Proceedings of the Methodist Annual Conference.
[reported for the Richmond Dispatch.]
Norfolk, Nov. 28, 1861.
Rev. Morris Langhorne
hoped to be excused for consuming a little of the time of the Conference.
When these fraternal visitations commenced, it was certainly with no expectation of an ultimate union of the churches.
That was an after development, but it was very gratefully regarded by the ministers of the Protestant Church.
All would rejoice to have the two Churches united, and speaking for himself, he would labor and pray for that result.
But they would not have nor would this body admit of union on any but just and honorable terms.
If these could be arranged, and it seemed to him it could be done, all would rejoice, and none more than himself.
The resolutions were adopted, and the report accompanying, and the Conference appointed John C. Granberry
, Wm. B. Rowzie
, and Nelson Head, fraternal messengers to the Protestant Methodist Conference.
Rev. P. A. Peterson
announced that those preachers who came by way of the Seaboard and Roanoke Railroad could return free of charge, by procuring a certificate of membership from the Secretary
of the Conference
announced to the Conference that the Louisiana Conference
resolutions were to be acted upon, and asked what order this body would take.
Rev. George W. Langhorne
moved ‘"that the Virginia Conference
non-concur,"’ and expressed the hope that the question might be taken without debate.
These resolutions, I may remark, memorialize the General Conference to change a rule of the discipline, so as to allow the Bishops of the Church
to continue a preacher at one station or circuit for the period of four years. The rule now is, that a preacher cannot be continued at a charge more than two years.
Messrs. W. A. Smith
, R. O. Burton
, H. B. Cowles
, D. S. Doggett
, P. A. Peterson
, G. W. Langhorne
, Nelson Head
, J. D. Coulling
, participated in the discussion.
The speakers stood arranged thus: A part opposed a change from two to four years, but advocated a change, fixing the limitation at three years, which is the period adopted by the English Wesleyan Methodists
, and of this number were Messrs. Smith
, and perhaps others.
Another part opposed any change whatsoever, of whom were Rev. G. W. Langhorne
, H. B. Cowles
and others, and J. D. Cowling
only advocated the resolutions proposed by the Louisiana Conference
This diversity of sentiment very fairly represented the actual state of opinion in the body at large
While the discussion was in progress Rev. A. G. Brown
offered a resolution which the chair ruled out of order; and its author gave notice that it would be presented and pressed whenever the direct vote had been taken upon the resolutions of the Louisiana Conference
The vote upon the resolution of Mr. Langhorne
was sixty-three for, eighteen against; and so this Conference did not concur with the Louisiana Conference
On motion, the morning session was extended for half an hour.
The Rev. A. G. Brown
's resolution was then put to Conference, which proposes a change of the rule, so as to allow preachers to be appointed to the same charge for three years.
Rev. P. A. Peterson
offered as a substitute, that, in the judgment of this Conference, any change in the rule is unwise and inexpedient.
The vote upon the substitute, was fifty-eight for the substitute, and thirty-five against it, which, therefore, stands as the sense of the Virginia Conference
Rev. James A. Duncan
desired to know whether the action just had instructed the representatives of this body in the General Conference
said that it did not instruct the delegates, where freedom of action was in nowise affected.
Rev. T. A. Ware
offered a resolution asking the General Conference to change the rule concerning admission of members, so as to have no Probationers, save Seekers Adopted.
A. M. Hall
, at his own request, was granted a supernumerary relation.
, at his own request, was left without an appointment.
On motion, it was resolved that when the Conference adjourns, it be to meet this evening, at 8 o'clock.
And then the Conference adjourned, with the benediction from the Bishop
At 3½ o'clock the Young Men
's Relief Society met in the Cumberland Street Church
, Rev. W. W. Bennett
, in the chair.
No business of interest was transacted, and the Society adjourned to meet in the same place at 7½ o'clock.
At that hour the Society was called to order by the Rev. W. W. Bennett
On motion, it was determined to go into the election of officers for the ensuing year, and thereupon the following were elected: Rev. J. S. R. Clarke
was elected President
; Rev. A. G. Brown
, first, and Rev. P. F. August
, second Vice President
: J. C. Granberry
; James A. Duncan
, Treasurer; and W. W. Bennett
, and Duncan
, Executive Committee.
