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“What shall be done when a member of an annual conference fails in business, or contracts debts which he is not able to pay? “Answ. Let the presiding elder appoint three judicious members of the church to inspect the accounts, contracts, and circumstances of the supposed delinquent, and if, in their opinion, he has behaved dishonestly, or contracted debts without the probability of paying, let the case be disposed of according to the answer of question 1 of this section.”
Page 69. Quest. 4, is altered from,
“What shall be done with a member of an annual conference who conducts himself in a manner which renders him unacceptable to the people as a traveling preacher!”
“Quest. 5. What shall be done when a traveling minister is accused of being so unacceptable, inefficient, or secular, as to be no longer useful in his work 1”
And the answer is abbreviated to the following:—
“Answ. The conference shall investigate the case, and if it appear that the complaint is well founded, and the accused will not voluntarily retire, the conference may locate him without his consent.”
Page 70. Provision is made for the secretary of the conference to keep the minutes of the trial “before a committee,” as well as before the conference.
Page 74. Answ. 5, which read,
“Every local elder, deacon, and preacher, shall have his name recorded on the journal of the quarterly conference of which he is a member, and also enrolled on a class paper, and meet in class, if the distance of his place of residence from any class be not too great; or, in neglect thereof, the quarterly conference, if they judge it proper, may deprive him of his ministerial office,”
is altered so as to read,
“Every local elder, deacon, or preacher, shall be amenable to the quarterly meeting conference where he resides. He shall have his name recorded on the journal of said conference, and also enrolled on a class paper, and meet in class, or, in neglect of either, he shall not be permitted to exercise his ministerial office; and when a preacher is located or discontinued by an annual conference, he shall be amenable to the quarterly meeting conference of the circuit or station where he had his last appointment.”
Page 75. The passage,
“No elder, deacon, or preacher among us, shall distill or vend spirituous liquors, without forfeiting his official standing,”
is struck out.
Same page. To answer 1, (in regard to the trial of a local preacher,) the following is appended, namely:—
“If the accused refuse or neglect to appear before said committee, he may be tried in his absence.”
The following new provision is added, (new edition, p. 90:)
“Quest. 3. What shall be done when a local elder, deacon, or preacher, fails in business, or contracts debts which he is not able to pay? “Answ. Let the preacher in charge appoint three judicious members of the church to inspect the accounts, contracts, and circumstances, of the supposed delinquent; and if in their opinion he has behaved dishonestly, or contracted debts without the probability of paying, let the case be disposed of according to the answer to question 1 of this section.
Page 77. In § 23, “Of the Lord's Supper,” answer 2 is struck out, namely:
“2. Let no person that is not a member of our church be admitted to the communion without examination, and some token given by an elder or deacon.”
Page 83. The general rule, which stood,
“Drunkenness, or drinking spirituous liquors, except in cases of ne-
is restored to its original Wesleyan form, namely:
“Drunkenness, buying or selling spirituous liquors, or drinking them, unless in cases of extreme necessity.”
Page 95. Line 14, the phrase, “If the circumstances of the accusation be strong and presumptive,” is altered to, 44 oo circumstances of the accusation afford strong presumption of guilt. Same page. After the words, “indulging sinful tempers or words,” in answer 2, the following clause is added, namely:“The buying, selling, or using, intoxicating liquors as a beverage.” Page 96. Last line, the clause, “And proper trial,” is altered to, “And satisfactory reformation.” Page 153, and the following—the boundaries of the annual conferences are altered, of course, where new arrangements are made. The most important of these is the addition of the fol
lowing article, (new edition, p. 156,) which stirs the heart like the sound of a trumpet:—
“31. There shall be an annual conference on the Pacific coast, to embrace Oregon, California, and New-Mexico, to be called the OREGoN AND CALIFor NiA Mission CoNFERENCE—to be organized as soon as practicable, under the authority and direction of the episcopacy—possessing all the rights, powers, and privileges, of other annual conferences, except that of sending delegates to the General Conference, and of drawing its annual dividend from the avails of the Book Concern and of the chartered fund.”
Page 167. That part of the deed of settlement which relates to the appointment of trustees has been transferred to its appropriate head, (namely, “Of Trustees,” new edition, p. 162;) but as it has been thought that difficulty may arise in some quarters from the alteration, the old deed of settlement will be printed at the end of the Discipline in all issues from this date.
Page 181. The following important clause is inserted in the rule for the appointment of a committee to estimate the table expenses, &c., of preachers, namely:—
“Which estimate shall be subject to the action of the quarterly meeting conference.”
