DOCUMENTS CONCERNING

THE SEPARATION OF
THE REV. ERNST PFEIFFER
jrom
THE GENERAL CHURCH OF
THE NEW JERUSALEM
BRYN ATHYN, PENNSYLVANIA,
APRIL 7, 1937
APRIL 7, 1937.
1'0 TIIE OF TIIE CENEH:\L CllUHCll:
The documents appencled to this letter cOl1tain tile esselltial
bets bearing upon the separation of the Rev. Ernst Pfeiffer from
the General Chllrch.
It will be notecl that the separation is Ilut based on clifferences
/}
of e!octri!lal view. It is based soleJy on the faet that Pfeiffer
'l ilas public1y repucliatee! the of the Church, ane! has
cleclared his intention to fOlïl1 an indepene!ent body.
For him ta relllain a Illember of the General Chllrch in vievy
of this confessed attitude and intention woul be subversive of
ail arder. S
!\ report of the recent meetings of the Coul1cil of the Clergy, and
of the Joint CounciI, where the matter \Vas fully discussed, will
appear in the June 1ll1lnber of "New Church Life."
(Signecl) GEOHGE DE CRAlDIS,
Ac/oing Bishop.
(The foll07c'il'lg acwunt was written by the ReIJ. Ernst Pfeiffer,
and as ta the main points illvo!vl'd, wos opprovl'd by Bishop de
ChIlJïIlS.)
HRIEF ACCOUNT OF A MEETING HELD
MARCH 25, 1937, AT BRYN ATHYN, PA.
(Present: BISHOP DE CI-IJ\RMS, presiding; BISHOP i\CTON, REvs.
C. E. DOEIUNG, H. SVNNESTVEDT, E. PFEIFFER, T.
PITCi\IRN, E. C. ACToN, and HENDHTK no!':!'.)
THE CJ-IAIRMAN statecI that the lllCeting had bcen callcd at the
request of Eev. T. Pitcairn. He presullled that either Mr. Pitcairn
or M1". Pfeiffer hacl S0111e proposaI to lllake, and he said that thosC'
present would be glad to hear whatever they might wish to say.
J\!IR. PFEIFFER said that he ancl lVI r. Groeneve1c1 had C0111e frolll
Uolland with the intention of seeking some C0ll11110n basis
essentials of the Church, on whiçh tllOse holding the new )()si8m
Illight continue ta work together with the General Church.
J-Je realized, however, that the doctrinal differenccs het\Veen
us were very great, and incleecl essential. This fact, ancl the con-
sequent difficulty of finding a C01111110n hasis had been elllphasizcd
in his minci by his personal conversations with Jlishop de Charllls
and with Bishop Acton.
Bishop de Channs had told him that the only basis for a COIll-
Illon undcrstanc1ing anel for cooperation were the teachings
of the \iVritings, and that if the 'uel lTlents over the
opponents of the new position, of which also this latest Sixth
Fascicle contained Illanv exalllples. would not cease, separation
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Jj
was necessary. He had replieel to this that he agreed that
plain teachings of the \1\ ritings of Swedenhorg coutel be the com-
mon basis. In the new position they had never held anything
contrary to this. nul he helicved that the J10ssibility of an internai
3
Church was clependcnt on the acknowleclgmcnt of the Divine
essence of g ~ D trine out of that \Nord, although there was
no authority apart from the letter. But he c1early saw that the
denial of the Divinity of the genl1ine Doctrine made by man Ol1t of
this New \Yord wOl1]cI make impossible the coming of an internaI
Church.
I3ishop cie Charms had expressed to him a belief in "human
good" and "human truth" and that the Divine things of the Church
remainecl always outside the consciousness of man, that in inflow­
ing so as to become the conscious affections and thoughts of man,
these latter were no longer a Divine proceecling but finite ancl
created; in one word, that the Holy Spirit remainecl always Ol1t­
side the consciousness of man. Mr. Pfeiffer stated that sllch a
belief appeared to him as opposed to everything essential for
regeneration. He was convinced that this belief was foreign to the
original faith of the f\caclemy and the General Church; that the
expressions of "human good," "human truth." ancl "human doc­
trine" were never usecl before this controversy arose; they cer­
tainly are nowhere to be found in the \i\Tord; and that they were
the result of the efforts only in these recent years of the opponents
to combat the new position.
