Extracts from Letters

"I deem it my duty and still a great pleasure to write regarding the splendid work of the Christian Scientist chaplain assigned to our division. He was attached to our regiment just before the battle of the Lys-Scheldte, and went into action with my company voluntarily. It is such an unusual sight to see a chaplain with front line troops that his presence caused considerable favorable comment among the officers and men of the company. The chaplain marched with me at the head of my company through heavy shell fire when we marched into position for the attack. His calm and encouraging remarks helped materially to steady the men, and, I am frank to say, caused me to feel a security and confidence that I have never felt under fire before. My wife is a devout student of Christian Science, and although I have been exposed to its influence a number of years, I never felt that I had a firm grasp of its teaching. However, the chaplain suggested that I repeat the following to myself: 'God is my guide, God is my strength, God is my protection.' I followed his advice, and when the situation seemed particularly difficult found a great deal of peace and security in those simple phrases. I soon began to understand that God's law was operating, and it dawned on me that His presence on the battle field was as certain as the moonlight which lighted our way.

"Later I was ordered to take my company across the Scheldte and relieve a certain French organization to our front. The chaplain insisted on being with the company, even thought I told him how dangerous our task was. We passed through the French first line and, with the company deployed as skirmishers over a seven hundred yard front, advanced to a village eight hundred yards beyond. We took this village under heavy machine gun and shell fire and drove out fifty of the enemy machine gunners. The chaplain stayed with me throughout the engagement in the front line, and I am glad to say, my company did not suffer a single casualty; divine Providence guided us safely to our position and we received word that any further advance would be postponed. The following morning as we were forming for the attack, we received information that the armistice had been signed.

"The Christian Scientist chaplain has been a fine inspiration to me, and I feel grateful beyond words for his assistance in unfolding the truth. He served as a field chaplain, not as a staff officer, and demonstrated beyond question the efficacy of a correct understanding of divine Love. The divine guidance and protection that directed my company was undoubtedly a result of the realization of the truths taught in Christian Science. Officers whom I have never heard utter a word of religion before spoke of it as 'nothing but the hand of divine Providence' that saved us. I cannot speak too highly of the assistance the chaplain has given me. We have studied together, and I have progressed in my understanding of Christian Science to a point I never dared dream of. He has not confined his efforts solely to the writer, but has zealously covered the field to help others. Nor has he limited his efforts to spiritual assistance, but time and again has earned the gratitude of some officer or soldier for some personal favor. I have written at considerable length, but feel that I have fallen short of the mark. He is admired by all the men in the regiment and it is an admiration that is akin to love. I trust I have not been presumptuous in writing you so fully, but I felt I must do something tangible to express my gratitude."

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God's Law the Finality
February 8, 1919

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