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Sketches of North Carolina
Chapter XXII - Minutes of the Synod of the Carolinas from 1783 to 1801, Inclusive with the Roll of the Members

WHEN it was finally determined, in May, 1788, by the Synod of New York and Philadelphia, to constitute a General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, in the United States of America, as a preliminary step some new Synods were first set off, of which the Synod of the Carolinas was one; by the following resolutions the way was open for its meeting:—"Resolved, that the Synod of the Carolinas meet on the first Wednesday of November next, at eleven o'clock, A.M., at Centre church, in Rowan county, and that Mr. Pattillo, or, in his absence, the senior minister present, open the Synod with a sermon, and preside till a moderator he chosen." The Presbyteries that, united, formed the Synod, were Orange, in North Carolina, South Carolina, in the State of the same name, and Abingdon, principally in Tennessee.

The members of Orange Presbytery were Rev. Messrs. Henry Pattillo, David Caldwell, Samuel E. McCorkle, James Hall, Robert Archibald, James McRee, Jacob Lake, Daniel Thatcher, David Barr, John Beck, in all ten. Those of South Carolina, James Edmonds, John Harris, Joseph Alexander, John Simpson, Thomas Reese, Thomas H. McCaule, James Templeton, Francis Cummins, Robert Finley, Robert Hall, Robert Hecklin; in all eleven. Of Abingdon Presbytery, Charles Cummins, Hezekiah Balch, John Cossan, Samuel Houston, Samuel Carrick, James Balch, in all seven. Total in the Synod, twenty-eight.

From the records of the twenty-five sessions which this Synod held, previously to its division in 1813, such extracts will be made as are of abiding interest., or necessary to give a succinct account of the doings of a pious and active body of men, whose names and doings should not be forgotten. In some cases a brief statement will be made, embracing the spirit of the records for the sake of brevity; in others the very words will be given, which will be indicated by the common quotation marks. Time exact words will be given whenever they appear to be of importance.


"Centre Church, State of North Carolina,
"November 5th, 1788.

The Synod of the Carolinas met according to the appointment of the late Synod of New York and Philadelphia, convened in May, 1788. Members present were, of the Presbytery of Orange, the Rev. David Caldwell, Samuel E. McCorkle, James Hall, Robert Archibald, James McRee, and Jacob Lake, ministers; with elders, Messrs. Wm. Anderson, McNeely, Harris, King, Robert Irwin, and John Dickey.

"Of the Presbytery of South Carolina, the Rev. James Templeton, Francis Cummins, Robert Hall, ministers; with elders, Messrs. Martin and Hamilton.

"Of the Presbytery of Abingdon, the Rev. Samuel Houston. One new member, it appears, had been added to the Presbytery of South Carolina, John Newton, and one had died, Robert Mecklin. The Synod was opened by the Rev. David Caldwell being the senior member present, after which Synod was constituted with prayer. The Rev. David Caldwell was chosen moderator, and Rev. James McRee and Robert Hall clerks."

The Committee of Overtures read the following:—"That the committee think it highly necessary that Synod should inquire respecting a certain report injurious to the credit of the late Synod of New York and Philadelphia, namely, that said Synod had cast off the larger catechism, and that with difficulty the shorter was retained." The Synod, in consequence of examining into the above report, and having received what they considered as authentic testimony to the contrary, concluded the report to be totally false.

Resolved, that it be enjoined on the several members of Synod, to take an account, when it may appear that the above false and scandalous report is injurious to the credit of religion, and call those who propagated it before their respective jurisdiction, and if found guilty without being able to give their author, that they be treated according to the demerit of their crime.

"Synod adjourned to meet at Poplar Tent, on the first Wednesday in September next. Concluded with prayer."


"Poplar Tent, State of North Carolina,
September 2d, 1789.

"The Synod met according to adjournment, and was opened by the Rev. David Caldwell, with a sermon from Psalms ii., 6." Two members were reported as added to the Presbytery of South Carolina, Robert McCullock and William C. Davis, and one dismissed, Robert Finley. It appeared that the Presbytery of Orange had received the Rev. David Kerr, from the Presbytery of Temple Patrick, in Ireland, as a member in good standing; the Synod proceeded to consider his credentials and collateral testimony, approved of the proceeding and invited him to a seat.

The report about the larger catechism being cast off was further considered, and it appearing the Rev. Robert Finley, lately dismissed from the Presbytery of South Carolina, was implicated in that report, Synod ordered a letter to be written to him, and another to the Presbytery of which he is a member.

"Overtures,—Whether persons who practise dancing, revel- horse-racing, and card-playing, are to be admitted to sealing ordinances? Synod, taking into consideration these and other things of a similar tendency, Resolved, that they are wrong; and the practisers of them ought not to be admitted to sealing ordinances, until they be dealt with by their spiritual rulers in such manner as to them may appear most for the glory of God, their own good, and the good of the church."

Overture,—Are persons who habitually neglect to attend public worship, on fast or thanksgiving days, admissible to sealing ordinances? Synod unanimously agree that such conduct is inconsistent with the Christian character; a disrespect paid to the call of God in his providences, and the authority of the church offensive to the sober-minded, and in point of example injurious to others."

The Synod then proceeded to order all its members to read the proceedings of Synod on the overtures in all their churches, and in the vacancies.

On a reference from the Synod of South Carolina, after deliberation, Synod "Judged, that the marriage of John Latham, of Waxhaw, with his deceased wife's sister's daughter, is criminal and highly offensive; and that all such marriages are truly detestable, and ought to be strenuously discountenanced; and that said Latham, in his present standing, is by no means admissible to the scaling ordinances of the church." This is referred to in the thirteenth session.


"Bethany, Oct. 6 (Wednesday), 1790.

"Synod met agreeably to adjournment, and was opened with a sermon preached by the Rev. Henry Pattillo (the moderator being absent), from Acts xxvi., 18."

Mr. Pattillo was chosen moderator, Mr. John Springer was reported as having been added to the Presbytery of South Carolina, and Mr. Houston as having been dismissed from Abingdon. The Synod examined and approved the proceedings of Orange Presbytery, in receiving the Rev. Wm. Moore from the Presbytery of Hanover. (The proceedings had been regular, but Synod took the oversight of receiving members from other bodies.)

Overturned, That Dr. Doddridge's Rise and Progress of Religion, and his ten sermons on Regeneration, be printed by contributions raised by the members of Synod.

"Ordered, that the Rev. James M'Ree request the printers in Fayetteville to publish in their Gazette the terms on which they will print, bind, and letter the above books.

"Ordered, that. each Presbytery make provisions that they be represented in the General Assembly.

