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is a list of noble men and women who have labored and suffered, too, for the truth and for the upbuilding of our Church. And yet many of our people, young and old, are ignorant of their names as well as their deeds. "A wise king is he who builds for the future, and trains his youth by instruction to love the land of his birth, and to know it, so that when he attains the age of citizenship he will be able to assume his duties with ability.' And why should not the church do likewise?
A good scriptural foundation always prepares the way for teaching the doctrines of the church and for interesting the children and young people in the work of the church with which they are connected, whereby they learn to give to its advancement at home and abroad. The hope of the church is in its youth, both as doers and givers, and the pastor and congregation are specially favored who can reach and cultivate the young people.
If a knowledge of the history of the church is necessary, how much more needful is an acquaintance with the work of the church. One who has learned the story of missions is on fire and ready to communicate to others. The man or woman who has spent the early years of life in a mission church is, as a rule, well prepared for any and every kind of church work. Our papers each week give us information of the work at home and abroad, and the Church member who reads and supports his church paper, as every faithful member will, will find something on this subject. A church interested in missions is always interested in its own work.
A writer in one of the issues of THE LUTHER LEAGUE REVIEW, in the February issue of 1910, expresses himself thus upon this subject: "Recognizing therefore the supreme importance of truth and doctrine it devolves upon our Church to be ever active in the education of her people in that truth and doctrine. She must teach her people to know in order to appreciate; and proper appreciation issues in firm convictions, and firm convictions must necessarily move the heart to true loyalty, so essential to a genuine Christian life and cheerful service in her blessed work. And when thus firmly entrenched in the best of his Church's doctrine and history, with the rich fruitage of loyalty and service, no new cult or ism, no sect or schism, no mere wind of doctrine can dislodge the member with an enlightened consciousness. And when all her membership shall have awakened to full consciousness of their Church's inimitable faith, her glorious past and her possible future, she will stand forth as a great missionary power for the gospelizing and uplifting of the nations."
Some object to the Luther League because it is a denominational organization, and thereby its members, in their opinion, may become narrow. One of the greatest organizers of men, whose influence has been felt for years in almost every missionary movement, claims that from his examination, the missionaries who believe in denominationalism are better workers in their fields of labor, and are able to do more effective work in connection with the missions of other denominations, than those who are not strong in following the tenets of their own church.
We believe that the teachings of the League are helpful in emphasizing the teachings of the Church, and our young people who have pursued the "Topics" and the Reading Courses will make active workers, with ready effort in every cause of the Church.
The basis of the Luther League is the Augsburg Confession, which should be satisfactory to all good Lutherans. The Luther League does not recognize synodical lines, nor does it teach a disregard for them. Its aim is not to emphasize differences, but to discover that which is common to all. The requisites of admission are simply the acceptance of this basis, and the name of the society does not prevent its admission, for the constitution prescribes that any society, of whatever name, connected with a Lutheran congregation or a Lutheran institution of learning, is entitled to membership.
At the organization of the first Luther League in New York, "by which the various Lutheran societies of New York City could be brought together and work harmoniously for the upbuilding of the Lutheran Church," a committee was appointed to confer with other societies in the Lutheran churches of that city, and, so that the movement might not have a synodical appearance, it was resolved that such committee, when appointed, should first visit a society connected with a church of different synodical connection than St.
Peter's. And the organization was effected on April 19, 1888, by delegates who represented six associations from churches of different synodical relations. This was not done to make the organization independent of the Church, because all its work is done under the supervision of the congregation of which it is a part. The allegiance of the local League to the Synod with which the church is connected has always been impressed upon its members, so that nothing which it does can interfere with or interrupt the work of its own Synod, or draw it aside from interest in the plans and movements of that body. The Luther League Handbook, on page 4, states this in language which cannot be misunderstood, and which must impress every one connected with the League, or who reads about it, with the fact that this organization is intended for information and education for better service in the church.
"It recognizes no synodical lines, although it does not thereby seek to teach a disregard for them, but as in the conditions in which we find ourselves as Lutherans throughout this country-notwithstanding these marks of distinction-the e is so much that is common to us all that we, as Luther Leaguers, believe that more can be accomplished by our united effort for the benefit of our common Zion than has been or ever can be by individual effort; and this without in any way disturbing our synodical relations. The League, therefore, welcomes all Lutherans without regard to ecclesiastical boundaries."
