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The Struggle for Religious Freedom in Virginia: The Baptists
William Taylor Thom
No preview available - 2015
Act of Toleration Amelia Amelia county amended Amherst county appointed Assembly assessment Baptist Church Baptist Ministers Baptist preachers Berkeley county Burgesses Chesterfield Chesterfield county Christians Church Establishment Church in Virginia civil clergy Colony Committee for Religion constitution Convention Court Culpeper December declare denomination dissenting ministers District Elijah Craig England Established Church Fauquier Fauquier county Fristoe ginia Goochland Goochland county Hening History House of Delegates Ibid imprisoned jail James River Jeremiah Walker John Waller Journal of House June Legislature Leland Lewis Craig licenses matter meeting meeting-house ment November October ordered pastor persecution petition of sundry political Powhatan county praying preaching Presbyterian presented principles prison Protestant Episcopal Church Quakers Regular Baptists Religion reported religious freedom religious liberty religious opinion religious societies repeal Reuben Ford Revolution Rippon's Register Semple says Separate Baptists session sion Spottsylvania struggle for religious Thomas tion vestries Virginian Baptist William Webber worship
Page 80 - Virginia do enact that no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer, on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish, enlarge, or affect their civil capacities.
Page 54 - That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence ; and therefore all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience ; and that it is the duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love and charity towards each other.
Page 80 - ... the proscribing any citizen as unworthy the public confidence, by laying upon him an incapacity of being called to offices of trust and emolument unless he profess or renounce this or that religious opinion, is depriving him injuriously of those privileges and advantages to which in common with his fellow-citizens he has a natural right...
Page 79 - Almighty God hath created the mind free; that all attempts to influence it by temporal punishments or burthens, or by civil incapacitations, tend only to beget habits of hypocrisy and meanness, and are a departure from the plan of the Holy Author of our religion, who, being Lord both of body and mind, yet chose not to propagate it by coercions on either, as was in his Almighty power to do...
Page 54 - A declaration of rights made by the representatives of the good people of Virginia, assembled in full and free convention ; which rights do pertain to them and their posterity, as the basis and foundation of government.
Page 50 - Resolved, that it be an instruction to the commanding officers of the regiments of troops to be raised, that they permit the dissenting clergymen to celebrate divine worship, and to preach to the soldiers, or exhort, from time to time, as the various operations of the military service may permit, for the ease of such scrupulous consciences as may not choose to attend divine services as celebrated by the chaplain.
Page 60 - ... a majority of the inhabitants had become dissenters from the established church, but were still obliged to pay contributions to support the Pastors of the minority. This unrighteous compulsion to maintain teachers of what they deemed religious errors was grievously felt during the regal government, and without a hope of relief.
Page 79 - Almighty power to do, but to extend it by its influence on reason alone; that the impious presumption of legislators and rulers, civil as well as ecclesiastical, who, being themselves but fallible and uninspired men, have assumed dominion over the faith of others, setting up their own opinions and modes of thinking as the only true and infallible, and as such endeavoring to impose them on others, hath established and maintained false religions over the greatest part of the world and through all time...
Page 84 - While I recollect with satisfaction that the religious society of which you are members have been throughout America uniformly and almost unanimously the firm friends of civil liberty, and the persevering promoters of our glorious revolution, I cannot hesitate to believe that they will be faithful supporters of a free, yet efficient, General Government.
Page 30 - Wicklifites in the fourteenth century; even of the Barefoot Friars of the thirteenth century. The resemblance is a general one. More particularly, in the case of the Virginia Baptists, we doubtless see an outgrowth of that same principle of Protestant evolution which, beginning formally with the Reformation, culminated in the latter half of the eighteenth and the early part of the nineteenth centuries in the immense development of the Methodists. This is the principle of direct personal communion...