The Lectures

Edward A. Kimball lectured on the subject of Christian Science, July 11. Governor Cummins introduced Mr. Kimball in the following words:—

I accepted the invitation to introduce the speaker for no other reason than that it gave me another opportunity to express the appreciation which I increasingly feel of the value of the work of all religious associations. I venture to say that this religion is one which impresses me more deeply day by day. I have had a better opportunity the last three or four for observing the influences of Christian work than I have ever had before. I have had a better opportunity to weigh and attempt to measure the imperative necessity for Christian work than I have ever had before. I shall not speak, I am not competent to speak, I am not worthy to speak of the Church as an instrument of safety, of salvation in the next world, but I am competent to speak, and I feel that it is one of the highest missions imposed upon man to speak of the Church as an instrument for the salvation of men and women in this world. The age in which we are living has many peculiar characteristics. I need not dwell upon the mighty forward advancement made in our own country in the last century, and as proud as we are of the growth, which is unparalleled in the history of the world, it is attended with dangers, it is accompanied with perils, it is surrounded with temptations, the like of which never surrounded or never beset the human race before. I speak naturally from a public standpoint. I speak instinctively of the Church and of the tendency of religion as allies of good government, as defenders of pure and progressive society. It is more difficult to be upright, honest, and courageous at this hour than it ever was before; and what we need at this time is redoubled energy upon the part of every lover of his country, of every lover of society, of every lover of humanity, to better understand and more faithfully execute the duties that progress and civilization, of which we are a part, have imposed upon us.

I am here to-night simply because I know that you are attempting hour by hour to do good and appreciate all our relations to each other and our relations to the Ruler of the universe, and to make them a little clearer, a little plainer to the human heart and to human understanding. I am here because you are inspired to the high duty of teaching humanity to perform, to recognize, and to enforce these duties and these relations. We must perform all the duties of life with fidelity and with knowledge if we are to accomplish the victories which the patriot and enthusiast have indicated for us. It is necessary, not only that you render to your fellow-man the things that are his, but it is necessary that you shall perform the duties of citizens in the right light, and obey the commands of the Master in whose service you have enlisted. It is just as faithless to the world and to those who are around you to place any man or any woman in a position of trust, believing him or her to be dishonest or careless, as it is to withhold from your neighbor the things which belong to your neighbor. I think one of the greatest missions in which the Church is engaged is to see that the plane of better morals is lifted up, and to see that all humanity is led to a higher level than the level upon which we are now living and the atmosphere we now breathe. I have often said, and I repeat it to you now after years of observation and close intimacy, that I think the churches of America are the most potent factors in the progress and steadiness of the people that can be observed in our nation; and if their protecting and their guarding influence were withdrawn, this society of ours, as we have organized it, could not exist a single year. The only thought in my heart at the present moment is one of congratulation to find before me so many good men and good women who have come here to know how they can live better, to know more clearly what they ought to be. Predicting for you all the pleasure and the profit which flow from this discourse pitched upon a high and spiritual plane and devoted to the good of humanity, I have the pleasure of introducing to you Mr. Kimball of Chicago.

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Christian Science at the Capital
September 16, 1905

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