Recently an official in one of our Western States asked, "What is the relation which the District League sustains to the Local League?"
"The District League," says the Manual, "does not seek to destroy the individuality of the various societies nor to weld them into one organic body, but to stimulate them to activity, to discuss what are the best methods for prosecuting the work, and to pro mote sociability among the members.
"It has always been the aim of a District League to encourage the members of the societies connected with it not only to be true to the Lutheran faith, but also assist to their utmost the congregation of which they are members, to assist pastor and church council in the upbuilding of their congregation, and to zealously labor to enlarge its field of usefulness.
And in organizing do not restrict your District League to the churches of one particular synod. It you do it will narrow your usefulness, hamper your progress and destroy the idea of centralization.
"Conventions are held for the purpose of giving all interested in the work of the young Lutherans an opportunity of becoming better acquainted with the work and achievements of the association, to promote a spirit of friendly intercourse among the members of the various societies, and to stimulate, by religious exercises and by essays and addresses, the spiritual welfare of the members.
"The District League is an association of societies. Its work is mutual help-co-operation for the purpose of helping each other to a high, common level of efficiency.
Loyalty is necessary for the success of any organization, and especially for the advancement of the church. All its members must be careful to do nothing which will in any way interfere with the plans and work of the Church of Jesus Christ. We are divided into denominational bodies for the greater extension of this work, and for the hastening of the time prayed for by Christ, that all may be one; and it would be wrong for any organization within a Church to maintain an independence, or work in disregard of the congregation of which it is a part, and every congregation is under the direction of the Synod with which it is connected.
Under the present plan, which cannot be changed except by the action of the Luther League of America, we believe that better work is done in the local congregation and the Church at large by the commingng of our young people in all portions of the Church, so that they may become better acquainted with each other, that they may learn about each other's work and the work of the Lutheran Church as a whole, and that they can appreciate each other's services, as well as realize what could be done if our Church were a unit, and all our people were working under one management. We differ. But we, as Christians, ought to agree to differ upon all things which do not involve principle. It is important for us to know that many of our differences are those only in name, or made by some individual construc
tion. We take the Word of God "as the only infallible rule of faith and practice." Surely no one can be a true Lutheran unless he is a Christian, and a believer in the inspired Scripture. Every Lutheran accepts the Augsburg Confession as the correct exponent of the Word of God, and as far as our faith is concerned we are one.
Today we number 2,254,019 in our American churches. What a host we would be if united against the enemies of the Lord; and if our forms of worship sometimes differ, and our conduct of congregational matters is not always the same, yet we all agree on the fundamental points; and if we can do our work, as the Luther League is trying to do, in the individual congregations, and meeting together for mutual acquaintance and conference under the present plan, why should we consider the necessity or propriety of making this body the same as the conference in connection with the Synod? We destroy the harmony of the instrument and the force of the music by leaving out certain pipes which belong to the whole organism, and restrict the effect by limiting the sound, and thus weakening the impression and result. we further delay the coming of the day when all Lutherans shall see eye to eye, and shall come to the realization that Jesus Christ meant us as Luther. ans to be one when the prayed as He did His last prayer upon earth. Let not personal preferences or ideas interfere with the work of the Master, but let us bid Godspeed to every movement, organization, or work within our Church which will tend to bring us to the true aim of life-the saving of souls at home and abroad, and increase the victory of Jesus Christ. From the Supplement to the Luther League Handbook we quote: "Loyalty, a word dear to the American heart, declaring a principle for which many true sons of America have shed their blood! A quality very necessary to vigorous lif: and growth, which we know only too well was frequently lacking on the part of our young people.
"Loyalty to the Church was felt to be of prime importance, and was the note struck when young Lutherans gathered for the first time in national convention. The love and enthusiasm which were then awakened have been growing and maturing ever since. The fruitage has been quickened interest and more consecrated zeal."
It is seventeen years since the Luther League of America was born into the Lutheran Church in this country. This birth was accompanied by the rejoicing of many people, and yet with a fear of some that it would be independent of the Church, and would not accomplish the work which it was hoped it coul do. These years have been experimental, and th child has grown to manhood, proving itself a helpful agent in awakening the young p ople to an interest in the history and work of the Church, and increasing in many churches helpfulness and strength hitherto not expected or appreciated.