In view of this opposition in such funclamental ancl essential
principles he foresa\v that it would be unavoidable that similar
statements as those to which Bishop de Charms objected so mllch
wOl1ld continue ta he macle and woulcl rather increase than dimin­
ish. For if one is convincecl of the trllth of principles which are
seen as essential for the welfare of the Chllrch ancl for the regenera­
tion of man, one cOlllcl not help to consicler the most active propa­
gation of these principles as the one nccessary thing to cio, and as
one's proper task to accomplish.
MR. PFEIFFER continllecl that the talk he and Mr. Pitcairn and
:Mr. Groenevelcl hacl hac! with Bishop Acton was of a similar
nature. It clilminateci in the statement of Bishop Acton that lInless
the propagation of the essentially objectionable things woulcl cease
separation was a matter of charity to both sicles. He stated that
he hacl come home from these two interviews with the feeling of
having had put upon him the weight of a mOllntain, and that for
the first time cluring ail these years the thol1ght of separation hael
impressed itself l1pon hil1l ancl those who were with him as the
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only solution. He said that they bac! felt it their dutY to inform
the Bishops of this development in their attitude before the forth­
coming ministers' meetings; that this was the cause why the request
for the meeting was made; and that they were now anxious to
hear how and in what way the Bishops could conceive of the pos­
sibility of a separation in charity.
B1SHOP DE CHARMS replied that he woule! like to hear first
from Mr. Pfeiffer how he conceived of such a possibility.
MR. PFEIFFER saie! that freeclom according to one's reason in
spiritual tbings was the inmost essential of a genuine Church, and
that without such freee!om the Church coulel not be establishecl,
neither the Church as a whole nor the Church in the inclividual
man. That this involvee! the necessity of freedom not on1y in the
internaI things which make the Church but also in the external
things which are of the Church, for the clevelopment and the con­
tinuance of internaI things was entirely clepenclent upon the pos­
sibility of llltimation, for only there the internaI things could fincl
a grouncl ancl the necessary limits from which they coulcl be
reflectecl and in which they coulcl be kept together as in a body,
by which alonc the continuecl life of internaI things coule! he
assured. In view, therefore, of ail the present circumstances ancl
the imposecl restraints from which the possibility of furthcr
cooperation had been mae!e depenclent by the two Bishops, they
had become convincecl that it was imperati ve for the welfarc of
the Church to ask for the completest freedom ane! for complete
i ndepenclence.
J\rSI-IOP DE CHi\RMS asked how the)' thought that this could
he accomplishecl.
lVIR. PJTCi\IRK said that the way would he the allow<lnce of a
scparate diocese for the Church in Hollanc!.
BISHOP ACTON at this point saicl that it appeared to him the)'
were not really proposing to establish a diocese, but a separate
C1hurch. A cliocese is a geographical division within a church, ail
the lllemhers of which were united in the comlllon acknowJec!gment
of the sal11e fundamentaJ' principles, and in one comlllon gOVCrIl­
ment.
DR. DOERING interjected: "And this involves subordination."
MR. PFEIFFER said that the word ( ~ s e might incleed convey
a di ffercnt idea from what \Vas intended, although his idca of a
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cliocese was not the same as that which had been expressecl. That
he conceivecl of separate elioceses which might exist throughout
the worlel as independent bisho[lrics which \Vould indeed have
many essential uniting things of an internai nature in common, but
which \Vould acknowledge as the com1110n head the Lord alone.
