Philander Chase



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Philander Chase censures the five bishops who are in favor of restoring Bishop Onderdonk.




Philander Chase, Bishop Hopkins, Bishop Onderdonk, Benjamin T. Onderdonk, Onderdonk, House of Bishops, Episcopal Church, Protestant Church, slander, apostasy, Bishop Delancy, Bishop Whitingham, Bishop McKosky, Bishop Gadsden


To J.H. Hopkins D.D.

Jub. Coll. Nov. 16 ---49

Dear Bishop

I write you this in confidence but with a hand trembling with age & pain. With no excitement”--such as you though was to ensue on the extraordinary declaration of Maryland in the House of Bishops-- but with a cool temper as then I answered: A temper however which while it bows to the devine[sic] command of prefering[sic] charity yet feels the full weight of the disgrace inflicted on the church by the five bishops who have demanded a special meeting of the House of Bishops to restore B.T.O.

Bp kemper this day adds his name to the list of four others viz Bps Delancey, Whitingham, McKosky[sic] & Gadsden. Perhaps they think they have by this act immortalized their fame; It may be so--but whether it be for shame or infamy God & good men will judge.

A sincere member of apostolic Church has lately communicated to me the following sentiments

“Your determination in regard to the [delaying] of the call of the Bishops to the last moment is in my humble opinion wise just and prudent and the only one you could take. If the call must be made one day before the opening of theConvention is enough. If they have a packed majority they can consummate the iniquity in one day as well as in twenty. There is certainly no reason why the whole Epis’l Court should be called together [?]ly for the purpose of hastening the triumph of a twisted faction six months before the time. If that dignified Court must again submit to be rebuked by a criminly[sic] convicted & suspended Bp surely they need not be in such hot haste to put their necks under the feet of presumptuous insolence

I doubt not that every effort will be made to secure a Majority of the Bishops the the interests of the Onderdonk Clique. It may be necessary for them, to obtain this ascendancy by the creation of [?] of their own choosing. They have long since looked to this. They resicted[sic] the Consecration of Mr Britton because he was not their man. They favour the consecration of +++ with every qualification to make him their took; with a tongue ready alike for my sychophancy or slander & regardless of truth in both. Alas for the honour of the Epis’l Bench! Alas for the Church! If men without intellect or moral principle can thrust their leaden heads into a mitre: if a scandalous Bp can trample upon the discipline of the Church & bring down the whole Epis’l Bench at their feet: if the Heretical Bishops who scarcely think it necessary to disguise their Apostacy from the faith of others; is there no veto for the aspirations of worthlessness? Is their[sic] no discipline to bruise the head of apostasy?[“]

You see from the above extracts what others think of us. He calls the Canon II of 1847 “excerable[sic].” You Dear Brother know my opinion of the [?] at the time of its being passed: how I openly declared my remonstrance against anything that had in view the possibility of the return of Bp B.T.O to the House of Bps for that I considered him by the Count of the names of Bishops who voted as degraded in foro conscienae[sic]. Expediency alone kept him in state of suspension: and from that trimming policy disclosed at my right hand to my great astonishment at the time of the final verdict have flowed our overwhelming tide of troubles

All the Christian world have judged that having been pronounced guilty of the crimes alleged he is virtually degraded and of course never can be restored.

Your sympathy in our great loss of one third of our living on the College Hill still cheers me in our most gloomy moments

We must now turn our attention to Agriculture for a living. May God for Christ’s sake render the bosom of our Mother Earth sufficiently fruitful to sustain my loved family members and keep our still cherished pupils from starving. To this end all our teams and work-hands are busy. The “stubborn glebe” is now being broken up and the grounds farmed. My all is involved to keep the College Institution from sinking. I ride out in my pillowed Buggy whenever I can to see how things go on under the superintendence of the Manager, who fulfils my orders.

Is not this an anomaly in the history of Bps?

Yours truly

Phr Chase

Letter to Bishop Hopkins



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