AN ORDINANCE OF THE LORDS and COMMONS Assembled in PARLIAMENT: FOR The present setling (without further delay) Of the Presbyteriall Government In the Church of ENGLAND

ORdered by the Lords Assembled in Parliament, That this Ordinance concerning Church-Government be forthwith printed and published.

Joh. Brown Cler. Parliamentorum.

London printed for John Wright at the Kings Head in the old Bayley. 1646.


Die Veneris 5. Junii 1646. AN ORDINANCE OF THE LORDS and COMMONS Assembled in PARLIAMENT.

THe Lords and Commons in Par­liament, holding their former resolution, That all notorious and scandalous Offenders shalbe kept from the Sacrament, have thought fit to make a further addition to the scandalous Offences formerly enumerated, for which men shall be kept [Page 2] from the Sacrament; and least the stay of the enumeration, and the not naming of Commis­sioners to judge of Cases not enumerated, should hinder the putting in execution the Presbyterian Government already established: They have thought fit, that in regard that divers persons fit to be Commissioners, according to the last Ordinance of 14 Martii 1645. by rea­son of the present Distractions, are absent from their habitations, and so cannot doe the service therein, which otherwise they might doe: They doe therefore Ordaine, that in stead and place of Commissioners in the said Ordinance,

THomas Earle of Arundell and Surry, Algernon Earle of Northumberland, Henry Earle of Kent, John Earle of Rutland, Philip Earle of Pembroke and Montgomery, Robert Earle of Essex, Theophilus Earle of Lincolne, Charles Earle of Nottingham, James Earle of Suffolke, William Earle of Salisbury, John Earle of Bridgewater, Robert Earl of Warwieke, Bazill Earle of Denbigh, Iames Earle of Middlesex, Oliver Earle of Bollingbrooke, Edward Earle of Manchester, Edmond Earle of Mulgrave, Henry Earle of Stamford, William Lord Vifcount Say and Seale, George Lord Berkley, Francis Lord Dacres, Philip Lord Wharton, Francis Lord Willoughby of Parham, Dudley Lord North, Iohn Lord Hunsdon, Charles Lord Stanhopp, Edward Lord Mountague, William Lord Grey of Warke, Iohn Lord Ro­berts, William Lord Maynard, Edward Lord Howard of [Page 3] Escrich, Richard Lord Herbert Cherberry, Thomas Lord Bruce.

Francis Rous, Edmund Prideaux Esquires, Sir Henry Vane Senior, Iohn Glyn Esquire, Recorder of London; Sir Ro­bert Harley, Bulstrode Whitlock Esquire, Humphrey Sallo­way Esquire, Master Serjeant Wilde, Oliver St. Iohn Es­quire, his Majesties Sollicitor; Sir Benjamin Rudyard Knight, Master Tate, Sir Iohn Clotworthy Knight, Iohn Maynard Esquire, Sir Henry Vane junior Knight, William Pierrepont Esquire, William Wheeler Esquire, Sir William Masham, VValter Young, Sir Iohn Evelyn Knight, Iohn Selden Esquire, Samuel Browne Esquire, Sir William Strickland, Walter Long Esquire, Herbert Morley Es­quire, George Snelling Esq Harbottle Grimston Esq Iohn Boys Esq Richard Shuttleworth, Lord Fairfax, Sir Iohn D'Anvers, Iohn Crew Esq Sir Anthony Irby, Sir John Hol­land, Sir Philip Stapleton, Luke Robinson Esq Thomas We­strow Esq Denzell Hollis Esq Henry Lucas Esq Sir Iohn Dreydon, Robert Reynolds Esq Sir Thomas Middleton, Ro­bert Iennor Esq Henry Oxenden Esq Sir Gilbert Gerrard, Nicholas Stoughton Esq Sir Iohn Burgoyne, Sir Edward Aiscough, Iohn Swynfen Esq Sir Henry Heyman, Edw. Leigh Esq Sir Thomas VVroth, Samuel Gott Esq Sir John Bamfield, VVilliam Ball Esq John Palmer Esq Laurence VVhitacre Esq Sir Arther Haslerigg, Sir Dudley North, Sir VVilliam VValler, Nathaniel Bacon Esq Richard Edwards Esq Luke Hodges Esq Sir VVilliam Lewis, Francis Allen Esq Giles Greene Esq John Gourdon Esq Dennis Bond Esq Sir Peter VVent­worth, Sir Samuel Luke, Edward Bainton Esq Richard Salloway junior, Simon Theloall Esq Oliver Gromwell Esq Isaac Pennington Esq Alderman of the City of London, John Ven Esq Doctor John Bond, Sir Richard Onslow, Sir VVilliam Armyn, VVilliam Aiscough Esquire, George Abbot [Page 4] Esquire, Cornelius Holland Esquire, John Blackinsten E­squire, Lord Herbert, Sir VValter Erle, Henry Martin Esquire, Sir Thomas Dacres, Richard Brown Esquire, VVilliam E [...]lis Esquire, John Lisle Esquire, VVilliam Ashurst Esquire, Sir John Treavor, Sir Nathaniel Barnardiston, Thomas Lord VVenman, Sir Martin Lumley, Samuel Vassall Esquire, Sir Matthew Boynton, Jervace Piggot Esquire, John Hutchinson Esquire, Thomas Hatcher Esquire, James Fiennes Esquire, Valentine Walton Esquire, John Ste­phens Esquire, John Evelyn of Surry, Thomas Scott Esquires, Thomas Pury Esquire, Henry Peck Esquire, Thomas Hodges of Gloucestershire Esquire, William Leman Esquire, Richard Winwood Esquire, John Lowry Esquire, Sir Martin Lister, Sir Edmond Fowell, Robert Wallop Esquire, Richard Whitehead Esquire, Nathaniel Hallows Esquire, Robert Brewster Esquire, Sir Edward Hunger­ford, Richard Norton Esquire, Sir Thomas Barnadiston, Sir Thomas Trenchard, Miles Corbet Esquire, Sir Henry Mildmay, Thomas Atkin Esquire, Alderman of the City of London, Lord Cranborne, Roger Hill Esquire, Sir John Barington, John Trenchard Esquire, Sir John Corbet, Alex­ander Popham Esquire, Sir Samuel Roll, Sir John Coke, John Nut Esquire, Ralph Ashton Esquire, Richard Barwis Esquire, William Armyn Esquire, Richard Tolson Esquire, Sir Henry Cholmly, Sir Thomas Widdrington, George Fen­wicke Esquire, Edmond Ludlow Esquire, Lillibon Long Esquire, Franois Drake Esquire, Sir Michaell Livesay, Ed­ward Stephens Esquire, Sir William Spring, James Herbert Esquire, Henry Laurence Esquire, John Roll Esquire, Sir John Francklyn, Thomas Sandys Esquire, Sir Thomas Mali­verer, Sir William Litton, Nathaniell Fiennes Esquire, William Purefoy Esquire:

