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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 1


"Let not then your good be evil spoken of." This apostolic precept is of general application, and is therefore binding upon the professors of Christianity throughout all time. When misapprehensions prevail respecting their conduct, or respecting their principles of action, so as to be made matter of serious blame, it is the duty of the parties accused to give such explanations as may be requisite in order to a just understanding of the case, so that evil surmising and evil speaking may, as much as possible, be prevented. The Wesleyan Conference, during its late sittings in Manchester, performed certain acts of discipline upon some of its members; and that as matter of painful, but of imperative, duty. Concerning these acts a large amount of clamour has been raised. The men upon whom they were passed have visited various towns, where they have convened mixed assemblies, before which they have stated their alleged wrongs; the public press, to some extent, has not only echoed their complaints, but espoused their cause; several persons belonging to the Wesleyan societies have declared themselves to be grievously offended; and Christians of other denominations have expressed a desire to understand the true nature of the affair, that they may be able to ascertain whether or not an ecclesiastical censure has been righteously administered, or the commands of Christ have been violated by a body of men who are pledged to act in accordance with them.

It is for the purpose of conveying what the writer con- page 6 ceives to be a correct view of the subject, that the following statement has been drawn up, and is now submitted to the consideration of all who feel an interest in the matter.