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nm M kMAn rflf n 1 i ? ?f?AR29 The Presbyterian o Vol. 96. No. 13. RICHMOND, VA. ? MARCH 29, 1922. BOOKS are said to contain the canned thoughts of the wise men and women of i lie world. Canned fruits and vegetables are very valuable, especially when we do not have access to gardens and orchards, but it is im portant to know that the contents of the cans are >i ? 1 1 1 1 < 1 and wholesome. So it is important to know about the contents of books. Many books hii many subjects are written and read. One of ilic striking characteristics of many Christian homes is the absence of lxx>ks on religious sub jects which provide food for the soul. Every homo should have them, and they should lie >nitcd to the age and capacity of every member nl' t li?* family. There are abundant supplies of mh-Ii lxM?ks. If any one is in doubt what to get, lie would do well to consult his pastor or some well informed friend. Next week is Iteligious Hook Week. Buy a book for yourself, for some member of your family, for your pastor or for a friend. You will find it a wise investment tliat will produce good results. MINISTERIAL Relief is always an inter esting subject to our Church, for its members feel that those who have rendered faithful service to God and the Church should not be allowed to suffer when they are laid aside from work because of infirmities of age or otherwise. Two plans are proposed by which tli is help may be rendered. One is to give a certain sum to all ministers who have reached tlie age of seventy years and have served the ('Imrch thirty years or more, whether they need the help or not. There are two serious objec tions to this plan. Those who direct this work for our Church have investigated the subject ??arefully, and they tell us that to do this would require that the Church provide four times as lunch for this cause as our Executive Committee has at its disposal each year, or else that the average amount given to each beneficiary will have to l>e reduced to one-fourth of what is now being given. This means that the average would l>e about $100, instead of about $400. I his would mean that those who need the help would starve, while others who do not need it receive their pension. This is the practical ob j eo t ion to this plan. The other objection is that }he Church has no right to call upon its mem Ix'rs to give when their gifts are not needed. Many a preacher continues his work and re ceives his salary long after he is seventy years r,l?l. Others have children whom God has ''leased, who feel it a privilege to take care of nit her and mother in their old age, and it is ?lieir duty to do so. Some few preachers suc ked in accumulating in one way or another enough to provide for their old age, either in whole or in part. There seems to be no just Reason for asking the Church to contribute to a fund to be distributed among those. The chief argument used by those whcf favor pension ln? all ministers, is to avoid having those who !lro in need say that they are. It is claimed that this requires that their private affairs "hould be discussed publicly on the floor of ''resbytery. If such a practice is customary ,ri any Presbytery, we have never known of such a case. Ordinarily, if not always, the matter is handled privatedly and quietly by a committee, Hhich recommends to the Presbytery that the Executive- Committee l)e asked to give the assis *aru'e which the Committee of the Presbytery deems proper. The committee makes its in vestigation in any way that it sees lit, and usually with all Christian tact and sympathy. The committee need not even ask the beneticiary to sign the application blank. The Executive Committee allows the Presbytery to say how the information shall be secured. Any aged or infirm minister can safely leave his case in the hands of his sympathetic brethren in his own Presbytery. PKESBVTE11IES arc called upon to \ote a second time to vote upon the questiou of having a limited period for the service of elders and deacons in the churches. It is claimed that there is a groat demand throughout the church for this change in the constitution, and yet last year there were not enough Presbyteries that voted for it to have it adopted by the Assem bly. Seventeen Presbyteries did not vote at all. And, it is said, many who voted for this amend ment did so, because of the plea that the law was not mandatory, but only permissive, that no church was required to adopt it, but that any church could do so that desired to adopt this plan of electing its officers. This is a danger ous precedent to establish, even if there is no objection to this special plan. The cilice 1*3 of the Church are provided for in the Scriptures and there the principles governing their duties are laid down. Who is to be the interpreter of Scriptures as to the government of the Church? Is it to be the highest court of the Church, as the Presbyterian Church has always held ? Or is it to be the individual congregation? I?! the congregation can decide this question, why may it not decide others? flight it not just as well decide that it will have no officers and that it will attend to all of the affairs of the church in congregational meetings? This would be Congregationalism and not Presbyterianism. The Assembly should settle the question, with the consent of the Presbyteries, as to what is the teaching of the Scriptures and 'he law should apply to all churches. There is no place for local option in a matter of this kind. YM. C. A. and Y. W. C. A. are organ iza ? tions that have accomplished much, both in times of war and of peace, for the uplift of young men and young women. Originally the great aim of these organizations was to win men and women to Christ. We fear that to day they are turning too much to social work. The character of the Association and the work that it does in any community depends largely upon what the local directors make them. The Christian men and women, who direct their work owe it to themselves, to those who sup port. the work, to the young men and young women, and above all to the Saviour to see that the salvation of lost souls and the building up of young Christians in faith and spiritual life should have first place in all of their pro grams. I WELSH Presbyterianism is in some re spects different from that of any other country. The Presbyterian Church in that ?country is known as the Welsh Calvinistic Methodist Church. That it is really Presby terian in doctrine and polity is shown by the fact that this Church is a me?nl)cr of the Pan Presbyterian Alliance, which is composed of practically all the Presbyterian Churches of the world. It is becoming usual for this Church now to call itself the Presbyterian Church of Wales, and 110 doubt in the future, the name will be formally changed. This Church grew up in Wales very much in the same way and at the same time that the Methodist Church, under the leadership of the Wesleys, grew up in Eng land. They both resulted from a spiritual awakening on a part of some of the members in the Church of England in each country, who found that it was necessary for them to leave that Church and organize a new one. Tlie Welsh movement was distinctly Calvinistic in its doctrinal development. The Church lias grown very considerably in the last seventy years. Jn 1850 it had 172 ordained and 11)4 unordained ministers. Now the total number is 1,183. Then they had 848 churches. Now they have 1,481. In 1850 the Church had 58,678 members. Now it has 187,575. There are about 200,000 in the Sunday Schools. The Church is growing in every particular. This Church has an unusual custom connected with the senices of its ministers. The pastor of a church is only expected to preach to his own people one Sunday in the month. Arrange ments are made by the officers of the churches by which pastors are invited from church to church on the other Sundays. Every pastor preaches every Sunday and every church has preaching every Sunday, but pastor and people worship together only one Sunday in the month. It is said that this plan suits the Welsh very well. Jt certainly gives variety to both preacher and people, but we should think it had its dis advantages. IGNORANCE is sometimes found where it is not expected. Mr. Roger Babson, the noted statistician, distributes frequently among business men leaflets that contain messages which he thinks will help the bus in ess of the country. Recently he sent out one entitled : "Es sentials of Business Success." It contained nothing but the Ten Commandments and the New Commandment given by Jesus, lie soon received a letter from a western business man, which was very enthusiastic in its commenda tion of the leaflet. Among other things he said : '*1 have never seen such a fine statement of the essentials for success. Where did you get it?" That looks like a good opportunity for some one to do some mission work. GERMAN Protestants are trying to do something to heal the breeches made by the war. We learn that in several places in Germany collections have lieen taken by the Protestants and sent to France to aid in re building the churches destroyed by the German shot and shell. WTe can think of nothing that will do more good in establishing kind feelings between the people of these two countries. The question is often asked why the Church does not do something to stop war; and the reply is often another question as to what can the Church do. If the churches of Germany, with out regard to what the government may do, will rebuild the ruined churehes of France and her mined homes, as far as they are able to do so, a friendly feeling will be established lietween the two countries that will not easily be dis turbed by the militaristic politicians.