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third year, forever; the first elections to be held on Monday in next Easter week, if fair, if not, the next fair day; and all succeeding elections on the same day (except as before excepted) in every third year; which elections shall be beld and conducted in the following manner, viz. The members of the Protestant Episco- Mode of con. pal Church, shall assemble at their respective parish ducting clecchurches, or at some other convenient place in the


tions. ish, on Easter Monday (except as before excepted) ev. ery third year, and then and there elect twelve able and discreet men, members of the same church, who shall, previous to their entering on the office of vestrymen, subscribe in vestry to be conformable to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the : Protestant Episcopal Church. Two of the vestry so chosen, shall, by a ma

Churchward. jority of the westry assembled, be nominated church wardens, who, or either of whom, and their successors, shall preside at all future elections, shall take care that the elections are conducted in a fair and orderly manner, and shall be judges of the qualifications of electors: And to the intent that vacancies in vestries may be filled, up. Vil. Be it enacted, That whenever vacancies in ves


how supplied. tries shall bappen, either by death, resignation, or removal from the parish, the remaining vestrymen, or a quorum of them, shall choose such persons as they may judge proper to supply the office of vestrymen, who, on their subscribing in vestry as before directed, shall continue in office until the next general election of vestries, except they remove from the parish for which they were elected, or shall resign.

VIU. And be it further enacted, That the ministers Inventory of and vestries of the respective parishes, or the person or property, and persons authorized by them to manage the temporal

venue, to be concerns of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the re- triennually spective parishes, shall, and they are hereby required, exhibited to on the court-day of their respective counties next fol- county court. lowing the triennial elections, and so continually once in every three years, at the court aforesaid, to exhibit upon oath, an account and inventory of all the estate both real and personal belonging to their respective churches or religious societies, together with the account of the annual revenue arising therefrom; and in case the vestry of any parish, or the person or persons entrusted with the care of the temporalities of the re

spective churches or religious societies of the Protestant Episcopal Church, shall fail to exhibit an account and inventory of the estate and annual revenue of the said churches respectively, for the space of twelve months after the expiration of the three years, within which time, they are hereby required to render such account and inventory, the vestry for the parish thus failing, shall forfeit and pay the sum of one hundred pounds, to the use of the commonwealth, to be recovered by action of debt in any court of record; and in case the account and inventory shall not be returned at the time appointed after the next general election, the vestry thus failing, shall cease to be a body corporate.

IX. And be it further enacted, That in all cases if revenue where it shall appear by the account and inventory renexceed 8001. perannum,

dered as aforesaid, that the annual revenue of any to be laid be. church exceeds the said sum of eight hundred pounds, fore the gen. the court before whom such account is rendered, is eral assembly

hereby required to report the same, together with the account and inventory by which such excess appears, to the executive, te be by them laid before the general assembly at their next session. And to the intent that the Protestant Episcopal Church may be released from those restraints which are yet imposed on her by the laws of this commonwealth,

X. Be it enacted, That all former acts relating to Church re

the elections, qualifications, powers, and duties of vesleased from all restrain's trymen and churchwardens, all former acts for the imposed by support of the clergy, all former acts relating to the former laws.

appointment or qualifications or duties of ministers, all acts enjoining the observance of any particular liturgy or form of worship, the use of any particular catechism or mode of faith, and the observance of fasts and festivals, and all former acts imposing penalties on clergymen for neglectiug to keep registers, or neglecting to give notice of any observance, or publishing any law, and every other act or clauses of acts within the

purview of this act, are hereby repealed; and all the ves

tries within this commonwealth, are, on the day before All vestries

the Monday in next Easter week, declared to be disdissolved.

solved; and the Protestant Episcopal Church within Church, in this commonwealth, are hereby authorized to regulate convention, (in conventions of their church, to be held so often as, its own relis and where they think proper, and to consist of a depugious con. tation of two persons from each parish, whereof ibe

minister shall always be one, if there be a minister in cerns, its disthe parish, and the other person or persons shall be

cipline and

worship. appointed by the vestries) all the religious concerns of that church, its doctrines, discipline, and yorship, and to institute such rules and regulations as they may judge necessary for the good government thereof, and the same to revoke and alter at their pleasure. Forty persons so appointed, shall be a convention, and the first meeting may be at the call of any three ministers of the Protestaut Episcopal Chureh. Provided, That no rules or regulations shall be instituted that shall be repuguant so the laws and constitution of this commonwealth, on bay, which a minister may be received into, au wrtted out of a parish, contrary to the consent of a majority of a sestry 14, wa

