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munion, and also to avoid any such exhibition of the Church's strifes and frailties as would be likely to depreciate her character in the judgment of Christians of other names. If this be so, how sadly has the author of this Memoir failed in his obligation!
We do not object to his saying any thing which was necessary to the full display of the character and principles of the subject of his Memoir: this he might have done without controverting the views or offending the feelings of others. We do not object to a statement of his own opinions and claiming identity between them and those of the venerable man whose life he was writing, although it might be easy to show that, upon some points, there was no strong sympathy between. them; but we do object, and object earnestly, against any pretense that the peculiar set of private opinions expressed in this volume, on the points above enumerated, are to be considered as necessary articles in the creed of Evangelical Churchmen. We also protest against the inference, which we fear many will draw from this volume,-that Churchmanship and Evangelicalism are antagonistic that whatever is Evangelical is not Church-like, and that whatever is essential to the Church-system, has no close affinity with Evangelical truth. Although the late Dr. Milnor was not a "High Churchman," such an inference would be in direct opposition to what was his sober and deliberate judgment. He believed that evangelical truth was held, and the evangelical spirit possessed, by good men, widely differing in grades of Churchmanship. He thought also that the distinctive principles of the Church might not only be firmly maintained, but also judiciously preached, without being inconsistent with Gospel doctrine, or injurious to vital piety. Writing to the Bishop of Calcutta, in July, 1842, long after the agitations of the Tract controversy commenced, he says: "In regard to the general state of the Church in our country, I thank God that I am enabled to say it is in its external circumstances prosperous; and in doctrinal views and evangelical feeling, improving. With our rapidly growing population, its extension keeps tolerably equal pace; and the divisions in some Protestant denominations have tended to add to our numbers. To a much greater extent than formerly, the great doctrines of the Reformation are preached to our congregations; and though in some places, what are called the distinctive principles of the Church, are, in my view, suffered to occupy too much attention, yet, for the most part, I believe the latter are allowed only their just place in the communications of the pulpit. A
few of our ministers are disposed to keep up a spirit of controversy, and to decry what they call low-Churchmanship; but on the whole, there is a preference of the things which make for peace. None are disposed unduly to compromise our peculiarities by inadmissible mixtures with others in the services of the sanctuary; and our Church commends herself to the regards of those who are without, by maintaining toward them the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace.'
The terms High and Low Church-of such ominous import and weighty significance-had their origin in the Convocation, held in the reign of good Queen Anne, more than one hundred and forty years ago. The majority of the Lower House was High, and the Upper House, composed of the Bishops, (mirabile dictu !) was Low Church. And what was the ground of the distinction? According to Bishop Burnet, the Lower House passed a resolution, or act, declaring "that Episcopacy was of Divine and Apostolical right;" they desired the concurrence of the Upper House in this. But the Bishops declined alledging that it "was a plain attempt to make a Canon or Constitution, without obtaining a Royal license." The terrors of premunire had their influence in that day no less than in this. But at length the Bishops, not wishing to be accused of secretly favoring Presbyterianism, sent for answer, that they acquiesced in the declaration, that was already made on that head, in the Preface to the Book of Ordinations."+
The party divisions and dissensions, which were contemporaneous in their origin with the terms High and Low Church, have continued with greater or less virulence from that day to the present. Yet at no time have these been proper terms of distinction between those who held what are called evangelical views and those who did not. Who can say that Beveridge was less evangelical than Tillotson-that Hobart was less evangelical than White? or, to come down to our own days, that Mant was less evangelical than Whately, or Wilberforce than Hampden? In the Church in this country, emphatically, these names of old parties in the Church of England, could never be applicable to any existing state of things; for the nice questions arising out of the union of Church and State, in which they originated, have no existence here. We all believe that the Church has spiritual jurisdiction, independent of any earthly power. Few among us doubt that Episcopacy
* Pp. 559, 560.
Burnet's history of his own times, Vol. III., pp. 483, 484.
is jure divino, and all will give their assent to the language of the Preface to the Ordinal. Differences of opinion have indeed existed, upon some principles of belief, as well as rules of discipline. And we are willing to admit, with Bishop Hopkins, that even parties may exist within the Church, without injury to her interests. But party spirit is the bane of the Church, poisoning her vitals; and should be frowned upon by every friend of piety among us, whatever may be the cast of his opinions.