"'The Synod recommended that the last Wednesday in next month be observed as a day of public thanksgiving to God, as an acknowledgment of his goodness in the plentiful crops of the present year."


Thyatira, Oct. 5th (Wednesday), 1791.

In the absence of the moderator, the Rev. Joseph Alexander opened the Synod, with a sermon from John ix., 35, and was chosen moderator. South Carolina Presbytery reported one added, James Stephenson.

Time Synod took action on the subject of reprinting Doddridge's Rise and Progress, and his ten sermons on Regeneration, and appointed a member of each Presbytery to see to it that proposals were circulated to obtain subscriptions in all the congregations; and if the numbers, as returned from the Spring meetings of Presbyteries, amounted to fifteen hundred, the committee of Synod was to forward a list to time printer, that the work be commenced.

The elders and congregation at Stony Creek having sent up for advice respecting the use of Dr. Watts's Hymns, in public worship, it was resolved, "that the petitioners be referred to the General Assembly, as the Synod do not conceive that it lies with them to sanction any system of psalmody, other than such systems as may be sanctioned by the General Assembly."

The Committee of Overtures presented the following questions,

Are they who publicly profess a belief in the doctrine of the universal and actual salvation of the whole human race, or of the fallen angels, or both, through the mediation of Christ, to be admitted to the scaling ordinances of the gospel? Wherefore, resolved, that although the Synod set themselves unanimously against the doctrine of universal salvation, as an article of belief, yet as the question involves some difficulty respecting admission to sealing ordinances, the said question be sent up to the General Assembly for their decision. (See next session.)

"The Committee of Overtures laid the following questions before Synod for consideration: "Should church sessions require an assent to, and approbation of the Confession of Faith, and larger or shorter catechisms, previously to their admitting persons to sealing ordinances?" On this subject, "Resolved, that the proceedings of the Synod of New York and Philadelphia General Assembly are sufficient to direct our members in that matter.

"Resolved, that the following ministers and elders be a Stand-in, Commission of Synod, and particularly to take up and issue the affair of Mr. Cossan, if not issued by the Presbytery of Abingdon, viz: the Rev. Samuel E. M'Corkle, moderator, James Hall, James Templeton, James M'Ree, Robert Hall, Wm. C. Davies, and Charles Cummins; with elders, John Dickey, John M'Knitt Alexander, Adam Beard, William Cathey, William Anderson, Joseph Feemster, and John Nelson. The moderator's council to consist of one minister, besides himself, and one elder. Two ministers besides the moderator, and as many of the above elders as may be present, to constitute a quorum."

(From this time, Commission of Synod was a regular appointment, with few intermissions. Much important business was done by them, and their decision was final.)

"On motion, Resolved, that it be enjoined on the several Presbyteries to take as effectual measures as possible for collecting materials for the history of the Presbyterian churches in America, and that returns of the said materials be made to the General Assembly as early as possible."

At this meeting the Synod took up the subject of domestic missions, and resolved to send out four missionaries to act in the destitute regions each side of the Alleghenies. The direction of missionaries to be in the commission of Synod during recess of Synod; their support fixed at two hundred dollars annually. It was made the duty of the missionaries to ascertain who of the families they visited wished to receive the gospel from the Presbyterians, and make report; they were also to make collections where they preached. The persons appointed were James Templeton and Robert Hall, of South Carolina Presbytery; and Robert Archibald, with the Licentiate John Bowman, of the Presbytery of Orange. Each was to labor for six months.

The Presbytery of Orange reported at this meeting, that seven of their ministers had stated charges; three temporary charges and one no charge; two probationers, who have calls under consideration; three who have accepted calls; and six who have not calls; and five candidates; thirteen vacancies able to support seven pastors; and eighteen not able to support one. The Presbytery of South Carolina reported as follows: ten ministers with stated charges; three without any charge; two licentiates; and nine candidates; thirteen vacancies able to support nine pastors; twenty-nine not able to support one. The names of pastors are not given annexed to their churches.


"Bethesda, October 4th (Wednesday), 1792.

"Synod met pursuant to adjournment, and was opened with a sermon from Matt. xi. 6, preached by the Rev. Joseph Alexander, the Moderator." "The Rev. Samuel E. McCorkle, D.D., was chosen Moderator." The Presbytery of Orange reported three members added by ordination, William Hodges, James Wallis, and Samuel C. Caldwell; the two last mentioned were invited to seats. The question sent up to the last Assembly was taken up, and the following minute made:—"This Synod at their last sessions having sent on a question to the General Assembly respecting the admission or non-admission of those who profess their belief in the doctrine of Universal Redemption, have it in their power to refer the public in general, and the members of our church in particular, to the decision of the General Assembly on that subject, which is as follows:—In General Assembly, May, 1792, a question from the Synod of the Carolinas was introduced through the Committee of Bills and Overtures, which was as follows: 'Are those who publicly profess a belief in the doctrine of universal and actual salvation of the whole human race, or of the fallen angels, or both, through the mediation of Christ, to be admitted to the scaling ordinances of the gospel?' The Assembly determined that such persons should not be admitted."

It being ascertained that 800 subscribers could be obtained for Doddridge's Rise and Progress, &c., Dr. McCorkle and Rev. Jas. McRee were appointed agents to transact with the printer in behalf of Synod. (This scheme of benevolent improvement occupied the Synod for some years, as will be seen; and finally failed, after a large amount of money had been expended.)

By report made to Synod, it appears the commission of Synod had held two meetings to transact the missionary business which had been committed to them. The first, in October, 1791, at Thyatira church, in which they drew up rules and instructions for the missionaries, and gave commissions to Rev. James Templeton, and Robert Hall, to act for four months each in the lower parts of South Carolina and Georgia, before the middle of the succeeding April; and Rev. Robert Archibald for four months, and Mr. John Bowman, for three months, as above, in the lower parts of North Carolina. The only part of the very judicious rules and instructions they prepared for their missionaries, which requires attention, as differing from those now given, is that contained in the third regulation: "You are not to tarry longer than three weeks at the same time, in the bounds of twenty miles, except peculiar circumstances may appear to make it necessary." The next meeting was at Steele Creek church, in April, 1792, to receive the reports of missionaries, and give commissions for the summer succeeding.

They held a third meeting for judicial business at Salem church, on the Nolachuckee, in September, to attend to a case of discipline between the Presbytery of Abingdon and the Rev. Mr. Cossan.

