Starting this blog

I welcome readers from my Boy in the Bands blog and earlier web endeavors, and newcomers. This new work will, I intend, hew closer to the faith and practice of Universalist Christians, which remains so close to my heart.

Ten years ago today, I was ordained to the ministry of the Gospel by Canon Universalist Church, Canon, Georgia. There and then, after the act of the congregation, I responded thus:

Friends: With a deep sense of responsibility, trusting not in my own strength, but in the grace and power of God, I take up the ministry to which you ordain me. I do pledge myself, so far as in me lies, to maintain the freedom of this pulpit; to speak the truth in love, both publicly and privately, without fear of persons; diligently to fulfill the several offices of worship, instruction and administration, according to the customs of this congregation and fellowship; and in all things so to live as to promote piety and righteousness, peace and love among this people and with all humanity.

Such a pledge doesn’t scan to a blog, but it shall be in my mind as I write and manage my words.

On this day in 1788: Murray ordained

Or ordained for the second time, but as so much with early Universalism, the first was irregular enough to be legally suspect.

John Murray was the minister of the Independent Christian Church, Gloucester, Massachusetts; the record of the ordination follows after the jump, from Universalism in Gloucester, Mass. (1892, 191 ff.) A polity note: see the parallels between the institution of the parish and the proprietors and regular congregation. Oh, and the Shorter Catechism referenced is the Westminster Shorter Catechism!

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