The development of the Lutheran young people in these seventeen yars has been wonderful, and if you are not convinced that young people can be used to advantage in the congregation, secure THE LUTHER LEAGUE REVIEW for the past five years, and read the accounts of the conventions, district, state and national, and especially the papers presented at these conventions; and you, who have been incredulous, will begin to realize that there is a strength in our Lutheran young people which had never been developed until this agent, born in 1895, came into the Lutheran family. Not only the helpfulness which has come from knowledge is apparent, but the spirit of interest in and appreciation of the young people of other Lutheran churches, regardless of synodical bounds, has been aroused.
For the past two years the executive committee has been considering some special work for the Juniors, so that they may be interested and held in the work of the congregation until they reach the age when they can be advanced to the Luther League of the Church. A religious weekly recently has said:
"A boy is a precious trust and a tremendous responsibility. What is going to become of the boys? Everybody ought to be asking that question and trying to supply some solution of it. The boys of today will be the men of tomorrow, and the girls of today will rule tomorrow's men. Wherefore let every one now careless concerning the boys and girls wake up and go to work to solve that greatest of all questions before the American people-how to save the youth of the land for Christ and the world."
The Lutheran Brotherhood has been much concerned about this branch of the Church, and has recently issued a manual for a Junior Lutheran Brotherhood. It seems to us, as you will hear from the report of the committee specially appointed to consider this matter, that some specific work should be laid out for our youths. Our Topics generally should, in our opinion, be recast, both for the Luther Leagues and for the Junior Leagues, not to cater to pleasure, but to make for profit. The minister realizes that if he can present his sermon in an attractive form, which carries with it religious instruction, he reaches a larger class of people than if he does not use this method. The man who is most successful in the pulpit makes his language simple, and if he expresses his thoughts in such a way as a child can appreciate, the grown people will always be attentive and will receive the benefit as well as the younger people.
It is the pleasure of your president to report that during the past year eight persons have received certificates upon the completion of the reading and study of the first course in the Luther League Reading Series. The pastor of Grace Evangelical Lutheran
Church of Rock Island, Ill., Rev. Ira O. Nothstein, led this band. He and his wife were two, and the balance were members of his congregation and League. In his acknowledgment of the receipt of the certificates, Pastor Nothstein writes: "The same group of people has taken up the second course of the Luther League Reading Course, and hopes to complete it within the next six months. It is enjoyable as well as profitable work." It would be a satisfaction to the executive committee if there were others who would follow this course and apply for and receive certificates upon the completion of the study of these books.
It is a gratification to us to report that at the meeting of the All India Lutheran Conference, held in December last at Rajahmundry, India, among other actions taken was the following: "The Luther League was commended, its literature recommended, as well as the placing of a general secretary in the field, with a view to organizing local Central Leagues." Notice of this movement should be made by this convention, and our salutations be returned to these missionaries who are so earnest in the work of the Master among these distinguished non-Christians.
Do you know that "there are 10,000 towns, of from
300 to 1,000 population each, in the Western portion of these United States, without a church, or Sunday School, or organized means of teaching the Word of God? That is to say, there are 10,000,000 souls without a church of any kind, hundreds of thousands of young people growing up without the Word of God, a multitude of communities in Our own American homeland practically pagan.' It is said that while we, as Lutherans, number about two millions and a halt in this land who are in the churches, there are seven million and a half who are unchurched. What is our duty? Are we wide-awake and attentive to our serv ice of the Master at home, so that we are led to do more for those who have not the privileges which we have? "For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required." We Lutherans in the past have been living apart from each other; we have not known each other, nor that which each one is capable of doing for the other as well as for our fellowmen, and until we present a united front as Lutherans in this land, we will never be successful in our work at home or abroad to the extent which God expects.