But a few years since, and that spirit was nearly dead. At the General Convention-of blessed memory-in 1835, when uniformity in the use of the whole service was secured, and the Church, baptized with a new measure of her Master's Spirit, recognized her duty and assumed her rank as a Missionary Church, all hands seemed joined together, all hearts melted into one! In the midst of that scene the soul of Milnor rejoiced, in unison with the souls of all true men in our communion, whether High or Low.
No "party" was left in being: or, if there was a remnant of the old "high and dry," it was a mere skeleton, without muscle or nerve enough to be capable of being galvanized into life.
But alas! new parties have been thrown up in the boiling cauldron of these troublous times, of other visage, and different temper than those to which the Church had been accustomed in earlier periods of her history. They are emphatically modern; creatures of the fearful day we live in. The one, is of reverent, rather than of reverend aspect; professing to be guided by the lore of dark antiquity, yet composed, for the most part, of unfledged youths, who show their love for ancient Fathers by laughing at the wisdom of their own; and exhibit their regard for Holy Church by questioning the mission, and undervaluing the discipline of that branch of it to which they belong; a class of theological petit-maitres, familiar with costumes and attitudes; more skilled in ecclesiology than in divinity, attaching more importance to a genuflexion than to a prayer or a gospel sermon, and spending more thoughts upon the position of a Font, or a credence table, or upon the mode of administering a sacrament, than upon the spiritual import and value of the sacraments themselves. This party may be under the guidance of some wiser and older heads; it may have incorporated in it some more solid and grave materials than the above hasty sketch would indicate; yet the sketch, extravagant though it may be, is sufficiently specific, not to fail of its application.
In company with this Romeward sprout, there has sprung into being another scion on the opposite side of the tree, and inclining to a contrary direction. A clique of pseudo-evangelicals has presented itself, but has no valid title to the parentage it claims. The old sires never gave birth to such misformed, degenerate sons. They are startled at sounds and practices, which were familiar to our fathers as household words and usages. They know of no evangelicalism but what consists in negations-denials of Baptismal grace, the real presence, and the Apostolical succession. They recognize no Body of Christ but that which is invisible, intangible, unreal; no Catholicism but that which comprehends all sects bearing the name of Christian; and admit of no piety but that which exists independently of all aids from Christ through the interposition of any Priesthood or Sacraments.
While one party expects to benefit the Church by caricaturing her principles and forms, the other looks for the same result by a disguise or suppression of them. To both, the Church may say:
Non tali auxilio, nec defensoribus istis
The times need sound heads and warm hearts; men firm in purpose, and vigorous in action; who with lively faith, and cheerful hope, and quenchless love,-unmoved by flattery, and unawed by fear,-will go forth in the power of the Holy Ghost to labor for the salvation of souls, for the edification of the Church, and for the glory of God. The existing evils are to be cured, and the ark of the Lord borne forward, only by His blessing upon the prayers and labors of sound evangelical Churchmen. The Hookers, the Beveridges, the Halls, the Hornes of the Mother Church of England, and the Whites, the Hobarts, the Griswolds, the Ravenscrofts, the Moores, of our own, must live again in the principles, the prayers, the holy lives, the untiring diligence of their successors in office, and their descendants in the Ministry of every grade. We must have men, who, contented with "the doctrine of Christ, as this Church hath received the same," will preach the pure Gospel in its fulness, simplicity, and power-as it is exhibited in our Creeds, Articles, Liturgy, and Homilies. Men who will carefully sustain the Church's Ministry, institutions, and discipline, as divinely appointed means for the preservation of truth and the advancement of holiness upon earth. Men who will reverence the sacraments they administer, not as substitutes for vital piety, but as means of producing and sus
taining it in the soul. Men, who, while they consider the religion of the heart to be a priceless gem, believe its value to be increased by the preciousness of the materials in which it is set, and the strength of the casket in which it is preserved. Such are the men (and thank God, they are neither few in number nor feeble in power at the present time) who will enjoy the confidence and meet the wishes of the great majority of all orders in our Communion. Let them be multiplied; let our Theological Seminaries yearly increase their number; then, by God's blessing, all is sure. The body of our Church will be unaffected by the clamors of factions within, and the assaults of enemies from without. Let our sincere prayer be: THE LORD GOD BE WITH US, AS HE WAS WITH OUR FATHERS; and then, like Luther in his times of trouble, we may "sing the forty-sixth Psalm." "GOD IS IN THE MIDST OF" OUR ZION; "THEREFORE she shall NOT BE MOVED: THE LORD OF HOSTS IS WITH US; THE GOD OF JACOB IS OUR REFUGE."