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they do not respond readily to the man who has done it. They have a sort of contempt for him. However we may explain the fact, the fact exists. Therefore it has seemed to the Young Men's Christian Association, and to men like Professor Steiner, that the Protestant churches must adopt the methods used so wisely by the Roman Catholic Church. That is, it must not only have native-born workers among these people, but it must also have Americans who have been trained in a working knowledge of their own language and who have lived for a time in their country, to lead the religious work among them. The Young Men's Christian Association in Pennsylvania has sent a group of young men for this purpose to Europe, under Professor Steiner's leadership, and the results have been excellent. There is a certain advantage in the American coming forward as the religious leader of these people.
CHRISTIAN NEIGHBORLINESS. Back of all the church tries to do for the immigrants there must lie the personal neighborliness of the church members. All the modern methods and all the salaried workers which the church may throw into the field will not do this work unless there is the strong reinforcement of individual neighborliness and helpfulness on the part of the members of the church to foreign-born and foreign-speaking people who live near them. I do not mean to advance any foolish ideas of social equality, or to suggest for a moment that this work could be done by inviting foreign-speaking people to our parties. They would be quite as uncomfortable as we would at such an absurd procedure. There are, however, countless opportunities to become acquainted and to help, and the religious motive of the church must be realized in the Christian neighborliness of church members. To find the stranger in their own block or street and to be friend and true neighbor to that individual or family is to do the essential work of the church through the individual church member. The whole complex problem must be shared by the individual family, the individual church, and the federated churches of every district or city. It is only when the three work together with some conscious sense of coöperation that the great work of the Protestant churches for the immigrants will be accomplished.
SOME OF THE FACTORS AND FORCES IN THE
GREAT REVIVAL OF TO-MORROW.
REV. FRANK G. SMITH, CHICAGO, ILL.
Mr. Moderator and Fathers and Brethren, -- It is my prayer that my first word to you to-night may carry to all of your hearts a satisfying conviction of the fact that I have an overwhelming sense of the importance of this occasion and a deep and abiding consciousness of the necessary inadequacy of any effort I may here put forth as compared with the desire and hunger of my heart to bring to you the message of truth, inspiration, power, and effectiveness that this sacred and opportune hour merits. I speak most sincerely when I say that for days I have been fairly trembling in the shadow of this vast responsibility, and almost praying that relief might come in some other way than by the actual carrying out of my part of this program.
My good friend and brother who speaks with me from this platform to-night is unquestionably the man for the hour and the topic. His experience and observation as to the religious conditions and necessities of our generation are as wise, warm, and winning as they are world-wide. No man perhaps in our country has had so rare an opportunity to grasp and analyze impartially the whole religious situation as he, and surely no man has been so keen yet kindly in availing himself of that opportunity. I have a feeling to-night that he understands quite as accurately the religious problems of the country at large and is quite as deeply convicted of some of the necessary steps in the solution of those problems as I understand the religious problems of my own community and parish and as I am deeply convicted of some of the necessary steps in their solution. I could wish, then, that some other man with similar vision and experience might have been chosen to stand here with him and bring to you the message that I am supposed to bring. Time is precious, however, and must not be wasted in either apology or wishes, however sincere they may be.
After all, there are two ways of studying a picture. One is to stand afar off and see it as a whole - get the impressionistic effect of its grand outlines; the other is to draw near and study its smallest details. I take it for granted that it is this second kind of study of our problem that belongs to me to-night; I am to see it from the viewpoint of a single parish or community, not forgetting that perhaps in essentials and fundamentals it is not unlike every other parish and community.
In announcing my theme, the exact wording of which was left to me, I have proclaimed to speak of “Some of the Necessary Factors and Forces in the Great Revival of To-morrow." In this theme it will be seen that I reveal at once my attitude to the present religious situation. Denominationally I am Congregationalist by deliberate choice and not by the accident of birth; politically I am a Progressive almost to the point of insurgency, and religiously I am a deep-dyed Optimist.