The Synod approved of the doings of the commission after hearing their minutes read:—and Synod, on a review of the whole of the minutes of said commissioners, concurred in their approbation of all their proceedings since appointed to that office. There is one act of the commissioners to be noticed; it was determined by them, while at Salem, that if either party felt aggrieved by this decision, they should have a re-hearing before Synod; but no advantage was taken of it.

Orange Presbytery reported their admission of the Rev. Colin Lindsey, from Europe, as a member of their body; of their proceedings the Synod approved.


"Sugaw Creek, Oct. 2nd, 1793."

The Synod met in regular sessions, and was opened with a sermon by the Rev. Dr. McCorkle, from 1st Cor. xii. B. Rev. James Templeton was chosen moderator. Rev. Humphrey Hunter and Robert Cunningham were reported from Peerly, of South Carolina, as new members; and Lewis Fuileteau Wilson, James M'Gready, Joseph Kilpatrick, Alexander Caldwell, and Angus McDiarmid (as licentiate from Europe, ordained by the Presbytery), were reported from the Presbytery of Orange; and Samuel Doake, from Abingdon Presbytery.

In consequence of an overture, Synod passed the following recommendations, viz.: "That members of the church transgressing the rules thereof, be called on as soon as convenient to account for their conduct, and not wait till they may ask the privileges of the church." Notice of this recommendation was sent to all the absent members of Synod.

The following letter was received from the Rev. Henry Pattillo, viz.


"Granville, 3d September, 1793.

"Rev, and dear Brother—From the pleasure you enjoy in attending church judications, you can conjecture my mortification in being denied them. But my advanced age, and the great distance refuse me the privilege. I bless the great LORD of the harvest that he is sending so many qualified laborers to work for him. What a number of excellent youth did I see in Prince Edward at a Presbytery and Sacrament last spring! of approved piety, warm zeal and indefatigable diligence, great popular talents, unstained reputation, and genteel behavior. There is scarcely a corner in Virginia where their voice has not been heard with pleasure and profit by multitudes. Presbyterianism, if that is worth regarding, was never half so extensively known and sought after in that State as now. I hope these characteristics of persons and successes agree to those worthy youths who have been sent out by us south of the Virginia line. On both sides they are all young, thriving American scions who flourish in their native soil: we have never found the exotic plants of Europe's cold regions to thrive among us. Frazer and Patton were the blots of human nature; and others might be named, who have been, or are like to be, a grief to our hearts, rather than useful ministers of JESUS CHRIST, and a blessing to the churches. Their divinity, if they have one, is not Jesus Christ and the power of his grace in experimental religion,—their politics arc monarchical, and suit not the liberal spirit of American Republicans. They will neither pray, preach, nor live like pious youth bred among ourselves. I bear my testimony against the admission of such dry sticks among lively trees in our American vineyard. And I assure myself, my worthy and beloved brethren will have nothing to do with such, but call on them to know Jesus Christ before they preach him. 'Their admission must be only a speedy prelude to their expulsion, while we hold the keys, and discipline is observed amongst us. The churches will be much better as vacancies than committed to stewards who would feed them with poison, or dry husks at best. If my reverend brethren will admit this letter to record, it will speak for me when I am numbered with the dead.

"I intended to send you the history of the Presbyterian church in these parts; but must omit that for the present, and be ready by your spring meeting. Bear one word more on the great subject. As to Europe, though perhaps, as Sallust says of ancient Rome, she may be too old and feeble to produce many great men, yet she knows how to hold them, if they make their appearance; so let it never be said, that such as she rejects should be licked up by America, in all the vigor of her youth in Church and State. One word more,—if there is such a scarcity of ministers, and there be so great a famine of the word of the Lord, we had infinitely better send forth pious laymen, who have trod the way, and would endeavor to lead others into it, than men who have nothing to recommend them but a smattering of languages and sciences, while they are the enemies of the cross of Christ, and strangers to vital piety.

My prayers, my wishes, and, if you will forgive the expression, my fatherly cares are anxiously employed for you. May the pleasure of time LORD prosper in your hands.

Your own affectionate brother and obedient servant,


Synod received information that the edition of Doddridge's Rise and Progress, &c., would be ready for delivery in the month of December.

The commission of Synod reported repeated meetings, to commission the missionaries, *mark out their routes, and to receive their reports. They reported, as having been in their employ, the following ministers:—James Hall, Samuel C. Caldwell, in North Carolina; John Bowman in North Carolina and 'Tennessee; Robert McCulloch in South Carolina; and Robert Cunningham in Georgia. These labored faithfully. On snaking their reports and exhibiting to the commission their receipts from contributions by the people to whom they had preached, they declined receiving from the Synod or the commission the small balance of their wages. The missionaries read their reports to Synod; one of which is recorded: the other being lost before the records of Synod were transcribed into the present folio volume for preservation.


Steele Creek, Friday, October 3d, 1794.

Synod was opener{, in the absence of the moderator, by Rev. Samuel C. Caldwell, with a sermon from Ezekiel xxiii., 36 and 37.

The Rev. James Hall was chosen moderator.

New members reported: From South Carolina Presbytery,—Moses Waddel, John Brown, William Williamson, and Robert Wilson : Abingdon Presbytery,—Robert Henderson and Gideon Blackburn.

An inquiry took place in Synod respecting an absent member of the Presbytery of Orange, the Rev. Robert Archibald, who was charged by common fame with preaching the doctrine of universal restoration of mankind: and the Orange Presbytery leaving given to Synod a relation of their proceedings in regard to Mr. Archibald —"Synod advised that the members of Orange resolve themselves into a Presbyterial capacity and immediately decide on the affairs of Mr. Archibald. Accordingly, the members of the Presbytery of Orange constituted and came to the following decision —That the Rev. Robert Archibald be suspended, and he is hereby suspended from the exercise of his ministerial office, and from the communion of our church. And Synod ordered that each member of their respective Presbyteries publish in his own and in vacant congregations the decision of Orange Presbytery relative to Mr. Archibald, and wares them against the reception of the above doctrine: and warn them also against countenancing or receiving Mr. Archibald as a minister of the gospel in his present standing."

The Synod received report from South Carolina Presbytery, that proper steps had been taken to fully answer the requisition of Synod respecting the history of the churches. The members of Orange Presbytery were enjoined to send the proper materials for the history of their churches to Rev. Messrs. Dr. McCorkle and James Hall; and the members of Abingdon, to Rev. Messrs. Hezekiah Balch and Robert Henderson, before the 1st of December; that they might; prepare a narrative for the inspection of their Presbyteries at the spring meeting; and from thence to be sent on to the next sessions of the General Assembly.

