By Charles D. Cashdollar
A non secular domestic explores congregational lifestyles inside of British and American Reformed church buildings among 1830 and 1915. At a time whilst students became drawn to the daily adventure of neighborhood congregations, this ebook reaches again into the 19th century, a seriously formative interval in Anglo-American spiritual lifestyles, to envision the historic roots of congregational life.Taking the point of view of the laity, Cashdollar levels generally from worship and song to fund-raising and management, from pastoral care to social paintings, from prayer conferences to strawberry fairs, from the sanctuary to the kitchen. Firmly rooted in broader currents of gender, type, notions of middle-class respectability, expanding expectancies for private privateness, and styles of professionalization, he reveals that there has been a gentle shift in emphasis in the course of those years from piety to fellowship.Based on documents, guides, and memorabilia from approximately a hundred and fifty congregations representing 8 denominations, a religious domestic provides us a accomplished, composite portrait of spiritual lifestyles in Victorian Britain and the US.
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Extra info for A Spiritual Home: Life in British and American Reformed Congregations, 1830-1915
16 Congregationalists were free to change according to the desires of the local congregation, and began to do so in the 1870s. 17 Once elected, new elders or deacons were “set apart” to their ofﬁces by ordination during Sunday morning worship, or perhaps during the day’s second service of worship in the afternoon or evening. First, they verbally afﬁrmed their faith and commitment to the ofﬁce by answering a series of questions; then a “solemn prayer to the Almighty God” marked them for their new responsibilities.
The churches were suspicious of worldly concerns and wished to hold them at arm’s length. They feared that if the two spheres were merged, ﬁnancial business would dominate church discussions and drive out spiritual concerns. Two boards and two meetings would insure that each got its due. The separation of function also allowed congregations to elect different types of individuals to the two boards. Although trustees had to be suitably religious, they were chosen primarily for their business skill, and many of them proved quite entrepreneurial in their management of church investments and building projects.
42 When a pastoral vacancy occurred, a nominating committee did the preliminary work of sifting through possible candidates. Among Congregationalists, committees included both church and society representatives; among Presbyterians, they were typically comprised of church ofﬁcers from each of the two governing boards plus at-large representatives from the congregation. The size of the committees varied considerably. For an 1882 search at Old South Congregational Church in Boston, there was a committee of ﬁve—four from the Church and one from the Society.
A Spiritual Home: Life in British and American Reformed Congregations, 1830-1915 by Charles D. Cashdollar