Bishop Turner’s New Book
Christian Recorder: June, 25, 1885
Ministers, Officers and Member of the A.M.E. Church: ---For many years I have seen the necessity of a small book which would define the duties and rights of every official in the Church, as well as the lay members. Such a book I have endeavored to prepare with as much condensation as possible. I started with the intention of making it consist of about seventy-five pages, but it reached near two hundred of printed matter before done.
I have tried to define the duties, limits and rights of General, annual, district church and quarterly conferences, official boards, exhorters, evangelists, preachers, ministers, Bishops, presiding elders, trustees, stewards, stewardesses, class leaders, literary associations, growth of the Church, power of the preacher, admission questions, appeals, etc., etc. In order to do this I have consulted the best Methodist authorities in the world, and have drawn from them, at times, quite freely. My chief object has been to let every officer see his duty and his rights under the law, and to help put a stop to so many conflicts between ministers and lay officers. Stewards and class leaders will see their duties as well as deacons and elders etc., and each can see if he will attend to the business of his own office he need never have a misunderstanding with his brother officers; God cannot be served in a wrangle, nor will any church grow in confusion. While I could have written twice as much, I intended to have condensed it so I could sell it for forty or fifty cents, but I will be compelled to ask a little more, owing to size and cost of printing. I have entitled it, “The Genius and Theory of Methodist Polity.” In order to piece it within the reach of the poorest member and officer of the Church and have no delay in getting it, I have arranged to have it bound in two styles: 1st style, 70 cents, 2nd style, 85 cents. This will include book, postage, wrapping and all. So every one can write for himself, and upon reception of the price, the book will be forwarded to your post office, provided you give the name, post office and State in plain writing. As I will be traveling regularly, my wife will act as agent, and as she is more punctual than I am, if you will send her the price the book will come on return mail. Address her, Eliza A. Turner, 26 Young Street, Atlanta, GA. Also General Manager Rev. J. O. Embry will have some at the Publication Department.
Presiding elders will find this book a great help among their ministers and officers, also pastors will be greatly benefitted in getting it into the hands of their leaders and stewards, etc., and where they send the price for a half dozen or more copies, my wife has been instructed to put one or more extra copies in the package, according to the number sent for. It may appear immodest for me to puff my own book, but I have neglected my work and remained at home, when duty called me elsewhere, to get in print for the good of the Church, as I believe it will save thousands of wrangles and disputes and make every department of the Church more effective for good. Nor did I write it to make money out of it. I wrote it for the good of the Church, and as soon as I can pay for its publication, I will reduce the price to the lowest possible figure. And, more, those who purchase it and are not satisfied with it, return it to me or my wife unsoiled and your money will be returned. So now do as you please about it, buy it or leave it be.