The commission of Synod reported their various meetings and appointments. The following missionaries read their reports of travel and labor to the Synod:—Rev. James Hall, a tour in the lover part of North Carolina; Mr. John M. Wilson, to the lower part of North Carolina; Mr. Robert Wilson, to the lower part of South Carolina; Mr. John Robinson, to the lower part of South Carolina; Mr. John Bowman, to the lower part of North Carolina; and Mr. James II. Bowman to the same region. The reports of the missionaries were spread on the minutes of Synod, and cover sixteen folio pages, and show great diligence in missionary work, and the alarming avant of ministers.

In consequence of an overture, Synod ordered their several Presbyteries to call on their respective members and church sessions, and their several licentiates and vacancies to render an account, once a year, how they discharge their respective duties to each other; "yet the Presbyteries are to conduct, as to vacancies, as prudence may direct."


New Providence, Thursday, Oct. 1st, 1795.

The Synod was opened with a sermon by the Rev. James Templeton, from Isaiah 1sii., 6 and 7. The Rev. James White Stephenson was chosen moderator. The Presbytery of Orange reported new members by ordination,—John Robinson, James Bowman, John M. Wilson, and John Carrigan; also Samuel Stanford and Humphrey hunter, from other Presbyteries. The Presbytery of South Carolina reported Robert B. Walker, William Montgomery, and David Dunlap. It appearing to Synod that an ordained missionary was required in the Western Territory, and it being stated that Mr. Wm. McGee, of Orange Presbytery, was willing to take an appointment for that purpose—"Ordered that the Presbytery be directed, and they are hereby directed to ordain Mr. McGee, as soon as may be convenient, agreeably to the permission granted to this Synod, in such cases, by the General Assembly, at their sessions of last day."

The Presbytery of Orange was divided by a line running along the Yadkin River. The Rev. Henry Pattillo, David Caldwell, Colin Lindsey, David Kerr, William Moore, William Hodge, James M'Gready, Samuel Stanford, Angus McDermaid, John Robinson, and James H. Bowman, retain the names of the Presbytery of Orange, to meet at New Hope, on the third Wednesday of November. The Rev. Henry Pattillo, to preach the opening sermon and preside; in case of his absence, the senior minister present to perform these duties.

The Rev. Samuel E. McCorkle, D.D., James Hall, James McRee, David Barr, Samuel C. Caldwell, James Wallis, Joseph D. Kilpatrick, Lewis F. Wilson, Humphrey Hunter, Alexander Caldwell, John M. Wilson, and Joseph Carragan, to be known by the name of the Presbytery of CONCORD, to meet at Centre Church, on the last Tuesday of March, 1796, Mr. Wallis to preach and preside till a moderator be chosen.

Dr. McCorkle produced to Synod receipts for £80 12s. 9d. paid towards the printing of Doddridge's Rise and Progress, &c.

"The Synod taking into consideration the unusually adverse dispensation of Providence towards our Southern States, respecting the fruits of the earth; the critical situation of our nation with respect to Great Britain; and the languishing state of religion in the church, do earnestly recommend to all the societies under their care to observe flue second Wednesday of December next, as a day of humiliation, fasting and prayer, to Almighty God, that he may avert the calamities of famine, continue with us the blessings of peace, and favor his church with a revival of religion."


Morganton, Thursday, Nov. 3d, 1796.

The Synod was opened with a sermon by the Rev. Samuel Carrick, from Psalm lviii., 5. Mr. Carrick was chosen moderator. The Presbytery of South Carolina reported new members—John Foster, George E. Macwhorter, John B. Kennedy, James Gill eland, and Samuel W. Yongue; and also the Rev. Thomas Reese and Thomas H. McCaule, deceased since the last sleeting.

Upon inquiry, it appeared that Dr. Sibley had not executed the promised edition of Doddridge; and fears were expressed of a total failure of the contemplated edition.

The members of South Carolina Presbytery, living west of Savannah River, viz., Rev. John Newton, John Springer, Robert M. Cunningham, Moses Waddel, and William Montgomery, were, by request, set off to form a Presbytery by the name of HOPE-WELL, to meet on the third Thursday of March, 1797, to be constituted by the Rev. John Springer, or in his absence, the senior member.

The following question was overturned, viz. "Is it expedient to admit baptized slaves as witnesses in ecclesiastical judicatories where others cannot be had?" Answered in the negative. An order was passed enjoining upon heads of families the religious instruction of their slaves; and the teaching the children of slaves to read the Bible.

By documents from Abingdon Presbytery and others, it appeared there had been great excitement in that Presbytery; and that in consequence, Rev. Charles Cummins, Edward Crawford, Samuel Doake, Joseph Lake, and James Balch, had separated themselves from their brethren, and formed the Independent Presbytery of Abingdon. The cause assigned was, that Rev. Hezekiah Balch had published in the Knoxville Gazette, a number of Articles of Faith, which gave great offence to many brethren, and also to many of the people; the matter had been laid before the Presbytery, and Mr. Balch apologizing for some personal abuse and imprudent doings, and explaining his doctrines as not contrary to the Confession of Faith, the majority were satisfied to dismiss the matter. The brethren mentioned above, were so dissatisfied with this conclusion of the matter, that they withdrew and formed their Presbytery. In their letter to the Presbytery, they say" There is no manner of doubt but they, who have declared themselves Independent, will immediately return to the union, in form, as soon as they shall," &c. The conditions of their return were, dealing with Balch, and those who held his sentiments, and an assurance of protection "in preaching and exercising church discipline, according to the Confession of Faith." What Mr. Balch's creed was, which they considered erroneous, does not appear. The Synod directed letters to be sent to the churches in Abington Presbytery, and to the Independent Presbytery; but what were their contents does not appear on the records.

"A memorial was brought forward and laid before Synod, by the Rev. James Gilleland, stating his conscientious difficulties in receiving the advice of the Presbytery of South Carolina, which has enjoined upon him to be silent in the pulpit on the subject of the emancipation of the Africans, which injunction Mr. Gilleland declares to be, in his apprehension, contrary to the counsel of God. Whereupon Synod, after deliberation upon the matter, do concur with the Presbytery in advising Mr. Gilleland to content himself with using his utmost endeavors in private to open the way for emancipation, so as to secure our happiness as a people, preserve the peace of the church, and render them capable of enjoying the blessings of liberty. Synod is of the opinion, to preach publicly against slavery, in present circumstances, and to lay down as the duty of every one, to liberate those who are under their care, is that which would lead to disorder, and open the way to great confusion."

Synod adjourned, to meet at Mount Bethel, on the second Thursday in August, 1797.