He admitted that his concept would involve also complete inde­
pendence as to government. He admittecl that the principles of the
new position were altogether di fferent from that held by the pres­
ent leadel-s of the General Church. That there is even a greater
difference between the new position and that of those leaders than
exists between the position of the General Church and that of
Convention. But since it was agreed on both sides that separation
was unavoidable, they had hoped that the Bishops would admit of
a more interior concept of the Lord's New Church above the
plane of the existing external organization, the nature and admin­
istration of which had been admitted by Bishop de Charms of
being purely human. They had hoped, therefore, that the General
Church would be \Villing to consider the possibility of the ordina­
tion into the third degree of a man who would have been founcl
acceptable to the group of the minority. This solution appeared to
them as truly charitable and if compared with the other alternati ve
of an open break, it had the great advantage of a complete split
and schism then being avoided. He stressed the importance of
avoiding such a break, especially for the sake of the protection of
the simple in the Church, for the sake of the other existing New
Church bodies, and of history, that it should not be said that the
Church ,vas once more torn asunder, for the sake of avoiding the
great suffering of many and the bitterness which must inevitably
accompany a sudden and violent break, for the sake of a possible
rapprochement and understanding in the future, and especial1y
also in order that we might part not as enemies but continue to
live as friends.
DE replied that he also had hoped for some
common basis of unity between us, but that he fully agreed \Vith
Ml'. Pfeiffer as to the extent and the essential character of the
differences in doctrinal viewpoint. So great is this difference, and
so fundamental, that the two groups could not continue to wark in
the same organization without a loss of freedom to both, and a
disruption of order. Charity docs indeecl unite varieties; but it alsu
6
divides, distinguishes, and hrings into order. This is sa in the
heavens. The spirits hom our earth are not in the sallie societies
as those hom other planets. Ali can be brought into the form of a
Grand Man, in which there is a larger unit y, and a general
cooperation, only because the necessary distinctions are observed.
Charity does not require that several families shall live together in
the same house. The place and situation of every one in the other
world is according to his concept of Goel. The funelamental differ­
ence between the Dutch Position and that of the General Churcll
is a difference in our concept of God, the nature of His Revela­
tion, and the nature of His presence and operation \Vith men.
This puts us into a different situation in the spiritual world, and
gives us a different center of influx and association there. This is
what we mean by an internaI separation.
The speaker expressed the desire that all those who accept the
Dutch Position shollld be free. He recognized that they shoulel
have full opportunity to elevelop \Vhat they regardec\ to be the
Divine Truth of the New Church. He believed that he was actu­
ated by that charity which values not only his own freeelom, but
also the freedom of those who do not agree \Vith him.
This, however, did not mean that he could become responsible
for promoting a movement the avowed purpose of which was ta
spread throughollt the worlel principles which he believed were
destructive of the New Church. This responsibility wOllld neces­
sarily be involved in his ordination of a man into the thirc\ e
of the Priesthood for the express purpose of establishing such a
movement.
SlJch a it woutd be utterly impossible for him to per­
form. Every sacred rite and sacrament of the Church, sincerely
performed, carries \Vith it the quality of the doctrine and the faith
of the Church body ta which the officiating priest belongs. This is
directly taught in reference to Baptism, and is equally applicable
to every other ceremony of the Church. If a Bishop of the General
Church a man, it is with the hope, and the confident
belief, that in so doing he is promoting the growth and develop­
ment of the General Church. One who accepts that ordination
must enter into the spirit of the act. His pllrpose must be one with
that of the ordaining priest. If aIL.Qrdination were performed in
which it was known and unc\erstoocl that the one-"receiving the
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$0
powers was to seek the establishment of another
the purpose of which lVas t2...-:}lPI lant the General Church. then
such a ceremony would be a mockery.
ivIR. PFEIFFER said that he had anticipated j ust SllC\1 a reply as
Bishop de Channs had j ust macle. Still it had Geel] his hope that
Bishop cIe Charms might have refrained from fonnulating his
answer until he had gi ven the matter consideration for several
.• days. He had hoped that it might !Je possible for him tL,rise above
JI the of e.xternal and to
DlvUle thll1gs of the Lord ll1 the Church,
above all or anizations. He said that still there was Bishop Acton.
and he would nolV ask Bishop Acton whether he might not give
CarefUI consideration to the possiGility, for the sake_ 9f eharit).r, oE
) ordaining a man to promote the higher welfare of the esse:1tial
)
\Tew Church. V'; e are united aiter all in the belief that the Writ­
( ings are the ""\Tord, and in the acknowledgment that the Lord has
made His Second Coming.
