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PRESBYTERIAN SYNOD., Issue 8053, 1 November 1889
The Synod resumed at seven o'clock last night. The Very Rev. the Moderator presided, and there was a very lirge attendance of members. DEPUTIES. The Rev. Mr Baird (cx-moderator) addressed the Synod on the subject of his visit to the Northern Assembly, and spoke of the kind manner in which he and Mr Adams had been received.
The Moderator having invited the deputies from tho Northern Church to address the Synod, The Rev. Mr Beattie (moderator of the Northern Church) conveyed to the Synod the greetings of that church. Speaking of the advantages to be gained by a union of the Presbyterian churches, he advocated it on the ground of increased usefulness. He could see no arguments which could be used against it, as there was no difference of doctrine, and it would unite in one body 25 per cent, of the population of the colony. With regard to endowments they should be allowed to remain as they were at present, and no notice should be taken of the mere bugbear of geographical difficulty. Mr Jack, the Wellington deputy, in his address emphasised the importance of home training to the young, and advocated .Biblereading in schools. The Rev. Mr Baird moved the following deliverance, which was adopted :—That the Synod express great pleasure at the presence of the deputies from the Presbyterian Church of New Zealand, thank them for their excellent addresses, rejoice to hear of the welfare and prosperity of the sister church, and assure them of tho Synod's continued interest and sympathy in their labors; renew expressions of terms of regard for the church they represent, and its prayer that it may be increasingly useful in promoting the Kingdom of Christ." The Moderator tsked the deputies to return the heartiest greetings of the Synod to their assembly, and expressed pleasure on behalf of tho Synod at having heard their addresses. He was sure there were very many in Otago and Southland who were looking forward to the union of the churches, which, eventually, must come about. CONFESSION OF FAITH. The discussion on this question was resumed. Mr A. D. Johnston spoke in support of Dr Macgregor's amendment. The Rev. Mr Todd moved as a further amendment the following addition to the Rev. Mr Will's motion :—" That the Committee be continued to collect information od tho subject, and that presbyteries and sessions be instructed to report to the Committee not later than June ; report to be made to the next Synod." He said that had he had the opportunity last year he would have opposed the appointment of the Committee on the'subject. He pointed out that in the opinion of Principal Rainy the church was in a better position to proceed in the matter than the Free Church at Home. The Rev. Mr Dalrymple seconded this amendment. Mr A. C. Begg said that it was a serious matter to begin to tamper with the constitution of a church, and pointed out the legal aspect of the question as affecting the church property. Great caution should be used in proceeding in this matter. Mr K. Ramsay supported the amendment of the Rev. Mr Finlayson. The Rev. R. R. M. Sutherland said that they should wait till the Free Church had spoken on the subject, and thought the Declaratory Act would want more explanation than the Confession, which it was intended to explain. Dr Copland had expected information from the report in regard to certain difficulties which had arisen in the church, but found no such information. It was, he thought, a very awkward way of going to work to attempt to provide a remedy before knowing what the disease was. He thought the difficulties would be best dealt with by a pastoral address.
Tl - e discussion was continued at some length, the Rev. Mr Finlayson's amendment being supported by the Revs. Chisholm, Stobo, Borric, and Jolly, and the Rev. Mr Bannerman speaking in favor of Dr Macgrcgor's amendment. In supporting the Rev. Mr Will's motion, theßev. MrCAMERONsaid thathe had himself come from the United Presbyterian Church, and claimed to accept the Confession of Faith with the Declaratory Act.
The Rev. Mr Bannerman moved that the words be taken down.
The Rev. Mr Cameron did not object. They could discipline him if they liked, but the proper time for them to have objected was when he came, it being known then that he was licensed by what had been called an Arminian Church. He was not an Arminian, but he held that the Declaratory Act was necessary.
After some little discussion the matter dropped. The motion of the Rev. Mr Will was, by leave, withdrawn, and also the amendments of the Rev. Mr Todd and Dr Macgregor, the latter rev. gentleman saying that the amendment of the Rev. Mr Finlayson contained all he cared about, provided the Committee was a representative one. The Rev. Mr Finlayson's amendment was then put as a motion, and carried unanimously in the following slightly altered form :—" The Synod receive the report, and in view of tho importance of the matter contained therein, and of the necessity of carefully considering the whole subject, order tho report to lie on the table till next meeting of Synod ; appoint a committee to continue and complete tho work assigned to the Committee by last Synod, and to tako notice of similar movements in other churches and ieport to the Synod." SUSTKNTATION FUND. The Rev. Mr Will said that the dividend of the sustentation fund for this year would be L2OG 18s 7d—l4s over that of last year. The Synod adjourned at a quarter past eleven o'clock p.m.
PRESBYTERIAN SYNOD., Issue 8053, 1 November 1889
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