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Bishop McCorkey shares his opinion on the ordination of Arthur Carey. He explains the full process of objecting to an ordination, as it it too late to do this with Mr. Carey. He also believes Evangelicalism is a larger threat to the Church than Catholicism.




Bishop McCorkey, Philander Chase, Arthur Carey, ordination, religion, Episcopal Church, Protestant Church, Evangelicalism, Catholicism


Detroit Aug 14. 1843.

Rt. Rev’d and dear brother.

I received your letters and read them with such pleasure and interest. Indeed they relieved my anxiety concerning you, as I had heard you were dangerously ill at St. Louis. I now proceed to give you my opinion (so far as formed) in reference to the late ordination in New York. In the first place, I think Drs. Anthon and Smith are decidedly [wrong] in going to St Stephen to make their objections, and still more so in leaving the hands of God as they did. It was a great mistake however pure their motives may have been. Their duty [was] at an end after the enunciation. It is always supposed that the Bishops and Clergy have made full enunciation into the Theological acquain[?] of every Candidate before he is publicly presented for [admition], and that no objection can then be made my any [distressed] Presbyter. If so, it would be placing the candidate in the hands of Presbyters who might if they saw fit defect every ordination; instead of leaving him in the hands of the Bishop where the Church has placed him. If he have pressed his enunciation, the whole case is left to the discretion of the Chief Pastor. The [?] [contemplate] only objections to [moral] character-- and those to be made by the Laity. Prior to this the Clergy have had their opportunity to object, & at this state the like opportunity is given to the people generally. It is in strict accordance with the whole [constitution] of our Church, which [requires] an equal voice in Clergy & Laity. So far as to this act - As to the ordination of Mr Carey. I think under all the circumstances, it might have been better to defer it. Of this however I am not fully convinced as I am not acquainted with all the circumstances. I do not believe he is a Romanist-- I have too much confidence in his [?] & in his Bishop to suppose for one moment that they [would] willingly introduce into the Church one whose views were at [?] with the standards of the Church. At present there appears to be a passion among some for old custom and things which are called primitive. I believe this young man to be thus affected, and I do not fear the result. They are like children with toys, let them alone and they will grow weary of them. I have far more dread of those who are called “Evangelicals,” “who have borne the burden and [?] of the [day],” “who [have] saved the Church from ruin,” who have stood alone on the walls of [Zion] and [sounded] the [alarm]” (see Episcopal Reader) than I have of those who have been marked on the [back] as “[?]”. I believe the former are endeavoring to get up a [party] in the Church, and are attempting to weaken the power & influence of the Bishops, & in every [way] ready to [crush] us all. That they may be esteemed the only godly ones in the Church - I am beginning to have as much dread of a man who then assumes the name of an “evangelical,” as I have of a Presbyter [Deacon]. I have no sympathy with men who can weakly slander their brethren. Nor am I identified with the [French]. My [guilt] is embodied in the Article and Prayer Book & [?]. I hold to the Church as [one] [can] [?] for the [diplomats] of Rome, & I blush when I read of those who are willing to take any an add to the [pure] treasures which are contained in these blessed [?].

I have not left space to write about Texas. I will write again. Mrs [Bondin] who is now with us sends her love as also Mr McC & my daughter. Present in effect to Mr Chase & believe me your truly attached brother,

Sam’l A. McCorkey

Letter to Philander Chase



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