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[224] the Rev. Mr. Joshua Gee, the Rev. Mr. Joseph Emerson, and the Rev. Mr. Hull Abbot. Four of these reverend elders were absent; scil., the Rev. Dr. C. Mather, the Rev. S. Bradstreet, the Rev. R. Brown, and the Rev. J. Fox. The rest, being present, at the house of Brother John Bradshaw, formed themselves into a council, and, having distributed the several parts of the work, went to the place of public worship, where the Rev. Mr. William Cooper began with prayer. Prayer being ended, the Rev. Mr. Benjamin Colman preached an excellent sermon from these words, Second Corinthians IV. 1: “We, then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain.” This being done, the Rev. Mr. Hancock proceeded to ordination,--Mr. Colman, Mr. Appleton, and Mr. Cooper joining in the imposition of hands. After this, the Rev. Mr. Appleton gave me the right hand of fellowship. We then sung the first part of the sixty-eighth Psalm; and so concluded with giving the blessing.

From these church records, we learn that entire unanimity prevailed in the election of Mr. Turell; which is another proof of the pacific and useful ministry of his predecessor. We do not find any examination of the character or creed of the pastor elect by the ordaining council, nor is any charge given to him touching doctrine or discipline. Our fathers seemed to rely on the sufficiency of the Scriptures, and the right of private judgment.

Thus Medford was provided with its second minister; and all prospects seemed auspicious. Very few events of an extraordinary character occurred in the ministry of Mr. Turell.

In order to procure the privilege of Christian baptism for their children, parents, who were not members of the church, were required to “own the covenant,” as it was called; that is, they stood up in the midst of the congregation, on Sunday, and the minister asked them if they believed the Bible to be the word of God, and would promise to take it as their rule of faith and practice. If they answered affirmatively, then he administered baptism to them or their children. This order, called the half-way covenant, was established in the Medford church in Mr. Porter's ministry, and was re-affirmed Dec. 2, 1724.

Mr. Thomas Hall was chosen deacon, 1726.”

“ June 18, 1731: Mr. Benjamin Willis was chosen deacon in the room of Brother Thomas Willis, deceased.”

It appears from the church records, that some members wished a more definite rule and searching scrutiny respecting the admission of communicants, and therefore revived the

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