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AN OFFICE OF
INSTITUTION OF MINISTERS
INTO PARISHES OR CHURCHES.
PRESCRIBED BY THE PROTESTANT EPISCOPAL CHURCH IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA; ESTABLISHED IN GENERAL CONVENTION OF THE BISHOPS, THE CLERGY, AND LAITY, 1804; AND SET FORTH WITH ALTERATIONS, IN GENERAL CONVENTION, 1808.
¶ The Bishop having received due Notice of the Election of a Minister into a Parish or Church, as prescribed by the Canon, concerning "the Election and Institution of Ministers," and being satisfied that the “ person chosen is a qualified Minister of this Church," may transmit the following Letter of Institution, for the proposed Rector, or Assistant Minister, to one of his Presbyters, whom he may appoint as the Institutor. ·
¶ In any Diocese, the concluding Paragraph in the Letter of Institution may be omitted, where it interferes with the Usages, Laws, or Charters of the Church in the same.
To our well-beloved in Christ, A. B., Presbyter, Greeting. E do by these Presents give and grant unto Sigillum. you, in whose Learning, Diligence, sound Doctrine, and Prudence, we do fully confide, our License and Authority to perform the Office of a Priest, in the Parish [or Church] of E. And also hereby do institute you into Signat. said Parish, [or Church,] possessed of full power to perform every Act of sacerdotal Function among the People of the same; you continuing in communion with us, and complying with the rubrics and canons of the Church, and with such lawful directions as you shall at any time receive from us. And as a canonically instituted Priest into the Office of Rector [or Assistant Minister, as the case may be] of Parish [or Church,] you are faithfully to feed that portion of the flock of Christ which is now intrusted to you; not as a man-pleaser, but as continually bearing in mind that you are accountable to us here, and to the Chief Bishop and Sovereign Judge of all, hereafter.
And as the Lord hath ordained that they who serve at the altar should live of the things belonging to the altar; so we authorize you to claim and enjoy all the accustomed temporalities appertaining to your cure, until some urgent reason or:
reasons occasion a wish in you, or in the congregation committed to your charge, to bring about a separation, and dissolution of all sacerdotal relation, between you and them: of all which you will give us due notice and in case of any difference between you and your congregation, as to a separation and dissolution of all sacerdotal connection between you and them, we, your Bishop, with the advice of our Presbyters, are to be the ultimate arbiter and judge.
In witness whereof, we have hereunto affixed our episcopal seal and signature, at this A. D. and in the year of our consecration.
¶ In the case of a Minister to be instituted in a State or Diocese in which there is no Bishop, the Clerical Members of the Standing Committee shall send the following Letter of Institution, for the proposed Minister, to the Presbyter whom they may appoint as Institutor.
To our well-beloved in Christ, A. B., Presbyter, Greeting. E do by these Presents authorize and empower Sigillum. you to exercise the Office of a Priest in the Parish [or Church] of E. And by virtue of the power vested in us, do institute you into said Parish, [or Church,] possessed of full power to perform every Act of sacerdotal Function among the People of the same; you complying with the rubrics and canons of the Church.
And as a canonically instituted Priest into the Office of Rector [or Assistant Minister, as the case may be] of Parish, [or Church,] you are to feed that portion of the flock of Christ which is now intrusted to you, not as a man-pleaser, but as continually bearing in mind that you are accountable to the Ecclesiastical Authority of the Church here, and to the Chief Bishop and Sovereign Judge of all, hereafter.
And as the Lord hath ordained that they who serve at the altar should live of the things belonging to the altar; so you have our authority to claim and enjoy all the accustomed temporalities appertaining to your cure, until some urgent reason or reasons occasion a wish in you, or in the congregation committed to your charge, to bring about a separation, and dissolution of all sacerdotal connection, between you and
them of all which you will give us due notice and in case of any difference between you and your congregation, as to a separation, and dissolution of all sacerdotal connection between you and them, the Ecclesiastical Authority of the Church in this Diocese (taking the advice and aid of a Bishop) shall be the ultimate arbiter and judge.