The minutes of the session held at Mount Bethel, near Greenville, Tennessee, never passed into the hands of the stated clerk. It appears, however, from reference in succeeding minutes, that the formation of the Independent Presbytery was condemned, and the members suspended; and the discontent in the bounds, of Abingdon Presbytery being very great, a commission of Synod was appointed to meet at Mount Bethel, in November, to hear and adjudicate the complaints and charges made against members of the Presbytery.


A commission of Synod, consisting of fourteen ministers and twelve elders, met at Mount Bethel, near Greenville, Tennessee, Tuesday, November 21st, 1797. Rev. Francis Cummins preached from Romans viii., 1st, and was chosen moderator. The first step was to set apart the next day as a day of public fasting and humiliation before God. The people were requested to join with them in the services. The Rev. Samuel Doake, Jacob Lake, and James Balch, appeared, and having declared their submission to Synod, and disavowing their independence, and confessing their irregularity, and declaring their return to order, the commission removed their suspension, and restored them to the full exercise of the ministerial office.

Various charges were exhibited against Rev. Hezekiah Balch, and the witnesses brought forward, and their testimony given. 1st. He was charged with contradicting himself in a certain statement about Drs. Hopkins and Edwards being members of the association of Connecticut, and in communion with the General Assembly; first affirming and then denying his having said so. On this charge he was acquitted, and the persons who brought it were reproved. He was also charged with saying "the saints appeared in heaven in their own righteousness," and afterwards of denying. He admitted the declaration, and disclaimed the denial. It was proved that he explained it as "the fruit of Christ's righteousness," &c. This part of the charge was not sustained, and the reporters of it were reproved.

2d. He was charged with preaching false doctrine. No manuscript or printed paper of his preparation was produced. The witnesses stated what, they recollected of his sermons and conversation, that they thought culpably erroneous. He was accused of charging the church of Scotland and some of our Calvinistic divines of holding the doctrine "that there were infants in bell not a span long;" of saying "that original sin is not conveyed by natural generation;" that if it were, the procreation of children would be sinful, a damning sin; that he justified a man in saying he was not afraid to take upon himself the original sin of the whole human family, Adam excepted (the person explaining that by original sin he meant Adam's particular act in eating the forbidden fruit); of saying "there was no sin but in self-love; that Adam's sin was his only, by approbation and imitation" (but that he also affirmed that the corruption of our nature, and the propensity to make a wrong choice, was from Adam); of saying that "we were not liable to condemnation till we became moral agents, or capable of a wrong choice, then the dire consequences of Adam's sin were imputed, but not his personal act;" of saying ''that answer in our catechism was wrong, which says "no mere man can keep the commands of God perfect,' for they were able, if they were willing; that through Adam's sin our nature was corrupted, but none were chargeable till they acted; and that the first act was original sin in our posterity."

On this charge with the specifications, the commission of Synod "view it as involving in it doctrines already referred to the General Assembly, and therefore unanimously agree to refer the charge, with the testimony, to the General Assembly for consideration and judgment."

During this part of the trial, one witness made a statement, which, although it bears not on the merits of the case, and was incidentally given in, is nevertheless interesting, viz : "Mr. Balch said he had no new doctrine, though Mr. Doake and Mr. James Balch had labored to establish that he had. In his late tour (to New England) he had gathered no new doctrines, only explanations, for he considered mankind as guilty as ever he did, only the old way was a lie, and the new one was true." From the frequent reference to Dr. Hopkins, it would seem that he intended to hold and preach the peculiar doctrines of that celebrated man.

The third charge was "for marrying Joseph Posey and Jane Reeves together, knowing that he, Joseph Posey, had a lawful wife living within three miles of him." The first part of the charge, the marrying, he admitted; the latter part, involving criminality, he denied. Though he admitted he knew she had been his lawful wife. The judgment of the commission was, that "Posey had not been legally freed from his former wife" at the time Mr. Balch performed the marriage ceremony, and that "Rev. Hezekiah Balch had conducted in a precipitate and irregular manner, in marrying Joseph Posey to Jane Reeves, and that this action, if received as a precedent, would introduce great and manifold evils, both in church and state."

The fourth charge was for creating a new session in Mount Bethel, contrary to the constitution. The fact of creating a new session was admitted; and the principal circumstances were agreed upon by the witnesses. The new session had suspended the old, and those who went with them; and great confusion had arisen in the congregations and the Presbytery. The cause of division which led to the appointment of the new session, was the novelty of the doctrines Mr. Balch preached, which, notwithstanding all his explanations, appeared to many of his people, and part of the Presbytery, to be erroneous; they have been stated under the 2d. charge. The new session was made up of friends to M. Balch, —the old session greatly opposed him.

The judgment of the commission was, "that time new session was unconstitutionally created, and all their judicial acts null and void." Mount Bethel was released from the pastoral care of Mr. Balch, and pronounced a vacancy. The petition of Abingdon Presbytery for division, was granted: and the Rev. Charles Cummins, Samuel Doake, Jacob Lake and James Balch, were set off to compose ABINGDON Presbytery, to meet at Salem on the 14th instant., Mr. Lake to preach and preside;—and Rev. Hezckiah Balch, John Cossan, Samuel Carrick, Robert Henderson and Gideon Blackburn, to compose the Presbytery of Union, to meet at Hopewell on the 2d Tuesday of February, 1798, Mr. Carrick to preach and preside; in case of absence of either person appointed to preside, the oldest member present to supply his place.

The subject of promiscuous communion was taken up by the commissioners on an overture; and the decision was, that as it was not necessary, and as it. gave offence to some of the people as implying a coalescence with other denominations in doctrines not held by him, from "prudential motives," a minister ought to abstain. No decision was given respecting the occasional communion of private members.


Bethel Church, South Carolina, Oct. 18th, 1798.

The session was opened by Rev. S. C. Caldwell, the last moderator, with a sermon from Philippians ii., 12th and 13th, and the Rev. Francis Cummins was chosen moderator. The Presbytery of Concord reported new members, Wm. C. Davies, from South Carolina Presbytery; and by ordination, George Newton and Samuel Davies : the Presbytery of Union reported Samuel G. Ramsey by ordination; the Presbytery of Hopewell reported the death of John Springer.

Inquiries were made about the edition of Doddridge's Rise and Progress; no satisfactory information was obtained. Rev. Edward Crawford, who was suspended in 1797, as being member of the Independent Presbytery, appeared; and having made suitable concessions and received an admonition from the chair, was received as a member of Synod and a member of Abingdon Presbytery.

