By Harry Austin Clapp.
Wonder how many of us have ever asked the question: "Why am I a Christian," and having asked, what is the answer. As for me, I am what is called a Christian simply because I was born of a Christian mother, in a Christian community, part of a Christian country. No credit to me. Had I been born in China, perhaps I would acknowledge Confucius; if born in Arabia, would have followed Mahamet, the prophet; born to Jew parents, most certainly I would have been a Jew; born of cannibals, would have followed cannibalistic rites and fattened my ribs with human flesh.
But, no, I was born a Christian and so this day I am what is called a Christian. There are many in the world who are trying to be Christians but those who have made the grade are mighty few. To be a real Christian is to become Christ-like, and few attain the peak, so most of us are only striving, struggling, toiling, endeavoring for the excellence which attained would make us the Christian we would be.
In my case, I inherited the title of Christian just as I inherited Republicanism, and I do not expect to ever arrive. All my life I simply try to be what my mother wished me to be. Can any man do more? I think not. I do not expect all readers of this string to agree with me, for some claiming to be Christians will attack my attitude, but what care I? I am on my way, going in my way and time, and some of these days I will arrive but it will be in the next world and not in this.
"I have no mockings or arguments; I witness and wait."--Walt Whitman.
There are as many opinions as what constitutes a Christian as there are stars in the Heavens and each seems to be correct, and they are, from the particular view point. Most people form their opinions early in life. I began forming mine at the age of fifteen but not until I was nearly thirty did my opinions crystallize into something basic, something that would support, and having found it, I have hugged it to my breast ever since, always drawing comfort, consolation, encouragement, refinement, enjoyment that has been a satisfaction during the past years.
Religion as we know it, is a matter of prejudice. Each one, be he Catholic, Methodist, Episcopalian, Presbyterian or Jew, claiming that his religion offers the only "open sesame" that opens the door to future delights. I do not claim perfection, but to me my way seems to be the right way and so I shall follow it to the end.
The idea that all men are divided into two classes, the saved and the unsaved, is to me repugnant. I do not believe the God I believe in cares much how we class ourselves. We are all his children whether classed as saints or sinners. All are in His hands and with His help all will arrive at the end of the journey.
I have no ambition to be a Holy man for then I would have nothing for which to strive. It is not sinning, but overcoming sin, that makes life worth while to us poor humans. I do not think it necessary to belong to a church in order that one may be assured of salvation. Any man may follow in the foot steps of Jesus if he will and a church is not the great essential.
"How much of a Christian am I? All the Christianity I have is what I can use; the rest has gone into the wastebasket."--Dr. Frank Crane.
When Dr. Crane acknowledges that his Christianity came through inheritance, guess I will consider myself in good company when I make the same admission.
Well, anyway, we have enjoyed a very happy holiday season; happy because our daughter was with us. The time was short--I cannot count the days, for days are too gross and rude. I rather count the hours and minutes for each is a pearl I count over, each pearl a precious emblem and at the end a cross is hung--the cross of giving her up for another space of nine thousand, nine hundred of those precious minutes we had her and then--
"She was gone, leaving her mother in tears,
Her heart full of love garnered in the years;
She went looking like a full blown flower,
Blooming in the first burst of womanhood's hour."
--Fragments from Hack.
Several whiles, now and then, the artist who manipulates the keys that casts the type furnishes amusement for me. Last week some of my copy read: "Mrs. Holsworth returning from Joliet and Chicago, Merriman L. Smith taking a trip to the city where seventeen railroads meet the sea. The candy booth enjoyed a splendid sale, and no wonder, when one looked over the salesladies." And this is what the readers had to puzzle over: "Mrs. Holsworth returning from the place where seventeen railroads meet the sea. Merriman L. Smith taking a trip to a splendid sale and no wonder when one looked over the salesladies at Joliet and Chicago."
John B. Heisey hauling wood after ordering twelve Bibles for the burghers.
Girl attempting to improve the shape of her lips with a lipstick. Listen, Sis, no girl has ever been successful in doing this and, besides, it looks terrible in such a public place as the post office.