In witness whereof, we have hereunto set our hands and seals, this day of in the year
¶ The day being appointed for the new Incumbent's Institution, at the usual hour of Morning Prayer, the Institutor, attended by the new Incumbent, and one or more Presbyters appointed by the Bishop (or, where there is no Bishop, by the Clerical Members of the Standing Committee) for that purpose, shall enter the Church. Then, all the Clergy present standing without the rails of the Altar, except the officiating Priest, who shall go into the Desk; the Wardens (or, in case of their necessary absence, two Members of the Vestry) standing on the right and left of the Altar, without the rails; the Senior Warden (or the Member of the Vestry supplying his place) holding the keys of the Church in his hand, in open view, the officiating Priest shall read Morning Prayer.
FIRST. Ezek. chap. xxxiii. verse 1 to verse 10.
¶ Morning Prayer ended, the Priest who acts as the Institutor, standing within the rails of the Altar, shall say,
beloved in the Lord, we have assembled for the purpose of instituting the Rev. A. B. into this Parish, [or Church,] as Priest and Rector [or Assistant Minister] of the same; and we are possessed of your Vote that he has been so elected; as also of the prescribed Letter of Institution. But if any of you can show just cause why he may not be instituted, we proceed no further, because we would not that an unworthy person should minister among you.
¶ If any objection be offered, the Priest who acts as the Institutor shall judge whether it afford just cause to suspend the Service.
¶ No objection being offered, or the Priest who acts as the Institutor choosing to go on with the Service, he shall next read the Letter of Institution.
¶ And then shall the Senior Warden (or the member of the Vestry supplying his place) present the keys of the Church to the new Incumbent, saying,
N the name and behalf of receive and acknowledge you,
Parish [or Church] I do the Rev. A. B., as Priest
and Rector, [or Assistant Minister] of the same; and in token thereof, give into your hands the keys of this Church.
T Then the new Incumbent shall say,
A. B., receive these keys of the House of God at your hands, as the pledges of my Institution, and of your parochial recognition, and promise to be a faithful Shepherd over you, In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
¶ Here the Instituting Minister shall begin the Office.
Minister. The Lord be with you.
Let us pray.
IRECT us, O Lord, in all our doings, with thy most gracious favour, and further us with thy continual help, that in all our works begun, continued, and ended in thee, we may glorify thy holy Name, and finally by thy mercy obtain everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who hath taught us to pray unto thee, O Almighty Father, in his prevailing Name and words,
UR Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, As it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; But deliver us from evil : For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
T Then shall the Priest who acts as the Institutor receive the Incumbent within the rails of the Altar, and present him the Bible, Book of Common Prayer, and Books of Canons of the General and State Convention, saying as follows.
ECEIVE these Books; and let them be the rule of thy conduct in dispensing the divine Word, in leading the Devotions of the people, and in exercising the Discipline of the Church; and be thou in all things a pattern to the flock committed to thy care.
¶ Then shall be said or sung the following Anthem.
PRAISE the LORD; laud ye the name of the LORD: praise it, O ye servants of the LORD. Psalm cxxxv.
2 Ye that stand in the house of the LORD; in the courts of the house of our God. Verse 2.
3 O praise the LORD; for the LORD is gracious: O sing praises unto his Name; for it is lovely. Verse 3.
4 The LORD is gracious and merciful; long-suffering, and of great goodness. Psalm cxlv. verse 8.
5 The LORD is loving unto every man, and his mercy is over all his works. Verse 9.
6 All thy works praise thee, O LORD; and thy saints give thanks unto thee. Verse 10.
7 The LORD doth build up Jerusalem; and gather together the outcasts of Israel. Psalm cxlvii. verse 2.
8 He healeth those that are broken in heart, and giveth medicine to heal their sickness. Verse 3.
9 The LORD's delight is in them that fear him, and put their trust in his mercy. Verse 11.
10 Praise the LORD, O Jerusalem; praise thy God, O Zion. Verse 12.
11 For he hath made fast the bars of thy gates; and hath blessed thy children within thee. Verse 13.
12 He maketh peace in thy borders, and; filleth thee with the flour of wheat. Verse 14.
13 He is our God, even the God of whom cometh salvation, GOD is the Lord by whom we escape death. Psalm lxviii. verse 20.
14 O God, wonderful art thou in thy holy places; even the God of Israel, he will give strength and power unto his people. Blessed be God! Verse 35.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Minister. The Law was given by Moses;