Mr Payson Ordained Oct
18 25 1682 1682 25 - 1682 (125
-partakers of ye fruit of Christs ascention, by thrusting another faythfull labourer into his harvest
heer viz Mr Edward Payson, of whom we have had suffitient proof touching his earnest & good
affection to gods flock in ys place, & alsoe of ye gifts & graces of Gods Spirit wherwith (from the
fullness of Xst) the lord hath graciously furnished him to ye comfortable satisfaction of ye whole con
gregation of God in this place
We canot but with humble thankfulness acknowledg ye lords free & great mercy that as we have
in some measure sought unto him, desiring to acknowledg him in all our wayse soe he hath brought
it to pass, s
oe yt [--] hath [-]the church has unanimously agreed to call & choose our much Respected
brother Mr Edward Payson to office, And alsoe inclined his heart to accept of office relation
The lord haveing thus farr gone before us & cleared or way to us, we have farther pitcht upon
the 25 of ys instant (being ye 4th day of ye week) for ye time to set him apart by fasting and
prayer & laying on of hands, unto ye service wherunto the lord hath called him
These The more humbly & Earnestly to Crave your prayers to God for us, & your concurrance
with us that we being incorraged by the right hand of your fellowship may manage yt wch re
=maynes in yt great & waighty affaire of gods house, according to ye good & acceptable will of God in
Christ Jesus .
In order whereunto we further intreat you to send your Elders & messengers to be present wth us on
that day, (by 9 of ye clock in ye morning if it maybe) to consider together with ye elders & messen
=gers of other churches & to advise what may be most sutable to our state & work, according to ye
will & counsell of or dear & blessed God, not els, but our desire to approove or selves in ye lord (To
whose free grace & abundant mercy we heartily comend you & desire to be comended by you) to
be for ever
Rowley 16 octob. Yor loving Brethren in ye fellowship of ye gospel
1682. Samuel Phillips
with ye consent of ye Church of Christ at Rowley
Heer note yt in ye forgoing letter yr is noe mention what ye office in the church calls
Mr Payson to, because they desired yr unworthy Teacher to chang his office & to be ye pastor
but I saw ground to object against it, & not to give any full answer to ye motion till it
might appear not only yt ye whole church did desire it but yt alsoe the Elders & messengers
we seek to (or soe many of ym as should be present) did also advise theeto.
upon ye day of ordination the church mett at my house & mentioned their desire & desired
their advise, it being an untroaden way. The Elders & messengers of 5 churches present did concurr
with the church & accordingly did advise me to accept their call notwthstanding the objections I
gave in to them in writing as followes on ye ordination day morning 25 octob 1682.
Reverend & beloved
Ther is noe mention what office Mr Payson is called to in the letters sent to your churches, because
the whole church as they tell me are very desirous I should be their pastor,
I have onely they desired
and I noe less to have the advise of ye elders & messengers when they meet, I doubt not but ye ch
will tell you what grounds move them to desire me to chang my title from Teacher to pastor
The grounds wch make it some what dubious to me are
1 Those scriptures wherein you are called of God therin abide wth god : They Answ yt is till god call
to another work or office alsoe yt scripture we have noe such custome &c. Alsoe it has bin soe
practised in Boston first church Mr Wilson first ordained Teacher then some years after ordain
ed pastor The like in Charlestown.
2 Consider whether such a chang may not occasion some Evill consequences as 1 Trouble in
the church in after times : It maybe they may have a mind to call Mr Paison to be ye pastor
rather then a younger man, & haveing soe practised before, It may incouragemt to doe soe
often & it may fall out that him whom they may call to joyne with Mr Paison, will not be
willing to joyne with him upon those tearmes, though he be to joyn with me : 2 may it not
hinder the success of my ministry in ye hearts of some : ffor though ther noe matter of prehemi
nanc in such a chang, yet it will be thought that yt is aimed at by me If I accept it, now
I would abhore being, & voyd all appearance of being filoprwteuwn 3 Epist John 9.
3 my time is almost spent, haveing bin above 30 years in the office of a Teacher & why to
chang now, who did not chang when yr was ye like oppertunity I am some what doubtfull, besides
I remember God sayth to Moses put some of thine honour upon thy successor Josuah, but he
was to take none from him
4 [illeg.] who cam not be ministred to but to minister & washt his disciples
 Written in another hand.
 I Cor. 7:24.
 I Cor. 11:16
 I.e., John Wilson, teacher of First Church, Boston, 1630-67.
 “Loving to be first.”
 Matt. 20:28.