Or any nine of them shall be a Committee of [Page 5] Lords and Commons, to adjudge and deter­mine scandalous offences not formerly enume­rated, and the Elderships shall proceed in the Examinations of such scandalous offences accor­ding to the causions and restrictions mentioned in the Ordinance of the twentieth of October, 1645. And the said Committee shall have such power, and shall proceed in such sort as is here­after menrioned.

If any notorious and scandalous offence not formerly enumerated be committed by any within any Eldership, and so after full proofe shall be found before the Eldership, who shall have power to examine Proofs and Witnesses on both sides, in case both the Eldership and the party complained of do agree, the Proofs and Examinations to be duly taken, the said Elder­ship shall forthwith certifie the said Offence, with the Proofs, to the said Committee of Par­liament, who shall with all convenient speed determine and adjudge the same; But in case the party accused shall finde himselfe grieved, either by the not examination or undue exami­nation of Witnesses, or mis-entring of the De­positions, [Page 6] in such case he shall forth with declare the same to the Eldership, who shall relieve him if there be cause, which if they shall not do, then the three Justices of Peace next to the Pa­rish whereof the party complained of is a Mem­ber, or any two of them, not being of the same Eldership before whom the Complaint lyes, shall have power, and are hereby inabled and re­quired forthwith to examine upon Oath the said Witnesses that were not examined, or were mis-examined, or whose Depositions were mis-entred, and with all convenient speed returne the Examination to the said Committee of Par­liament: And in case the said Justices, or any two of them, do not finish their Examination, within six daies after the Cause shall be present­ed to them, the Party shall abstaine untill they have finished and certified their Examinations; And the said Committee upon hearing the whole matter from the Eldership and Justices, or either of them, shall adjudge whether the same be a notorious and scandalous offence, and so proved or no. And in case the said Commit­tee shall not adjudge and determine the Case [Page 7] within fourteen dayes after the receipt of the Certificate to them made, the party against whom the said Certificate shall be made, shall abstaine from the Sacrament, untill the Com­mittee shall determine the same, unlesse in the meane time the Party shall shew his repentance for the said offence, and thereof give satisfacti­on to the Eldership; And if the said Committee shall adjudge the same not to be a scandalous Offence, or not well proved, the said party shall be admitted to the Sacrament; and if they shall adjudge the same to be a scandalous Offence, and so proved, he shall not be admitted to the Sacrament untill he shall have testified his re­pentance to the Eldership.