Girl mopping powder on her face and it looks horrible, especially when done in presence of others. Why not bring in water and wash rag and take a full bath.
Girl with sheer, unmixed, clean, unadulterated silk, or near silk, hose with the seam running around her leg like a vine. Looks awful, and I wonder why they go out that way. Ask Verner Bowers, for he ought to know. Well, anyway, whether he does or not
"The Moving Finer writes; and having writ
Moves on; not all your Piety or Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it."
And, so no Tuesday, January 1, 1929, the people of Collegeport assembled for their nineteenth annual community dinner. About sixty souls were present, but he Kings, Welsbys, Franzens, Liggetts, Walters, Mercks were not represented for each family was struggling with influenza. While there was food a plenty on the long table, I had eyes only for the big dish of the famous Carrie Nelson Noodles and had I to do it over I would not have allowed it to pass until my plate was heaped. I hoped Ben R. Mowery would be there with a plate of noodles prepared in his own factory. Telling about them he gives the impression that he makes them, but my opinion is that Mrs. Mowery, whom all acknowledge as being some classy kooker, at least supervises. Be that as it may, I do know that as my tummy distended with Carrie Nelson Noodles, the cockles of my heart warmed and I felt as though I could kiss my deadliest enemy. The Bradens and Arthur and Ruth Matthes were present, and here comes Paul escorting a peach named Yeager from Blessing. Paul appeared to be in excellent health and I hope it means a reduction in the price of kerosene. One year ago, this day, Mrs. Shuey and Mr. E. H. Holsworth were present, but they are on the other side this day. I looked them over and wondered who would be called this year.
"Think, in the battered Caravanserai
Whose Portals are alternate night and day,
How Sultan after Sultan with his Pomp
Abode his destin'd Hour, and went his way."
Margaret Holsworth informed me that Vern Towers, now living in Nebraska, reads the Tribune and enjoys "Thoughts" and often thought he would write me. Well, why don't you, Vern?
You girls with sallow, pimply faces should try steaming your face over a wash board. Wonderfully effective in clearing complexions. Scrawny arms will become shapely by wringing out clothes and there is no more effective bust developer than hanging out clothes. Carrying tubs of clothes into the house decreases waist measure and makes shapely legs. Try it on the piano once, anyway.
I am glad that Tom Carr surrendered to the sheriff and hope he can prove his innocence. None of us believes that Tom is guilty of theft.
Have wondered why Verner Bowers was late in opening his store, but the reason is clear.
Mrs. Fulcher is confined to her bed with an attack of influenza and her boy, Tommy, is doing the cooking. He brags about the bisquits he makes. They may be the ultimate in bisquits, but the fact is that after Verner has absorbed a few of them he is unable to rise from the table, hence he is late at his store. Hope Mrs. Fulcher makes a rapid recovery.
We miss Ora coming down the road with a bunch of greens, onions or beets and we miss Oscar driving in with is put-put. Fine neighbors, these two. They will be interested in knowing that Bonita has four new grand-children, at presently living with the Homer Goffs.
I, too, would like to know who used the 41,451,577 pounds of snuff manufactured last year.
Oscar Odd says: "A stage cluttered up with nude ladies has been no novelty on Broadway for several years." I don't believe any Texas ladies ever go about in the nude, but of course some of our girls are dressed so thinly that to be a bit nuder would be quite rude and a strain on the eye.
"First likes the whole, then separates what he sees;
On several parts a several praise bestows,
The ruby lips, the well proportioned nose,
The snowy skin, and raven glossy hair,
The dimpled check, and forehead rising fair,
And e'en in sleep itself, a smiling air.
From thence his eyes descending viewed the rest,
Her plump, round arms, white hands and heaving breast."
--Cymon and Ipbigenia, Dryden.
Men are all alike. They see what they see. Oscar has no financial reason to work when the Waldorf-Astoria closes its doors forever for he has accumulated many a grand, but the great thing is the sentiment which has grown in his heart. With tears rolling down his face he refused to lead the last grand march at the annual employees' ball. He could not do it. His emotion was too great. Those who have been guests at this family hotel know of Oscar. I love him because he is sentimental. I am sentimental, myself--I cannot destroy old things, things that are saturated with memories.
