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Wishes to ascertain what various Bishops think should be their relations with the southern dioceses, (because of Civil War?) with respect to giving and receiving official letters. Mentions his letter to the clergy on rationalism as exhibited in the writings of certain clergymen of the church of England, which will be ready for distribution "this week."
letter, McIlvaine, Lee, church
McIlvaine, Charles Pettit, "Letter to Bishop Lee" (1866). Charles Pettit McIlvaine Letters. 358.
Jan. 1, 1866
My dear Bishop,
Happy New Year to you & all yours. I want to ascertain what is thought among the Bps. on the point whether our relations to the Southern Dioceses are such that we can give & receive Letters Dimissory to, & from, them. I suppose there is no doubt about Tennessee, N. Car. & Arkansas. But for example Va. I have an application for a Letter to Bp. Johns. My idea is that we are not so related, that the Diocese & Bps. that seceded & formed a separate Union, & established a separate legislation & have not forsaken it, are in such an unrecognizable position, that we cannot transfer clergymen to them or receive letters of transfer from them. I will be much obliged for your view.
My Rationalism, will be ready to be sent to the Sec. of the Lower House this week for distribution. I will however send you a copy sooner than you can get it from there. I got, besides your view of the Title, those of Bp. Burgess, Bp. Potter & Bp. Whittingham. Potter was a little disposed to diminish the representative character, but said it must be in the very words that were read, besides such notes and other additions as his Resolution allows. These very words which I have taken care to separate very plainly from the addition, at the end & at the notes, contain all the evidence of representative character I deserve, besides the Resolution which I give on the back of the Title. [Bp.] Whittingham is as strong as possible that it was intended to be the voice of the House, as such to be published & received, & gives me his [minute] memoranda to prove it. But I have contented myself with a new [?] title:
As exhibited in the writing of certain Clergymen of the Ch. of E.
To the Clergy [?]
Set forth by direction of the H. of Bps. at the late Gen. Conv.
This will not exceed Potter’s view. It was advised by Burgess, & falls short of Whittingham.
My son leaves in the Ev. for the East. He will go to Phila. for a day or two, & get to Washington in the last of that week. I have great pleasure in thinking of his being so nearly connected with you, & your ministry & advice & kinship, & he highly appreciates the prospect.
Remember me very kindly to Mrs. Lee and believe me, dear Bishop,
Your affectionate friend & brother,
Chas. P. McIlvaine