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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 20

Session XIII

Session XIII.

The Synod met and was constituted. The Moderator in the chair.

The minutes of former meeting were read and approved.

The Moderator intimated that he had received from an anonymous donor a second donation of L50, for a second missionary to New Hebrides. It was agreed to record the thanks of the Synod for the same, and to request the Moderator to acknowledge the donation through the press.

Dr. Stuart, as ex-Moderator of Synod, was authorised to sign the minutes of 1872, instead of Mr. Kirkland, translated beyond the bounds of this Church.

The following answers to reasons of dissent were given in, read, and adopted:—"1. The dissentients in their first reason have not correctly stated the position of the Synod under the Dunedin Church Lands Ordinance, 1861. By that Ordinance the Manse Reserve property is vested in the Superintendent, in trust for the Presbyterian Church of Otago, and the highest court of the Church is constituted sole administrator of the funds arising from rents, &c., of the property. As administrator of the funds, the Synod is not bound to erect a church and manse for First Church; but only to give the first grant of such funds 'towards the erection of a church and manse (see Dunedin Church Lands Ordinance, 1861, section 4) on Church Hill for First Church.' The limits of that grant must of course be determined by the administrator of the funds, page 18 not the recipients of the grant. 2. In their second reason the dissentients assert, without any attempt at proof, that the Synod gave authority to the First Church to proceed with the church now in course of erection, and so are bound to complete it. The fact is, however, that the Synod was never asked to give such sanction, but only to give a grant towards the erection of a church, which they did, but all along persistently refused to become responsible for any contracts into which the deacons' court might enter. 3. The resolution carried and dissented from is not a refusal to implement the responsibilities resting on the Synod under the Dunedin Church Lands Ordinance, 1861, but a mere administrative carrying out of the resolutions of the Synod of 1871, which finally fixed the limit of grant to be given to the First Church, and from which there was no dissent taken by any party at the time it was passed.—James Copland, convener of committee."

It was agreed to instruct the Church's Factor to cany out the resolution adopted at the last sederunt anent Manse Reserve Fund, and the Finance Committee were appointed to advise with him thereanent.

Report of Finance Committee given in and read. After deliberation) it was unanimously agreed to adopt the report; record the thanks of the Synod to the committee, and especially to its convener, for the admirable manner in which its business is conducted.

Report of committee on Synodical expenses was given in and read, and the several charges allocated.

Collections were appointed to be made on behalf of Church Extension not later than March next; for passage-money of ministers, not later than July next; and for Missions, not later than November next. A collection for the Bethel Mission, Fort Chalmers, was also recommended.

The Moderator, Clerk of Synod, and the Clerk of Dunedin Presbytery were appointed a committee to superintend the printing and publishing of the Synod's Proceedings.

It was agreed that the committees be instructed to prepare notices to be laid in the pews of the churches previous to collections being made, giving information regarding the object of the collection.

Pastor Heine, of Nelson, was introduced to the Synod.

It was agreed to record the thanks of the Synod to the reporters and conductors of the press, for the satisfactory reports given of its proceedings.

The minutes of this meeting were read and approved.

The Moderator then addressed the Synod, which adjourned to meet in this place on the second Wednesday of January next.

Closed with prayer.