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Seventh Rule. The Pastor should frequently inquire re

flock, and enjoin the persons who have the care

But since, through the fault of the sick person or the negligence of his attendants, it

sometimes happens that the Curate is not health & his opportunely called in, it becomes his duty

very often to inquire concerning the health of

his flock; and to require this of some of those to acquaint h having the care of the Church, (such as the any are sick. wardens, or clerk, or door-keeper,) that they

acquaint him when to their knowledge any of

the inhabitants of the parish happen to be The Curate sick; and the Curate being certified of the fied of their indisposition of any one, should go to him of should visit his own accord, and not tarry to be called for, own accord. because he ought to seize every opportunity

of being serviceable to his flock, and avail given. himself of any seasons more approachable,

whatever they may be, which sickness affords for visitation. No one, therefore, to whom the care of souls is committed should shun this charitable work, upon the plea that his parishioners are bound to send for him if they

be sick, (according to that injunction of the St. James', Apostle, “ Is any sick among you? let him

The reason why he should do so

call for the elders of the Church; and let

Epist. ch. v. 14.

them pray over him,”) or because he fears lest, if he should of his own accord obtrude, he might be an unwelcome visitor, or might come at an inconvenient time; yea, rather, lest he should seem to them to be framing excuses, and seeking a pretence for inactivity, let him of his own accord pay at least one visit to the sick; and if he shall find himself an unwelcome visitor, and shall clearly perceive that he will not be likely to benefit the sick, then, and not before, can the Curate absent himself without any mark of negligence.

Thus far has been shown after what manner he who has the cure of souls ought to be furnished, in order that he may discreetly enter on, and serviceably discharge the arduous employment of visiting the sick; he also now requires that I should point out the method to be observed towards the sick themselves in his visitations: and this the following rules will declare.

Rules included under the Second Division.

First Rule.

when visit

tion for the sick.

Second Rule.

It will become the Curate, when first he The Curate approaches the sick, to express for him some ought, in the first place, commiseration by his voice and countenance, ing, to ex- and to inquire kindly respecting the nature of press his commisera- the malady with which he is oppressed, its

symptoms and duration ; for as these are
evidences of his love and good will, so do they
render more acceptable the things which he
is about to speak.
Then

may the Curate intimate, that he has hope that the sick person will submit his own to will to the Divine, and bear (as becomes a

dutiful child) the parental correction of his God's hand.

Heavenly Father; for the present correction, though it may appear heavy, may nevertheless

be far short of that which he deserves; for By what

although it is commonly reckoned among the number of things which are evil, yet it will be productive of good to him, if he shall bear it with a quiet mind, and consider that it is sent, even as all other afflictions are, from God, in

The sick should be

be submissive under

argu vents the Curate should persuade him to do this.

instruct him

order to prove and examine the patience of the sick; the Curate may add, that impatience does not remove, does not lighten, but increases the evil ; forasmuch as every trouble

presses more heavily upon any one in proportion as he less willingly endures it.

The Curate may, moreover, show him that Third Rule. the issue of diseases is uncertain, and, there- He should fore, he should not so despair of recovery as bretenser of to reject the medicines which, under God's tainty of blessing, are able to remove the malady; nor, despair of on the contrary, so hope as to venture to bodily repromise himself another season for repentance, or think it safe to postpone to another soul. day that work so essentially necessary.

Then, on his knees, he should supplicate Fourth Rule. God in behalf of the sick, according to the Prayers out order appointed in the Liturgy ; and prayer for visiting being in a little while interrupted, let him said. arise and

Proceed to that exhortation which is con- Fifth Rule. tained in the Book of Common Prayer, or if The Curate he shall judge it more convenient, to some proceed to other exhortation, such as I have already composed.

covery, nor to delay the care of his

of the Order

the Sick to be Sixth Rule.

address him. quenter of Church should not deter the

And point

out to him

faith.

Seventh Rule.

faith should be examined,

The exhortation being ended, he may show

him how impossible it is without faith to the necessity of a right

please God, and, therefore, of how much consequence it is to ascertain whether his be a right faith.

And that this inquiry may be rightly permanner his formed, the Curate should rehearse, with a

clear and distinct voice, all the Articles of the Apostles' Creed, and (as our Church appoints) ask the sick, with respect to each of them, whether he heartily assents to the same, and if he shall perceive him to hesitate in any one article, then he should take upon him to

strengthen him in the faith. Eighth Rule. And since certain of the articles of our Especial care faith are so essential that they cannot, without taken with loss of salvation, remain entirely unknown, or fundamental be accounted untrue, the Curate should at

least endeavour, as far as relates to them,

that the person visited should rightly underThe circum- stand and give his assent thereto; neither sick having should the Curate hesitate to discourse with been a fre

any one about giving his assent to the same, on the ground that he has for a long while been a frequenter at Church; for from defect

faith.

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