"While memory holds a seat
In this distracted globe. Remember thee?
Yea, from the table of my memory
I'll wipe away all trivial fond reports,
All saws of books, all forms, all pressures past,
That youth and observation copied there;
And thy commandment all alone shall live
Within the book and volume of my brain."
The Daily Tribune, January 9, 1929
[Article began with information about Cleopatra, but only Collegeport information is included here.]
Jiminy crickets! How can a man write about Cleopatra when the Miserable Wretch yells, "Come and empty this tub of water?"
Judd Mortimer Lewis has put the kibosh on "sow's tootsies, carrots, spinach, parsnip and eggplant." Shows he donít know what good eating is. Give me that menu plus some of the Famous Carrie Nelson Noodles and I will live to be a hundred years old.
During the past week I have received a wonderful bouquet from a Bay City lady reader, and before I had a chance to be surfeited, or satiated, with its perfume along come a brick bat. A reader (sex and name unknown) commenting on "Thoughts About Impatience," writes these words: "If you would be more patient with your good wife, people would think more of you." Just a difference in thought, notion, viewpoint, perspective. Can't please all folks, all the time.
E. L. Hall has his private bog hole in which to leave his car.
Stanley Wright hauling wood without chains.
Roy Nelson bringing Rosalie to school.
Mrs. Thomas Hale (Barbara) here to take care of her mother.
Ben R. Mowery recovering from the influenza.
The post office sold out on one-cent stamps.
The Carl Boekers home from a visit in Illinois.
North Cable getting fifteen eggs per day from seventeen Black Giant Jersey hens.
John Merck getting a reputation as a skunk catcher.
I had the pleasure of attending a meeting of the Collegeport Woman's Club the other day and must congratulate them on the manner in which they dispatch business. The League boys might attend one of these meetings and learn something about parliamentary practice. Not once did a member speak without properly addressing the chair and gaining recognition and then confined remarks to the question before the house. Business was dispatched properly and after adjournment then visiting and gossip began. I was not invited to the meeting, but it was held at Homecroft and that is where I and the Miserable Wretch hang out, so they were obliged to bear with me, but insisted that I occupy the bleachers. Fine lot of women we have in this club and it is doing a good work.
Margaret Holsworth leaving for her school work in Chicago. Bet the sun does not shine as bright in the Holsworth home when she is away. Of course Jack is some son, but Margaret is some daughter, if you understand what I mean.
Frances Eisel getting the mail and looking sweet, dignified and stately.
We have some splendid looking girls, many of them attractive, enticing, alluring, charming, winning and among them is Ruth Mowery. The Mowery family are not blamed for being proud of their daughter.
Anyway, I am glad that Ben R. is able to be out after a severe attack of the influenza.
Frances King with her golden hair a hangin' round her head.
Tom Hale coming over from Wadsworth. Wonder what for?
The League has paid Miss Bird the ten bucks promised on the health contest organized by Miss Frances Mayfield, county health nurse. If it encourages one child to better health conditions, it is money well spent.
Hope L. E. Liggett butchers one each week so long as he sends over some more of those elegant, graceful, refined, fashionable spare ribs, garnished with enchanting, fascinating, bewitching liver. "Auf wiedersechen."
The Daily Tribune, January 16, 1929
By Harry Austin Clapp
[Collegeport information taken from longer article.]
There is sadness in my heart this day, for have just learned of the death of a good old friend in the person of W. R. Allison, of Houston, who died Thursday. I have known him for more than fifteen years and rarely visited Houston without meeting him. Always affable, courteous, sociable, gracious, I consider it a privilege to have known this man. He had much to do with the development of Harris county and the Midcoast. One of the original organizers of the Houston Real Estate Exchange and a prominent figure in the real estate business. He was so progressive that he never understood what retrogression meant. Patriotic, liberal, always ready with money or strength for any proposition that was for the benefit of the other fellow. I loved this man for just what he was. I have only one fault to find with him. Some years ago we took a trip north to interview the Frisco management regarding tourist rates to the Midcoast. We went to St. Louis over the Katy and we found that only two berths were open, an upper and a lower, so he proposed that we cut cards for the lower. He won, but I thought then, and still think that W. R. sort o' stacked the cards on me. Being accused of it he denied it of course, but bought me a fine dinner to square the thing. Anyway, I am sad this day because this fine gentleman has passed away.
