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richer lay element will be welcomed by the poor, if the latter feel that they are running their own church, with some financial aid from the rich. The first gift needed is money enough to keep the local church alive and well equipped, like the New York Adams Memorial church, which is thus wisely aided by Dr. Parkhurst's wealthy church. Ample aid of this kind by single churches or city missionary societies, or the American Home Missionary Society, is needed imperatively in localities like that below Fourteenth Street in New York, to be found in all large cities, whole quarters largely abandoned by self-supporting churches.
In one of our religious papers we read not long since a noble illustration of what consecrated money can be the means of doing as furnished by the use of the bequests made by Sir Francis Lycett and Sir William McArthur, for the Wesleyan Church in London. Says the Congregationalist: “Since the fund thus provided has been put to use, eighty-one chapels have been built providing 120,000 sittings. The number of ministers has been increased from forty to one-hundred and twenty, and several thousand members have been added to the churches."
At a meeting of the Episcopalian Church Club in New York last spring, it was proposed to raise $1,000,000 to spend in Christian work in New York below Fourteenth Street. Young business men resident in the district are to assist the clergymen in carrying on the various forms of work. If love to Christ and devotion to His work were anything like proportionate to the wealth in the bands of church members in the United States, such experiences would be repeated a thousand times, and that without waiting for legacies. The living would do it and that gladly.
Second. Many church members can give their services.
“ After money, send men,” says a succesful city pastor. Then they will be welcomed as aids, not as condescending patrons. There is a culpable lack of intelligent helpers in mission churches. Up-town church members must believe that they are positively unChristian unless they roll up their sleeves and identify themselves with work in the neglected districts. This is being done more in England than in America. And let us remember that our first duty is to the most neglected and most needy districts, not, as some seem to think, to those districts which well-to-do people, churchgoing people, are filling up. Better than this even, it is well for the lay element of the up-town church to be actually identified with the down-town church by cburch membership, and a guiding hand in the policies of the church. Though they live several miles away, leu them go to the down-town church for Christ's sake. And better still is it, where practicable, for Christian families to move to needy districts, the more fully to identify themselves with mission work. It is perfectly practicable, as your committee can testify. Here is a ponderous necessity. Brain and spirituality are needed in mission fields where there is little of either. Ignorant people will run a church into the ground, unless guided by the intelligent, who come to work side by side with them as equals, and not as superiors and patronizing benefactors.
A number of the various kinds of work for which paid lay workers are being fitted in the training schools (as above mentioned) call also loudly for unpaid lay work, e.g., house visitation, boys' clubs, which, as introduced by Rev. J. C. Collins of New Haven, have proved a great success in Massachusetts and Connecticut, working girls' clubs, reading-rooms, singing classes, and choir leading. Then what was mentioned in connection with a number of city churches, of work to draw in, interest, instruct and hold the non-church-goers, shows how wide and needy a field is open to all our church members. Mission Sunday schools all over the country are languishing for lack of intelligent, zealous teachers, whom the churches can furnish and ought to. Nothing is more painful than to see classes, especially of young men and young women, go to pieces, because no competent and regular teacher can be obtained from large city churches, which ought to be able to furnish many more workers than are asked for, and bless God for the privilege. One of your committee has been compelled to make appeal after appeal to large churches in several cities to furnish Sunday school teachers for mission schools among foreign population. If all would follow the noble example of our first church in Chicago, wbich sends two omnibus loads of teachers every Sunday to Dr. E. A. Adams' large Bohemian Bethlehem Sunday school, our city mission Sunday schools all over the land would flourish as never before and become most thriving nurseries of the church. Only by the aid of lay-workers can the excellent plans of work proposed by the Evangelical Alliance be carried out. The great work of the W.C.T. U. depends largely on unpaid workers, as does that of the Young Men's and Young Women's Christian associations. What have been called " Club-houses of a spiritual
character” furnish excellent opportunities. A worker in this line says : 6. We often best reach men when we play with them. We touch elbows in parish houses open every night in the week, as well as in the church building on Sundays. The laymen in a body may so frequent and Christianize such a house as to reach the working class as never before.”
Then there is medical work for our Christian doctors. No class of professional men is more ready to respond to the calls of those needing help gratis, than physicians. By the use of no other means did Christ so reach and win the hearts of men, as when He healed the sick. To His servants who go forth in like manner is given a like opportunity, and medical missions rightly developed become the strong right hand of all Christian effort. The sick need a physician who often needs to be found. In this work it is feasible for the ministries of religion and of medicine to go hand in hand. If he be a Christian, the physician may in many cases above all others minister consolations that are unspeakable.
