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‘ [395] and those who went through the fire aforetime are devoted to pass through it again. But, my dear friend, I hope thou and all who are doomed to suffer for conscience sake, will stand firm, and not deviate one inch from what you believe to be your duty. They may cast you out of the synagogue, which I fear has become so corrupt that a seat among them has ceased to be an honor, or in any way desirable; but you will pass through the furnace unscathed. Not a hair of your heads will be singed.’

The ecclesiastical proceedings in this case were kept pending more than a year, I think; being carried from the Monthly Meeting to the Quarterly, and thence to the Yearly Meeting. Thirty-six Friends were appointed a committee in the Yearly Meeting. They had six sessions, and finally reported that, after patient deliberation, they found eighteen of their number in favor of confirming the decision of the Quarterly Meeting; fifteen for reversing it; and three who declined giving any judgment in the case. Upon this report, the Yearly Meeting confirmed the decision of the inferior tribunals; and Isaac T. Hopper, James S. Gibbons, and Charles Marriott were excommunicated; in Quaker phrase, disowned.

I thus expressed myself at the time; and the lapse of ten years has not changed my view of the case: Excommunication for such causes will cut off from the Society their truest, purest, and tenderest spirits.

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Quaker (Missouri, United States) (1)

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