It is with regret that your president calls attention to the shortage in the fund for the support of the general secretary. The local Leagues seem to have overlooked the suggestion of the Luther League of America to collect from each member ten cents toward this fund. The secretary has done good work, he has labored efficiently, and while the results may not appear prominently, yet the executive committee knows that his work has been worth while. As the League has obligated itself to pay the general secretary a certain sum, it should keep its promise and relieve him from the burden which he has been carrying in paying for his own support and expenses. This is an epochal year in the life of the general secretary. He was ordained to the ministry twenty-five years ago, and has been for ten years in the service of the Luther League of America. We tender him our hearty congratulations, and with him God's blessing in the coming years.
When the Chinese republic was recently announced a flag of five colors was thrown to the breeze, and instead of "The Yellow Flag with the Dragon' peared "The Rainbow Flag of China." It may be a coincidence only, but these are the same colors which you and I wear in our buttons and in our ribbons. They are not sewed nor joined together, but the flag is so made that there is no appearance of separation and the colors blend one into the other. Each strip represents a district in this great China land, and the flag is made so as to prove that, in the union of these five divisions as a republic they are bound together firmly to support the new Government.
We, as Lutherans, have been working apart. have not observed the golden rule, "As ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise"; we have often interfered with each other's work, and have caused the work of the Lord to languish because we have been straining in competition, like merchants in their business. We believe in the two great commandments, to love our God with all our powers and to love our neighbors as ourselves; but too often we have looked at other neighbors than those of our own family, and overlooked our own. And the blessing will only come to our dear Lutheran Church when our people, clergy and laity, see eye to eye, and live as the Gospel teaches us our duty both to God and to our fellowmen. The Luther League of America was not organized to bring the churches together, but it has done more than any other effort to introduce the Lutheran youth to each other, so that they do not question each other's Lutheranism, look with jealousy upon those of another Synod. We believe the secret of this has been that we have been non-synodical, and that our young people have had the opportunity of coming together freely and happily to become acquainted and to learn the needs and progress of our Church in all the world-at home and abroad.
What we need today is greater study of God's Word and incessant and insistent prayer, and when we together each day, although apart, some of us at a great distance, pray without ceasing for better eyesight and better heart-sight and better love for our Master, Jesus Christ, then will we reach the point when our work will be successful, and old and young will work harmoniously and unitedly for the salvation of men, whom we cannot properly teach unless we live as
followers of the meek and lowly Jesus who went about doing good.
Thus may I serve Thee, gracious Lord!
Thus ever Thine alone,
My soul and body given to Thee,
The purchase Thou hast won:
Through evil or through good report
Still keeping by Thy side,
By life or death, in this poor flesh
At the conclusion of the hymn, "Jerusalem the Golden," Prof. Jacob Fry, D.D., L.H.D., the Nestor of the Lutheran pulpit in America, delivered the keynote address of the convention on "Religious Sanction of Government." Dr. Fry said:
Religious Sanction of Government.
I am glad you have chosen the theme "Creed and Flag" as your motto, and I would rather talk a little about that than I would about the id a assigned to me on the program about "Religious Sanction of Government. These words are very significant. What do we mean by creed? You hear a great deal about creed. Creed is a statement of what a man believes. It is an easy thing for a man to say "I believe the Bible," but what do you believe the Bible teaches? Our Lord asked: "Who do men say I am?" As his disciples gave their relies, He asked: "But whom say you that I am?" That is your creed. Th Bible is not your creed, the Bible is God's word. Your creed is what you believe the Bible teaches. Creed is that which marks the Church, not its members, whether they be intelligent, ignorant, rich or poor; it is its creed which makes the Church, therefore you will see how important it is. Our creed delivered b.fore Empror Charles V at Augsburg in 1530 is the earliest creed of the Protestant branch of Christians, and that is around what we rally.
