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the ideal in terms never to be misun- the residue of his strength in devising derstood, rather than an extramun- and practising secret economies. dane theory propounded by one who is The present gives him scarcely a not called upon to put it to the test of care; but the future! It looms dark and actuality.
bleak before him: extreme penury, posBecause this principle of participa- sibly starvation, or - charity. He tion has been accepted by the entire would prefer the former for himself; he body of Protestant laity the conditions has lived so intimately with chivalrous upon which Protestant ministers must ideals and generous impulses, he has live their lives are defined with some- striven so hard to keep his individual thing like finality. Each must fit into independence as an inalienable right, his habitat at the stage of social evolu- that he would rather die a South Pation reached by his parish. But his pre cific castaway than subsist on doles of cise place is not set by striking an aver- pity. But his family! and above all, the age: he must adopt the customs and honor of his church! For these he must meet the standards of the better class drain the dregs and comfort his soul of his parishioners. Even though his with his oft-used pulpit parable of salary is no higher than that of the Lazarus and the crumbs. Provision skilled mechanic, he and his family for disability or old age is altogether must dress, entertain, and contribute out of the question with the average to local philanthropies on the scale of minister. the comparatively rich.
The cost of living has been rising at To this as an immediate programme the rate of five per cent a year; the level the clergyman has no objection; by in- of clerical salaries has not risen five stinct and education he appreciates the per cent in a decade; and the increase, emblems of refinement; he wishes his such as it is, has not been a flat adchildren to have a flying start in a com- vance throughout all the churches; it petitive age; and, above all, he wants has been chiefly confined to the wealthto be a commendable representative of ier parishes and congregations. Even the civilization he is pledged to sustain to save by insurance is almost out of and advance. The Manse,or Rectory, or the question, at least in an amount adeParsonage, is always too large and out quate to an old-age annuity. Taken at of proportion to his income; books are a comparatively early age, a $5000 the tools of his trade, and they are not twenty-year endowment policy would only expensive but they become obso- swallow up more than a fifth of the lete more quickly than other tools; cler- average yearly salary of Protestant ical clothing cannot be bought readily clergymen; supposing, however, that it and cheaply in the custom-made stores could be managed, the income at five during clearance sales; charity, to him, per cent will bring in only $5 a week is not a passing luxury but a perma- for old-age subsistence. No matter how nent investment to conserve his capi- saintly and devoted he is, or how deeptal in character; vacations are almostly under obligation earth may be for enforced, and in a high-tension-nerve- his vicarious life, the Protestant clergybrain-and-heart occupation must not man can see his heaven only beyond a be neglected. So he takes his place, belt of hell through which he and his smiles, preaches optimism, gives first loved ones must pass. and last aid to every kind of injury, What fault there is lies at the door of keeps the honor of his church and his the wealthier laymen of the churches, Master beyond reproach, and spends particularly the successful business men. Nearly all of them are officers or Church. During the sixteen years from partners or stockholders in the great 1890 to 1906, that property investment corporations of the country. They increased 40 per cent; in the nine years know perfectly well that practically since the latter date, the increase must every large and well-established indus- have been another 25 per cent. Thus in try is providing for the disability and twenty-five years, under the inspirathe old age of its employees; they have tion and guidance of its ministry, the almost a flawless knowledge of the ac
Protestant Church has added 65 per tion recently taken by various states in cent of value to its capital account, respect of employers' liability; they ac- but in that phenomenal increase the quiesce in the pensions paid by the gov- minister has not even an infinitesimal ernment to the personnel of the army equity. The one institution on earth and navy. These and other develop that is dedicated to the proclamation ments of the corporate conscience are and practice of Justice is a monumentnow fixed factors of business and citi- al and monstrous example of injustice; zenship, justified alike by economic jus- the one organization in the land that tice and humanitarianism. Nearly all has as its raison d'être the leadership of the prominent business men of Am- in private and public righteousness is erica have some connection with the dragging its palsied conscience far in church; many of them are conspicuous the rear of the nominally non-moral in
leaders of Christian enterprise. Indus- dustrial corporations. Without shame, trially they are Dr. Jekyll; ecclesiasti- with scarcely a transient concern, the cally they are Mr. Hyde. What use is Protestant Church is treating its most there in glossing the matter? They are worthy employees as though there had proud of being just and fair where it is been no advance in social and indusan economic necessity; they are brutal- trial ethics since the tooth-and-claw ly callous where it is a religious grace. period. The employer who dares not rip a faith
This religious corporation employs ful but gray-haired mechanic from his 150,000 local managers or executive lathe and throw him upon the mercy of officers known as priests, clergymen,
, the community will tear a faithful but ministers, pastors, or preachers. Usual
, gray-haired preacher from his pulpit ly these pay the cost of their own trainand drop him upon the lean cold bosom ing, although some branches of the saof charity. Perhaps the horrible ana- cred business assist candidates during chronism is the last defiance of a de- the years of preparation. Higher stanfeated feudalism.
