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Synod Resolved, That the Judicatories of the Church be, and are hereby required to receive no licentiates or Ministers, under their care, from any body of professing Christians, who maintain doctrines different from our's, without an open and explicit declaration, on their part, that they have renounced such doctrines, as contrary to the Holy Scriptures, and the standards of our Church.
Synod enjoined upon the different Judicatories of this Church, to notice every deviation in any of its Ministers from the doctrines and standards of the Church, and faithfully deal with all who may espouse erroneous sentiments.
[Passed in the session of General Synod, 1814.} Resolved, That it be, and herehy is enjoined upon all the Classes, under the care of this Synod, to appoint standing committees, whose duty it shall be to guard against the introduction of unsound doctrines, into our vacant congregations, by Ministers, or candidates from Churches, which are known to hold or tolerate sentiments inconsistent with the standards of the Reformed Dutch Church; and further, that the respective Classes be herehy directed to enjoin upon the Consistories of vacant congregations under their care, not to employ the Ministers or candidates of Churches, circumstanced as above mentioned, until they have consulted with the standing committee of the Classis to which they belong, and have obtained their consent.
[Passed in the session of General Synod, June, 1815.);
Resolved, That four Ministers and four Elders of the Albany Synod be appointed a Committee on Missions.
That the committee so appointed, shall be known and distinguished by the name and style of the Stand
ing Committee of Missions for' the Reformed Dutet Church in America.
That this committee shall continue in office until the next ordinary meeting of General Synod.
That this committee shall be organized for the transaction of their business, by their choosing one of their members for a President, and appointing a Clerk, who shall keep all their records, acts, and minutes of pro: ceeding.
That this committee shall also appoint a Treasurer, in whose hands shall be placed all monies collected, or otherwise obtained, for missionary purposes, which Treasurer shall always be subject to the order of said committee.
That it shall be the duty of this committee to exhibit at any ordinary session of General Synod, a precise and accurate account of all monies by them received and expended for missionary purposes; and in order to produce the highest satisfaction respecting their exertions and proceedings, the book of their minutes and acts shall lay upon the table of General Synod, for the inspection of all the members, during the session.
To give satisfaction to the churches and members who contribute to the missionary work, during the recess of General Synod, it is also enjoined on the committee to make a just statement of their proceedings, and furnish the Particular Synodis of New-York and Albany, at their respective ordinary sessions, with an authenticated copy of such statement.
[Passed in the session of General Synod, 1806.) The Synod invests the Committee of Missions with power to supply any vacancy which may haprin in tbat Body by death or otherwise, by their own vote, during the recess of General Synod.
(Passed in the session of General Synod, 1809.}
Resolved, That it be enjoined on the Standing Committee on Missions to make annual reports to the General Synod.
(Passed in the session of General Synod, 1814.) Resolved, That the Standing Committee of Missions be instructed, besides presenting a copy of their minutes to General Synod, also to make an annual report, including a minute statement of their missionary ground, their prospects, and such accounts and opinions relative to future Missions, as they shall deem adviseable and useful to communicate to General Synod.
Resolved further, That the said committee be hereafter at liberty to employ Missionaries in any parts of this, and the neighbouring States, as well as in the Province of Upper Canada.
(Passed in the session of General Synod, June, 1815.) Whereas it appears from the minutes of the Committee of Missions, that an engagement had been entered into with a licentiate not belonging to our communion, employing him as a Missionary : It is hereby Resolved as the sense of General Synod, that the Committee of Missious consider themselves to be hereafter restricted in their choice of Missionaries to the Ministers and candidates of the Reformed Dutch Church.
[Passed in the session of General Synod, 1812.) Ordered, That collections be continued to be annually made in all the congregations under the care of this General Synod, and transmitted to the Treasurer of Synod for the support of Missionaries.
(Passed in the session of General Synod, 1800.1
DISMISSION OF MINISTERS.
For the regular obtaining of dismissions, when a Minister has received and accepted a call from another place, it is required that a neighbouring Minister of the same Classis to which the congregation belongs, be invited to be present, and superintend the dismission of the Minister from his congregation, countersign the instrument of dismission, and consider it as his duty to deliver the same, with a report upon the subject, to the Classis ; which report and document shall serve as a basis upon which the final dismission and certificate of the Classis shall be founded.
(Passed in the session of General Synod, 1800.] Resolved, That the resolution, passed in General Synod of 1806, dissolving the connexion between Ministers and their congregations, on the principle of EXPEDIENCY, though one of the parties be averse to such dissolution, he repealed; because unconstitutional, and of an evil tendency, calculated to foster strije in congregations—to encourage WORLDLY-minded Professors—to excita animosities in a Church against Mmisters, and repugnant to the PRACTICE of the Reformed Dutch Church in all AGES.
[Passed in the session of General Synod, 1809.)
PROTESTS AND APPEALS.
With respect to cases in which the members of any inferior Judicatory may judge a defect of such a nature to exist, as to render the Judicatory unconstitutional, it shall be lawful for such members to enter their protest, expressing the reasons of their dissent; but they may not oppose the decision of the majority, by withdrawing from the Judicatory ; their protest, however, shall shield them from any consequences that may arise from the procedure of such Judicatory. Should protesting memlwers take upon themselves to withdraw, the Judicatory, from the principle of self-preservation, which every society enjoyš, possesses a power of inflicting due punishment; and in order to ascertain the degree of such punishment, it is recommended that every inferior Judicatory shall form rules for that purpose, to which all the members shall be subjected : if, however, in the prosecution of such case, any protesting and absenting member considers him or themselves aggrieved, a right of appeal is possessed to the next higher Judicatory, where the dispute shall be decided.
[Passed in the session of General Synod, 1800.] Protests being the acknowledged privilege of the minority in any Judicature, whereby they exonerate themselves from what they conceive to be an unjustifiable decision of the majority, cannot be taken up by that or any higher Judicature, as the ground of judicial inquiry, consistently with the established discipline, and according to the uniform practice of the Reformed Dutch Church. Any individual conceiving himself to be personally aggriezed or injured by the decision of a lower Judicature, may appeal therefrom to the judgment of an higher Judicature, and any lower Judicature, as a Consistory or Classis, esteeming itself aggrieved by the judgment or censure of an higher, enjoys the same privilege ; but in such case the appeal must be made by the Judicature, as such, when regularly convened, and not by any individuals belonging to it. The appeal of individuals must be made during the session of the Judicature, at which the decision appealed from is made, but they have the privilege of a reasonable time for drawing up their reasons of appeal, to be delivered to the President, before the next meeting of the Judicature, to which the appeal is to be referred.
The appeal of a Consistory or Classis may be made after the decision of the Judicature, at which the decision appealed froin was given ; but it must be made known, and the reasons of it stated in writing to the President, a reasonable length of time before the next meeting of the higher Judicature, to which the appeal