From the Religious Press

At the last meeting of the Boston Unitarian Club it was suggested that Dr. Hale should go into cities where he is well known and Unitarianism is not, and preach as the representative of the American Unitarian Association. We have already mentioned a preaching mission similar to the one now proposed carried on in England by the ministry of Rev. Stopford Brooke, who easily takes his place among the most eminent literary men and preachers of Great Britain. It is often said that the ministry is the only profession where long experience and accumulated stores of wisdom count for nothing. There is an element in every community which does not care for wisdom. This element is larger than it ought to be, but it does not represent the public opinion which moves the world. We hear much about the degeneracy of the elergy; and yet there never has been a quarter of a century in the history of the world when such conspicuous honor has been paid to ministers of religion, who, by their services, their character, their learning, and their wisdom have deserved the love and reverence of their fellows. The public will listen to Dr. Hale when it would not listen to a younger man. A layman said of him at the club. "He has earned the right to do just as he please and say just what he likes for the rest of his life." As an instance of his abundant vigor, we note the fact that he has just delivered in Boston a course of six Lowell Lectures on the early history of New England. They have been given evenings and repeated in the daytime, making practically twelve lectures since his attendance at the Washington Conference. —Christian Register (Unitarian).

Why should the church leave her high place and come down into the arena, where she will be put to shame? asks Ian Maclaren in the Ladies' Home Journal. Do men come to church for petty pleasures fit only for children, or for the satisfaction of their souls and confirmation of their faith? Would Christianity have begun to exist if the apostles had been "pleasing preachers" and "bright men," and had given themselves to "socials" and "sales" and "talks"? The church triumphed by her faith, her holiness, her courage, and by these high virtues she must stand in this age also. She is the witness to immortality, the spiritual home of souls, the servant of the poor, the protector of the friendless, and if she sinks into a place of second-rate entertainment then it were better that her history should close, for without her spiritual visions and austere ideals the church is not worth preserving.

Many Christian people will sympathize with Dr. Campbell Morgan in his expression of weariness with some old theological terms, so many of them are misleading and others are so familiar as to have lost their meaning or their grip upon us: "There is that word consecration; we have used it and abused it until it has almost lost its significance. Young people should not consecrate themselves in monthly instalments, or reconsecrate themselves. They should consecrate themselves and stay consecrated. Reconsecration means that the consecration has been withdrawn and is renewed. And thus we are deceived by old familiar terms." The pulpit of to-day would gain immensely in power and influence by dropping many of those old words and phrases and adopting fresher substitutes. —The Watchman (Baptist).

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December 7, 1899

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