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THE CROSS AND ANTICHRIST IN HISTORY
Massachusetts Bay Colony was the scene of "The Great Migration" wherein thousands of religious dissenters came over to the New World to make a new life for themselves in the company of "saints" and other Puritans. Right off quick they passed laws regulating social behavior and the observance of the Sabbath and the ministers went to great pains to condemn the traditional "idols" of the established church (not to mention Popery). In 1636, following a sermon by Roger Williams (who was later ousted from Massachusetts for being too liberal and went on to found the Rhode Island Colony) condeming the cross as a symbol of the Anti-Christ, the Governor of the Colony, John Endicott, ordered the Standard Bearers of the Colony to remove the St. Georges Cross from their flags. Before this was done, however, the Great and General Court hauled Endicott in for examination, found that he had "exceeded the lymits of his calling" and punished him by forbiding him from holding public office for one full year! Then they gave the Standard Bearers permission to devise any kind of flag they wanted and, without exception, they removed the crosses from their flags.
More than a generation later, the Puritans having lost some of their hold on the beliefs of the Massachusetts settlers, the St. George’s cross again began to appear on the flags.
SOURCE: THE NEW ENGLAND FLAG by David B. Martucci
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