A Christian doctor says, “ If systematic visitation by competent persons could discover to the medical institutions and to medical men those who were worthy and those who were unworthy of help, it would be a rare event where the discovery were not well cared for; while by such visitations, and conference of visitors with the managers of medical and other benevolent organizations, a vast amount of imposition could be prevented. It is feasible to interest the medical profession very largely in the work of missions. It is feasible to command the best of medical attendance in cases of need, if help is wisely and properly sought. It remains for Christian workers to develop and perfect the work of visitation, and then to acquaint the medical profession and the benevolent public with the special cases of need.”
We only wish it were possible to speak at adequate length of the blessings that will come not only to those worked for, but also to the workers, by such activity as we have been commending.
One very busy layman writes : “Some years ago I was asked to take charge of a small Bible class in a Western penal institution. The class then numbered perhaps twenty-five, and was composed mainly of long-time criminals. I was a young business man with but little experience in Christian work. Being about the only one available, with much shrinking and a vivid sense of my incapacity I took hold of it. As the years ran along the attendance increased voluntarily to an average of from two to three hundred, and the character of the service changed from a class to a kind of preaching service, followed by private conversation at the cells. So much is a necessary preface in answering your query as to the subjective effect of such efforts. I found first of all that my interest and joy in the work increased steadily. I was forced by it into the study of homiletics, theology, penology, etc., etc. Through them, 'and in the service, I found windows looking heaven-ward, real recreation. When Monday came, with mind refreshed, I was better fitted for my daily business. I have never yet found a layman engaged in active Christian work who did not thank God for an inflowing blessing out of all proportion to the poor service rendered.”
A beloved physician sends this word : " Missions are needed for the laity, as places for work ; which insures for them development. There are then two practical essentials.
• First. Places for work, wisely provided.
“ Second. Every Christian at work, somewhere; all utilizing all their forces. This means, with the Divine blessing, the spiritual uplifting of every worker; the conversion of many adults, the leading of a multitude of children heavenward; the lifting up of the cross before all men ; the rapid organization of new churches; the building of new houses of worship; the leading of the masses to a better Christian life, to better home lives and to the best of citizenship.”
We close with the words of another prominent layman of our denomination, the same whose experience of the reflex influence of Christian work we gave above. “ Look out and see the mercies of the Lord ; how He is leading His church in these later times into unparalelled opportunities, and crowning her with unspeakable rewards. Oh, I rejoice in the thought of a church whose grand aim shall be, not to get, but to give, a church whose one purpose shall be to preach Christ, and whose one joy to sacrifice all for him. Let us toil mightily, not with eye-service that men may glorify us, but with heart-purpose so that the work may be done. It is not the church with the longest roll of members whose crown shall be the brightest up there; it is the church which, amid tears and discouragement, has gone forth bearing precious seed, scattering that
seed as best it could, with no thought of self in its thought of the reaping, turning many not to its own way, but to righteousness and Christ, gladly giving up all for Him. So doing, it shall shine as the stars forever; so giving, it need never fear lest any man shall take away its crown.”
THE REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON MARRIAGE AND
The importance of the subject intrusted to the committee is so obvious that it hardly needs statement, yet a few things should be said to give something of that definite impression which is essential to a clear knowledge of the subject.
1. The fact of sex and the relation of the sexes form one of the most profound and difficult problems of mankind. The average politician and theologian may ignore, but the scientific biologist and sociologist insist upon them. From prehistoric times down to the very latest aspects of civilization, they constitute perhaps the most important factor in the social order, deeply influencing if not determining the forms of habitation, costume, trade, property, legislation, government, and religion.
As Schiller says :
66 While philosophers are disputing about the government of the world, Hunger and Love-the two great unceasing and primeval energiesare performing the task."
The family thus, in some form, antedates and underruns all other institutions. A moment’s glimpse is given us of it early in Genesis, where it appears in its typical beauty. On the other hand, even if we accept the theory of the evolution of the race, the researches of ethnologists seem to show that in the relation of the sexes there has been a progress from promiscuity through savage customs of the capture, and later the purchase, of woman, several women by the man, and through rudely regulated forms of concubinage, polygamy, or polyandry, towards wbat the Scriptures, confirmed by science, point out as both the original and final divine ideal, viz., a strictly monogamous family. "From the beginning God made them male and female.” This is the latest as it is the earliest word of revelation on the subject.
History adds its powerful testimony to science and Scripture and distinctly affirms that in proportion as successive epochs, tribes,