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Church of England a
THE BOOK OF
AND ADMINISTRATION OF THE SACRAMENTS,
ACCORDING TO THE USE OF THE
UNITED CHURCH OF ENGLAND
TOGETHER WITH THE PSALTER OR PSALMS OF DAVID,
POINTED AS THEY ARE TO BE SUNG OR SAID IN CHURCHES :
AND THE FORM AND MANNER OF MAKING, ORDAINING, AND CONSECRATING
OF BISHOPS, PRIESTS, AND DEACONS.
THE TEXT TAKEN FROM THE MANUSCRIPT BOOK ORIGINALLY
AN HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION AND NOTES.
By ARCHIBALD JOHN STEPHENS,
BARRISTER AT LAW.
IN THREE VOLUME S.
In consequence of communications from the Bishop of Meath and the Archdeacon of Cork, the Editor's attention was directed to the Manuscript Book of Common Prayer, that was originally annexed to stat. 17 & 18 Car. II. c. 6. (Ir.), and it being considered that a correct copy of its text would be an important acquisition to the members of the United Church of England and Ireland, Dr. Elrington, the Regius Professor of Divinity in the University of Dublin, at the request of the Archbishop of Dublin, kindly consented to afford the Editor his valuable co-operation in presenting an accurate representation of the original Manuscript.
At the era of the Reformation, observes Bishop Mant,* “the Church of Ireland partook of those marks which were inherent in the Church of England also, as well as in the other Churches of western Christendom. The true word of God was not preached by her ministers, nor acknowledged by her people, through the general ignorance or prohibition of the Holy Scriptures. Legendary tales maintained an ascendancy over the Christian verity. Transubstantiation, wafer-worship, and half-communion ; auricular confession, and discretionary absolution ; purgatory, pilgrimages, penances, and indulgences; the invocation of saints, and
i Hist. Church of Ireland, 106, 107.
the adoration of images and reliques : all conspiring to derogate from God's honour, and to lay false foundations for man's hope of salvation ; were some of the enormities which deformed her creed and religious practice. The sacraments of Christ were partly withheld, or superstitiously administered: they, as likewise the public prayers of the Church, were celebrated in a strange tongue : and certain other ecclesiastical ordinances were raised to the dignity of the two sacraments of Christ. Celibacy was enjoined upon her clergy. They, as well as her people, were little distinguished for moral or intellectual improvement. Monastic establishments existed to a great and very detrimental extent. And of those who bore the episcopal office in her communion, her four archbishops and twenty-six bishops, the appointment was conferred, the allegiance claimed, and the rights and privileges circumscribed by a foreign potentate ; from whom the metropolitans had submitted to receive their archiepiscopal palls from the middle of the twelfth century, in acknowledgment of the Papal
* As to the English sovereignty being derived from a foreign source, it may be remarked, that the claim of the Kings of England to the dominion of Ireland was independent of any papal authority. Whatever right Pope Adrian may have pretended to possess or to exercise in the bestowal of that kingdom on Henry the Second, he had by right, as Sir John Davies has remarked, “no more interest in this kingdom than he which offered to Christ all the kingdoms of the earth.” (Discovery why Ireland was never entirely Subdued, by Sir John Davies, 15. ed. 1747.) To use the words of Archbishop Ussher, (Religion of the Ancient Irish, 115.) “Whatsoever become of the Pope's idle challenges, the Crown of England hath otherwise obtained