13ISHOP AnoN said that he associated himself fully and with­
out reserve with the position taken by Bishop de Chanlls.
Pfeiffer was proposing an unhearcl-of thing, na1l1dy, that a seced­
ing body should deri ve its authorization from the very organization
which it was attempting to destroy. :'1r. Pfeiffer must recognize
that, believing in the Dutch Position as sincerely as he does, he
cannot but wish all men to come into that sa1l1e Faith. Il is for
that purpose that he wished to establish a Church. Bishop Acton,
however, bdieved just as sincerely in the Principles of the General
Church, and wishecl that ail men 1l1ight come to accept these Prin­
ciples. This clesire was present in ail that he did in perfonning
the duties of his office. It was impossible, therefore, for him to
orclain a man knowing that the result of the act would he opposi­
tion to the very principles which he loved and wished to promote.
He further pointed out that Mr. Pfeiffer would seek, and rightly,
tu elllhrace within his organization all those who agreed with his
doctrinal position, wherever they lllight be. The General Church
does the same. It has lllelllbers in all parts of the world, and it
ll1aintains that Church unity is a spiritual thing. Tt is not basecl
on geography but on the acknowleclgment of a COlllmon faith
\Vhere this unity exists, space does not separate. Tt is right that
all those of the same Faith should be free to join a church with
8
whose principles they are in spiritual sympathy; and this, wherever
they live, in Bryn Athyn or elsewhere. The separation of mem­
bers froll1 the General Church, >vhen they are in essential e!isagre(>
ment with it, woulel strengthen our boe!y-not weaken it. \Ve
woulel not e!esire to hoId them externally in the General Church.
if they eliel not have internaI sympathy with its principles. YVe
woule! wish them weil, and coule! continue in our friendship. The
speaker woulel even admit, theoretically, tInt Ml'. Pfeiffer might
be right, and he might be wrong. He would ae!mit that the Church
established on the principles of the Dutch Position might contribute
to the growth of the New Church on earth. If so. this wouIe! be a
matter of Providence. But he was bound, nonetheless, to act in
accore! with his own une!erstane!ing of the \Vritings, ane! to protect
and e!efcne! that which he regarc!ee! as the genuine truth of the
New Church.
MR. PFEIFFER saie! that they hae! not hrought up this matter
from any embarrassment of knowing no other way to accomplish
their purpose. They knew the way which they ",;ouIe! have to take.
They hae! not come to ask for help. They hael thought it their duty
ane! a matter of charity to bring the question before the Bishops. 1-Ie
1 saiel that we neeel not he afraid of each other. In the measure in
\ which a man is sincerely convincee! of serving the truth he may
be confident that the Lore! will protect the truth.
MR. PFEIFFER gave the information that they hael a candidate
fU2:.-!he ministry' in The Hague, a man 37 years of age, w I ~ is
i earnestly e!esirous of entering the requiree! stue!ies. Since he full).,
1 accepts the new position, it would be impossible for him to atten(1
the Theological School in Bryn Athyn. IIe mentioned this fact on
account of the immee!iate urgency of the proposee! idea.
In taking up the charge expressed by Bishop Acton that they
wished to combat the General Church, Mr. Pfeiffer repliee! that
J
those with whom the new position hael uriginated hael not attackeel
1the General Church. They merely put forth the things which they
hae! come to see clearly ami to conl1rm abune!antIy from the \Vorel,
1 without the least idea that these things were contrary ta the teach­
f ings of the General Church. From the very I1rst. they hael met
w i t ~ such a _bitter anel virulent attack, being accusee! of things
JJ they hael never meant, that they were cOll1pelleel to elevelop the
position further, in an ene!eavor to remave the misunderstanelings,
and to answer the misrepresentations.