dards of character are required of the employees than in any other occupation; and, on the whole, the degree of
mental efficiency demanded is as exactAccording to the United States Cen- ing as in other professions which rest sus Bureau, the Christian Church of on an intellectual foundation. The outAmerica is the greatest corporation in standing qualities, scrutinized with the country. In 1906, it reported a jealous care, are the instinct for spiritproperty equipment costing $1,257,- ual interpretation and the capacity for 575,860, of which the Protestant share ethical leadership. These are the rarest was $935,942,278. For the purpose of characteristics in the endowment of framing an indictment to which some humanity, and historians and philosoone in particular must plead, I shall phers are unanimous in thinking that confine myself to the Protestant the stability and advancement of so
ciety have always depended more upon perately needy. Later I shall point out the exercise of these qualities than up- more definitely the distinction between on any other factors. And, as may be the charity called relief and the jusat once conceded, the intensive cultiva- tice known as pensions. It is sufficient tion of these qualities precludes the de- here to note that one of the wealthiest velopment of the economic or financial branches of the Protestant corporafaculty; hence the sneer that ministers tion has thus far failed to reach the are poor business men is as much be- standard of economic justice frankly side the mark as to say that as a rule recognized by industrial corporations bankers would make indifferent artists commonly called 'soulless.' and corporation presidents very wretched poets. Necessity, however, in this
III case comes to the rescue of the clergy, for they are compelled to assist in the Industrial justice represents the latfinances of their parishes and in course est phase in the evolution of a social of time they do acquire a respectable conscience. For many centuries chardegree of business acumen. As a class, ity has been reckoned a grace of reliat the age of thirty-five, they are prob- gion, and it is supposed that grace has ably as level-headed and worldly-wise forever abrogated law. Perhaps in the as the men of any other class.
theological realm it has, but not in the Moreover, the Protestant Church social. Swiftly, and with ever-increasraises and administers well over $100,- ing momentum, the science of econom000,000 per annum, not counting the ics has overridden sentiment; indusadditions to the invested permanent trialism has frankly appropriated the funds — local and general endow- language and the laws of ethics; organments. For instance, the denomina- ized bodies of laborers have dropped tion with which I am most familiar, the pleading tone of the suppliant and 'The Presbyterian Church in the Unit- speak in the accent of demand. The ed States of America,' the incor- movement came, not from the few at porated title, -reported for the year the top, but from the masses at the botending in 1915, a total income of tom and from the multitudes in the $27,785,036. It is manned by 9685 middle. Charity has grown to be the ministers; but this number includes per- most hated word in the vocabulary. manent officials of boards, professors, There is no anger against the impulse missionaries, ministers without charge, of charity as felt by the almoner, but a and a large percentage disabled by deep indignation that the social strucold age from active service. And yet, ture should have any area in which out of that total only $256,144 was charity is needed. Men demand ecodesigned for meeting the needs of its nomic justice as they demand liberty disabled servants or the widows and of thought, speech, and movement, as dependent children of ministers who they demand equality before the law, had died.
as they demand representation in govBut what is worse, only $96,596 was ernment; they claim it as an inaliengiven in cash by the churches during able right, as a fundamental law of the year for bona-fide pensions — the democracy; and they will accept no balance being for the Relief Fund, grace as a substitute. which is a pure form of charity and Fortunately, in one department of barely enough to avoid scandal by giv- our multiform industrial relationships, ing slight alleviation to the most des- the capitalists or their executives re
cognized almost instantly the validity and economically sound. The principle of the claim. To tabulate the various has been almost universally adopted. forms of response in baldest outline and Practically every railroad system and without a word of comment would re- manufacturing corporation in America quire more than the space allotted to reckons the pensioning of disabled or this article. Within a few years, thou- aged employees as a fixed liability, no sands of schemes have been elaborated more to be evaded than the annual by which the producers of values may charge-off for depreciation. participate in the wealth produced. Such a principle or practice, once esLeaving aside coöperative societies, tablished in the business world, could stock partnerships, bonus distribution, not fail of extension. Colleges and uniprofit-sharing, and sliding scales of versities paid attention to their emeriwages, as being a branch of the theme tus funds, and, when it was found that that is not germane to the subject of these were inadequate or inequitable, , economic justice toward the Christian the Carnegie Foundation completed ministry, we come to the question the system. The privileges of this fund pensions, which, in its final form, is have been extended to seventy-three nothing less than the equity a worker institutions, and the average pension has in the value of the business his provided for professors who wish to relabor has helped to build up, considered tire at sixty-five years of age or later is from the standpoint of the time he has $1600 per annum. Public-school sysgiven to the occupation. Pensions dif- tems in every large centre already fer from all forms of workmen's com- have made, or are making, provision for pensation for disability chiefly in the old-age retirement, but the bases of the fact that the time element does not plans adopted are so variant that no enter into the latter; but both are a summary can be given: they represent distinct recognition that the employees' every possible form, from contributory willingness to contribute to the produc- insurance to a straight pension paid by tion of values gives them an indubit- the Educational Board from the taxes able equity in the wealth produced, and provided for in the annual budget.