Charges which had been brought against Rev. Hezekiah Balch, by the old session of Mount Bethel, before Union Presbytery, and by them referred to Synod, were read: The 1st charge accused Mr. Balch of having held an election for elders in Mount Bethel Church, soon after the first meeting of the Presbytery of Union, while the congregation «•as vacant, against time will and desire of the old session: and refusing the privilege of voting to any who had not signed a call for himself. The 2d charge accused hint of intruding on the congregation the first Sabbath after his return from Philadelphia, and preaching without leave of session; while they had two young men engaged and there, on that day: and also ordaining elders against the express order of the existing session; and also for persisting to preach in the congregation. 3d charge—"We charge Mr. I3alch for deviating from the truth, by denying in the Assembly, that he ever said in Presbytery, August, 1796, that he meant the same by the word transfer as impute. Also for denying in the Assembly that he ever held that there was not a covenant made with Adam; for proof of which, see the Assembly's judgment on his creed. And that he did hold there was not a covenant made with Adam."

The 4th charge accused Mr. Balch of falsehood in denying what he had said in a sermon about original sin, and of charging his accusers with drunkenness, &c.

5th Charge.—"We charge Mr. Balch for saying since his return from the General Assembly, that he was fifty thousand times stronger in belief of that definition of holiness (alluding to the creed) than he was before he went away. For those expressions we give Josiah Temple and Alexander Galbraith as evidence; and that that definition of holiness was pointed out as erroneous by the General Assembly, we refer you to the judgment on his creed."

Charges were brought against Mr. Balch by two other individuals, of minor importance.

Mr. Balch brought charges against the old session, for using violence towards him, by driving him from the meeting-house; and for not keeping their word, &c.

Synod judged on the first and second charges, that the election of the elders after the rising of the commission (held at Mount Bethel) was irregular; and that Mr. Balch is highly censurable for ordaining them so disorderly and schismatically; and that he was imprudent in preaching in the house to but a part of the congregation. Respecting Mr. Balch's charges against the elders, the Synod decided,—That the elders "had blameably violated" their promise in not withdrawing certain civil suits; and were highly censurable for interrupting Mr. Balch in time of worship, and driving him out of the house; and that one of the elders had improperly used the name of God, for which he is highly censurable.

As the other matters were not ready for trial, Synod postponed final sentence on these matters until the Extraordinary Synod, appointed to be held at Little Britain, on the second Tuesday of February, 1709, for the purpose of attending to all the charges and all matters of difficulty.


Little Britain, Rutherford Co., N. C., 13th Feb., 1799.

Synod was opened by the moderator, Francis Cummins, with a sermon from Titus iii., 10, 11. Present thirteen ministers and seven elders.

About thirty folio pages of evidence on the three remaining charges against Mr. Balch, for and against them, had been taken by a committee, and were read in Synod. Mr. Balch was heard in his defence; and Air. Galbraith was heard for those who had accused him : and both professed they had nothing more to say in the case. The Synod decided on the 3d and 4th charges brought by the session, that they were not sustained by the evidence. On the 5th charge Mr. Balch acknowledged that he had expressed himself as charmed, and that his only objection was, it was not strong enough instead of fifty thousand times, he would say five hundred thousand times." Whereupon "the Synod, after mature deliberation, judge, that Mr. Balch has acted with duplicity in expressing himself as laid down in the charge, considering the judgment of the Assembly, and his submission to that judgment."

The two other charges were pronounced unsustained.

The Synod proceeded to pronounce sentence on Mr. Balch:

"Do hereby suspend him from the exercise of his office as a Minister of the gospel, and refer him to the Presbytery of Union, to which he belongs, who will be adequate to the removal of the suspension, when reformation on the part of Mr. Paich shall open the way." They also pronounced the sentence of suspension from the office of elder and the communion of the church upon four of the elders who had appeared against Mr. Balch, for the impropriety and irregularity of their course; also the sentence of a public reprimand on two others who appeared; and that of a private reprimand on two others, as not having exhibited a proper spirit. A committee was appointed to repair to Mount Bethel, and communicate the sentence and administer the admonitions.

On the sentence being read, Mr. Galbraith, who appeared in the name of the session, expressed his submission Mr. Balch asked till the next day for consideration. The next day Mr. Balch asked a re-hearing, which was refused, as, in the judgment of Synod, there did not appear to be sufficient cause.

After a session of six days, the record of which, with the evidence, covers about forty-one folio pages, the session closed with the following minutes:

"The Rev. Hezekiah Balch read the following paper, which he requested to be entered on the minutes, viz: To the Rev. Synod of the Carolinas: As I do not wish to do anything that may have the least appearance of obstinacy, I do cheerfully submit to your judgment; at the same time solemnly declaring that I am not conscious of anything, in the matter referred to, more than imprudence, which I hope I shall always be ready to acknowledge, as far as I can without injury to my conscience or the truth. I humbly request that this, my answer, may be entered on your minutes.

"I am yours,
("Signed,) ''HEZEKIAH BALCH."

The parties having both submitted to the judgment of Synod, received a suitable admonition from the moderator." "At the request of Mr. Balch, Mr. Galbraith and he shook hands in the presence of Synod in testimony of their personal affection to and cordial wishes for the welfare of each other, and hopes of a permanent friendship hereafter." And the Extraordinary Session closed.


Hopewell Church, October 31st, 1799.

Rev. Francis Cummins opened the sessions with a sermon from Luke xiii., 22; and James McRee was chosen moderator.

Four new names appear on the list of Orange Presbytery as ordained either in the year '97 or '98; the list of '97 was lost with records; and in '98 the list is not given. The four were William T. Thomson, William Paisley, John Gillespie, Samuel McAdo, and Robert Tate. The Presbytery reported also Mr. John Anderson, from another Presbytery.

Several cases came before Synod, by overture or request, concerning marriages within the forbidden degree of relationship: one respecting a man marrying his former wife's half-brother's widow; ----dismissed, as not within the prohibited degrees : one of a man who had married his deceased wife's sister's daughter,—laid over till the matter could come before the Assembly, for a general rule on such subjects: and one of a man who had married his former wife's sister, and had with her been under suspension for some time,—laid over.

The case of Mr. Bowman, who had been suspended by the Abingdon Presbytery, for unsound doctrine, was taken up; and, after hearing Mr. Bowman's explanations, the Synod reversed the sentence, and addressed an affectionate letter to the Presbytery. The subject of dispute was the extent and manner of the offer of the Gospel—Mr. Bowman using the phrases of Dr. Hopkins, and his views of Election, which were disagreeable to his brethren, and, though not altogether agreeable, yet not condemned by Synod.

This year four of the Presbyteries presented a report of their preachers, with their places of preaching, which may interest the reader.


