Green Pryor Rice

Cumberland Presbyterian Minister

1793 - 1856


1812
Mr. Green P. Rice came forward and was examined on experimental religion and his call to the ministry; which examinations were sustained, and having obtained a good report of his moral character, is now received as a candidate for the ministry.
Ordered that . . . Green P. Rice prepare a written discourse form St. John X, 9.
[Source: Minutes of Cumberland Presbytery, November 3-6, 1812]

1813
Ordered that . . . prepare a discourse . . .Green P. Rice from John III.
Green P. Rice delivered a discourse from John X, 9, which was sustained as part of trial.
[Source: Minutes of Cumberland Presbytery, April 6-9, 1813]

1813
Green P. Rice read a discourse from St. John 3rd Chap. and 30th Verse ...sustained as parts of trial.
Ordered that Green P. rice prepare a written discourse from 2nd Corinthians 5th Chap. and 21st Verse ... to be read at our next presbytery.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, August 31, 1813]

1814
Green P. Rice read a discourse from a text previously assigned him, which was sustained as a popular discourse preparatory to licensure.
Presbytery proceeded to the examination of Green P. Rice on Divinity and English Grammar preparatory to Licensure, which was sustained.
By the appointment of the Moderator the Rev. William Harris proceeded to license Green P. Rice to preach the gospel agreeably to the rules of the discipline of this church (to wit). At Lebanon in Christian County, Kentucky State on the 10th of March, 1814.
The Logan Presbytery having received testimonials in favour of Green P. Rice of his good moral character and of his being in the communion of the church proceeded to take the usual parts of trial for his licensure. And he having given satisfaction as to his aptness to teach, as to his experimental acquaintance with religion, and as to his internal call and motives to the ministry, and as to his proficiency in divinity.
The presbytery did and do hereby express their approbation of all these parts of trial, and he having adopted the confession of faith of this church and satisfactorily answered the questions appointed to be put to candidates to be licensed. The presbytery did and do hereby license him the said Green P. Rice to preach the gospel of Christ as a probationer for the Holy ministry, within the bounds of this presbytery or wherever God in his providence may cast his lot.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, March 8-10, 1814]

1815
Ordered that Green P. Rice supply not less than three sabbaths at Redriver before next presbytery.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, April 4-6, 1815]

1815
Presbytery having received petitions from Redriver and Mt. Moriah societies praying the Ordination of Green P. Rice. Ordered that an intermediate presbytery be appointed for that purpose to meet in the bounds of Mt. Moriah Congregations on the third Friday in December next, and that William Harris preach the Ordination sermon, and that William Preside and give the charge, and that Finis Ewing, Alexander Chapman and John Barnett attend as members.
Ordered that Green P. Rice prepare a discourse to be delivered at the Intermediate Presbytery from Romans 5th Chap and 1st Verse, preparatory to his ordination.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, November 5, 1815]

1815
Presbytery examined Green P. Rice on experimental religion, his internal call to the work of the Holy ministry, Philosophy, Geography, astronomy, Church History, Natural and Revealed Theology, Church Government, and on the Latin and Greek languages, all of which were sustained.
Green P. Rice delivered a discourse from Rom. 5th Chap. and 1st Verse preparatory to ordination which was sustained. Rev. William Harris preached the Ordination sermon from 1 Cor. 9th Chap. and part of the 16th Verse.
The questions required by our Discipline were put to the candidate, and he having answered in the affirmative, the Presbytery proceeded to set apart the said Green P. Rice to the whole work of the ministry, by the imposition of hands and prayer.
Rev. William Harris who was appointed in the absence of William Barnett, gave the charge. The whole was concluded with Prayer.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, December 15, 1815]

1816
The Rev. Green P. Rice took a seat in Presbytery as a regular member.
That Green P. Rice supply what is convenient, in Russellville, Mount Moriah, and Red River.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, April 1816]

1816
Member Present. Rev. Mr. Green P. Rice
Rev. Green P. Rice was chosen Clerk.
Green P. Rice absent on second day of meeting.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, November 1816]

1817
Member present, Rev. Mr. Green P. Rice
Rev. Green P. Rice was chosen Clerk.
Green P. Rice was chosen stated Clerk.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, April 1, 1817]

1817
Absentee Green P. Rice
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, November 18, 1817]

1818
Absentee Green P. Rice
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, April 7, 1818]

1818
Absentee Green P. Rice
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, November 17, 1818]

1819
Absentee Green P. Rice
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, April 6, 1819]

1819
Members present Rev. Green P. Rice
Rev. Green P. Rice was chosen Clerk.
Green P. Rice was inquired of by the Presbytery, why he was absent from several presbyteries, whose excuses were sustained.
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, November 16, 1819]

1820
Absentee Green P. Rice
[Source: Minutes of Logan Presbytery, April 4, 1820]

 


The most accurate information to which I have access is to the effect that Rev. Green P. Rice moved to Western Illinois as early as 1817. He came to St. Louis and preached in the then small French village, and was frequently in Missouri attending the Presbyteries during the first years of the Church.
[Source: Ewing, R. C. Historical Memoirs: Containing a Brief History of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in Missouri, and Biographical Sketches of a Number of Those Ministers who Contributed to the Organization and the Establishment of that Church, in the Country West of the Mississippi River. Nashville, Tenn.: Cumberland Presbyterian Board of Publication, 1874, page 11]


Green P. Rice, 1815-1822

The first Cumberland Presbyterian minister who came to this community, was the Rev. Green Prior Rice. he was a convert of the 1800 revival, and a real pioneer. He was a worthy man of those days when men had to be brave. He was ordained in Kentucky and joined the Missouri Presbytery, since Illinois had none.

Mr. Rice had come to Hill's Fort, where Greenville was later located. it is related that he was there as early as 1815, and helped lay out some lots. He purchased some lots and opened the first store in Greenville, a very small one, but the first store there. When they wanted a name for the fort, it was named Greenville, in his honor. He attended presbytery in Missouri, in 1817, and as he returned, at a settlement near Edwardsville, he met Robert Paisley, the Barbers, and others who were Cumberland Presbyterians. He interested the group in the new town of Greenville, and Robert Paisley either came here with him, or came soon afterwards, to this locality, in 1818.

The Rev. Rice was glad to be able to contact so devoted a man as Robert Paisley. They worked together for at least four years. Together they held a camp meeting, organized the church, which was named Bear Creek, held a second camp meeting, and built the little log church.

Shortly, the Rev. Rice attended synod again in Missouri. It was then that he asked for Illinois to be organized into a presbytery, and his request was granted. The date was set as May 8, 1823. A camp meeting was to be held in connection with the organization. The Rev. Rice was to act as moderator. For some reason the Rev. Rice returned to his home in Kentucky, and never came back, which accounts for the fact that the Rev. John M. Berry acted as moderator at the first Presbytery in Illinois.
[Source: One Hundred Twenty Years of Donnellson Presbyterian Church History 1819-1939. Compiled by Olive F. Kaune, page 31]


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Updated May 12, 2009

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