ARTICLES TO BE Ministred, Enquired of, and Answered, Concerning MATTERS Ecclesiastical: In the first EPISCOPAL VISITATION Of the Right Reverend Father in God GILBERT By Gods Divine Providence Lord Bishop of BRISTOL: In the second ye [...] of his Consecration.

[blazon of the Lord Bishop of Bristol surmounted by bishop's miter]

London, Printed for H. Brome. M.DC.LXII.

The Tenor of the Oath to be Ministred to the Church-wardens and Side-men.

Your Oath is,
THat you the Church-Wardens for your parts, and you the Side-men for your parts, shall well and faithfully execute and performe your several Places and Offices respectively, for this your Parish, for this year following; in all things according to the use and custom there, and the Law in that behalf: And also duely and truly to present all such Crimes and Offences (punishable by the Laws Ecclesiastical of this Land) which upon view and consideration of these Articles given you in Charge, by fame, report, or otherwise (by your diligent inquiry) shall come to your knowledge or notice: All Favour and Affecti­on, Hatred and Malice, or sinister respect set apart: So help you God in Jesus Christ.

ARTICLES TO BE Ministred, Enquired of, and Answered: IN THE DIOCESS of BRISTOL.

Concerning the Kings Majesties Authority in Causes Ecclesiastical.
  • 1. HAVE you any in your Parish, that oppugne or gainsay any part of his Majesties Supremacy in the said Causes Ecclesiastical?
  • 2. HAVE you any that affirm, That the Civil Magistrate ought not to prescribe any thing to Ecclesiastical persons, in or about the publique Worship of God, but that their duty only is, to protect and defend the said per­sons?
Of the Church of England.
  • [Page 2]1. HAVE you any in your Parish that affirm, That the Church of England, as now by Law Established, is not a True and Apostoli­cal Church, reproaching the same as Anti­christian?
  • 2. HAVE you any that affirm. That the Book of Common-Prayer, now established by Law, containeth any thing in it, that is Su­perstition, and contrary to the Word of God; and therefore that godly men ought not to ap­prove and subscribe to the same?
  • 3. HAVE you any that seperate themselves from the Church of England, and the publique Worship thereof; and combine themselves in a new Brotherhood, making Rules and Orders amongst themselves, to be Ruled and Governed by, in Church-matters? or, that come not to Church till Divine Ser­vice be ended, and the Sermon to begin?
Of Divine Service.
  • [Page 3]1. ARE the Lords-dayes, and other Holy­dayes kept in your Parish, according to the Orders of the Church of England, prescribed in that behalf, by frequenting the publique Worship, and using all charitable and sober Conversation?
  • 2. DO your Church-wardens diligently ob­serve, what Irregular persons, or Non-confor­mists absent themselves from their own Pa­rish Church? And do they repair to the Iustices of the Peace for their warrants, to levy twelve pence upon the Goods of such persons according as by Law is required of them?
  • 3. IS the Common-Prayer Reverently used in your Church or Chappel, upon such dayes as are appointed? And is the Letany used upon Wenesdayes and Frydayes weekly by your Minister, without adding or diminishing in the matter and form thereof? And do the Parishi­oners resort thereunto?
  • 4. HAVE you any in your Parish that cover their heads in Church or Chappel, in time of Divine Service, except he hath some known [Page 4]Infirmity, and then to wear a Cap only? Or do your Church-wardens suffer any Idle per­sons to loyter, either in the Church-yard, or Church-porch, in the time of Divine Service, or Sermon?
Of the Sacraments.
  • 1. IS the Sacrament of the Lords Supper du­ly administred in your Parish, at the least thrice a year, Easter being one? And doth the Minister give warning thereof at Morning Prayers the Sunday before such time? And doth the Church-wardens provide a sufficient quantity of Bread and Wine for the same?
  • 2. HAVE you in your Church or Chappel, a convenient Table covered in time of Divine Service, with a Carpet; and in the time of Administration, with a fine Linnen Cloth? Is the Wine brought to the Communion­table in a clean Stoope or Pot?
  • 3. DOTH your Minister admit any to the Sacrament of the Supper, that are Excommu­nicate persons? or any that are known to live in any grievous crime? or live in open conten­tion with their Neighbours? Or any Church-wardens [Page 5]or Side-men that have heretofore neglected, or refused to present such publique Offences, as they know to be committed in their Parishes, and so incur the horrible crime of Perjury?
  • 4. IS the Sacrament of Baptism duly Ad­ministred in your Church or Chappel, according to the form thereof prescribed by the Church of England? Is there a Font of Stone placed to­wards the lower end of the Church for that purpose? And are there such Godfathers and Godmothers used therein, as are of Age? or have received the Sacrament of the Lords Supper?
  • 5. HAVE you any in your Parish, that re­fuse to bring their Children to be Baptized by the Minister, according to the Book of Com­mon-Prayer? who are they? and, how long have they done so?
For Ministers.
  • 1. DOTH your Minister, when he readeth Publique Prayers, or Administer the Sacrament, wear a comly Surplice with sleeves? And if he be a Graduate, such Hood [Page 6]as by the Orders of the Vniversity is agreea­ble to his Degree?