Rev. James A. Duncan
was unable to give any report as Treasurer, and desired to be excused from acting further as Treasurer.--Subsequently he resigned.
Rev. Nelson Head
was elected to supply the vacancy.
On motion of D. P. Wills
, it was determined to appoint a person to preach a sermon before the Society at the next Conference, and Rev. Nelson Head
was elected by the Society.
An order was made for the publication of the proceedings in the Richmond Advocate,
and the Society adjourned.
The Conference assembled at 8 o'clock.--Long before that period, indeed, the members were all in their places, and the house in every part crowded with ladies and gentlemen.
The profoundest interest sat upon the faces of preachers and people, all alike anxious to learn what, if any changes, are to be made in the appointments of the members.
Punctually at the hour named, Bishop Andrew
ascended the pulpit, and, coming forward, asked if there was any further business to be transacted, as, otherwise, he would proceed to close the session.
Rev. Leonidas Rosser
, in a few earnest remarks, asked to be left without an appointment for the succeeding year.
moved that the request be gritted, if in the judgment of the Presiding Bishop
, there was-no legal impediments.
was of opinion there was none, and therefore the Conference voted unanimously to grant the request.
Rev. H. B. Cowles
offered a series of resolutions of thanks to the citizens of Norfolk
, to the several churches of the city, to certain railroad companies, to the secretary and assistants, and to Bishop Andrew
, which were severally adopted unanimously by a rising vote.
responded very happily to the resolution referring to himself, and concerning the officers, said, ‘"he had never seen officers who pleased him better." ’
It was ordered that on the several circuits and stations a collection to defray the expenses of the delegates to the General Conference, be taken in the month of March, and forwarded to Rev. D. S. Doggett
, at Richmond, Va.
Several standing committees of the Conference were announced; and there being no further business, the Bishop
proceeded with the closing exercises.
gave out the hymn on page 190 Methodist hymn book, commencing
‘"Draw near, O, Son of God, draw near,"’ and the whole immense auditory united in singing it to the tune Woolridge
The effect was truly magnificent.
then offered a most impressive and fervent prayer, at the conclusion of which the appointments were announced, which are as follows, (errors excepted:)
--James D. Coulling
, P. E. Richmond
; Centenary, W. W. Bennett
; Sidney, to be supplied; Clay Street, Thomas H. Haynes
, to be supplied; Broad Street, David S. Doggett
; Trinity, A. G. Brown
; Union Station
, Wm. H. Christian
's Bethel, F. J. Boggs Manchester
, Chas. C. Pearson
; Charles City
, Oscar Littleton
; James City
, Wm. G. Lumpkins
, Jacob Proctor
to be supplied; York
, J. W. White
, J. B. Day
, one to be supplied, (William H. Wheelwright
, in the army;) Matthews
, Jas. G. Lumsden
; King William, B. H. Johnson
--James A. Proctor
, P. E.-- Fredericksburg
, A. Bledsoe
, H. C. Cheatham
, A J. Beckwith
, John G. Rone
, John M. Saunders
, Wm. F. Bain
; King George, L Moore
, James E. McSparrin
, James H. Cronin
, James P. Fitzpatrick
, John F. Poulton
, J. Carson
, supernumerary; Rapid Ann Mission, to be supplied; Loudon
James M. Anderson
; Potomac, John H. Baylev
, Robert W. Watts
, James Williamson
, J. W. Shipley
, J. G. Hammond
; Washington, D. C.
, George H. Ray
, W. Wallace Duncan
; Rock Creek
, Patterson's Creek
, and Prince William, to be supplied.