, whether that wealth be regarded as per- The retiring pensions of the United manent capital or periodic increment. States army and navy, and also the old
Pensions are deferred wages. They age benefits of some of the brotherare as far removed from charity as is hoods of organized labor, are too wellthe ordinary biweekly pay envelope known to need comment. Once the or the monthly check. Their record is principle was accepted and found feasnot in the private bank-book of the em- ible in application, it spread in conployer but on the debit page of the led- centric circles, through municipal emger. This is equally true whether they ployees and various state and federal are provided by a capital fund, as in branches of employment, until it seems the United States Steel Corporation, now to be coterminous with human or whether they are charged against needs everywhere. Old-age pensions earnings, as by the New York Central are distributed by the governments of Railroad. Indeed, the method of pro- France, Germany, Great Britain, Denvision is the least important feature; mark, and indeed, in one aspect or anthe one vital point is that industrial other, are in force in nearly all. civilcorporations recognize that to pay wa
ized nations of the world. In several ges to employees when their ability to of our own commonwealths mothers' produce has passed away is ethically pensions are being operated with a de
gree of success that is far too 'subtle, the relentless foes of intemperance, imthough none the less real, to admit of morality, and gambling; they stand tabulation. The right to live' sums sponsor for better housing, more effecup, not only the sentiment, but the tive health measures, the conservation ethics of this universal development of of childhood, the laying out of playthe economic conscience. Any one who grounds and parks, the improvement of works according to his ability creates the home, higher and more practical for himself an inalienable equity in the standards of education, and for poputotality of the world's wealth, and the larizing thrift, for self-respect, and for annual pension is not a new form of lar- civic enthusiasm. These value-making gesse but a regular dividend upon the characteristics are pointed out because capital which the worker has invested the new movement for ministerial penin the form of time, muscle, or brain. sions should rest squarely upon the Or, in other words, a pension is simply business men of the churches, and the a deferred wage held back for book- claim should be frankly recognized as a keeping purposes. It is no more charity payment of deferred salary out of the than is a bond coupon.
increased values produced. And if the Clergymen are producers of values. effort to put the movement upon a baEvery form of property depends for its sis of equity is to succeed, the laymen worth upon the stability of the social of the churches must take it in hand as fabric, and upon the overhead charges a part of their business and not as a of the state for its protection. There is work of grace. The last shame and more relevance than business men real- blight that can rest upon the Protesize in the apparently cynical remark of a tant ministry will fall if the clergymen friend of mine: 'I stand for the church of the various denominations are exnot because I believe in Heaven, but pected to panhandle for the establishbecause I believe in earth. It is cheaper ment of their respective pension funds. to pay preachers than policemen and it In fact, they will refuse in such large is always more economical to support numbers that the schemes will fail and pulpits than prisons. I always contri- the Protestant Church of America, bute to the churches and charge it to counting among its laymen the leaders my insurance account.' Sir Charles of national finance and industry, will Warren, when chief of the London po- present itself as that glaring anomaly, lice, made the remark that each Salva
a spiritual corporation devoid of an tion Army officer in the slums of the ethical soul. metropolis released two policemen from
IV duty. Speaking of the effect of the work of a popular evangelist upon the em- Organized charity does not differ in ployees of a certain railroad, one of its a
any essential from spontaneous and high executive officers said to me that desultory charity: it is a dole dependent his company could well afford to pay on the impulse of the donor rather than $100,000 for the six weeks of revival on the rightful claim of the recipient. meetings in return for the increased effi- The great Protestant denominations ciency of the men by decreasing drink- have for many years systematized the ing and inducing a more conscientious giving of relief to indigent and wornconcentration on their occupations. out ministers, or to the widows and de
In every community the clergymen pendent children of the clergy. Quite stand and have always stood for those recently, several of the churches have things which increase values; they are realized that social justice requires