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but on the unrighteousness or unscripturalness of that connection there has never been a secession from the Church of Scotland. As respects purity of doctrine, the same has also to be said. It was correctly observed by Hill Burton, and the statement has been repeated by Carlyle, "that Scots' dissent never was a protest against the principles of the Church, but always tended to preserve the old principles of the Church, whence the Establishment—by the progress of enlightenment as some said, by deterioration according to others—was lapsing." The chief cause of secession has had its root in Patronage. Yet a close observer might well be astonished how Patronage could ever have caused a single secession from the Church. To bring about discord in her borders was the very purpose for which Patronage was imposed on the Church. To secede from the Church on that account was to work the work of the Episcopalian enemies of both the Scottish Church and State. Patronage was thrown amongst the people of the North with the very intention of producing discord; it was the last wily device of a beaten enemy, and every patriot should have been careful that the plot hatched in the Senate should have been rendered innocuous by that shoulder-to-shoulder firmness which was triumphant on sterner fields. The closer the history of Patronage is examined the more is this view established. When the Covenanters abolished Episcopacy in 1638, they abolished Patronage along with it. In 1662, when Charles II. came into power, Patronage was re-imposed. With the Revolution Settlement of 1688, the Church of Scotland again got quit of Patronage. As long ago as 1690, when Patronage was abolished, there was passed a Patronage Compensation Act. After the Revolution the re-imposition of Patronage in 1711 was a political move by the Jacobites, who intended by it " to weaken and undermine " the Church of Scotland, which favoured the House of Hanover. But history repeats itself often, Patronage has again been abolished, and again has been passed a Patronage Compensation Act.
The year after the re-imposition, the General Assembly presented a petition to Queen Anne to use proper means for preventing an encroachment so evidently prejudicial to the work of the Gospel and the peace of the Church. The enemies of Scotland, however, succeeded but only too well. The people they could not fight, they put by the ears. Ebenezer Erskine was the first fruit of the Patronage Act, the first who lent himself unconsciously to working the work of the enemies of his Church and country. It was of no avail they called themselves Seceders and not Dissenters, that it might be understood they had no disagreement with the doctrines of the Church. But the Secession party themselves soon became the prey of secession. They split into Burghers and Anti-Burghers. The former split again into Old Light Burghers, and Old Light Anti-Burghers. The latter into the New Light Burghers, and the New Light Anti-Burghers, and I know not what.
The next secession, in 1761, was also a Patronage affair, and was occasioned by the deposition of Thomas Gillespie for disobedience on the occasion of the settlement of a minister at Inverkeithing. The result was the formation of another new sect called "The Relief Church." On his death-bed, Gillespie recommended, without avail, his people to return to the Church of Scotland. The various branches which rose out of the Secession and Relief movements were amalgamated in May, 1847, into what is now the United Presbyterian Church.
The Kilsyth Relief Church was formed in 1767. In that year Mr. Telfer took part in the ordination of an unpopular presentee to the parish of Eaglesham. This action gave offence to two or three elders and a few parishioners. They, consequently, withdrew from the Church and formed themselves into a congregation of Relief. In 1770, they built the church which now stands in the Low Craigends, and in place of which they have erected in Kingston a much more handsome edifice. The secession not being the result of a spiritual movement was not well regarded by the body of the parishioners, and some were not slow to say that no good would come of it. The Seceders must, however, have had some confidence in themselves and their cause, for the church they built accommodated 559 worshippers. There has been a ministerial succession of six clergymen. The first was James Graham, who was ordained in 1772, and who resigned in 1775. For his resignation, after so brief a ministry, no reason is assigned. Leaving Kilsyth, he went to America. He afterwards returned to Scotland, became a teacher at Bo'ness, got into trouble through marrying two of his scholars, and was banished furth of Stirlingshire. The second minister was Allan Cornfoot He was ordained 1778) and he resigned in the following year. The reason of his resignation was "his getting into trduble bf a delicate nature which caused him to leave the town." The third was James Dun, a native of Kilsyth. He was ordained in 1780, and translated to East Campbell Street, Glasgow^ 6th September, 1792. He gathered a considerable congregation, and his connection with the Relief Church terminated characteristically. Having arranged to deliver his farewell sermon, when he came to the church he found the managers had locked the doors. There was
no stir and no congregation; it was simply the method his flock took of telling him that he was free to go, and no explanation was necessary. The fourth minister was John Anderson from West Falkirk, He was ordained 1 ?th September, 1793. He received calls to Dysart and Cupar. He was moderator of the Reformed Synod in 1828, and died 2nd Feb., 1862. His son, Robert, was ordained his colleague and successor, 27th July, 1847. Some disagreement arose at this time, and certain of the Relief body—constituted that year the United Presbyterian Church—withdrew and formed the Congregational Church, which still continues to survive. In 1890, Mr. Robert Anderson retired and Mr. John S. Goodall of Milnathort was ordained the 26th Feb., 1890.
The ministry of the Andersons, father and son, embraces a period of close on one hundred years. They may be safely said to have piloted the congregation through the difficulties of its early life and made it what it now is. The father of the Rev. John Anderson was a mechanic and a man of some inventive ability. He was employed at the Carron Iron Works, and was the first to introduce a tramway into Scotland. He invented the ball - cock in common use, by means of which the supply of water to cisterns is beautifully and automatically regulated. His son, the Rev. John Anderson, ministered to the Relief Church in Kilsyth for the long period of sixty-nine years, and died at the unusually long age of ninety-two. He was distinguished by the carefulness of his pulpit ministrations, the simplicity of his habits, and his advanced political notions. He was twice married, and had two sons and five daughters by each marriage.
William was the second son of the first family. At the jubilee soiree of his aged parent, he said, inhis characteristic manner, that, than his father, he had never known anyone he would have liked so much to be his father, and then, laying his hands on his progenitor's silver hair, he launched out into the popular ditty, "John Anderson, my Jo." William was born at Kilsyth, 6th January, 1799, and was for a period of years as wellknown a man as was to be found in the West of Scotland, and as notable a figure as filled a Glasgow pulpit. There were many reasons why he should have held his father in the highest filial esteem. As a boy, he had attended Chapel-Green School, but in reality his father was his tutor, and prepared him for entering the university. In all things, human and divine, he gave him the solidest nurture. The father mingled chess and draughts with the Shorter Catechism. The boy taught himself to swim in Dini Linn, now rapidly silting up. He hid his stockings and shoes after he got clear of his father's house of a morning, that it might not be said of him he was the only booted boy in school. One of his schoolday acquaintances was Emily, the sister of William Motherwell, the poet, who seems to have impressed him like another Jeanie Morrison. The freshness of the morning light was transitory. He grew up a shy, bashful lad, till with manhood there came another change. He had a shrill voice, and when he read his Latin exercise at college, Professor Richardson said, "Well sung, Gulielme!" Chalmers in the Tron Church, thundering forth his "Astronomical Discourses," was then at the height of his popularity. Young Anderson heard him every Sunday, and came under the spell of his eloquence. He caught something of his manner which he was never quite able to throw off, but which, having an individuality of his own, it would have been good for him if he had. William Anderson's devotion to the paper must