Gratitude for the things that conduce to comfort and wholesome living,—this is well, but every broadening man has begun to realize that the nobler, more significant thanksgiving compasses the lives which have made for humanity's freedom and progress, the lives which were consecrated to and became the channels of that liberty and love without which there can be no wealth or happiness.

As representatives of the human race, we all begin with hunger, and hence we must legitimately acquire the things which satisfy hunger. This common want soon differentiates itself, however, into forms that range above the physical. We hunger for life, opportunity, knowledge, growth, all the higher possessions which we of as pertaining to and enriching personal and religious liberty, and here we should begin to realize our unnumbered occasions for gratitude that among our forbears were those who fulfilled the Scripture requirement of loyalty to their highest convictions of truth and duty "until death."

Especially are we who are the sons of the Pilgrims reminded of our immediate and unmeasured indebtedness to their sterling Christian integrity, their unyielding adherence to the sense of right, their willingness to suffer and to die if need be rather than become subservient to any personal domination in matters of conscience. In his story of "The Genesis of the New England Churches," Dr. Bacon has summed up in the following words the reasons which led the settlers of Plymouth to face the known and unknown hardships incident to their great adventure. He says: "It was for the sake of assembing freely to worship God according to the simplicity and purity of the New Testament, and to be edified by the ministry of the Word."

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November 25, 1911

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