9
nISI-IOP DE CH.'\R MS said that the atta!:k hael come From the
Dutch Position. The General Church had but endeavoreel to
defcnd itself. Mr. Pfeiffer hael received ordination and appoint­
mcnt from the Bishop of the General Church. He had been sent
to Holland to l11inister to a group of General Chllrch mel11bers
there, who had joined our body becallse they accepted the prin­
ciples on which our Church was established. He had so far dis­
regarded the trust imposecl in him, that he hael used his position
to develop and teach a doctrine which he knew to be directl)'
opposecl to the doctrine of the Church which he representecl. Pos­
sibly through ignorance, he had clisregarclecl the established orcler
of the General Church, in that he had taught this doctrine, and
pron1l1lgated it among the members of the Church without bring-·
ing the matter to the attention of the Bishop or of his fello\'!
ministcrs. In this he hacl not exercised orclinary lo)'alty to the
General Church.
The speaker expressed it as his opinion that an)' m1l11ster.
ell1powered and cOl11l11issioned by the General Church W<lS expected
to support and uphold the principles of that body. If in conscience
he could not do so. he nonetheless had no right to use his position
as a means of cleveloping something inimical to that body ",hile
outwardly representing it. The l11embers of the General Church.
by application to the Bishop, are received first into the General
hody, presumably because they freely acknowledge and accept its
principles. Only by virtue of this fact do they become eligible
to membership in a society. A pastor who is placecl over them is a
trusted officer of the General Chllrch, and the people have a right
to expect that he will seek to promote its welfare. 1'0 use such a
position for the promulgation of principles opposed to those of the
General Church is contrary to funclamental honesty.
Nb. PFEIFFER explained that his concept of the Church was
ditferent from that of Bishop cie Charms. It was from the teaching
of the -Word that the Lord is the ail in aH of Heaven and of the
Church that he thought our concept of the New Church shollld be
drawn. Accorcling to this teaching the things of avoweclly only
human nature of the external organization could not properly be
cünsidered as being of the New Church. In referring to a remark
by Bishop de Charms in his main reply to the proposition of
ordination, nal11ely that ordination according to the \iVritings meant
10
the transfer of the Holy Spirit, ML Pfeiffer asked him: "Do you
really maintain that the transfer of the Holy Spirit may be made
depenelent on the things of a human organization?"
BISHOP DE CHARMS saiel that ML Pfeiffer was mistaken if he
unelerstoocl him ta say that the organization was nothing but a
purely external thing. He saw everything clown ta the particulars
of the organization of the General Church as being a boely of which
its charity and faith were the sou!.
MR. PFEIFFER repliecl that he coulel see \vhat he meant but that
there was a more interior relation of soul and body in application
ta the Church. Accoreling ta a truly internai concept of the Church
the Lord alone was the Soul and the genuine things of charity and
faith which were Divine, becallse of the Divine, proceecling, were
the body of that Soul, while the ultimate things of the extcrnal
organization could never be genuine unless j ust in the in
which they were the ultimate cl'othing of that Divine body of that
Divine Sou!. It was in this way that it must be unclerstood that
Angels and regencrate men are in the Body of the Lord, thc
Corpus Christi.
MR. BOEF: "Bishop, when l gave my layaIty ta the Church T
did not give it to Convention, ta Conference, or to tl; -eneral
J\
Church, but to the Lord's New Church. l believe that whcn it
said thata- minister must preach according to the doctrines of his
Jchurch, the General Church is not meant but the Lorcl's Ncw
1
Ch Irch." He asked Bishop de Charms whether he bc1ieved that his
Lelief is the acceptecl faith of the General Church and that III
expressing his belief he voices the faith of the General Church.
BISHOP DE CHAR ;'.IS said that he thought sa.
BISHOP ACTON pointed out in reply ta Mr. Boef, that the very
title of the chapter, "Ecclesiastical and Civil Governl11ent," makcs
it dear that what is there referrecl ta is the external ore-anization
1 -
of the Church the minister belongs, in which organization
there must be higher and lower governors for the sake of arder. It
1
says that the Minister must preach the truth, ancl leacl to
1
the good of life, aecording ta the doctrine of his ehureh" that
, if he disagrees with this doctrine, he must not disturb the church.
1If he does clisturb the church he must bé separated. If this cloes
not refer oraa ..< tian, then who is ta do the sc:;parat­
ing? i Ta man can separate another from the Ncw Church.- This
11
cloes not place any binding limitation on the exercise of conscience,
but merely enjoins upon a man that he shall nt2.fdo injury to'ihe
to whjch he belongs.
rdR. PFEH'FER questioncd the translation of the number cited.
