October 22, 1915 Preparing Young People For a New World Order
Harrisburg telegraph. (Harrisburg, Pa.)
Preparing Young People For a New World Order
How the Churches Are Making Ready in Time of Flux For Changed Conditions
(By the Religious Rambler) When the guests In the Astor Hotel, New York, a few evenings ago, saw a company of about a hundred men in evening clothes taking the elevators to one of the banquet rooms they doubt less gave no thought to any possible significance of the gathering: it was only one more of New York's multi tudinous dinner parties. All unknown to observers—and perhaps, even, to sc.me-of those present—that particular dinner group stood for one of iie great ideas that are emerging from the cliaos of world strife, namely, concep tion of liffe. This war Is shattering old traditions, usages, customs and unities. It has revealed deficiencies and evils which can be remedied only by starting anew at the bottom. So a few men who have official con nection with the one world-embracing organization for the training of chil dren—H. J. Heinz, John Wanamaker, George W. Bailey, Arthur M. Harris, James H. Post—invited a large group of interested men to meet at dinner to review the present status and pos sibilities of the Vv'orld's Sunday School Assoc.laiton in the light of the crisis that has come upon the world. Mil lionaire businessmen, famous edu cators, leaders in religious Journalism, laymen eminent in Christian work, and a considerable sprinkling of preachers, with a couple of bishops rdded, made up the company. The formal addresses were deliv ered by Dr. John R. Mott, chairman of the continuation committee of the Fdinburgh Conference; Bishop Joseph C. Hartzel. of Africa, and Dr. Samuel M. Zwemer. of Arabia and Cairo. H. J. Heinz and Colonel E. W. Halford made the introductory addresses. Bonds That Outlast War "Big Business," in a sense not usu ally meant by that steroetyped phrase, occupied the evening, for the World's Sunday School Association enrolls 21,000,000 members, in 298,000 local organizations, staffed by 2,600,000 offi cers. And it. is steadily and rapidly browing, the most notable increase being in the accession of men. The American headquarters are in the Metropolitan Building and the European headquarters are In Old Bailey, London. The officers are: President, Sir Robert Laidlaw, Lon don: chairman, H. J. Heinz, Pitts burgh; general secretaries, Frank L. Brown, New York; C'arey Bonner, X.ondon; treasurers. Arthur M. Harris, New York, and the Rt. Hon. T. R. Kerens. M. P.. London. The American headquarters are in the Metropolitan Building and the European headquarters are In Old Bailey, London. The officers are: President, Sir Robert Laidlaw, Lon don: chairman, H. J. Heinz, Pitts burgh; general secretaries, Frank L. Brown, New York; C'arey Bonner, X.ondon; treasurers. Arthur M. Harris, New York, and the Rt. Hon. T. R. Kerens. M. P.. London. Guests had before them booklets showing, by flags, the international distribution of the Sunday school among 200 nations or groups of peo ple. Only 54 countries on the whole earth were reported as without Sun day school organizations, and these were the small and remote places, like Curacao, Faroe Islands, Iceland, Monaco, San Marino, Afghanistan, Bokhara, Abyssinia, Macao, British Somalland, etc. Something over 15 per cent, of the entire population of the United States is enrolled in the Sunday school. This International organization will rot be essentially afTected by the war. All the countries having Sunday schools will continued to have them, in increasing number. And in the gigantic task of repairing the war's spiritual damages the Sunday school will be a powerful agency. Its bonds continue real and vital and will out last the war. While the world's con vention planned for next year has been postponed, it will yet be held, and with representatives from all leading nations present. Some Emissaries of Peace Perhaps the most significant state ment. made at the New York dinner was Dr. Mott's declaration that in confidential conferences with Christian leaders in twenty-one countries, held tral public. eYt there are at tills very new obligations present conditions lay upon the Church, there was unani mous agreement that the supreme problem is that of the new training of youth. The leaders of the time In the things of religion realize that they must go right down to the bottom, and begin to educate a generation of boys and girls with vital Christian principles and an international mind. The fact that all over the world there are being held meetings of this sort by men and women who have not been maddened by war and who retain their poise and sense of re sponsibility may be news to the gen eral public. Yet there are at this very hour a relatively large number of the emissaries of idealism and religion go ing to and fro among the nations at war, and in neutral countries, to pre pare for the hugs tasks that will await the Church when peace has been de clared.