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dleton, there were not ten in his diocese who would refuse compliance.” So far, however, was this from being the case, that a special meeting of Council was held at Edinburgh on the 4th of November, in order to prolong the period to the 1st of February following. But, as in England with the Act of Uniformity, when about two thousand of the Presbyterian Clergy relinquished their livings, on the 24th of August, 1662, rather than openly renounce their principles, so it happened in this country. The result of such proceedings proved indeed very different from anything that had been anticipated. It has been estimated that, in Scotland, where there were about eight hundred parishes, nearly one half of the ministers voluntarily submitted to a sacrifice of all their worldly prospects, rather than conform to such radical changes in the forms of worship, discipline, and Church government.” These ejected ministers were prohibited from residing or preaching within the bounds of their own parishes—no toleration was permitted to private assemblies for devotional purposes—and any person frequenting such conventicles was liable to punishment by fine and imprisonment.
In the North, the ministers generally, with some notable exceptions, were less zealous and decided, and, as might be expected, they greatly preferred conformity to suffering. At this time, in the diocese of Murray, Brodie's two uncles, John, and “his beloved” Joseph, were dead; and George Innes, minister of Dipple, and Harry Forbes, minister of Auldearn, prevented deposition by resigning their charges, in 1663. In the same year, Thomas Urquhart, minister of Essill, James Urquhart, minister of Kinloss, and George Meldrum, minister of Glass, were formally deposed.* The places of such men were supplied with others less scrupulous, but who were so unacceptable to the people, that they would not avail themselves of the ministrations “of intruders.” The Bishop of Murray, Murdoch M'Kenzie, appears to have acted in a very tyrannical
* Wodrow's History, vol. i., pp. 265, and Journals, Edin. 1843, 3 vols., large 283. 8vo., or Bannatyne Club edit., 4to.
* See Memoir of Robert Baillie, by the • Shaw's History of the Province of present Editor, prefixed to his Letters and Moray, 1775, p. 371.
manner; yet Brodie says, “I did see the Bishop at Spynie,” and in their discourse, he adds, “I did goe far alongst in complying by titles, fair words, and the lyke. Oh! discover the secret sins of my nature, and inclinations, that this complacency be no snare to me, nor may it be to others.” In his own parish, in April, 1667, he says, “I desire to be affected with the withered and dry state of Dyke and Auldearn. Oh! does there fall any rain upon them 7” A few days previously, he says “the case of Auldearn and Dyke was my sore burden; that the Lord would shyne in on this dark place, and breath on these dead bodies, is one of the great desires of my heart.” Being so greatly opposed to ceremonies and formal worship, he felt himself constrained to abstain from giving any countenance by his attendance to the class of ministers who were then intruded in these vacant parishes; even while he had an overpowering sense of the duty of “keeping up the form of public worship.” In August, 1672, he says, “Oh! let God raise up faithful and able teachers in His Church, and pitie the want of such; what great differ is there in the gifts of these that are laid by, and these that are keeped and admitted?” In reference to the compulsory attendance upon religious services that were felt to be unprofitable, contrasted with the ministrations of those who had been ejected, Brodie speaks of himself in March, 1673, as being tied up “to attend the dead ministry of others . . . of far less gifts, . . . to prevent confusion and disorder, waiting, but desperate in my waiting, to see if God will vouchsafe an outgate, and make way for able and faithful preachers—ministers “not of the letter only, but of the Spirit.” Had they faithfulness, diligence, gifts, and endowments, I hold their ministry lawful even that enter by Bishops, and acknowledge them, albeit I prefer the other government, if rightly administered; but the Lord has humbled us in that also Greater confusions have not been at any time than our divisions produced by our Assemblies.” To a person so peaceably disposed, it argues a sad state of spiritual destitution, that he found it more profitable to abstain from public worship, or participating in Church ordinances. Thus in June, 1676, when doubtful as to his communicating at some neighbouring church, he says, “I have been these several years without this ordinance of the Sacrament. . . . It's true, I have communicated with these who conform, and I think I may lawfully doe it without partaking of their sin. Yet the offence that honest men took at it has made me forbear. . . . The last Sacrament which I receaved was 25th August, 1669.” From what he states, it is clear, that his objections were not such as actuated his friends of the stricter class, who refused to countenance any minister who had received ordination at the hands of a Bishop, while he stayed at home “partly because the minister to preach was not such as he ought to be, partly to avoid