Page:Notes by the Way.djvu/155

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NOTES BY THE WAY.

��85

��THE UNITED FREE CHURCH OF SCOTLAND.

After an agitation extending over thirty-seven years (for it 1900, NOV. 10.

was in 1863 that the first joint committee was appointed to consider f^ e United

the question of union) , the Free and United Presbyterian Churches Free Church

of Scotland have now become one Free Church, and Principal of Scotland :

Rainy has been chosen as its first Moderator. It seems appropriate pj, r - inci fi a1 ,.

that an event so important in the history of Scotland should have Moderated a note in ' N. & Q.' On Wednesday, the 31st of October, 1900,

the union was commemorated at Edinburgh with due ceremonial, commemora-

when the members of the supreme courts of both bodies marched tion at

in procession to the extemporized hall in the Waverley Market Edinburgh, where the meeting was held. The Scotsman of November 1st gives a graphic account of the proceedings, and states that when the

adoption of the Uniting Act was moved by the Rev. Dr. Murray- Solemn

Mitchell, the oldest ordained minister in the Free Church, and ceremony, seconded by the Rev. Dr. Henderson, of Paisley, the oldest minister in the United Presbyterian Church,

" the whole audience, moved by one impulse, rose to their feet : in silence the members of the House, in token of assent, held up their right hands, while the clear voice of the Moderator was heard saying, ' In the presence of our Divine King and Head, the King and Head of the Church, and with the concurrence of my brother Moderator, I declare the Act of Union finally adopted, and that the Free Church of Scotland and the United Presbyterian Church are now one Church under the designation of the United Free Church of Scotland.' "

On the signing of the Uniting Act by the two Moderators and the Signing the Clerks of Assembly the House remained standing as interested Act. spectators :

" The Moderators then, facing each other, gave each other the right hand of fellowship in these terms Dr. Ross Taylor : ' In the name of the Free Church of Scotland I offer you, honoured brother, as Moderator of the United Presbyterian Synod, the right hand of fellowship in token of the happy union now formed between the two Churches.' Dr. Mair, responding, said : ' I have the equally high privilege, in the name of the United Presbyterian Church, to offer you, honoured brother and Moderator of the General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland, the right hand of fellowship in token of the union now happily consummated by the signing of the Act.' The audience raised a cheer as the Moderators in face of the assemblage cordially shook hands."

The hall in which the meeting was held contained a number Relics in The of interesting relics, the loan of which had been obtained from Scottman. friends. The Scotsman of the 31st of October stated that these included

" the original parchment manuscript of the National League and Covenant, subscribed at Glasgow in 1638. Copy of Thrissel's ' Banner,' a broadside printed in 1640 in connexion with the Covenanting struggles,

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