"The dead are like the stars by day
Withdrawn from mortal eye,
But not extinct, they hold their way
In glory through the sky;
Spirits from bondage set free,
Vanish amidst immensity,
Where human thoughts, like human sight,
Fall to pursue their trackless light."
The other day Carl Boeker started from home with his truck and Mrs. Boeker noticed that one tire was sort of flat and so being a good wife she yelled at the top of her voice, "Flat tire! flat tire! flat tire!" The neighbors hearing her thought she yelled "Fire! Fire! Fire!" and turned out en masse to fight the fire demon.
George Welsby thinking to renew an old friendship pulled on a pair of trousers of the vintage of 1920 and as he did so felt something like paper in the waist band over the watch pocket. He called his wife's attention to it and she taking a pair of scissors ripped the band open, and lo, out came two one dollar bills. This was good luck for George but tough on the Collegeport housewives, for every man in the burg is not having his trousers ripped open, hoping they, too, may find a hidden treasure.
Cream is coming in slowly but never mind, for soon grass will start and with it increased cream.
Wonder what has become of the Bay City creamery that Doc Harkey promised?
The Briggs & Company drag line is busy cleaning out the drain ditches, a work badly needed.
The miserable wretch picking out nuts for candy making. I picked up the shells and was amused to see how the nuts got together.
Went to Palacios with George Welsby and found that Commissioner Harrison has put in some first class cement culverts.
Palacios seemed almost as busy as Collegeport.
According to my reporter, the principal subject for discussion at the Sunday school was whether new born babies were born in sin. Most of the Christians voted in the affirmative. A few Sundays ago the subject was tainted money and the old time Christians were of the opinion that the person should never use tainted money. I wonder what tainted money is. Does it smell bad? How can one distinguish money with a taint from money that is virtuous, moral, chaste, pure? Ye gods! and suffering snails! Is it true that tainted money will not satisfy the hunger of a starving one, or clothe the naked? As for me being only a Christian by inheritance, bring on your tainted money. I'll not require a dollar of it to present a marriage certificate before I use it. The good deacons of our churches have taken many a dollar on the Sunday collection basin that was won in a Negro crap game the night before.
Rusty needs a good sound spanking, for he has developed into a very naughty dog.
By an order issued by Mussolini the new twenty lira bears these words: "Miglio vivere un giorno da leone, che cento anni da pacora," which means in American talk, "It is better to live one day like a lion than one hundred years like a sheep." Think what a helluva time the sheep will have in that time and no lions roaming about.
Carlyle once said, "Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure that there is one less rascal in the world."
For evening driving Merriman L. Smith uses a Buick Master Six, but for morning calls he takes his Ford touring. Some style in our preacher.
Two more of my old friends have passed the ford into the other world. Gordon Lawson killed in a railroad crossing wreck and E. H. Koch dying in a Houston hospital. Gordon was the first man I met when I landed in Matagorda county, and for twenty years we have been friends. I regret his tragic death and the loss of this friend. E. H. Koch was an El Campo banker and at one time a member of the executive board and treasurer of the Texas Midcoast Industrial Congress. In this business I came to know him well and can say that El Campo and the Midcoast have lost one of its progressive and patriotic men. Three good old timers taken in one week.
Rain, rain and then more rain, and with it mud, mud and more mud, except when one is on the "nine-foot sidewalk." Wonder if it will let up long enough for planting cotton?
"The rain though raining every day
Upon the just and the unjust fella,
Falls chiefly on the just, because
The unjust has the just's umbrella."
A stranger said to Seth Corse, "So you are the postmaster, justice of the peace, real estate agent, house renter of this town?" an Seth modestly replied, "Yes sir! You might say I'm the Mussolini of Collegeport." Maybe that is not true. Anyway, lots of things appear in this column that are just as far from the truth.
