Westminster Assembly. The confession of faith, together with the larger and lesser catechisms. 5th edition. London: Printed by S. Cruttenden and T. Cox, at the Bible and Three Crowns in Cheapside, near Mercers-Chappel, 1717.
Westminster Shorter Catechism was written in 1646-47 by the Westminster
Assembly, a synod of English and Scottish theologians and laymen intended to
bring the Church of England into greater conformity with the Church of
purpose of the Shorter Catechism was to educate children and others “of weaker
capacity” (according to a preface written by the Church of Scotland) in the
Reformed faith. It is based on the Larger Catechism, which was intended for use
by ministers in teaching their congregations. The Catechism is in question and
answer format, which had been popularised by Martin Luther as a way to help
children learn the meaning of Christian texts instead of merely memorising
Foirchedul aithghear, Cheasnuighe. Glasgow: Seumus Duncan, 1760.
eighteenth century edition of the Shorter Catechism translated into Scottish
Roderick Lawson (editor). The shorter catechism: with commentary and scripture proofs prepared for the use of schools. Edinburgh: Macniven & Cameron, [187-?]
ostensibly intended for readers “of weaker capacity”, the Shorter Catechism has
in practice always proved a difficult work for beginners.
edition the questions are divided into short sections, so that the plan of the
book can be more clearly seen. The emphatic words and clauses in each answer
are marked, so that the sense may be gathered more readily. The meaning of each
answer is given in a short commentary, to assist the child in answering the
teacher. Proofs are added to show how each answer is based on Scripture.
Finally, revising questions are added to each section, in order that matter
learnt becomes more firmly fixed in the memory. Lawson’s edition is of enduring
popularity and is still in use today.
Westminster Assembly. The shorter catechism: agreed upon by the Assembly of Divines at Westminster; with scripture proofs. Dunedin: New Zealand Bible, Tract, & Book Society, [ca. 1890]
edition of the Shorter Catechism was published by The New Zealand Bible, Tract
and Book Society whose head office was in Princes Street, Dunedin. The Society
was a major supplier of Presbyterian Church and Sunday school literature from
1873 until the Depression era.