About the flag. Do you know the origin of the word "flag"? It is an unfortunate word. The word "flag" means to "fall back," "to fall behind." How in the world they got that word to signify the banner or emblem of the nation, I cannot tell. Our flag stands for our nation; the one thing that marks a nation is its flag. Of course its constitution does in another sense. The flag is the emblem of the nation. It stands for the principles upon which this nation was founded, believing that all men are cr ated free and equal. It stands for freedom of conscience that gives every man the right to worship God. Ther fore, you have these two things combined together, crzećflag. I give to the third word "and" the most importance. That is the point in this convention. It is not the question of creed or the question of flag, it is the question of what these two are to each other. What relation has the flag to the creed? What re'ation has the State to the Church? Take care in this convention that you give no encouragement to that idea which is that the only proper way is to have a union of Church and State. Our fathers fled from the oppression of the Old World and came to the New World to get rid of Church and State and to get rid of that condition. Therefore, we must be very careful not to give any encouragement by our motto, "Creed and Flag," to the thought that somehow the Church will come under the control of the State or the State come under the control of the Church. There must be some connection between these two and the word "and" is the very word. What authority does religion give to the government? Is there anything in the Word of God to teach that there should be any relation between the flag and the creed, between the State and the Church, as we have them today? Most surely. We pray God that the day will not be far distant when the State will have nothing to do with the Church, and the Church nothing to do with the State. I would like to call your attention to two pictures in the Bible. In the Book of Genesis, the very first book, you have that scene on the Nile where Joseph brings his aged father and Jacob blesses Pharaoh. There is the Church blessing the Nation. You will recollect how Jacob is brought down into Egypt and how Joseph had arisen to be the chief man under Pharaoh and how he sent for his aged father and brothers to come down. Here was
the old man from the fields of the land of Canaan coming into the royal splendor of the court of Pharaoh, and when Joseph brings him in to see the king of Egypt, at that time the greatest monarch in the world, the dear old man raises his hands and pronounces a benediction. Did he not feel that "I am the head of the Church of God"-the Church b:essing the State?
In the one picture you have the Church bl sing the Government and the in the other the Church putting itself under the protection of the Government, and I think these two pictures give us our idea of what our relation is between the creed and the flag. I would like, if I had time, to bring out the story of how Christ put to confusion the man who tried to confuse Him: "Render unto Cæsar the things that are Cæsar's, and unto God the things which be of God.' The Church must have regard for the Government and do all she can to foster a proper governm nt. The Government must defend and protect the Church against persecution and that which would break up the religious life in the Church. What would the American nation be if it had not been for Luther at Augsburg, so many centuries ago?
I am reminded of that saying of our Lord when He was asked which was the great commandment, "Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself."
I want to bring out this point: How can this Luther League, gathered in Albany, make this theme really full of power? I can only say, rally around both, rally around your creed and rally around your flag, and the reason is that there are forces at work just now, for the last year, that seem to have as their aim the breaking down of that free and independent government we have and bringing that gov.rnment under the dominion of a foreign power. I am not an alarmist; I have among the Catholic people some of my warmest friends, but since Spain and Italy are gone and there is only Austria left, it seems to be their aim to get our country beneath their power. Rally around your cred and rally around your hag, because just as soon as that or any other Church comes in to dictate to Congress what shall be the politics or policy of our Government, that soon nation will fall and go back to those ages that are long since passed. Therefore, you must rally around your creed, you must rally around your flag. You are meeting tonight in a time that is full of possibilities. We are all in need of great changes, and shall you and I as Lutherans stand back and take no part in the tremendous forward movement to spread Christianity? The Lutheran Church stands for the proper relation between Church and State, creed and flag. That cannot be denied. You know that we are the greatest of the Prot: stant forces, numbering far more than all the other Protestant branches of the Church, Our history is great and you know that no movement has ever been started that has had the push of the centuries behind it. We have that push and it seems between the push behind of four centuries and the tremendous future which opens up before us, there ought to be such a push and pull that would cause every Lutheran to stand by his flag and creed and not rest until he plant that flag, which is the emblem not only of America, but everywhere. On the staff of the flag put the star of Bethlehem and then you will have the proper union of the cr ei and the flag.
The second session of the convention opened promptly at 9 o'clock on Wednesday morning with devotional services. Rev. Lloyd Steckel, of Platteville, Wis., conducted the morning devotions. They consisted of the "Morning Suffrages" or the "Morning Prayer of the Household." The hymns, "Come My Soul," and "Lord! in the Morning Thou Shalt Hear," were sung. The business session of the convention opened promptly at 9:30, the entire convention joining in singing "All Hail the Power of Jesus' Name." In the absence of the Statistical Secretary, Mr. Paul B. Mattice, of Middleburgh, was appointed Secretary pro tem. The report of the General Secretary, Rev. Luther M. Kuhns, for the biennium was presented as follows:
General Secretary's Report.