Page 183. Under the head of “Support of Missions,” the following new article is added, (new edition, p. 178:)
“Any annual conference may, at its option, by a vote of two-thirds of its members, assume the responsibility of supporting such missions already established, or to be established, within its own limits, as have hitherto been reported under the head of ‘Missions in the Destitute Portions of the Regular Work;’ and for this purpose it shall be at liberty to organize a conference domestic society with branches; provided, such organizations shall not interfere with the collections for the Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church, as required by the Discipline. Provided, also, that in case more funds shall be raised for such missions than are needed, the surplus shall be paid over to the treasurer of the Parent Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church at New-York, to be appropriated to such mission or missions, under the care of the society, as may be designated by said conference. It shall be the duty of every such Conference Domestic Society to send, annually, to the corresponding secretary at New-York, a full and detailed account of the number, names, condition, and prospects of each mission under its care ; and to the treasurer of the Parent Society at New-York an account of its receipts, incidental expenses, and disbursements.”
Also the following, (new edition, p. 184:)
“17. It shall be the duty of all our missionaries, except those who are appointed to labor for the benefit of the slaves, to form their circuits into auxiliary missionary societies, and to make regular quarterly and class collections wherever practicable, and report the amount collected every three months, either by indorsing it on their drafts, or by transmitting the money to the treasurer of the parent society.”
Page 193. Article 5, in regard to the constitution of the book committee, is altered. It stood thus:—
“The book committee at New-York shall consist of six traveling ministers, and the editors. The annual election of two by the New-York, two by the Philadelphia, and two by the New-Jersey Conference, shall constitute the six members of the committee.”
It now stands:—
“The book committee at New-York shall consist of seven traveling ministers, to be chosen by the General Conference. During the intervals of the General Conference, they shall have power to fill any vacancy that may occur in their own body.”
Page 194. The following is added to article 7, in regard to the powers of the agents at Cincinnati:—
“And the agents at New-York shall fill the orders for the agents at Cincinnati for the plates of such books or tracts, and when the agents at New-York are about to issue any new work of less than seven hundred pages, they shall, when practicable, give notice to the agents at Cincinnati, and furnish, if ordered by them, duplicate plates, which, with the above, shall be at cost.” Page 196. A change is made in the constitution of the book committee at Cincinnati similar to that recited above in regard to the book committee at New-York.
Page 197. The words,
The above are all the changes of any moment that we have found on a careful examination, both of the Discipline and of the Journals of the General Conference. That some points may have escaped notice is altogether probable; such a task is not easily accomplished with entire accuracy. We again repeat the request, that any who are so disposed will send us their contributions toward a completely accurate edition.
ART. X.-The Editor to the Readers of the Review.
EIGHTEEN years ago this Journal was commenced in the Quarterly form, under the name of the “Methodist Magazine and Quarterly Review.” The series thus opened went on until 1839, and its ten volumes form a collection valuable in many respects, but especially in regard to the history and literature of our church.
A new and enlarged series was commenced in 1841 by our able predecessor, who carried it on up to the July number of the present year. This series of eight volumes is not only indispensable to the library of every Methodist preacher, but should be found in that of every member of our church who is able to indulge in any of the “luxuries of life.” It embodies a large amount of sound criticism, both in general and Biblical literature; it conveys, in a condensed form, the substance of many costly works, some of which are inaccessible to ordinary readers; and it furnishes able expositions and defenses, as well of the general doctrines of Christianity as of the peculiar doctrines and polity of the Methodist Episcopal Church. It has called forth many able writers, both in the ministry and in the laity; and has, we believe, contributed in no slight degree to elevate the minds and enlarge the comprehension of our younger ministers and members. In a word, it has done the church good service—even though it may not have added largely to the profits of our great publishing house. And of this the church is aware. We may regard the Quarterly Review as one of our permanently established organs; and so the last General Conference regarded it. But its circulation is limited. Many of the ministers do not take it; and few, very few indeed, of the names of our members are to be found on its subscription books. It was this fact, doubtless, which led to the adoption of the following resolution by the General Conference:— “Resolved, That while we highly prize the Quarterly Review in its present character, it is our firm conviction that were it made more practical it would be more popular and useful.” So, then, it is our duty, as set down by our masters, to make the Review more practical. But how ! Not surely by lowering its tone in point of literature and scholarship—that could never have been meant. Such, at least, was our own view; and to make assurance doubly sure, we applied to the Book Committee, our constitutional counselors, for advice. It was freely given, in the form of a resolution, in which the editor is “advised to improve, as far as practicable, the literary character of the work.” We are therefore left to employ our own judgment in the conduct of the Review, so long as we fulfill, or strive to fulfill, the object of making it more “practical,” and, at the same time, of elevating its “literary character.” It is right and fitting that we should say frankly, in beginning our work, how we shall aim to secure these ends.