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3. The Association for the Promotion of the Moral and Religious Welfare of our Soldiers and Sailors was organized in Detroit, Michigan, in September, 1914, for the purpose of securing from the Government better equipment and facilities for the work of Army and Navy chaplains, closer and more helpful relations between them and the churches to which they belong, and an active, helpful interest of churches, Sunday schools and young people's societies in the enlisted men in the Army and Navy. The officers of this Association with which all the denominational Commissions ought to work most cordially are as follows:
CHAPLAIN 0. J. NAVE, President
1114 Woodward Building, Washington, D. C. 4. The Executive Committee of the Federal Council commended the Association to the assistance of the Church and Social Service Commission, and the Commission by its Secretarial Council has authorized Secretary Carroll to conduct the necessary correspondence on behalf of the Commission and to prepare literature and arrange for its distribution through the denominational agencies.
It will thus be seen that the Washington Secretary of the Federal Council, Dr. H. K. Carroll, who is at the same time the Secretary of the Association for the Promotion of the Moral and Religious Welfare of our Soldiers and Sailors is therefore the direct agent of the churches of all denominations in negotiating with the governmental authorities for the appointment of more chaplains and for larger facilities for religious work in the Army and Navy.
On personal consultation with him and by correspondence, your Commission has also obtained from him the following facts under date of June 22, 1915, in answer to inquiries as to the present share of Congregationalists in
this good work and how they may increase their represen· tation in the religious service for men under the flag.
1. There are at present twenty-four regular chaplains in the Navy and four, up to date, have been appointed under the new law as acting-chaplains, making twentyeight. The full number to be appointed under present regulations is about fifty to fifty-two. The Secretary of the Navy hopes to appoint at least seven this year so that when they have served their three years of probation they may be found qualified to be appointed as permanent chaplains. The law limits the number of permanent chaplains that can be appointed in any one year to seven.
2. As to chaplains in the Army, the law authorizes the President to appoint a chaplain for each regiment of cavalry and infantry, one for the corps of engineers, one for each corps of field artillery, and fourteen for the coast artillery corps. There are sixty-five chaplains in the Army at present; of these four are Congregationalists, namely, Rev. Messrs. Axton, Wood, Livingston, Aiken; sixteen are Roman Catholic, thirteen are Protestant Episcopal, six are Methodist Episcopal, nine Presbyterian, six Baptist, including two colored Baptist, three Methodist Episcopal Church, South, two African Methodist Episcopal, two Lutheran, one Dutch Reformed, one Christian and one Unitarian.
3. Of the chaplains in the Navy, one is a Congregationalist, six are Roman Catholic, five are Methodist, six Episcopalian, three Baptist, one Presbyterian, one Universalist, and one belongs to the Disciples of Christ. The Secretary of the Navy has appointed further these actingchaplains: One Roman Catholic, one Presbyterian, one Baptist, and one belonging to the Disciples of Christ.
4. We have no means of estimating the denominational relationships of the enlisted men in the Army and Navy. There may be information at the Army and Navy Departments upon the matter and we are hoping after a while to get a copy of these lists, if possible. The general testimony is that the quality of enlistments, both in the Army and Navy, has been very greatly improved in recent years and the number of Protestants is much greater in proportion to the number of Catholics than formerly.
5. Chaplains are appointed by the President, with confirmation by the Senate, after candidates have been ex
amined by committees appointed by the Departments and by Government surgeons. The new method of appointment in the naval service requires men first to be appointed as acting-chaplains and to serve three years and then to come before a committee for examination as to qualifications. Acting-chaplains are appointed
are appointed by the Secretary of the Navy, after examination by the Government surgeon, upon the basis of such testimonials as may be satisfactory to him, and also after a personal conference with the Secretary and the Federal Council before making a new appointment, the latter secretary taking no responsibility in the matter, but simply assisting the Secretary in getting candidates and in seeing that each candidate has the backing of his own denomination, official if possible.
In view of the foregoing facts and conditions your Commission recommends to the Congregational churches of the United States the following important measures:
1. In conjunction with all the leading denominations, our denomination should maintain a permanent Commission on Army and Navy Chaplains, and should keep in close and sympathetic touch with the present Congregational chaplains in the service. It should also find and recommend candidates for appointment to chaplaincies in the Army and Navy.
2. It will be of great service to the cause if the State Conference or local Association to which a U. S. chaplain belongs will ask for an annual letter from him to be read to the body and authorize a reply to be sent, designed to show its interest in the work of the chaplain and its regard for him personally.
3. It will also be of real service to the cause if the local congregation and Sunday-school write to them and see that they are mentioned in the prayers of the church. The young people's society should also be interested in them. Temptations and demoralizing influences assail them in the peculiar conditions under which they live, and their love for home and church and virtue and temperance ought to be kept alive and nourished.
4. Let the churches recognize and emphasize from time to time the importance of this work as a career for its earnest young men.
Information concerning chaplains in the Army or Navy will be furnished on application to the Secretary, as above mentioned. Good candidates for the chaplaincy service, especially in the Navy, are needed. Write for information as to requirements, method of application, etc., to the Secretary, or to this Commission whose addresses may be had from the Secretary of the National Council at Boston.
This Commission therefore desires to discover among the young Congregational ministers of our land all those to whom this work of Chaplaincy in the Army or Navy would appeal. It will be glad to have the record of their training, qualifications and references, and to forward the same with its endorsement to the appointing powers in Washington. It considers that with the historic record of our Congregational churches for sterling patriotism and thorough Americanism, our ready adaptation to new conditions and emergencies, and above all our cordial cooperation with men of all religions, our largest emphasis being always on our common Christianity rather than denominationalism, we are, as Congregationalists, in a position to serve the nation most wisely and effectively in its larger religious work for the Army and Navy.
THE sum of $3,601,599.77 represents the total cost to the American Bible Society of supplying Scriptures for the fields of the American Board from the time of the first grant in 1822 to the present year. This includes salaries of missionaries of the Board engaged in translation or revision, and the cost of printing, binding and distribution by colporteurs, or, when other denominations use the same Scriptures, the proper proportion of these expenses.
The grant for Bible work in the fields covered by the Missions of the American Board for the year 1914 amounted to $134,278.25. This history of astounding contributions began in 1822 with a grant of $500 for our Ceylon Mission. The next grant was made in 1826. Since then, every year but two the American Bible Society has made grants to the American Board, ranging from $13.66 to $72,635.88, — 482 separate grants totalling, as indicated above, $3,601,599.77.
These figures are taken from an itemized statement prepared for the Council's Commission under the direction of Dr. Henry 0. Dwight, the Historian of the American Bible Society.
In ways not so easy to tabulate and appraise but none the less real, our Homeland Societies have been aided by this great helper of the Churches in all their work.
It was in anticipation of the Centennial of the American Bible Society which is to be celebrated next year that the Commission on Bible Cause was created. The Commission has been consulted by the officers of the Society with regard to the Centennial Celebration and with regard to the World's Bible Congress which was held at San Francisco in August.
It is greatly to be desired that the approaching Anniversary should be made the occasion of a renewal of inter