Is our Trend Religious, or are Churches and People Retrograding?

The Rev. DR. BOYD VINCENT, Bishop of Southern Ohio, in an article entitled as above, published in a recent number of Success, answers his own query in a very thoughtful and able manner. His conclusions differ from many of the current theological views of the time, being much more optimistic than those of a large number of his co-theologians.

From his able and analytical article we take the liberty of quoting the following:—

There is less apparent religiousness than at other times in the old century. Religious organization and sentiment do not dominate entire communities as when these were smaller, and general intelligence was less and the population less mixed. Religion is less demonstrative in its appeals to entire communities. The old revival methods are less in evidence. There is not so general and regular an attendance at church. Modern, natural science, and Biblical criticism have disturbed some of the old, stiff, orthodox views of the Bible and its teachings, just because these views were so often the uninspired interpretations and unwarranted inferences of men instead of the direct declarations and revelations of God. All this has created a temporary mental attitude toward religion which is not so much hostile as uncertain; with the result that many men, really religiously inclined, have come to hold their religious opinions and attachments in suspense, waiting for more definite scientific conclusions and, so, for final religious convictions of their own. And all this looks, I say, to a superficial observer, like the eddies and back currents of religious indifference and reaction.

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"Some Heretical Nobles."
September 12, 1901

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