ESTABLISHED CHURCH. United Church of England and Ireland. [ScoT LAND, Cannon or.] The history of the Protestant Episcopal Church in England, now called the United Church of Eng land and Ireland, commences in the reign of Henry VIII., when that king abjured the ecclesiastical supremacy of the Pope and declared himself head of the church.
[Suranmsor.] The object of this notice is to show the nature of the connexion which exists between the united church of England and Ireland and the state.
Whoever shall come to the posses sion of the crown of England shall join in communion with the church of England as by law established. (12 & 13 Wm. III., c. 2, § 3.) The Regency act, 3 & 4 Vict. c. 52, which appoints Prince Albert Regent of the United Kingdom in case of Her Majesty dying before her next lineal successor is eighteen years of age, provides that in case of his marrying a Roman Catholic the guardianship of the heir to the crown and regency should thenceforth cease.
At the coronation of the king or queen regnant of England, one of the archbishops or bishops is required by 1 Wm. III., c. 6, to administer an oath, that they will, to the utmost of their power, maintain the Protestant reformed church established by law, and will preserve unto the bishops and clergy of this realm, and to the churches committed to their charge, all such rights and privileges as by law do or shall appertain unto them or any of them. By 5 Anne c. 5, § 2, the king at his coronation is required to take and subscribe an oath to maintain and pre serve inviolably the settlement of the church of England, and the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government thereof. as by law established.
The religious tenets of the United Church of England and Ireland, are con tained in the Thirty-nine Articles ; and the services of the church [Fnetorsi MOIGNE] are set forth in the Book of Common Prayer. The Thirty-nine Arti cles and the Rubric of the Book of Com mon Prayer, " being both of them esta blished by act of parliament, are to be esteemed as part of the statute law." (Burn, Preface, Ecc. Law.) Articles of Religion were published by order of Henry VIII. in 1536. In 1552, Ed ward VI. promulgated Forty-two Arti cles which had been drawn up and signed by the Convocation. These Arti cles were set aside in the reign of Queen Mary. In 1562 Queen Elizabeth confirmed the Thirty-nine Articles which had been agreed upon by the Con vocation.
They were published it Latin, but when they were revised in 1571 the Convoca tion signed an English as well as the Latin copy.
The act 13 Elia. c. 12, requires that all persons who are admitted to holy orders, shall subscribe the Thirty mine Articles.
The Thirty-nine Articles include some which are of a political character, or re late to the government of the Established Church. Article 39 recognizes the Queen's supremacy as head of the Church. Article 37 asserts the power of the Church to decree rites and ceremonies.
The promulgation of the Thirty-nine articles by Queen Elizabeth was accom panied by a Declaration' which set forth Her Majesty's powers as head of the Church, and defined the powers of the clergy in Convocation. The Queen de clared herself " the supreme governor of the Church ; and that if any difference arise about the external policy, concern ing the injunctions, canons, and other constitutions whatsoever thereto belong ing, the clergy in their Convocation is to order and settle them, having first ob tained leave under our broad seal so to do ; and we approving their said ordi nances and constitutions, providing that none be made contrary to the laws and customs of the land." In like manner the clergy in convocation might settle matters of doctrine and discipline, which were, however, only to be authoritative after the queen had given her assent ; and this being done, the declaration says : " we will not endure any varying or de parting in the least degree." It is de clared of the articles that " no man here after shall either print, or preach, to draw the article aside any way, but shall submit to it in the plain and full meaning thereof ; and shall not put his own sense or comment to be the meaning of the article, but shall take it in the literal and grammatical sense ;" also " That if any public reader in either of our Universi ties, or any head or master of a college, or any other person respectively in either of them, shall affix any new sense to any article, or shall publicly read, determine, or hold any public disputation, or suffer any such to be held either way, in either the Universities or colleges respectively ; or if any divine in the Universities shall preach or print anything either way other than is already established in con vocation with our royal assent, he o they, the offenders, shall be liable to ot• displeasure and the church's censure ii our commission ecclesiastical, as well as any other ; and we shall see there be due execution upon them." The Constitutions and Canons Eccle siastical were framed by the Convocation of the province of Canterbury in 1603, and assented to by King James (who confirmed them for the province of York also). These Canons maintain the king's
