constitution, he shall for every such Offence be suspended from the Exercise of his Office for the space of Six Months.
The whole Fees for Showing Letters of Orders, and other Licenses, due but Once in every Bishops Time.
The Number of Apparitors Restrained.
Authority of Synods.
A National Synod the Church Representative.
WHosoever shall hereafter affirm, That the Sacred Synod of this Nation in the Name of Christ, and by the King’s Authority assembled, is not the true Church of England by Representation, let him be Excommunicated, and not restored, until he repent and publickly revoke that his wicked Error.
Synods Conclude as well the Absent as the Present.
WHosoever shall affirm, That no manner of Person either of the Clergy or Laity, not being themselves particularly assembled in the said sacred Synod, are to be subject to the Decrees thereof in Causes Ecclesiastical (made and ratified by the King’s Majesty’s Supreme Authority) as not having given their Voices unto them; let him be Excommunicated, and not restored until he repent and publicly revoke that his wicked Error.