« PreviousContinue »
THEODORE ROOSEVELT AND BOURKE COCKRAN Here are seen characteristic gestures and poses of two of the most popular speakers of the present day. President Roosevelt is as vigorous in gesture and enunciation as in thought. Bourke Cockran is distinguished by his graceful gesture and easy delivery.' He is a happy after dinner orator.
FRANK W. GUNSAULUS (1856
CHICAGOʻS FAVORITE PULPIT ORATOR
MONG the pulpit orators of the West, Dr. Gunsaulus, whose
ministrations for many years past have been confined to the
metropolitan city of the lakes, has long held a high place in public estimation. Born at Chesterville, Ohio, and educated for the ministry at the Ohio Wesleyan University, he passed the first four years of his ministerial life as a Methodist preacher. Subsequently entering the Congregational Church, he filled the pastorate of the Eastwood Church at Columbus, Ohio, from 1879 to 1881, preached during the succeeding four years at Newtonville, Massachusetts, and for two years at Baltimore, and became pastor of the Plymouth Congregational Church, of Chicago, in 1897. In 1899, he removed to the Central Church, Chicago. In addition he has been a lecturer at the Yale Theological Seminary, and a professorial lecturer at the University of Chicago. Aside from his pulpit duties, he has been somewhat active as an author, especially in the field of poetry, his poems embracing several volumes of graceful and thoughtful verse. As a pulpit orator, Dr. Gunsaulus is highly esteemed, and is looked upon as one of the leading lights in the Western ministry.
THE TAPESTRY OF ANGLO-SAXON CIVILIZATION [Among the many memorial sermons and addresses delivered after the death of Britain's esteemed Queen, that spoken by Dr. Gunsaulus in the Auditorium at Chicago, February, 1901, is certainly one of the most elevated and appreciative, alike in its estimate of the character of Victoria and its lofty conception of Anglo-Saxon progress during her reign, as compared with that of the age of Elizabeth, England's fornier great Queen. From this fine address we select the portions in which this view of modern progress is most picturesquely set forth.]
Wonderful and rich is that tapestry known as Anglo-Saxon civilization. The pattern, all beautiful, was seen in vision by him who relaid the
FRANK W. GUNSAULUS
foundations of society on the truth of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man. Poets and priests have not been alone in catching glimpses of its glory from time to time. As they have climbed reverently up the altar steps of Calvary, kings like Charlemagne, Alfred and Gustavus Adolphus, in spite of limitations and the ignorance of their times, have looked now and then upon the external plan of God in the redemption of man by man. So far as they have obeyed the vision, they have been the truly great in history. Separated by ages and of differing temperaments, sure to have formed an irreconcilable company had they ever met on earth, uniting with the uncrowned kings of time, such as Hampden, Lincoln and Cavour, each of them in the light of this vision has become great. They have come into a growing supremacy over men's hearts, not so much because of might of mental endowment or that wit or wisdom which springs from unique prowess of brain, as because of the fact that each of them, after the manner of his own character, loyally seized upon
of the Infinite One and compelled himself and all things attaching themselves to him, to enter into the achieving of the will of God in human history.
Some of these, like Victoria, have the distinction of being less apparently illustrious than others, especially in the possession of military and civil genius, in those abilities which manifest themselves in consummate strategy or comprehensive organization. This very fact, however, enables us to see the true foundation and manner of their greatness. If these less magnetic leaders of the race wrote as inspiring pages of history, or if they also trained the forces of an age till they met in orderly battalions around their thrones, it was not because of the greatness of humanity displayed at fortunate moments, but because of the greatness of God revealed in humanity. A little child mounting reverently and obediently upon the vast shoulders of the Infinite God, and living his life there at the high level to which the uplifting God has raised him, is taller far than the mightiest of giants. He gets the sublime point of view, he travels with the gait of the swift, sure and on-marching Jehovah. When he is weakest, he is strongest. His cry is, “The Almighty is my defense,” “Yea, Lord, Thy gentleness hath made me great." Such was the greatness of Victoria, Queen of England. With her hand on these Scriptures and their like, she answered an Indian prince, who inquired of her the secret of England's greatness : “ This," and she gave him a Bible—"this is the secret of England's greatness."
She approached her throne at a time when a totally opposite view of what constitutes greatness had well-nigh bewildered Europe, but at length had been torn into tatters in the name of humanity at Waterloo. Its brililant incarnation was dying an exile on the English island of St. Helena.
FRANK W, GUNSAULUS
When Wellington defeated Napoleon on that memorable day, it was not so much England gaining a victory over France, as the civilization of Europe rising to behold the idea of duty struggling triumphantly against the illusion of glory.
“Not once or twice in our rough island story,
The path of duty is the way to glory."
So sings the Englishman to-day. After sixty years of duty doing, the accomplished sovereignty of Victoria has flung its warm light upon the history of our times. No other kind of greatness, save the greatness allied with the on-going process of God's plan, realizing itself in the development and education of man, would have been equal to the demands of our age. No greatness is equal to the demands and opportunities of any time which is not true to the heart of eternity. Taine says that Napoleon was a Cæsar thrust upon the eighteenth century. Let us add that Victoria, who had visited in her worship and hope the cross of Jesus once lifted up upon a hill-top in one of Cæsar's dependencies, was a Christian possessing that statesman-like vision which shall make Cæsarism impossible. Her era was to be an era devoted to the scientific method. It was to be conscious of indubitable facts. Within the effulgence
of every movement of its course there was to be discerned a plain and often too hard reality. The greatness, therefore, which should both reign and rule, was that whose eyes saw not glory, but duty, as the “Stern daughter of the voice of God.” Like her own earliest poet-laureate, Wordsworth, who gave to England this happy phrase, the realm over which Victoria was to rule had put aside the fever-haunted dream sympathetic with the French Revolution ; and the best hope of civilization was ready for a time when public duty should obey the dictates of lofty personal morality, while freedom, “broadening slowly down, from precedent to precedent,” would win new triumphs throughout all the world, along with such achievements of literature and art, and especially trade and commerce, manufacture, invention and discovery, as would dazzle the eye of the student of history. ...
What are called the “spacious times of great Elizabeth” spacious indeed, as compared with those confined and narrow days before England experienced her true renaissance. When Edmund Spenser accompanied Raleigh to London in the winter of 1589, stopping on his way to add to the first three books of “The Fairie Queen,” England was almost a fairy land given over to the fresh romances which filled the English imagination. Her heroic sailors came back with tales that expanded the fancy and stimulated the enterprise of an age whose poet was the