Favoritism Of The Episcopal Church

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Late in the 18th century, the nation was changing before our eyes. New religious movements were popping up throughout Virginia and among the other colonies. The most important change that was happening was that the colonist were fighting the Revolutionary War to gain their independence from Great Britain. The Colonist faced many problems before the war and after the war, mainly caused because of religion and taxation. There were dissatisfaction from the dissenters; who broke off from the Church of England. The dissenters were unsatisfied because they were being penalized for leaving the Church. The Founding Fathers tried to find ways in which would better the nation when it came to the tolerance of new religions. One bill passed that help bring …show more content…
Especially, through the passages of new bills. The members of other religions called for action and change. The one denomination of the Christian religion to speak against the Virginia Assembly’s favoritism, towards the Episcopal Church was the Presbyterians. The Presbyterian Church of Hanover sought out equality and the security to practice the religion of their choice. In the May 26, 1784, Hanover petition, the church outlines it reasons for writing the petition and its reasons why the General Assembly of Virginia is failing to protect the rights of all religions. A major point made in this petition is the involvement of Church and State. The Presbyterian Church in its petition says, “The security of our religious rights upon equal and impartial ground, instead of it being made a fundamental part of our constitution… it has been left to the fate of Common Law” (Hanover petition, 26 May, 1784). The church feels that the Assembly of Virginia is not there to protect their religion, but rather have Common Law, in which the government chooses what religion to grant acceptance to, rule. These dissenters are telling in this petition that a higher power is handing down the rules similar to how the government in Great Britain was ran, instead of cooperation of a the whole legislature. The Presbyterians felt, that the new religious laws that were being passed was making, the Episcopal Church was …show more content…
One of the influencers Thomas Jefferson created an act for establishing religious freedom, passed in January 1786. There was a point, in time, where Virginia was only seen tolerant of the Anglican religion. Most felt that the Church of England would/should be the main Church of the new United States also. Those who were not in favor of that happening were the dissenters of the Presbyterians, Methodists and Baptists. In the act established by Thomas Jefferson, he says, “Be it enacted by General Assembly that no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry” ([Jefferson], act of religious freedom 1786). Jefferson is trying to say in the previous quote that a bill like this was needed so people would know that the tolerance of all religion will be accepted or none at all. In same document it says, “We well know that this Assembly elected by the people for the ordinary purposes of Legislation only” ([Jefferson], act of religious freedom). The General Assembly was put in place to make legislature. The Assembly was not put in place to settle religious disputes. Neither should that have a say in what religion should be followed by the colonist. This was why the separation of Church and State was

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