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other; and require them, in speaking, always to address the chair. He shall prevent a speaker from deviating from the subject; and from using personal reflections. He shall silence those who refuse to obey order. lie shall prevent members who attempt to leave the judica. tory without leave obtained from him. Ile shall, at a proper season, when the deliberations are ended, put the question and call the votes. If the judicatory be equally divided, he shall possess the casting vote. If he be not willing to decide, he shall put the question a second time; and if the judicatory be again equally divided, and he decline to give his vote, the question shall be lost. In all questions he shall give a concise and clear state of the object of the vote; and the vote being taken, shall then declare how the question is decided. And he shall likewise be empowered, on any extraordinary emergency, to convene the judicatory, by his circular letter, before the ordinary time of meeting.
III. The moderator of the presbytery shall be chosen from year to year, or at every meeting of the presbytery, as the presbytery may think best. The moderator of the synod, and of the General Assembly, shall be cłosen at each meeting of those judicatories: and the moderator, or, in case of his absence, another member appointed for the purpose, shall open the next meeting with a sermon, and shall hold the chair till a new moderator be chosen
EVERY judicatory shall choose a clerk, to record their transactions, whose continuance shall be during pleasure. It shall be the duty of the clerk, besides recording the transactions, to preserve the records carefully; and to grant extracts from them, whenever properly required: and such extracts, under the hand of the clerk, shall be considered as authentic vouchers of the fact which they declare, in any ecclesiastical judicatory, and to every part of the Church.
OF VACANT CONGREGATIONS ASSEMBLING FOR PUBLIC
I. CONSIDERING the great importance of weekly assembling the people, for the public worship of God, in order thereby to improve their knowledge; to confirm their habits of worship, and their desire of the public ordinances; to augment their reverence for the most high God; and to promote the charitable affections which unite men most firmly in society: it is recommended, that every vacant congregation meet together, on the Lord's Day, at one or more places, for the purpose of prayer, singing praises, and reading the Holy Scriptures, together with the works of such approved divines, as the presbytery within whose bounds they are, may recommend, and they may be able to procure; and that the elders or deacong be the persons who shall preside, and select the portions of Scripture, and of the other books to be read; and to see that the whole be conducted in a becoming and or. derly manner.
II. Every presbytery shall arrange for the supply of the vacant pulpits within its bounds either by direct action at a meeting or through a committee. The session of a vacant church
may receive leave to supply the pulpit for a period to be fixed by presbytery, subject to the limitation contained in the fourth section of this chapter.
III. Ministers, licentiates, and local evangelists connected with the presbyteries of this Church shall be the only persons to be employed as regular supplies in vacant churches. It shall be the duty of ministers not engaged in regular church work to render service in vacant congregations within the bounds of their respective presbyteries, unless excused by act of presbytery. Ministers of other denominations in correspondence with this General Assembly may be employed as occasional supplies.
IV. When the pulpit of any congregation has been vacant for a longer period than twelve months, the ap
pointment of ministers for the pulpit shall be made by the presbytery, and shall continue to be so made until a pastor has been elected by the congregation and duly installed by the presbytery.
OF COMMISSIONERS TO THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY.
I. The commissioners to the General Assembly shall always be appointed by the presbytery from which they come, at its last stated meeting, immediately preceding the meeting of the General Assembly; provided, that there be a sufficient interval between that time and the meeting of the Assembly, for their commissioners to attend to their duty in due season; otherwise, the presbytery may make the appointment at any stated meeting, not more than seven months preceding the meeting of the Assembly. And as much as possible to prevent all failure in the representation of the presbyteries, arising from urforeseen accidents to those first appointed, it may be expedient for each presbytery, in the room of each commissioner, to appoint also an alternate commissioner to supply his place, in case of necessary absence.
II. Each commissioner, before his name shall be enrolled as a member of the Assembly, shall produce from his presbytery, a commission under the hand of the moderator and clerk, in the following, or like form—viz. “The presbytery of
being met at day of
doth hereby appoint bishop of the congregation of
for “ruling elder in the congregation of
as the case ‘may be;"] (to which the presbytery may, if they think proper, make a substitution in the following form)“ or in
case of his absence, then bishop of the congre“gation of
ruling elder in the congre'gation of
as the case may be:] to be a commis
“sioner, on behalf of this presbytery, to the next General
Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United “States of America, to meet at “day of
A.D. or wherever, and whenever the said Assembly may happen to sit; to consult, vote, "and determine, on all things that may come before that “body, according to the principles and constitution of
this Church, and the Word of God. And of his diligence hereiü, he is to render an account at his return. Signed by order of the Presbytery,
Clerk." And the presbytery shall make record of the appointment.
III. In order, as far as possible, to procure a respectable and full delegation to all our judicatories, it is proper that the expenses of ministers and elders in their attendance on these judicatories, be defrayed by the bodies which they respectively represent.
OF TIIE ORGAVIZATIONS OF TILE CHURCII: THEIR RIGIITS
AND DUTIES. 1. The members of a particular church or particular churches may associate together, and may associate with themselves other regular members of the congregation or congregations, under regular forms of association, for the conduct of a special work for missionary or other benevolent purposes, or for the purpose of instruction in religion and development in Christian nurture.
II. Where special organizations of the character above indicated exist in a particular church, they shall be under the immediate direction, control, and oversight of the session of said church; where they cover the territory included within a presbytery or synod, they shall be responsible to the judicatory having jurisdiction; and where they cover territory greater than a synod, they shall be responsible to the General Assembly.
III. The names or titles of special organizations may be chosen by themselves, and the organizations shall have power to adopt each its own constitution and to elect its own officers, subject always to the powers of review and control vested by the Constitution in the several judicatories of the Church.
IV. Whenever the functions of the special organizations shall include the collecting and distributing of moneys for benevolent work, it shall be done always subject to the power of oversight and direction vested by the Constitution in the session and in the higher judicatories.
1. Amendments or alterations of the Form of Govern. ment, Book of Discipline and Directory for Worship may be proposed by the General Assembly to the presbyteries, but shall not be obligatory on the Church unless a majority of all the presbyteries approve thereof in writing.
II. Amendments or alterations of the Confession of Faith, and the Larger and Shorter Catechisms, may be proposed to the presbyteries by the General Assembly, but shall not be obligatory on the Church unless they shall be approved in writing by two-thirds of all the presbyteries, and agreed to and enacted by the General Assembly next ensuing, and the written votes of the presbyteries shall be returned to that Assembly.
III. Before any amendments or alterations of the Confession of Faith, or the Larger and Shorter Catechisms, proposed by the General Assembly, shall be transmitted to the presbyteries, the General Assembly shall appointto consider the subject-a committee of ministers and ruling elders, in number not less than fifteen, of whom