The Jews were thrust into a position of isolation, and the Code of Theodosius and other authorities characterize the Jews as a lower order of depraved beings (inferiores and perversi), their community as a godless, dangerous sect (secta nefaria, feralis), their religion a superstition, their assemblies for religious worship a blasphemy (sacrilegi coetus) and a contagion (Scherer, op. cit.
The Church in America in 1738 asked the Classis of Amsterdam (to whose care it had been transferred from the West India Company) for the privilege of forming a Coetus or Association with power to ordain in America; the Classis, after trying to join the Dutch with the English Presbyterian churches, granted (1747) a Coetus first to the German and then to the Dutch churches, which therefore in September 1754 organized themselves into a classis.
This action was opposed by the church of New York City, and partly through this difference and partly because of quarrels over the denominational control of King's College (now Columbia), five members of the Coetus seceded, and as the president of the Coetus was one of them they took the records with them; they were called the Conferentie; they organized independently in 1764 and carried on a bitter warfare with the Coetus (now more properly called the American Classis), which in 1766 (and again in 1770) obtained a charter for Queen's (now Rutgers) College at New Brunswick.
Livingston (1746-1825), who had become pastor of the New York City church in 1770, on the basis of a plan drafted by the Classis of Amsterdam Coetus and Conferentie were reunited with a substantial independence of Amsterdam, which was made complete in 1792 when the Synod (the nomenclature of synod and classis had been adopted upon the declaration of American Independence) adopted a translation of the eighty-four Articles of Dort on Church Order with seventy-three "explanatory articles."' In 1800 there were about forty ministers and one hundred churches.
Michael Schlatter (1716-1790), a Swiss of St Gall, sent to America in 1746 by the Synods (Dutch Reformed) of Holland, immediately convened Boehm, Weiss and Rieger in Philadelphia, and with them planned a Coetus, which first met in September 1747; in 1751 he presented the cause of the Coetus in Germany and Holland, where he gathered funds; in 1752 came back to America with six ministers, one of whom, William Stoy (1726-1801), was an active opponent of the Coetus and of clericalism after 1772.
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