And be it further Ordained, That the El­dership shall either give personall notice to the Party complained of before them, or else leave notice in writing at his dwelling place, of the time and place when and where they will exa­mine Witnesses against him, and also of the time that they will make their Certificate to the Committee of Parliament. And in case informa­tion shall be given to the Eldership of a notori­ous [Page 8] and scandalous offence committed by any within their Eldership, they shall forth with pro­ceed to the Examination thereof; and if they cannot finish their examination til the week be­fore the Sacrament, and they shall then finde by sufficient proof that he hath committed a noto­rious and scandalous Offence, and yet they can­not certifie the same before the Sacrament, it being to be administred within a week after, in such case the Party shall abstaine from the Sa­crament for the next time onely, unlesse the Committee of Parliament, to whom the same is to be certified, shall adjudge the same a notori­ous and scandalous offence, and so proved; for which he ought to be kept from the Sacrament: and in such case, upon the testifying of his re­pentance to the Eldership, he shall be againe re­stored to the Sacrament, and not before.

And be it further Ordained, If any shall finde themselves agrieved with the judgement against him given by the said Committee, they shall appeale from thence to both Houses of Parliament if they see cause.

And be it Ordained, That the Committee [Page 9] to whom the said Certificate shall be made, as aforesaid, shall report to both Houses the said severall Cases to them certified, and their judge­ments thereupon, that so the offences not yet enumerated may be added to the enumeration, in case the Houses shall so thinke fit, and in their Reports they shall take care that they first re­port those Certificates and their opinions there­upon, wherein they at any time shall differ from the Eldership.

And be it further Ordained, That this Ordi­nance shall continue for the space of three yeers and no longer, unlesse both Houses think fit to continue it.

Joh. Brown Cler. Parliamentorum.

22 Aprill, 1647. Remedies for removing some Obstructi­ons in Church-Government.

Resolved, &c.

1. THat Letters from the Speakers of both Houses be sent into all Counties (from whence no returne hath been certified) That their respective Coun­ties be divided into distinct Classes, and the same certified forthwith, with the Names of Ministers and others fit to be of each Classis, according to the Ordinance.

[Page 11] 2 That such returnes from any of the Counties as are already made, or shall here­after be made, be referred to be considered of by the Committee of Lords and Commons for judging of Scandall, and that so soone as such returnes shall be made, the Speakers of both Houses doe send the said returnes to the said Committee accordingly; and that such being by them considered of and allowed, shall have power to act according to Ordinance of Parliament.

3 That the severall Classes constituted by Parliament, in the severall Counties within the Limits of the said respective Classes, where no Congregationall Presbyteries are already setled, shall have from time to time power to nominate such Ministers and others as are qualified according to the Ordinance, to joyne with them in the same, to be approved by the Committee of Lords and Commons appoin­ted to judge of Scandall, untill such time as Congregationall Presbyteries shall be setled within the said respective precincts: And when the said Congregationall Presbyteries shall be [Page 12] setled within the said Limits, That then the said Congregationall Presbyteries shall act according to the power and directions of the Ordinance in that behalf; And that such power shall be executed, not onely in cases of death, or other departure of any Minister or Elder from the place of their wonted dwelling, but also in case of increase of Ministers and Con­gregationall Elderships in their severall pre­cincts.

4 That at any such time as seven Congre­gationall Elderships, or more, shall be consti­tuted in any Classicall precinct in any of the Counties, by the respective Classes establish­ed by Parliament, the same shall by them be signified to the severall Congregationall Elder­ships so established; and the said Congrega­tionall Elderships shall forthwith proceed to depute such of their Elders as are most fit, who together with their Ministers (according to the Ordinance of Parliament) shall meet as a Classis, and shall be, to all intents and purpo­ses, thenceforth the Classis of that precinct, and execute all power belonging to such or [Page 13] any former Classis; and the Classis formerly constituted by Parliament, shall cease as to that precinct.

5 That the Elders of the Classis of the Pro­vince of London, shall hold their Provinciall Assembly in the Convocation-house at Pauls Church in London, upon the first Munday in May next ensuing, and may adjourn their mee­ting de die in diem, and conclude their meeting with Adjournment unto the next opportunity, according to the Ordinance of Parliament: And that no Act shall passe or be valid in the said Province of London, but what shall be done by the number of Six and thirty present, or the major part of them, whereof Twelve to be Ministers, and Four and twenty to be Ruling-Elders; and that the first meeting of the Pro­vinciall Assemblies in the severall Counties, be appointed by the Committee of Lords and Commons aforesaid, and may adjourne as a­foresaid; who are to appoint the number of which each Province shall consist, and the Quo­rum that shall act in each Province.

6 That in the Classicall meeting of all [Page 14] Classes, that which shall be done by the major part present, shall be esteemed as the act of the whole Classicall number; and the same to hold in the City of London in their meeting of Tri­ers, and in all their Classicall meetings, and in the severall Counties; and that no act done by any Classis shall be valid and good, unlesle it be done by the number of fifteen present, or the major part of them, whereof five to be Ministers, and ten to be Ruling Elders.

Joh. Brown Cler. Parliamentorum.

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