By Charles D. Cashdollar
A non secular domestic explores congregational existence inside of British and American Reformed church buildings among 1830 and 1915. At a time whilst students became drawn to the daily adventure of neighborhood congregations, this booklet reaches again into the 19th century, a seriously formative interval in Anglo-American non secular existence, to envision the ancient roots of congregational life.Taking the point of view of the laity, Cashdollar levels generally from worship and song to fund-raising and management, from pastoral care to social paintings, from prayer conferences to strawberry fairs, from the sanctuary to the kitchen. Firmly rooted in broader currents of gender, type, notions of middle-class respectability, expanding expectancies for private privateness, and styles of professionalization, he unearths that there has been a gentle shift in emphasis in the course of those years from piety to fellowship.Based on files, courses, and memorabilia from approximately a hundred and fifty congregations representing 8 denominations, a religious domestic offers us a finished, composite portrait of non secular existence in Victorian Britain and the USA.
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Extra resources for A Spiritual Home: Life in British and American Reformed Congregations, 1830-1915
Its authors, Scottish Presbyterians and English Puritans together, viewed the Anglican Book of Common Prayer as their foe, and a suspicion of any imposed pattern of worship was part of the heritage these Reformed groups brought into the nineteenth century. Thus, Reformed worship during the ﬁrst third of the century remained plain, even austere. The Directory’s insistence that each component be put to a scriptural test remained the measure; if no explicit Biblical warrant could be found, the action was rejected.
23 The reasons for dividing ecclesiastical and temporal affairs reﬂected both tradition and contemporary inclination. The roots of the separation go back to the established or state church patterns of Britain and colonial America. In the New England colonies where Congregationalism enjoyed the status of an established church, the church received tax monies; by the late seventeenth century, nonmember taxpayers insisted on having some say in parish affairs, and colonial governments responded. 24 By the time state support ended, the habit of separating church and society business was deeply ingrained among Congregationalists.
After the ordination prayer, the new elders or deacons were offered the “right hand of fellowship” by the minister and their fellow ofﬁcers. 18 Individuals selected as deacons or elders had typically achieved a respectable position in the world, although the deﬁnition of worldly success varied according to the social level of the congregation. In St. George’s parish church, located in the prosperous New Town section of Edinburgh, thirteen of the sixteen elders in 1868 were entitled to write “Esquire” after their names.