While working through the Wapping Church minute book, I discovered this festive account from 1677. The church had voted to withdraw fellowship from Okey in June of the year. Apparently that was not okay with Okey. Okey had responded by praying for God to kill the pastor, Hercules Collins. The church took the following further action on Christmas Day 1677.
At the Church Meeting in ole Gravell Lane the 25th of December 1677 was John Okey Cut off and Excommunicated from all the priviledges of the gospel for the sin of lying and Revilling and for Refusing to hear the Church: together with his Invocating the God of Heaven to cut off and destroy Bro: Collings and saying also that he would be Revenged.
On a bit more pleasant note than the Christmas 1677 meeting, the Wapping Church took up a special collection for London pastor Benjamin Keach on December 25, 1679 in response to his recently having been robbed.
December 25th 1679 The Congregation in old Gravell Lane Did then Raise and give to Bro. Benj. Keach when he was Robed the Sum of Three pound five shillings
The church ultimately gave 3 pounds and eight shillings to Keach. On December 30th 1679, it was recorded in the minute book that: “Bro. Collings gave to Bro. Keach the Sum of three pound Eight Shillings which was gathered for him of the Church.”
Posted by Steve Weaver, Research Assistant to the Director of the Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies, Dr. Michael A.G. Haykin.