Henry Pattillo, Grassy Creek and Nutbush.
David Caldwell, Buffalo and Alamance.
Colin Lindsay, without charge.
William Moore, Upper and Lower Hico.
William Hodge, without charge.
Samuel Stanford, Black River, and Brown Marsh,
Angus McDiarmid, Barbacue, Bluff, McCoy's.
James H. Bowman, Eno, and Little River.
William F. Thompson, New Hope.
John Gillespie, Centre, Laurel Hill, and Raft Swamp.
William D. Paisley, Union, and Lower Buffalo.
Samuel McAdo, Speedwell and flaw River.
John Anderson, without charge.
Robert Tate, South Washington and Rockfish.

Licentiates—John Rankin, Robert Foster, Andrew Caldwell, and Edward Pharr. Candidates—Daniel Brown, Ezekiel B. Currie, .John Matthews, Duncan Brown, Murdock McKillan, Malcolm McNair, Hugh Shaw, and Murdock Murphy. They leave ordained William McGee;—have licensed Barton Stone,—and dismissed their both to connect themselves with the Presbytery of Transylvania.


Joseph Alexander, Bullock's Creek.
John Simpson, Good Hope, and Roberts.
James Templeton, Nazareth.
Francis Cummins, Rocky River,
Robert McCullock, Catholic and Purity.
James W. Stephenson, Indianstown and Williamsburgh.
John Brown, Waxhaws.
Robert Wilson, Long Cane.
William Williamson, Fairforest.
Robert B. Walker, Bethesda.
David E. Dunlap, Columbia.
Samuel W. Yongue, Lebanon and Mount Olivet.
John Foster, Salem.
James Gilleland, Bradoway.
John B. Kennedy, D)uncan's Creek and Little River.
George D. Macwhorter, Bethel and Beersheba.
Andrew Brown, Bethlehem and Cane Creek.
John B. Davies, Fishing Creek and Richardson.

Talley have three licentiates,—George Reid, William G. Rosborough, and John Couser: and two candidates,—Hugh Dickson and Thomas Neely.


Samuel E. McCorkle, D.D., Thyatira.
James Hall, Bethany.
James McRee, Centre.
David Barr, Philadelphia.
Wm. C. Davies, Olney.
Samuel C. Caldwell, Sugaw Creek and Hopewell.
James Wallis, Providence.
Joseph D. Kilpatrick, Third Creek and Unity.
Lewis F. Wilson, Concord and Fourth Creek.
Humphrey Hunter, Goshen and Unity.
John M. Wilson, Quaker Meadow and Morgantown.
John Carrigan, Randall, and Bethpage.
John Andrews, Little Britain.
Samuel Davies, Mamre
George Newton, Swannanoe and Rim's Creek.

They have one candidate, Thomas Hall.


Samuel Carrick, the Fork and Knoxville.
Robert Henderson, Westminster and Hopewell.
Gideon Blackburn, Eusebia and New Providence.
Samuel C. Ramsey, Ebenezer and Pleasant Forest.

It would have been gratifying, if the other Presbyteries had made a return, that we might know the places in which the ministers of the Synod labored at the close of the Iast century; with all the candidates, vacancies, and licentiates; a reference and comparison would be advantageous to the present generation.

On petition, the Presbytery of South Carolina was divided, and Broad River made the dividing line. The members on the northeast side of the river, viz., Joseph Alexander, Robert McCullock, James W. Stephenson, John Brown, Robert B. Walker, David E. Dunlap, Samuel W. Tongue, John Poster, George E. Macwhorter, and John B. Davies, to constitute the first Presbytery of South Carolina, to meet at Bullock's Creek, on the first Friday of February, 1500, and Rev. Joseph Alexander to preside, or the senior member in his absence. And the members on the south-west side, viz., Joseph Simpson, James Templeton, Francis Cummins, Robert Wilson, Win. Williamson, James Gilleland, John B. Kennedy, and Andrew Brown, to be known as the Second Presbytery of South Carolina, to hold its first meeting at Fair Forest, on the first Friday of February, 1800. The Rev. John Simpson to preside, or in his absence the senior member. The first named Presbytery to keep the records of the past, furnishing to the second such extracts as they may need.

Synod resolved to hold its annual meetings, hereafter, in October, commencing the first Thursday.


Subaw Creek, Oct. 2d, 1800.

Synod was opened by Rev. James McRee, with a sermon from 1st Tim. iv., 16. The Rev. John Brown was chosen moderator. The Rev. James S. Adams and Thomas Price, of the Independent church, being present, were invited to scats as corresponding members.

It appearing, that the letter, on the subject of the difficulties attending marriages in affinity, which was prepared for the last Assembly, failed to reach the Assembly; a committee was appointed to draft another this meeting.

From the report of Orange Presbytery, it appeared, that the Presbytery had conditionally suspended Colin Lindsey, and had dismissed Win. Hodge, Samuel McAdo, and Mr. John Rankin, to go to the West. An overture for the purpose of commencing a correspondence with other religious denominations in the State, about petitioning the legislature for the emancipation of the slaves, on the principle that all children of slaves born after a fixed time, shall be free, which was brought in last meeting of Synod was taken up and disposed of by the following report, which was adopted:

"Your committee report, that though it is our ardent wish that the object contemplated in the overture should be obtained; yet, as it appears to us that matters are not yet matured for carrying it forward, especially in the southern parts of our States, your committee are of opinion that the overture should now be laid aside and that it be enjoined upon every member of this Synod to use his influence to carry into effect the directions and recommendations of the Synod of New York and Philadelphia, and those additionally made by the General Assembly, for the instruction of those who are in a state of slavery, to prepare them the better for a state of freedom, when such shall be contemplated by the legislatures of our southern States."

The Synod considering the importance and necessity of carrying on the missionary business,—that the Rev. James Hall has been appointed by the General Assembly to the Natchez, and ought, if possible, to have company,—determined to send with him two members, viz., the Rev. Messrs. James H. Bowman and William Montgomery, who are directed to spend eight months, if convenient and they find it expedient, in that country and places adjacent; commencing their mission about the 15th instant: and for the support of these missionaries the Synod itself to give them thirty-three and one-third dollars per month from the time they engage in the work; they rendering a regular account of all moneys received by them during their mission." (The reason for passing; the subject of missions for a few years is nowhere given.)

Overture from the First Presbytery of South Carolina.—"In case of fornication, will an acknowledgment before the church session, and reported to the congregation, be sufficient?" Answered in the negative.

A pastoral letter on the subject of domestic missions was prepared and sent to the Presbyteries to be laid before the congregations.