He quoted the Latin words as being "secundum ecclesiae suae
doctrinam ex Verbo," which is, "according to his Church's Doctrine
ont of the \\ford." He said that this very passage is one of the
strongest l'roofs of the correctness of the new position, since jt

the necessity of a Doctrine out of the \\lord which is not
the sa1l1e thing as the letter.
j'vI-.R. PITCAIRN said that he clid not regard the principles of thC)\
new position as contrary to the established teachjng of the General J
1 Chureh. He himseli fully accepts that teaching as expressed in the
'1. "l'rinci )les of the Academy" and in the Liturgy of the General
.3 Church, as in the Creed and elsewhere, and that he was in agree-'
ment with the positions hele! by Dishops Benade and \IV. F. Pel1Llle­
ton ane! other leae!ers of the Acae!emy. The things involved in the
ncw position were things which hae! never heen before considered
in the Church, and therefore it coule! not be said that there was any
established doctrine concerning them.
:MR. PFEIFFER in rcply to Bishop de Charms' latest speech saie!
that the charges which had been made against hill1, in regard tn
the way in which he had developed the new position, had alrcacly
been answcred. Dut he \\'ould say somcthing iurther about thcl1l. 1\
I
new ( ctrinal position develops slowly. hardly tell \'\:b.;:;­
it heo'ins. He can not know when it cOlnes into opposition to the
J
accepted ,doctrI.' ne _of the Church. H e had had no thOlwht of
Jing the General Church. He would haye becn glad at any tune tD
have presented the matter to the Council of the Clergy, hac1 not
the O'reat distance and difficulty of tl'avel made this impossible.
b _
, . Dut he did not think of the Church as an external orgalJ.!zation.)
111s loyalty was to the Lord alone. He must regard tlle 1
truth whlch he clearly sees, and be frec to teach thlS.
DISI-IOP ACTON asked :'iIr. Pfeiffer whether he wOlild Ilot cxpect
the other threc Illinisters present ta become Illclllbers of the lIe\v
diocese.
j\1R. PFEIFFER repliecl that as he saw itMr. Elma and
1 [VI r. Hcndrik 130e \Vere cngaged slIcccssfllllY!Il thcir respective
that they dill Ilot mert with an)' amI that their
12
societies c1id not suffer from disturbances, and that therefore there
was no immediate reason why they should not continue their work.
MR. PFEIFFER'S concluc1ing remarks were that in sincerity they
had presented their view to the consic1eration of the Bishops; but
since the attitude taken was such as hac1 appearec1 c1uring this
evening, the matter would have to be left where it stood.
The 111rcting adjournrd after long discussions not here r{'(ordrd.
h1l1 'withoul an)' action being talœn.
EXTRACTS FRO:vr THE M I ~ U T E S
(If the JOINT :VrEETING of the Council of the Clergy and the
Executive Committee of THE GENERAL CHURCH ()F TITE
)\[\V JET{USALET\[. helc1 on Saturc1ay. I\pril 3, 1937, in the
Council Hall, nryn Athyn, Pennsylvania.
(Section 17) ACTING BISHOP GEORGE DE CHAR MS ... referred
to the c1iscussion on "The State of the C\1urch." which has taken
place during the last few days, in the meetings of the Council of the
Clergy-particularJy the states arising out of th w doctrinal
views developed in The Hague, Holland, sorne years ago. This dis­
cussion arose out of what transpired at a meeting held about a
week ago (Thursday evening, :'vlarch 25) between the proponents
of these views and hill1self. and available members of the Con­
sistory. He understood that the members of the Executive C0111­
mittee had reac! the written account of this meeting, which account
had been agreed upon as an authentic record by the Rev. E.
Pfeiffer and himself.
The discussion in the Council of the Clergy has made it clear
that NI r. Pfeiffer fully recognizes the essential differences of
doctrine between himself and the recent leaders of the General
Church. In Mr. Pfeiffer's view, the General Church has separated
itse\ii!-om the Lord; and therefore he (Mr. Pfeiffer) no longer
feels himself in sympathy with this body, or able to co-operate with
it, recognizing that separation is necessary and inevitable.