To the President, and Members of the Tenth Biennial Convention of the Luther League of America: This convention marks seventeen years in the history and progress of the Luther League of America. During this time much has been accomplished by it in fostering the spirit of loyalty and stimulating increased Christian activity. Until the organization of the Luther League of America there was nothing distinctively Lutheran and under the management and direction of Lutheran Churchmen to fill the need of utilizing the latent force and wasted energies of our own young people. Says Leonard Woolsey Bacon: "In no denomination of the American Church was the social influence of an efficient Young People's Society our more needed than among the Lutherans. From comparatively small dimensions, this denomination has grown, within a few decades, to be one of the most numerous of the American sects. It has been aggrandized by a great tide of immigration, in which have mingled currents from four principal nations, Teutonic and Scandinavian. Its new recruits are under the necessity, within a generation or two, of unlearning their ancestral language and learning English; and the danger is a grave one that in this transition, losing hold of patriotic and family traditions, they will make shipwreck of faith. But even if faith is saved, there is danger that the German or Scandinavian immigrant, in becoming American will lose his hold upon the church relations of his ancestors. And in the case of the Lutheran Church there is more to lose than in the case of some others. There is a great treasure of hymnody, the richest in Christendom, which must in any case be almost a total loss in the process of translation. But, besides this, there is a great history, reaching back into the ages before the Reformation; and a church polity which combines to a remarkable extent the elements of episcopal and classical authority and of congregational liberty; and a definite and characteristic theology, the ripe fruit of many generations of the highest scholarship; and venerable liturgical traditions, the outgrowth both of the studies of theologians and of the experience of saints. The leaders of the Lutheran Church in America have other and nobler reasons than those arising from mere sectarian emulation, when they study methods of organization that shall hold the youth of their congregations in social union, and promote their interest in the history, the worship and the activities of the Lutheran communion." remarkable, coming as it does from a New England source. Experience has demonstrated the worth of this society at critical periods of Church membership and has proved its value in impressing upon our youth the duties and obligations of Church membership.
After Dr. Fry's address, the audience, which crowded the church so that it was necessary to fill all available space with chairs, joined in singing the hymn, "For the Mercies of the Day," and reciting the Lord's Prayer. The excellent music of this session was under the direction of Miss Gainsley, of the Church of the Redeemer.
Under the auspices of the ladies of the various Lutheran churches of Albany, a collation was served the delegates and visitors in the parlors of St. John's Church.
During the biennium official visitation was made of societies in South Dakota, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana and Wisconsin. Through the cooperation of the presidents and executive committees of the various States I have been enabled to attend
almost every State convention held during this time, and also a large number of district conventions. In accordance with the action of the Pittsburgh convention a month's campaign was conducted in the Chicago District League with the co-operation of the district officers and resident members of the executive committee of the Luther League of America. Societies in forty-nine congregations were reached. The work of the Luther League was presented to the students of Gettysburg, Chicago, Trinity, Mt. Airy, Hartwick, and Midland Theological Seminaries, and to the students of Dana College of the United Danish Lutheran Church, Jewell College of the Hauge Synod, Augustana College at Rock Island, Ill., and Augustana College at Canton, S. D. In addition to these I had the pleasure of meeting a number of Lutheran professors and students at the Nebraska, Iowa and Wisconsin State Universities, to whom the work of the Luther League was presented. Visits to these educational centers cannot fail to be of benefit. Michigan was likewise visited and at meetings in Detroit preliminaries were arranged for the organization of a Michigan State Luther League. In a large majority of these meetings instruction in the work of the Luther League, demonstration of the conducting of business and devotional meetings, the asking and answering of questions and the opportunity for the presentation of problems with an attempt at their solution, constituted the program. In each instance a followup campaign was advised the officers and committees. One thing developed in these visitations was an almost persistent, continued ignorance, or else a studied disregard in some quarters of the spirit, aims and methods of the Luther League work on the part of those who should know the principles and nature of the work. Many workers among our young people utterly disregard the principles in the Handbook authorized by previous conventions of the Luther League of America. This we believe can and should be corrected, as it is subversive of organization.
It was my privilege to participate in a number of special church services in various places, and in Lenten and Easter services under the auspices of the Luther Leagues. Where the Lenten and Easter services have been provided by the Luther Leagues, they have met with favor and have been regarded as beneficial.
