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of calling the attention of Dissenters in general to ihe subject . There was , he believed , a statute yet in force authorizingthe minister to inquire , before he performed the ceremony , whether the party had been baptized . An instance of this inquiry had
once been brought before the Deputies , who were going" to take it up , but the young" man , whom it concerned , was in greater haste than they , and he suffered himself to be baptized first , and . married afterwards .
He would only add , that tt was no answer to the arguments in favour of these associations , to say , that the government and the courts of the country were liberally disposed . He remembered to have once heard Lord EUenborough himself , in a case of private libel , breaking out , as it
were , in his fathers spirit , when Sir Vicary Gibbs , then Attorney-General , was endeavouring to harass a witness , and prejudice the court against hint , by making him confess he was an Unitarian , an 4 observing , " What does it signify , Mr . Attorney , to what denomination of Christians the
witness belongs V * and yet the same judge would have been obliged , if called on to put in force laws which treated this man as a blasphemer , unworthy of the Christian
name . Mb . Hojlden , of Tenterden , observed that it was not his intention to have offered himself to the notice of the meeting , but that he felt it incumhent on him , at the same time that he united himself with the
present Association , to disclaim any intention to be in the remotest degree disrespectful to the Deputies , from whom he had received the most polite attention . He was extremely happy to find this feeling so general , and was convinced that no slight could be intended . He had had
occasion to apply to the Deputies for their advice and assistance , in the case of a person whom the minister of the parish refused to bury , because he had not been baptized in the Church ; that assistance bad been readily given , and had been attended with the best effect , for the minister lead the service six weeks after the death
and interment of the person in question . He took that opportunity of expressing his grateful acknowledgments , and was confident , that , in joining- the present Association , he was not doing any tiling which would appear disrespectful to the body to which he had alluded . The second resolution was carried
unanimously . Dr . Thomas Rees seconded the third . He also wished to bear testimony to the polite attention he had always , received from th « Deputies ; but , at the same time , it appeared quite clear to him , that cases peculiarly belonging * to Unitarians could not be effectually conducted there , nor
ought matters of exclusive interest to them to be left to be attended to at the trouble and expense of that body , which had already larg-e claims on their exertions and their funds , in behalf of the general community of Dissenters . The third resolution was then unanimously agreed to . Mr . Richmond seconded the fourth
resolution . Were they about to publjsh a crusade , be observed , against the possessions of their brother Dissenters , their object would be justly reprobated 5 but to their associating for protection , he could
see no objection . The peculiar advantage of societies like this , was , the facility which it afforded for collecting and
preserving that sort of information , of a mixed character , partly legal and partly religious , which it would be difficult to obtain from the mere lawyer . This had been frequently experienced . If this Society was formed , every congregation that might happen to have its property or rights
invaded ^ would have the opportunity of the immediate assistance of gentlemen , not only acquainted with the law , but who had united that sort of religious and legal knowledge , which was so necessary for the proper conduct of such causes . Every
one would then know where to go for information on these points , and in most cases would , in the first instance , receive an opinion on the question in dispute , that would decide the matter , and answer all the purpose of expensive judicial pro * ceedings *
The fourth resolution being unanimously agreed to , Mr . Richard Ta y lob seconded the fifth . He should only express his entire concurrence and approbation . They had peculiar disabilities , surely they ought to have peculiar Associations , by which
they would not only benefit themselves , but confer a benefit on society in general , in removing one portion of the load of intolerance .
The sixth and seventh resolutions were then seconded by Dr . Morejmd and Mr . Parkes , and carried unanimously . Some discussion arose ( in which Mr . Gibson , Mr . Rutt and Dr . T . Rb * s took a part ) as to the propriety of having the officers chosen by ballot , which was , however , given up , the general feeling seeming to be against it .
The eighth , ninth and tenth resolutions were seconded by Mr . Youwg , Mr . Ives Hurry and Mr . Smaulfiei . d , and agreed to .
Mr . Fox observed the vessel was now built and rigged , and they only wanted to man her and set her afloat . He had but little to say , but that he hoped would be to the purpose * The main point was to raise tlie wind , and a breeze fiH > in the
country , he believed , was most neqewsairy to set them afloat . In the few dam thaj
54 Intelligence . — -Unitarian Association .
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Jan. 2, 1819, page 54, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct1768/page/54/