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Letter from Sewall to his son, in Henry Sewall's Diary
Sewall, Henry
November, 1826
Location of original: Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston, Massachusetts
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    As to the Episcopalians, it is difficult to conceive how they can be arminians, as large numbers of them have been, while they profess to hold the 39 articles as the platform of their faith, which articles embrace all the peculiarities of Calvinism in a high degree. Their forms of prayer are too general, & more than 100 years behind the enlightened era of the nineteenth century. The language in the baptizmal service is ambiguous, apparently making that ordinance to be regeneration; & the use of prayers altogether unscriptural. Their funeral service, applicable only to such as die in the Lord, is administered to all who have been baptized in their communion. But this denomination, have of late years become more evangelical, & we have reason to believe embraces a goodly number of genuine christians. Another, & the most exceptionable feature in this denomination, is the establishment of three orders of the clergy, viz. bishops, rectors & priests; whereas we think the scripture places all the clergy, bishops, elders, pastors & teachers on an equal footing, without any preeminence over above another; and that the proceedings of the church are regulated by the pastor thereof as moderator, only, to receive & declare its decisions by regular votes of the male members in meeting duly assembled.

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