I do not believe the great revivals of religion are all peculiar phenomena of past ages, with no especial present value and power except as fertile feeding grounds for psychological study and research. I believe that the child of God who has the spiritual vision to take this whole round world up in his spiritual hand and view it as a whole cannot fail to be convinced that we are now, at this very hour, in the very midst of the greatest world-wide revival of genuine religion that the world has ever seen, and that all signs indicate that the revival of to-morrow promises to be so much greater than that of to-day that the very glow of its allurement blinds us to the realities of the present.
Nor will I weaken this statement by pausing to try to explain that the revival of to-dayis very different from that of yesterday, and the revival of to-morrow must be very different from that of to-day. It is not true; there is only one true religion, and only one real conversion, and only one genuine revival. Religion means God's
for men to live in this world. Conversion is man's surrender to that way by the rising to sovereignty in his heart of the divinely implanted element of faith in his Father God manifesting itself in a deep and abiding devotion to personal righteousness and social friendship, fellowship, and brotherly helpfulness, and a revival of religion includes all fruitful efforts to bring human hearts into conscious surrender to these great
spiritual truths as well as the deepening of their reality, vitality, and meaning to those whose lives are already nominally surrendered to their sway. The more individuals, therefore, who honestly want to find God's way and walk in it, the more thoroughly the world is leavened with the great redeeming truths and principles of godly life revealed to us in His Son and our Saviour, Jesus Christ the Righteous, the greater the revival. It is because of this that I believe we are now in the midst of the greatest revival of all the ages, and that the revival of tomorrow is to be vastly greater than the revival of to-day. Stop for one single moment and remember this, that this world has never gone backward permanently in any way. It is not a losing world, it is a gaining world; it is not a decaying world, it is a growing, evolving, unfolding, developing world. Physically, morally, intellectually, industrially, socially, and religiously it is a better world to-day than it ever has been before. Lift up your spiritual eyes and let them turn backward to that time when the first man stood, "God-conquered with his face to heaven upturned,” and then come down the centuries taking only a single glance at each succeeding century, and as your last glance includes all the great missionary and other religious movements of the past century, surely you will be able to sing with new zeal and added fervor,
“ The morning light is breaking,
The darkness disappears;
To penitential tears."
Let us not make the mistake of thinking that because some of us are having a hard time in our churches, and because churches generally do not give gratifying evidences of apparent success, that there is no revival of religion. It has been true sometimes in the history of the past -- and perhaps it may be again - that while the church was apparently going forward, the kingdom was actually going backward; and again when the church was apparently going backward, the kingdom was actually going forward by leaps and bounds. Witness the scattering broadcast over the world of vital faith coincident with the apparent decay of the church that came along with the Reformation and subsequent events. So is it impossible
to conclude - yea, is it not logical to expect — that even now, while the cry of discouragement is coming up from many a church because of the lack of apparent success, that God is preparing us for some mighty unfolding of his infinite plan that shall advance the kingdom a thousand years in a day. All signs indicate to me that our feet are trembling now upon the threshold of a new era. The religious intenseness and expectancy of our age reveals a condition that has been set to the music of verse by him who said,
At the birth of each new era,
With a recognizing start,
Standing with mutė lips apart,
Leaps beneath the future's heart.”
The church as we know it to-day as a channel of service and instrument of religious achievement may have to go; it may perish from the face of the earth, but the kingdom will go marching on.
“Subtlest thought shall fail and learning falter,
Churches change, forms perish, systems go;
Christ no after age will e'er outgrow.”
Of the increase of his kingdom there shall be no end until the “Kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord and his Christ.”
What, then, is my mission here to-night? Like one of old, I am "but a voice crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord; make his paths straight.” I am simply and earnestly asking what I can do, what you can do, what we all can do, to prepare the way, to furnish the necessary channels through which the Spirit of God can come in power into the world for the accomplishing of that for which the Master's heart hath long hungered.
In the moments that remain to me, therefore, I shall endeavor to fix our responsibility for the great revival of to-morrow. I shall endeavor to indicate some of the factors and forces that we must bring about and create before the Spirit of God can have a fair chance to do his mighty work.