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of decent citizenship. Every ounce of effort for good in your Associations is part of the ceaseless war against the traits which produce such men. But in addition to condemning the grosser forms of evil we must not forget to condemn also the evils of bad temper, lack of gentleness, nagging and whining fretfulness, lack of consideration for others—the evils of selfishness in all its myriad forms. Each man or woman must remember his or her duty to all around, and especially to those closest and nearest, and such remembrance is the best possible preparation for doing duty for the State as a whole.
We ask that these Associations, and the men and women who take part in them, practice the Christian doctrines which are preached from every true pulpit. The Decalogue and the Golden Rule must stand as the foundation of every successful effort to better either our social or our political life. “Fear the Lord and walk in his ways" and "Love thy neighbor as thyself”—when we practice these two precepts, the reign of social and civic righteousness will be close at hand. Christianity teaches not only that each of us must so live as to save his own soul, but that each must also strive to do his whole duty by his neighbor. We can not live up to these teachings as we should; for in the presence of infinite might and infinite wisdom, the strength of the strongest man is but weakness, and the keenest of mortal eyes see but dimly. But each of us can at least strive, as light and strength are given him, toward the ideal. Effort along any one line will not suffice. We must not only be good, but strong. We must not only be high-minded, but brave-hearted. We must think loftily, and we must also work hard. It is not written in the Holy Book that we must merely be harmless as doves. It is also written that we must be wise as serpents. Craft unaccompanied by conscience makes the crafty man a social wild beast who preys on the community and must be hunted out of it. Gentleness and sweetness unbacked by strength and high resolve are almost impotent for good.
The true Christian is the true citizen, lofty of purpose, resolute in endeavor, ready for a hero's deeds, but never looking down on his task because it is cast in the day of small things; scornful of baseness, awake to his own duties as well as to his rights, following the higher law with reverence, and in this world doing all that in him lies, so that when death comes he may feel that mankind is in some degree better because he has lived.
END OF VOLUME TWELVE