supremacy over the Church of England, and subject to the punishment of excom munication whoever shall affirm the fol lowing things : "That the Church of England, by law established under the King's Majesty, is not a true and aposto lical church, teaching and maintaining the doctrine of the apostles" (Canon 3). " That the form of God's worship in the Church of England, established by law and contained in the Book of Common Prayer and Administration of Sacra ments, is a corrupt, superstitions or un lawful worship of God, or containeth anything that is repugnant to the Scrip tures" (Canon 4). " That any of the Thirty-nine Articles are in any part su perstitious or erroneous, or such as he may not with a good conscience subscribe to" (Canon 5). "That the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England are wicked, anti-christian or superstitious, or such as being commanded by lawful au thority, men who are zealously and godly affected, may not with any good conscience approve them, use them, or as occasion re quireth, subscribe unto them" (Canon 6). "That the government of the Church of England under his Majesty by arch bishops, bishops, deans, archdeacons and the rest that bear office in the same, is anti-christian or repugnant to the word of God" (Canon 7). " That the form and manner of-consecrating and ordering archbishops, bishops, &c., containeth any thing in it that is repugnant to the word of God ; or that they who are thus made are not truly either bishops, priests, &e., until they have some other calling to those divine offices." Schismatics were directed by the canons to be excommuni cated. [NONCONFORMISTS .1 The reign of Queen Elizabeth is • a I most important period in the history of the Established Church. On the queen's accession an act was passed (stat. 1, Eliz. c. 1), which conferred on her the su premacy over the church as fully as it had been enjoyed by Henry VIII. and i Edward VI. There is a clause in this act which empowered the queen to name and authorise by letters patent, as often as she shall think meet, for such time as she shall please, such person or persons, being natural born subjects, as she shall think fit, to execute all jurisdiction con cerning spiritual matters within the realm, and to visit, reform, redress, order, correct, and amend all errors, heresies, schisms, abuses, offences, contempts, and enormities whatsoever, which by any ecclesiastical authority might be lawfully ordered or corrected. This was the origin of the Court of High Commission, which exercised a sort of jurisdiction equivalent to that of the Inquisi•:on or Holy Office in some other countries. One of the clauses for regulating the proceed ings of this court, authorised the commis sioners to make inquiry by juries and It it nesses, "and all other means and ways which they could devise, which seeirs," observes Reeves (Hist. English Law),•"•o authorise every inquisitorial power—the rack, the torture, and imprisonment." By the same act the oath of supremacy was directed to be taken by all persons hold ing any office, spiritual or temporal, on pan of deprivation, and also by all per sons taking degrees in the Universities, and by all persons wearing livery or doing homage : writing or preaching against the queen's supremacy was made punishable for the first offence with for feiture of goods and one year's imprison ment, for the second with the pains of prtemunire, for the third as high treason. In 1563, by an act (5 Eliz. c. 1) "For the assurance of the Queen's Majesty's royal power over all estates and subjects within her highness's dominions," the oath of supremacy was required also to be taken by all persons taking holy orders, by all schoolmasters, barristers, teachers, and attorneys, by all officers of any court of common law or other court whatever, and by all members of the House of Commons; and the refusing it, or upholding the jurisdiction of Rome, was made punishable with the pains of prtemuuire for the first offence, and for the second with those of high treason. The penal enactments against the Roman Catholics in this and other reigns are noticed under the head ROMAN Cxrao LICIEL Another act (1 Enz. c. 2) was passed on the accession of Elizabeth, entitled " An Act for the Uniformity of Common Prayer and Divine Service in the Church, and the Administration of the Sacra ments." By this act, clergymen who refused to use King Edward's Book of Common Prayer were ordered to be pun ished, for the first offence, with forfeiture of one year's profit of their benefices and six months' imprisonment ; for the second, with one year's imprisonment and depri vation ; for the third, with deprivation and imprisonment for life : all persons, either speaking anything against the said ser vice-book, or causing any other forms than those it prescribed to be used in any church or other place, in the performance of prayer or the administration of the sacraments, were subjected to a fine of 100 marks, and for the third offence to forfeiture of goods and imprisonment for life.