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on. But notwithstanding the Sacred Canons do oblige the Faithful only to confess and communicate once a Year at the time aforesaid, nevertheless the Vicars shall advise their Parishioners to do it oftner, namely at Christmass and Whit

warning thereof still the Sunday before...

Decree III.

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THe Synod doth declare and teach, That no

1 Christian, how contrite soever for his Sins, may lawfully come to receive the Divine Sacrament of the Altar, being guilty of any Mortal Sin, without having first confessed all his Sins entirely, to some approved Priest that has Authority to receive his Confession, that being the Tryal and Examination that the Apostle speaks of, and faith a Man ought to make of himself, and being so approved and confessed, let him

vine Cup; For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, and with a Conscience of Sin, eateth and drinketh Judgment and Condemnation to himself;

be given to publick Sinners, without they have left their Sins, as publick Witches, and common Women, and such as keep Concubines publickly, and such as are in open malice, before they are reconciled, and all other open Sinners whatsoever. In which Matter the Vicars must be extreamly careful, being sensible, that as it is a grie

vous Sin in such to receive the Divine Sacrament, before they have forsaken their Sins'; so it is likewise a grievous offerice in them to give the Sacrament to such publick Sinners, and who are known by all to live in such Sins, and not to bave forsaken them, notwithstanding they should have been confessed by others, and should bring a Note of their being absolved. This matter ought to be laid home to the Consciences of the Vicars by reason of the great diffoluteness that there is in this Bishoprick in giving the Communion to publick Sinners, and especially to those that keep Concubines, and are Married, but will not live with their Wives, and to others who live in open Malice, without any Body to hinder them, of all which the Vicars must give a strict Account to God; but at the point of death they may give the Divine Sacrament even to such as have been publick Sinners, if they are not finally impenitent.

Decree IV.

THe Synod teacheth, That this Divine Sacra

I ment ought to be received Fafting, as Holy Mother Church commands, and that upon the day on which people are to communicate, they are neither to eat nor drink any thing from Midnight untill after they have received the

Com. Communion, not to do so being * a most grievous Sacrilege, such only excepted as are under any great infirmity, or much spent with Sick. ness, who may take Electuaries, and other light things to strengthen them, of which the Confeffor must be judge.

*2 molt grievous Sacri. Apostles when he first instirured it, lege. ] Tho' the custom of re. nor by the Faithful for some Ages, ceiving the Sacramcoc Fafting is they must needs carry the maccco very laudable, yecconsidering too far, that call the receiving ic

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n Hristians are not only bound to receive the

v most Holy Sacrament of the Altar once a Year, at Easter, but as often as they are in probable danger of Deach, and especially in any great Sickness, for which reason this Divine Sacrament is called the Viaticum, that is to say, the Support in the way from a Mortal to an Eternal Life, wherefore the Synod doth command all Sick People, whose Distempers are any thing dangerous, to receive it with much Devotion ; and as they that look after the Sick ought to give the Vicars timely Notice, so the Vicars themselves must be diligent to enquire what Persons are fick in their Parishes, that so before they come to be too weak, at a time when it will do them no prejudice, they may be brought in a Palanquin, or in something else that covers them, to the Church, there to receive the Holy Sacrament ; for which use there shall be a Palanquin, or Net, made commodious with Carpets, in every Church, in which the Sick Ihall be carried with due care, which shall be bought within a month after the publication hereof out of the Fabrick money of the Church, all which the Synod doth recommend earnestly to the Vi. cars, this being truly the chief Duty of their Of fice; and if it shall any time happen that a PariThioner shall die. without having received the Communion, thro' the Vicars default, the said Vicar shall be suspended for six months, from his Office and Benefice, and if it happen thorow the Vicars not having been advised thereof, then those that attended the Sick Person, shall be reverely punished by the Prelate.

TA 7 Hereas Women are many times in danger

W of Death in Child-bed, a great many dying therein, the Synod doth therefore declare, That all Women with Child ought about the time when they reckon they are to be delivered, to confess themselves, and receive the Ho · ly Sacrament, but especially before the Birth of their first Child, in which the danger is greatest, recommending it to them to be careful to do it in time, that they may not be prevented by their Labour, from going to Church. Such also as defign to undertake any long and dangerous Voy


age, ought to do the same, to whom the Synod recommends it much, and requires it of them.

i Decree VII. :

F zanares of this Diocess that do never celebrate, some by reason of their having been or. dained when they were but Boys, and so do wait till they come to be of a due Age, and others through other Impediments, therefore the Synod doth command all such to receive the Holy Sacrament upon all the solemn Festivities, and at least once a month, wishing they would do it every Sunday with a due preparation and reverence; and as often as any Priest doth communicate, he shall be in a Surplice and Stole, with a Crofs on his Breast to distinguish him from other People, by reason of the Reverence and Respect that is due to the Sacerdotal Office which he bears.

Decree VIII.

Eeing as is aforesaid, it is not lawful for atiy S Person to come to the most Holy Sacrament of the Altar, having the least scruple of any Mortal Sin about him, without having been Sacramentally confess’d, the Synod doth declare, That even to Priests it is not lawful, and that none finding in themselves the least scruple of Mortal Sin, and having an opportunity of a Confeflor, . Q 2


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