Since 1V1 r. Pfeiffer's proposal of a new fOrIn of governnwnt
13
- ,.cf-... '''--el
r-.: ""'" 1- .!."':;>
(made at the meeting ahove referred to) hac! not been acceptable
to the Council of the Clergy, he has expressed ~ intention to
{ es ablish an inclependent body, under a clifferent name-in fact,
a separate Church. Yet Mr. Pfeiffer ciocs not wish ta rcsign at
this time, on the ground that he does not see his way clear, that he
1wishes to consult the Church in Hol1ancl, and that he has concern
for the "remnant" in the General Church.
Bishop de Charms said that the matter might rest there for
the moment....
* * *
l
(Section 20) THE REY. E. PFEIFFER (addressing Bishop de
Charms) saicl that he wished to make one short remark \Vith
reference to his (the Bishop's) carlier remarks as to the proceedings
in the Council of the Clergy. As a whole he accepted those remarks
as fair. B l ~ t he had not made t h ~ , stat.ement that. "the Church ,!lad
l
separated Itself from the Lord.' What he sald was that the
oro'anization and administration" of the General Church had
Jscparated itsclf from the Lorù....
nJSTIOP DE CHARMS said he \Vas qllitc willing ta accept j\fr.
Pfciffcr's cOlTcction of his rcmark.
;\ "lUI. 5, 103i.
REY. ER!':ST PFEIFFER,
BRYN ATHYN, l'EN:"'SYLVi\l\'Ji\.
Dear ML Pfeiffer:
In vie\\' of your open condemnation o( the "administration
../ and organization of the General Church," and in vicw of your
declared desire and intention to establish an independent body
of the New Church, it is clear that WI have already se Jarated
VOllr:elf from the General Church in aH but ultimate facto
- 1l1e time has come wl1ên this lIltimation can no longer bc
delayed. 1 must therefore ask you for your immediate resignation
as a recog-llize<1 Pastor, and as a member of the General Church.
Very truly yours,
(Signcd) GEORGE DE CHAR',,[S,
/1 ding ]J-is!Jo l'.
14
BHYN AnIYN, !\PRIL (j, 1937.
'l'liE Rl(;l1T n.EVEIŒNIJ GJ;;()]{GE ilE CLlAlDIS.
HI(YN ATI-iYN. PENNSYLVAl\lA.
Dear Dishop de Charllls:
In reply to your letter of .'\pril 5th. in which you ask me for
illY immediate resignation, l <:an only repcat the statcnletlt of Iny
feelings expresscd before the Couneil of the C!ergy, name\y that
'1 l consicler it my duty, imposecl upon me by my conscience, to
1
action before l have received a clear light from the Lord Himself.
I regret that in your letter it should appear that you seem no
J'longer to respect these feelings, although bath before the COlllicil
of the Clergy and before the Joint COllncil you expressed yourselJ
to the contrary.
The interpretation you have given to my attitude dming ,!he
Illcetings, as you expréss it in the first paragraph of yom letter.
/
and the conclusions which you lIraw fr0l1l it, are contrary to my
own understanding.
MOl'eover l am convinced that according to the orcler of the
Chuxch which aclmits not only of the ri 'hts of
but also of the necessity of the consideratIon of a 'selllbly, the
question of l1ly resignation cannot justly be brought to a point
j
of clecision unless the Chl!..!:ch (in Holland has been given an
Jopportunity to express itself.
Yours sincerc1y,
(Signed) EHNST Pl'ElFFEl(.
Al'RIL 7, 1937.
rü:v. EHNST PFE.LFFEH.
BRYN ATIIYN, PENXSYLVANlA.
Dear Mr. Pfeiffer:
Your refusa! ta resigl:t, in accord with illY requC'st of .'\pril 5th.
Ieaves me no alternative except ta infonn you that your nal11e has
ken removecl from the roll of mel11bership in the Counei! uf the
C!ergy, ancl in the General Chureh of the New JerusaIem.
Very tndy yours,
(Signecl) GEOHGE DE CHAlUIS,
Acting Bishop.
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