There has been marked growth during the biennium in Junior work in certain localities. Increased and wider spread interest has arisen throughout the Church generally in this department of the work. is not without its difficulties and perplexities, but ever since the inauguration of this work at the Cincinnati convention in 1900, Junior work has been growing. The report of the statistical secretary will show to what extent it has developed.
reading and the things of Christ have been more prized and appreciated, and at the same time by insisting upon a higher type of personal piety in its members, the Luther League has proven its right to exist by awakening in its members a clearer consciousness of Christian faith and producing greater fidelity to their own Church. Affirming the superiority of the spiritual and the inferiority of the material, it would now, as ever in the past, foster loyalty to the Church of which Christ is the great head and fidelity to the pastor who is the under shepherd of the flock. The experience in the past is assuring for the future. Upon the request of the officers of the State League the territory of the Iowa Central District was visited, and this district was reorganized. The State work in both Nebraska and Kansas has been reorganized, and the Nebraska State Luther League and the Kansas State Luther League apply for membership. Application for membership is made by the Luther League of St. Mark's Church, Baltimore, and by the Luther League Central of Baltimore and vicinity. These applications have been referred to the Credential Committee for action. Indiana and Ohio State Leagues have adopted new constitutions, based on the model constitution for State Luther Leagues. Uniform regulations governing the application for membership in District, State and National Leagues should be observed. It should also be declared officially that, as far as feasible, the organization of the Luther League into State and District bodies shall be confined within the boundaries of the State lines, so that where Locals are received into Districts or States beyond their borders it shall be with the understanding that when such States effect organizations these societies may be demitted to enter their own geographical District or State organization.
At no time in its previous history have the prospects of the Luther League been more auspicious. The future is rich with promise. The conventions of this year have been exceptionally good, and the various State Leagues are well officered. This is very important, for the efficiency of the National work depends upon the good work done in the States, and State Leagues to aid in perfecting the National organization and impart to it permanent and solid organization for steady growth should be in closest touch and sympathy with the general work of the Luther League of America.
Seminaries, colleges and universities visited.. Committee meetings attended.
The following tabulated summary is submitted: Sermons, addresses and round tables.. Conventions attended
Rallies, Locals visited and places visited for organization
States and Districts organized.
Letters, postals, telegrams and packages.. Miles traveled
Expenses, railroad fare.
Postage, telegrams, expressage and stenographer 127.62 Hotel and baggage expense.
Among the activities of our young people's societies the following may be enumerated: The establishment of lyceum lecture courses, the raising of funds for mission colleges, contribution to orphans' home, hospital funds, to increase the benevolent contributions to synodical and congregational funds, home and foreign mission funds, for the payment of old church debts, electric lights, the purchase of carpets, communion sets, money for the purchase of organs, to put Church papers in the Y. M. C. A. and Y. W. C. A., starting of a library, reception to students and Church people, sunshine fund for the sick, flower fund, and entertainment for boys. In one State League six societies report eleven candidates for the ministry, five Leagues state that nine of their members are preparing for the ministry, one League has two of its members preparing for the work of the deaconess, one League has one member doing the work of the deaconess, one League has three of its members in the foreign field, one League supports a missionary in the foreign field, another supports a child in India, another supports a mission at home, sixteen Leagues have separate committees whose work is to visit the sick, decorate the church, distribute flowers and secure and interest old members.
Better organized and equipped the Luther League faces the future for more aggressive work than in the past. It would enlist the sympathy and co-operation of all our Lutheran young people. Being non-synodical in character, the legitimate place for Luther League work to be effective, the place to put the emphasis for its ever growing activities, must be found in the local societies. This is where the real practical benefits of its stimulating influence for Christian activity must be felt. It has cultivated the religious spirit; into many a home it has introduced a greater love of good
Resolved, That, in view of the approaching quadricentennial of the Reformation under Luther, the Executive Committee of the Luther League of America is authorized to arrange for the suitable anniversary observance of this event.
Aften ten years of service as General Secretary of the Luther League of America I now return to you the trust committed to me in full appreciation of the honor conferred upon me and with grateful appreciation of the confidence bestowed upon me while occupying this position.
LUTHER M. KUHNS, General Secretary.