CONCLUSION Disputes over plans to establish an American bishopric highlight how the conflict between the colonies and England manifested itself on many levels over a long period. The first thing to note is how colonial institutions evolved in new ways without an overall plan compared to the long-established and well organized institutions of England. This disparity made it almost impossible to bring an existing institution such as a bishop and establish it in the colonies without conflict. Secondly, political conflict in England was just as important, if not more so, than colonial disputes for undermining plans for an American bishopric. Next, maneuverings by the Anglican leadership to advance the Church and establish a colonial bishop revived the colonists’ seventeenth century fear of ecclesiastical tyranny and heightened concerns over the loss of political and religious liberties. Fourth, the arguments over the establishment of bishops in the colonies, particularly between Secker and Mayhew, highlight the incompatible premises of each group. Fifth, the Anglican view of liberty under the established church with a recognized legal toleration conflicted with the multi-denominational character of the colonies, which promoted liberty of conscience. In spite of the good intentions of the Anglicans, this divergence created an environment for conflict over the introduction of bishops into the colonies. Finally, urgent attempts by the church to install resident bishops in the years before the American Revolution created unintended consequences: First, as tensions increased the government became more hesitant to implement the plan in spite of Churchmen’s continual pursuance otherwise,...
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