giving some offence to others.” Or when hesitating whether he ought to attend or not, he exclaims, “Lord! give me direction, for I am nothing edified by him. Yet he is in the place of a minister.” A special cause of his dislike to Bishops was not merely the introduction of English ceremonies, but the fact of churchmen being employed in civil matters; yet he still continued, on the whole, on friendly terms with many of the Conformists. He mentions his getting admonitions from time to time “to come and hear his own minister, Mr. William Falconer”; and in December, 1676, having met with him, “He did expostulate with me for not hearing. I told him, it was not from prejudice against him more than others, but being dissatisfied with the constitution of the Church and government as it is now is, I did withdraw, lest my hearing might be constructed a consent and compliance. I told him, that besid the Covenant, I held the civil places of kirkmen unlawful and inconsisting with the office of a minister of Christ. To sit on life and death, and on civil things of fyning, punishment corporal, and the lyk, earthli dignities, as princes, and preferenc befor Dukes and Marquises, was unseeming and inconsisting. I durst not disclaim the present ministers of the church of Scotland, but I did hold them guiltie of gross defections and corruptions. . . . “He askd, If my son had baptizd his child. I told him solemly I knew not, for if it was baptized it was more than I knew. But, if my good daughter" did it, I could not controll her; and I did not hold it unlawful to hear.” In the following year, when the ejected minister of Kinloss went to the North of Ireland, then a place of refuge to the Nonconformists, he says, “Mr. James Urquhart took journey from this towards Ireland. Whatever darkness I be under, I desire to be affected duly with this, to part with him and to be separated from him, and that the land cannot bear such. Let the Lord bring back the banish'd, and loose the prisoners in His own due tyme, and teach me how to walk and be affected in the meantym.” Notwithstanding the rigour exercised against those who frequented conventicles, or unlicensed places of preaching, the frequent opportunitiest of hearing the ejected ministers were not neglected. The houses of several of the chief families in Morayshire were so many sanctuaries to the oppressed.” Some of the Nonconformist ministers, chiefly from Rossshire, often visited the province of Murray; in particular, Brodie mentions James Fraser of Brae, Thomas Hog of Kiltearn, John MacGiligan of Inverness, and Hugh Anderson of Cromartie, who were much esteemed by many of the gentry; and as field-preaching in the North was not greatly encouraged, their ministrations were more tolerated than in various other districts, notwithstanding the zeal of the Earl of Murray and Bishop Mackenzie to repress and punish such persons. All this time we may regret that Brodie had no opportunity of meeting with Bishop Leighton, to have had, as it were, some account of his Prelatical experience. Of the Archbishop of St. Andrews, when he heard a report of his murder, he expresses his regrets at such an atrocious act, without any feelings of personal regard. It would have been well, had Sharp escaped the vengeance of these misguided zealots, and been left to wear out the rest of his life in the enjoyment of his gratified ambition, even at the risk of continuing to the end of his days a fierce enemy to his brethren of the Covenant. One of Brodie's relations, Alexander Brodie of Mains, apparently his cousin-german, and the son of his uncle, Mr. Joseph Brodie, minister of Forres, was also the writer of a Diary, part of which is still preserved. It is a small volume, extending from September, 1671, to July, 1675; and contains occasional notices of his family relations. The following excerpts may be therefore given, as some of them relate to the Laird, or as he calls him, Lord Brodie:– “10 September, 1671–Was the Lord's day. Mr. Collin Falconer being at Edinburgh, Mr. George Innes preached; who intruded contrair to his promise and profession upon Mr. James Urquhart's kirk, at Kinlos. I thocht it amisse to heir him upon that accompt. Therfor I have staid at hom. “The eight day of February .—The old Lady Park was buried. “1 March-Ther cam in or about this time som Popish books to Leith and Newcastle. They at Newcastle were brunt; but they which cam to Leith were by the arch-prelate put up in the Castle. A massacre of holy men was much feard in Edinburgh. It is hie tym for Thee to awak, when the wicked mak voyd Thy law “16 March.-This day ther was a preparatory servic befor the sacrament to be given. Mr. Colin in his fast day spok most invectively against them who upon the account of the present government wald not partak of the sam, “May–June.-My Lord Brodie has been very unwell of the gravell. Lord be thanked, quho has wrought a gret delyverance for him, by giving him two gret stones after a long continued sickness. “It is reported, the Archbishop of St. Androes hes gotten ane yearly pension from the Pop to promove Poperie.
* Page 277. * Page 328. * Page 311. * Page 332.
* Page 359. • Minister of Moy and Dyke from 1674, till, in his turn, he himself was ejected * Nov. 1673, page, 348. after the Revolution.