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of religion and holy desires to please God, they spend some time in religion, besides the Lord's day; but be very careful that the Lord's day be kept religiously, according to the severest measures of the church, and the commands of authority: ever remembering, that as they give but little testimony of repentance and mortification, who never fast; so they give but small evidence of their joy in God and religion, who are unwilling solemnly to partake of the public and religious joys of the Christian church.

LXX. Let every minister be diligent in exhorting all parents and masters to send their children and servants to the bishop at the visitation, or other solemn times of his coming to them, that they may be confirmed: and let him also take care that all young persons may by understanding the principles of religion, their vow of baptism, the excellency of the Christian religion, the necessity and advantages of it, and of living according to it, be fitted and disposed, and accordingly by them presented to the bishop, that he may pray over them, and invocate the Holy Spirit, and minister the holy rite of confirmation.

VI. Rules and advices concerning the visitation of the sick.

LXXI. Every minister ought to be careful in visiting all the sick and afflicted persons of his parish: ever remembering, that as the priest's lips are to preserve knowledge, so it is his duty to minister a word of comfort in the time of need.

LXXII. A minister must not stay till he be sent for; but of his own accord and care go to them, to examine them, to exhort them to perfect their repentance, to strengthen their faith, to encourage their patience, to persuade them to resignation, to the renewing of their holy vows, to the love of God, to be reconciled to their neighbours, to make restitution and amends, to confess their sins, to settle their estate, to provide for their charges, to do acts of piety and charity, and above all things, that they take care they do not sin towards the end of their lives. For if repentance on our death-bed seem so very late for the sins of our life; what time shall be left to repent us of the sins we commit on our death-bed?

LXXIII. When you comfort the afflicted, endeavour to bring them to the true love of God; for he that serves God for God's sake, it is almost impossible he should be oppressed with sorrow.

LXXIV. In answering the cases of conscience of the sick or afflicted people, consider not who asks, but what

he asks; and consult in your answers more with the estate of his soul, than the conveniency of his estate; for no flattery is so fatal as that of the physician or divine.

LXXV. If the sick person inquires concerning the final estate of his soul, he is to be reproved rather than answered; only he is to be called upon to finish his duty, to do all the good he can in that season, to pray for pardon and acceptance: but you have nothing to do to meddle with passing final sentences; neither cast him down in despair, nor raise him up to vain and unreasonable confidences. But take care that he be not carelessly dismissed.

LXXVI. In order to these and many other good purposes, every minister ought frequently to converse with his parishioners; to go to their houses, but always publicly, with witness, and with prudence, lest what is charitably intended be scandalously reported; and in all your conversation be sure to give good example, and upon all occasions to give good counsel.

VII. Of ministering the sacraments, public prayers, and other duties of ministers.

LXXVII. Every minister is obliged publicly or privately to read the common prayers every day in the week, at morning and evening; and in great towns and populous places conveniently inhabited, it must be read in churches, that the daily sacrifice of prayer and thanksgiving may

never cease.

LXXVIII. The minister is to instruct the people, that the baptism of their children ought not to be ordinarily deferred longer than till the next Sunday after the birth of the child; lest importune and unnecessary delay occasion that the child die before it is dedicated to the service of God and the religion of the Lord Jesus, before it be born again, admitted to the promise of the gospel, and reckoned in the account of the second Adam.

LXXIX. Let every minister exhort and press the people to a devout and periodical communion, at the least three times in the year, at the great festivals; but the devouter sort, and they who have leisure, are to be invited to a frequent communion; and let it be given and received with great reverence.

LXXX. Every minister ought to be well skilled and studied in saying his office, in the rubrics, the canons, the articles, and the homilies of the church, that he may do his duty readily, discreetly, gravely, and by the public measures of the laws. To which also it is very useful that

it be added, that every minister study the ancient canons of the church, especially the penitentials of the eastern and western churches: let him read good books, such as are approved by public authority; such which are useful, wise, and holy; not the scribblings of unlearned parties, but of men learned, pious, obedient, and disinterested; and amongst these, such especially which describe duty and good life, which minister to faith and charity, to piety and devotion; cases of conscience, and solid expositions of scripture. Concerning which learned and wise persons are to be consulted.

LXXXI. Let not a curate of souls trouble himself with any studies but such which concern his own or his people's duty; such as may enable him to speak well, and to do well; but to meddle not with controversies, but such by which he may be enabled to convince the gainsayers in things that concern public peace and a good life.

LXXXII. Be careful in all the public administrations of your parish, that the poor be provided for. Think it no shame to beg for Christ's poor members; stir up the_people to liberal alms by your words and your example. Let a collection be made every Lord's day, and upon all solemn meetings, and at every communion; and let the collection be wisely and piously administered: ever remembering, that at the day of judgment nothing shall publicly be proclaimed, but the reward of alms and mercy.

LXXXIII. Let every minister be sure to lay up a treasure of comforts and advices, to bring forth for every man's need in the day of his trouble; let him study and heap together instruments and advices for the promoting of every virtue, and remedies and arguments against every vice; let him teach his people to make acts of virtue not only by external exercise, but also in the way of prayer and internal meditation.

In these and all things else that concern the minister's duty, if there be difficulty, you are to repair to your bishop for further advice, assistance, and information.

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