Rev. Hezekiah Balch brought a complaint against the Presbytery of Abingdon for having ordained Mr. Witherspoon in Mount Bethel church before they had settled their money accounts with himself; and also because Mr. W. held the following sentiments, as expressed in a public sermon: "1st. That Jesus Christ is not the object of faith. 2d. That the justification of a sinner through the atonement of Christ is an act of justice. 3d. That the justification of a sinner through the righteousness of Christ, is not as wholly an act of God's free grace, as if there had been no atonement made. 4th. That there was no difference between saving faith and historical faith, only in degree of evidence."

Trial of the complaint was ordered for next meeting of Synod.

On petition from Hezekiah Balch and others, a new Presbytery was set off, to be known by the name of GREENVILLE, to consist of Rev. Messrs. George Newton, Samuel Davis, Hezekiah Balch, and John Cossan, to meet at Swannanoe church, on the third Tuesday of November next, and Mr. Newton to preside and preach; and that Messrs. John Bowman and Stephen Bovelle, with their congregations, be attached either to the Abingdon or Greenville Presbytery, as they may choose.


Fishing Creek, October 1st, 1801.

Synod was opened by Rev. John Brown, with a sermon from Rom. xi., 13; and William Montgomery was chosen moderator.

The Presbytery of Orange reported they had removed the conditional suspension of Colin Lindsey, dismissed the Rev. John Anderson to the first Presbytery of South Carolina: that they had deposed Robert M'Culloch, and ordained William Rosborough the Presbytery of Concord, that they had suspended Rev. David Barr; the Presbytery of Greenville, that they had ordained John Bowman and dismissed him, and had ordained Stephen Bovelle.

"The reports of our missionaries to the Natchez were called for and read, together with some other papers relating to that business. The Synod were happy to find, that by the blessing of Divine Providence, the good consequences of that mission appear to have far exceeded their most sanguine expectations. The missionaries received time cordial thanks of the house for their prudence, zeal, and diligence, in the execution of the important duties assigned them.

The case of the man who had married his wife's sister's daughter, and was put under discipline by the Synod at its session in 1789, was taken up, and after much consideration the Synod adopted the following: "This Synod so far rescind their former judgment, as to leave it to the church session of the congregation to which Mr. Latham belongs, to do as they think prudence and duty may direct them; keeping carefully in view the glory of God, and the peace and happiness of the church in those parts."

The complaint of Mr. Balch against the Presbytery of Abingdon AA as taken up. On the first complaint (see last session) the Synod judged that the Presbytery ought, at the time Mr. Balch presented his claim against the people, or at some other convenient season, to have endeavored to bring the matter to a proper adjustment; and also that it was neglect, if not unfriendly, in Mr. Balch, not to have presented his claims earlier, for a fair adjustment.

On the complaint and charges against Mr. Witherspoon (see last session), the action was as follows: having heard Mr. Witherspoon explain the first specification that, he meant "the immediate object of faith; the Scriptures, or the report of the Apostles about Christ was the immediate object, the Synod do judge—that the young man's mode of expression was unhappy and unguarded; yet it appears to this Synod, that the Presbytery may probably have had satisfactory testimony of his orthodoxy on that particular." On the second specification, Mr. Witherspoon said, he used the expression, "and well remembers that he added, it was also an .act of mercy; that it was mercy as it respected the sinner, but justice as it respected God, who passed the act; that the atonement answered the demands of justice, and laid the ground for the act to pass in justice." Synod judged—"Mr. Witherspoon's phrase, that justification, as it respects the atonement, is an act of justice, may be explained in a good sense." On the third specification, Mr. Witherspoon said, he had read in a work of Mr. Edwards, borrowed of Mr. B.—"that the justification of a sinner is as wholly an act of God's free brace as if there had been no atonement," and that he had expressed a doubt on the matter, that the atonement might thereby be superseded. The Synod passed by what might have been said in private by Mr. Witherspoon, and judged, "inasmuch as Mr. Witherspoon appears to have held, and still to hold, that the justification of a sinner is not wholly an act of brace, or not as wholly as if there had been no atonement, the Presbytery ought. not to have proceeded to ordain Mr. Witherspoon, without endeavoring to bring him to a right view of the doctrine." On the fourth specification, after hearing Mr. W.'s explanation, the Synod judged, "that Mr. Witherspoon's proposition is not true; yet he has explained himself consistently with truth and that the Presbytery ought to have endeavored to bring him to a mode of expression more consistent with his own ideas, as his proposition and explanation appear to be very different."

"Upon the whole, this Synod, sorry to find that the brethren over the mountains still retain so much of the spirit of warm opposition, DO SOLEMNLY RECOMMEND to Mr. Balch, and those who are opposed to him, to pray for and endeavor to exercise more of that spirit of meekness and brotherly kindness which the gospel so frequently recommends to us, and endeavor to cultivate friendship with each other. And further, the Synod recommend to the Presbytery of Abingdon a more strict regard to our standards of doctrine and discipline, especially in introducing young men to the ministry of the gospel." "The parties acceded to the judgment."

The Synod passed orders, for the purpose of bringing the subject of missions before all the congregations; and for obtaining collections from them all for the support of missionaries.

A petition from the congregations of Greenspring and Sinking Spring, with a remonstrance against the proceedings of Abingdon Presbytery, in ordaining Mr. Bovelle pastor of Sinking Spring, in the peculiar case of the congregation, particularly that there was so strong an opposition to him. After much time spent in hearing papers produced by the Presbytery and Mr. Bradley, the representative of the congregation, the Synod judged that the Presbytery "acted incautiously " in ordaining Mr. Bovelle in the circumstances; and after appointing a committee to take the sense of the congregation on the continuance or discontinuance of the connexion and to lay the result before the Presbytery, who are to act accordingly, they say—"And further, this Synod do seriously and solemnly, and with all the authority which they possess as a judicature of the church of Christ, recommend to the ministers and people beyond the mountains, and especially to the people of Sinking Spring and Greenspring congregations, to seek peace and pursue it. O brethren, live peaceably among yourselves! Let brotherly love continue. See that ye fall not out by the way." The Presbytery of Greenville was directed to hold a meeting on the second Tuesday of February, to receive the report of time committee and to determine the case.

The Rev. William Montgomery, of Presbytery of Hopewell, and Mr. John Matthews, a licentiate of Orange Presbytery, were appointed Missionaries to the Mississippi Territory, from the 15th of November, to act as long as they shall judge convenient. Thomas Hall, a licentiate of Concord Presbytery, was appointed to itinerate through the Carolinas and Georgia, for the space of eight months.

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