  • 2. HATH your Minister more Benefices with cure then one? and if so, how far distant one from an other? upon which doth he reside? Hath he a sufficient Curate to teach and in­struct the People? Doth he Catechize the youth and ignorant persons of the Parish, in the Ten Commandements, the Creed, and the Lords Prayer? And do all Fathers, Mothers, Ma­sters, and Mistresses send their Children and Servants to be instructed accordingly, when re­quired thereunto?
  • 3. DOTH your Minister solemnly bid Em­ber-weeks, Holy-dayes, and Fasting-dayes, as they are set down in the Kalender? Doth he also use to visite the Sick?
  • 4. DOTH any Person Preach in your Pa­rish, as a Lecturer? Doth he before his Lecture read Divine Service? and is he Conformable to the Orders established in the Church of England?
  • 5. DOTH your Minister Preach or Admini­ster the Sacraments in private Houses? Or appoint private or publique Fasts without Authority?
  • [Page 7] 6. DOTH your Minister frequent Ta­verns, or Alehouses, or any suspected places? or is he of an honest and sober Conversa­tion, such as becometh the Gospell of Christ?
Of School-Masters.
  • 1. HAVE you any School-Master in your Parish? Hath he a License from the Bishop to teach School? Doth he instruct his Schollers in the Catechism, and good Man­ners, as well as Learning?
  • 2. DOTH your School-Master upon Sun­dayes and Festival-dayes, when there be Ser­mons preached, in your Church or Chappel, bring the Schollers to Church, and see them there orderly to behave themselves, and examine them, at times convenient, what they remember of the said Sermons?
Of the Church and Church-yard.
  • [Page 8]1. HAVE you in your Church or Chappel, a Bible of the largest Volum, and of the late Translation? The Book of Homi­lies, set forth by Authority? And have you the Book of Common-Prayer, appro­ved and commanded by the late Act of Par­liament?
  • 2. HAVE you in your Church or Chappel a convenient Seat, or Desk, for your Mi­nister, to read Divine Service in? And a comely and decent Pulpit, with a Cloth or Cushion, for the Preaching of Gods Word?
  • 3. IS your Church or Chappel sufficiently repaired, the windows glased, and all things there in such orderly sort as becometh the house of God?
  • 4. IS your Church-yard well and sufficiently fenced by those who by Law ought to fence the same?
  • 5. HAVE you in your Church or Chappel a Chest for Almes, with a hole in the up­per [Page 9]part thereof, with three Keyes, one for the Minister, one for the Senior Church-warden, and one for the Overseer for the Poor?
  • 6. HAVE you in your Church the Book of Divine Service, to be used upon the Fifth of November, the Thirtieth of January, and the Nine and Twentieth of May? And doth your Minister and the Parishioners duely observe those dayes yearly, as they are appointed? Have you also the Book of Canons and Con­stitutions?
  • 7. ARE the Seats in your Church kept in good repair? And are the Ten Comman­dements set up in some convenient place, in your Church, with the Creed and the Lords Prayer, and some choyse sentences of Scri­pture?
  • 8. HAVE you a Terrier of the Glebe-lands and other Possessions belonging to your Church? Is your Ministers house kept in suf­ficient repair?
Of Church-wardens.
  • [Page 10]ARE your Church-wardens chosen by the Minister and Parishioners, the Minister chusing one? and do your Church-wardens at the end of the year, give up an account of such Moneys as they have received?
Of Parish-Clerks.
  • HAVE you a Parish-Clerk, chosen by the Minister, sufficient for his Reading, Writing, and a competent skill in Sing­ing? And doth he receive his accustomed wages?
Of Marriages.
  • [Page 11]1. IS there any in your Parish that have Marryed within the Degrees prohibi­ted by the Laws of God, expressed in a Ta­ble, and set forth by Authority, Anno 1563? And have you the Table set up in your Church?
  • 2. HATH your Minister Marryed any in your Parish under the age of 21 without the consent of their Parents? Or, hath he Mar­ryed any persons in private houses?
Of Physitians, Chirurgeons, and Midwives.
  • DOTH any Man in your Parish take upon him to practise Physick, or Chirurgery? And doth any Woman take upon her to exercise the Office of a Midwife, without approbation and license from the Ordinary?
Of Burials.
  • [Page 12]HAVE any been buried in your Parish-Church, or Church-yard, that have been known Recusants, or Excommunicated per­sons, or such as have been Felones dese? And doth your Minister bury the Dead, according to the form prescribed in the Book of Com­mon-Prayer?
Of the Parishioners.
  • 1. DOTH any in your Parish use bodily labour in their Vocations upon Sun­dayes and Holy dayes, or suffer their Servants so to do? Or, do any of your Parish go to Ta­verns, or Ale-houses, to tipple or game on those dayes?
  • 2. ARE there any married Women, in your Parish, who after Child-birth, refuse [Page 13]publiquely to give thanks to God for their safe delivery, as is prescribed by the Book of Com­mon-Prayer?
  • 3. IS there any in your Parish that is known or vehemently suspected of Adultery, Fornica­tion, Incest, or that are common Swearers, and Drunkerds, or Sowers of Sedition? You are to present all such. Knowing that the discharge of your duty herein, is a means to reform such dis­orders in your Parish, and to prevent the Judgements of God from falling on the same.
GILB. BRISTOL.

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