XI. And be it further engoted, That the ministers and laymen met in general convention, shall have full


how removpower and authority, on good cause to them shewn, to ed. remove from any parisit any minister accused of unWortby behaviour or neglecting the duties of his of fice. XI. And be it further enaoted, That where it shall

Vestries to have happened that the present vestries, have failed in lay levies and any parish to lay their parish levy, and to make pro- provide for vision for their poor, or other legal demands against poor. such vestry, at the time prescribed by law, such ves-tries having so failed, are bereby authorised to levy on their respective parishes, all arrearages due from the said vestrý, in the same manier as they might have done before the passing of this act; any thing in Aris act-to the contrary notwithstanding.

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Ch. LXXXIX in original.

An act for dissolving the destry of the parish of Southfarnham, in the county of Essex

1. WHEREAS it hath been represented to this present general assembly, that the present vestry of the VOL. XI.

S 3

parish of Southfarnham, in the county of Essex, have not been elected by the freeholders and house-keepers of the said parish, but as: vacancies have happened, therein, they have been supplied by the vestrymen, themselves: For remedy wliereof,

II. Be it enacted, That the vestry of the said parish of Southfarnham be, and the same is hereby dis

solved. Vestry of pa III. And, be it further enacted, That the freeholders rish of South and house-keepers of the said parish of Southfarnham county of Es. sball, before the tenth day of April next, meet at some sex, dissoly. convenient time and place to be appointed, and pubed, and a new licly advertised by the sheriff of the said county of Esvestry to be elected.

sex at least one month before such meeting, and then and there elect twelve, of the most able and discreet persons, being freeholders and residents in the said parish, for vestrymen; which vestrymen50-elected, having in the court of the said county of Essex, taken the oaths prescribed by law, shall to all intents and purposes be deemed and taken to be the westry of the said parish of Southfarnham.

IV. And be it further enacted, That the vestry of the said parish of Southfarnham to be elected by virtue of this act, shall levy and assess upon the tithable persons of the said parish, all such sums of money and quantities of tobacco as ought to have been levied and assess ed by the said vestry. Provided nevertheless, That notwithstanding any thing in this act contained, any. suit or suits brought by or against the vestry or church wardens of the said parish, and now depending, may be prosecuted in the same manner as if this act had never been made.


Chap. XC in orginal,

An act concerning the arrears of le

vies due in the parish of Saint Tho-
mas, in the county of Orange.

WHEREAS it hash heen represented to this as- Preamble. sembly, by William Buckner, of the county of Orange, that he was collector of the levies in the parish of Saint Thomas, in the said county, for the year one thousand seven hundred and seventy-six; that a judgment was obtained, against him, in the court of the said county, by the vestry of the said parish, in the year one thousand seven hundred and eighty-one, for nine thousand eight hundred and sixty-eight pounds of tobacco, the

balance due on account of the said collection, and that there still remains due to the said William Buckner, a much larger quantity of tobacco for arrears of the said evies which he could not colleet, as he was not authoized by law to make distress for the same; And wheres it would be burthensoime to those so in arrears to be ompelled to pay tobacco, or money in lieu thereof at the present price, and it is unjust that the said William Buckner should be compelled to pay the tobacco due on the said judgment, antess he is authorized to receive or collect the arrears so due to him in kind: For reme. dy whereof, .

- II. Be it enacted by the General Assembly, That it" Wm. Buckshall and may be lawful for the said William Buckner ner, collector to satisfy and pay the balance of the said nine thou- of levies, in sand eight hundred and sixty-eight pounds of tobacco Thomas, in (after deducting therefrom the amount of insolvents, county of to the first day of January, one thousand seven hun- Orange, audred and eighty-five) either in tobacco, or in money discharge a in lieu thereof," at the rate of ten shillings per hundred. judgment for Every person in arcear to the said William Buckner, the

the same, in for levies due in the said parish in the year one thòu- tobacco, or sand seven hundred and seventy six, shall and may thereof, at discharge the same in tobacco, or money in lieu there- 10s. per hun. of, at their option, at the rate of ten shillings per hun

Persons in dred; and on failure to make such payment on demand, arrears for it shall and may be lawful for the said William Buck- levies, may ner to make distress for the same, in like manner as is discharge directed by law in the case of county levies.

same rate,


them at the

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