PROCLAMATION, For a Solemn Fast and Humiliation▪

WILLIAM By the Grace of GOD, King of Great Britain France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith;
To [...] Macers of Our Privy Council, Messengers at Arms, Our Sheriffs in that part, conjunctly and severally specially con­stitute Greeting.

Forasmuch, as, by Reason of many abounding heinous Sins and Provocations; The Displeasure and Wrath of Almighty GOD is very visible against Us, and Our People, not only in the sad Calamity, under which the Kingdom Labours, by reason of the Disappointment, and failing of the Cropt and Fruits of the Ground, for the Year by past, whereupon such Scarci­ty and Dearth did ensue; That the Poor of the Land have generally been Reduced to the greatest Extremity; But also, by the continuance of such bad VVeather, and so unnatural a Season, as doth sadly threaten the Mil-giving, and Blasting of the present Cropt, and Fruits of the Ground, to the Increase of that Distress, whereby the Kingdom is already Afflicted, and in hazard to be ruin­ed, (if God in his Mercy prevent not) which certainly calls for our deepest Humiliation and most earnest and fervent Supplications to our gracious God to avert it: VVhich Consideration, hath also moved the Commission of the late General Assembly, to Adress the Lords of Our Privy Council, That a Day of Humiliation may be appointed, and keeped throughout this Kingdom; VVherefore, VVe with Advice of the Lords of Our Privy Council, appoint and Command a Day of Solemn Humiliation and Prayer to be observed through this whole King­dom, that all may put up fervent Prayers to God, [...] and Forgivenness. And that he would turn away his Wrath, and keep off deserved Judgement, and yet Graciously bless [...] People with Seasonable VVeather, for In bringing the Fruits of the Ground. And also, that above all things, he would bestow on Us and them, his Spiritual and Heavenly Blessings, by the con­tinuing and prospering of his Gospel, and the Fruits thereof amongst us. And We, with Advice foresaid, Require and Command the said Solemn Fast, and Day of Humiliation, to be Religiously Observed and Keeped, by all Ranks and Degrees of People, upon the Days following, viz. In all the Planted Churches on this side the River of Tay, upon the twenty fifth day of August Instant, and in all the Planted Churches of the rest of this Kingdom, upon the Eight Day of September next to come: And in such Churches, as are Vacant, upon such Days, as shall be Appointed by the Presbytery of the Bounds. Certifying such who shall Contemn or Neglect the Dutiful Observing and Keeping of the said Day of Humiliation; They shall be proceeded against, as Contemners of Our Authorty, and Neglecters of such a Necessary Duty: And seing, that on such an Occasion, and for such Causes. God doth more especially re­quire the exercise of Christian Charity and Compassion towards the Poor and Indigent, whose Pinching Straits and VVants, do at present lay them under the deepest distress and cry aloud to all for their Help and Relieff, as they expect, and would wish that God should be gracious to them in the like Case; Therefore, VVe do further, with Advice foresaid, seriously Recommend to all Our Good Subjects, to draw forth and extend their Christian Charity, and Compassion towards the Poor and Indigent, by a Cheerful, and Liberal and Boun­tiful Contribution, upon the said Day of Humiliation and Lords Day thereafter, as the best and most acceptable Expressions of their Sincerity and Earnestness in the foresaid Duty And VVe peremptory Require and Command, that not only the Money to be Contribute and Collected upon the Dayes foresaid; But likewise, (if it shall be found needfull,) that all other Money formerly Collected, and still lying in Church-Boxes, or in the hands of Kirk Sessions, or lent out upon Interest, by Bonds taken for the Product of such Col­lections, be instantly uplifted, imployed and wared out for buying of Victual, and other necessars for relief of the Poor, within the Bounds of the Paroches to which the saids Collections and Bonds do belong. And that at the fight of the Ministers and Elders, with concourse of such Heretors as shall Joyn with them, within the saids respective Paroches, by these already Intrusted, or who shall be Intrusted by the saids Ministers and Elders, and Heretors with the over sight of the Poor in the saids Bounds, to the Effect the said Vic­tual, and other necessars, for the relief of the poor, may be Orderly, and Proportionally distribut among them, effeiring to their sever­all Indigencies. And We again, Require and Command, all Ministers of the Gospel, and others foresaid, to applye themselves dili­gently to the foresaid pious VVork, for the Supplye and Relief of the Poor, as they will be Answerable to God, and Us thereanent OUR VVILL IS HEREFORE, And VVe Charge you strictly, and Command, That in continent these Our Letters seen, ye pass to the Mercat Cross of Edinburgh, and to the remanent Mercat Crosses of the Head Burghs of the several Shires, and Steuarties within this Kingdom, and in Our Name and Authority, make Publication hereof, that none pretend Ignorance. An VVe Ordain Our Solicitor to dispatch Copies hereof, to the Sheriffs of the several Shires, and Steuarts of Steuartries, and their Deputs, or Clerks to be by them Published at the Mercat-Crosses of the Head Burghs, upon receipt thereof, and immediately sent to the several Ministers to the Effect they may Read and Intimate the same, from their Pulpits upon the Lords Day immediately preceeding the Dayes above appointed, And Ordains these Presents to be Printed, and Published in manner foresaid.

Per Actum Dominorum Secreti Concilii. GIL. ELIOT Cls. Sti Concilii.

GOD save the KING.

Edinburgh, Printed by the Heirs and Successors of Andrew Anderson Printer to His most Excellent Majesty, 1696

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