--Jos. H. Davis
, P. E. Charlottesville
, Thos. H. Early
, John L. Clarke
, James W. Grant
, Samuel Robinson
, H. H. Gary
, H. M. Linncy
, Thos. I. Bayton
, Davis P. Wills
; Louise, James R. Waggoner
, Henry M. Lattimore
, James O. Moss
, Joseph H. Amiss
; Elk Run
and Graves Chapel, F. L. Way
--G. W. Langhorne P. E. Lynchburg
Centenary, N. P. Mitchell
; Court street, John E, Edwards col. Mission
, to be supplied Lambeth
, Jas. P. Garland
, Wm. G. Cross
, E. A. Gibbs
, T. A. Pearce
, J. W. Blanco
, Geo. F. Doggett
; State River, W. H. Camper
, Cyrus Doggett
--Thomas A. Ware
, P. E.--Henry
, Thos. H. Boggs
, Jacob Shough
, L. H. Greyhill
; Patrick Mission, John G. Bayley
; Smith's River
, Charles D. Bingley
, Robert A. Gregory
, James Shelton
Randolph Macon District.
--P. W. Archer
, P. E. R. M. Station, J. S. Lindsey
, Frank Stanly
; R. M. Circuit
, B. C. Spiller
, Union and Clarksville
, S. V. Hoyle
, James C. Watson
, John J. Lafferty
; Charlotte Mission, John D Southall
; South Staunton, John W. F. Jones
, James J. Lamkin
; South of Dan, Wm. Carter
and — Wallace
, W. A. Valden
; R. M. College, W, A. Smith
--J. R. Finley
, P. E. Farmville
, Nelson Head; Prince Edward, M. M. Dance
; Colored Mission to be supplied; Powhatan, W. W. Spain
, Alfred Miles, and nominally, J. W. Connelly
, T. S. Campbell
, Jesse K. Power
, John W. Howard
; Colored Mission to be supplied; Nottoway
, Lemuel S. Reid
, J. L. Spencer
, supernumerary; Colored Mission to be supplied; Lunenburg
, Paul Whitehead
; Colored Mission, to be supplied; Brunswick
, D. J. C. Slaughter
; Colored Mission, to be supplied; Greensville
, Wm. B. Rowzie
; also; agent of Murfreesborough
Female College; Northampton
, W. E. Allen
; J. C. Garlick
, supernumerary; Colored Mission, William Grant
--L. M. Lee
, P. E. Norfolk city; Cumberland street, Ro Michaels; Bute street, And. J. Coffman
; Granby street, Jno. D. Blackwell
; James street, James
; Dinwiddie street, P. A. Peterson
; North street, to be supplied; Wesley Chapel
, to be supplied; Second street, Thos. Y. Cash
. Princess Anne, Jno. W. Wonnicutt
; Indian Ridge
, Currituck Mission, Aaron Boone
, and one to be supplied; Elizabeth City
, Wm. L. Delby
; Elizabeth City
Mission, to be supplied; Pasquotank
, Jos. J. Edwards
, Jer. McMullen
, Wm. J. Starr
; Colored Mission, Wm. J. Norfleet
, Jos. Lear
, Ed. M. Peterson
; Jos. Riddick
, supernumerary; Suffolk Colored Mission, A. R. Bernard
; Norfolk Circuit, Jas. W. Compton
--Left without appointments, Eastville
, Cape Charles
, Atlantic Circuit, Taylor's Island
--R. O. Burton
, P. E.--Petersburg
; Washington street, Charles H. Hall
; Union street, to be supplied; Market street, Ro. M. Sleade
; City Mission, to be supplied; High street, W. E. Judkins
, J. Kerr
; Factories Mission, Jas. H. Jefferson
, H. B. Cowles
, Jno. N. Guy
; Colored Mission, to be supplied; Sussex
, L. J. Harnsberger
, J. A. Riddick
, sup.; Prince George, N. Thomas
, A. Stuart
, B. Woodword
, sup.; Surrey
, Jas. A. Crowder
, Jno. P. Woodward
, sup.; Smithfield
, Jos. S. R. Clarke
, Jos. G. Potts
, J. M. Arnold
, sup.; Murfreesboro
, Thos. L. Williams
, R. J. Carson
Several preachers were left without appointments at their own request.
John C. Granberry
, P. F. August
, James E. Joyner
and some others not now remembered appointed Chaplains in the Army, and B. R. Duval
agent of the Bible
and Tract Society of the Conference, and James A. Duncan
editor of the Richmond Christian Advocate
remarked that if he had overlooked any member of the Conference, he would rectify the error if reminded of it in the morning; and then pronounced the benediction, thus dispersing the Conference until the next year.