The King's Daughters met at Homecroft Thursday and so I had a chance to sit in on the game. For the benefit of those who live in marble palaces on the shore of an inland lake will say that those present were Mesdames Holsworth, Crane, Nelson, Liggett, King, Kundinger, Heisey, Wright, Clapp and Ackerman. The work consisted of making a bed quilt for the suffering kids of the Fiji islands. Report of the secretary was an interesting document and disclosed the fact that the organization has accomplished much valuable work during the year. They voted the sum of $5.00 to the late cyclone fund and re-elected all the officers. I was much interested in the eats which consisted of everything from Wright fried chicken to pork spare ribs, Doknots [donuts?], a pan of those Liggett baked apples, each one looking like a big maraschino cherry, plum pudding, peaches, pineapple and to crown the menu there before my eyes was a big pan of those celebrated Carrie Nelson Noodles. When I see noodles I see nothing else, so gathered a generous bunch to my tummy while the gathering was good. If Ben Mowery fails to bring a mess of his noodles to the supper February 22nd, I shall believe that he has no noodle factory.
[Paragraph about savings deposits around U. S. not included.]
Well, anyway, Ruth Mowery and Mamie Franzen out dog catching brought home the game, so what are we about savings deposits?
Jack Holsworth working hard building a fence, assisted by John Merck and Carl Boeker. Ought to be a fine fence with such splendid talent.
It might be well for us to remember that tomorrow is just what today was yesterday. Not much change except that we have drifted just a bit closer to the other shore.
The Daily Tribune, Tuesday, January 22, 1929
By Harry Austin Clapp
I cannot vouch for the truthfulness of this tale, except that what follows is the truth as told to me. To some it will be of interest, as it was to me.
In the year 1898 my camp in Mexico was established at a place called Anita where we were engaged in opening a placer mine. Among the men who worked for me was a Maya Indian and his woman was about as magnificent specimen of physical woman as it has ever been my pleasure to see. She stood six feet high, weighed about 180 pounds, splendid shoulder and bust development. She had jet black hair that hung below her waist, black eyes, and a complexion that would be a delight to any woman, so clear it was, but looked like burnished copper.
The work people lived about one-fourth mile below my camp but daily came to my camp for supplies so I saw her often and had opportunity to talk with her. One day she told me of the remnant of a tribe of white Indians. Having never seen anything of the kind I doubted her story, but she insisted and told me that they lived not far from Anita, across the line in Sinaloa. She was very proud that she was a Maya and used to brag that she was pure Indian and a member of that ancient tribe.
About 1900 I moved the camp to a place called La Noria, so called because I blasted out of the granite the only well in the country. La Noria means "the well." At this place we had a community of perhaps one hundred souls, and often men, women and children from other sections would come to visit, and among them a girl named Felipe. She could play the guitar well and always brought it along. She was almost white but insisted on calling herself an Indian. She claimed to be from a race of white Indians. One day she brought her father and he, also, was white and made the same claims, and after much trouble and insistence he told me the story.
Many centuries ago a peculiar boat came ashore on the west coast. It had white wings and tall spars and from it there came two score strange beings. Strange because they had yellow hair which hung to their shoulders, blue eyes and white skin. They were taken to the Cacique or Chief who allowed them to remain and they soon took up with the customs of the tribe and began to take in marriage the women and the final result a lighter colored strain appeared among the tribe.
Conijaqui, the Cacique, had a daughter, who falling in love with one of the white strangers, desired to take him in marriage. This the chief refused, but as the girl persisted in her plans he at last consented but said, "you shall have your lover and be united with him, but in my way." The Indians were good placer miners and it was their practice to construct tunnels under the river beds to bed rock. Conijaqui caused his daughter and her lover to be bound with chains of gold and seating them in the far end of one of the tunnels allowed the water of the river to flow in until the tunnel was submerged. In this way the lovers were united.
Early in the last century miners exploring some placer ground opened up a curious condition which, upon examination, proved to be an old tunnel and in it they found the skeletons of a man and woman bound together with chains of gold. The chains weighed something like fifty pounds which made it a valuable find. That the old time miners did not construct tunnels to be rock is proven by the fact that in my operations on the Anita Placer, one day when we were working twenty-six feet below the river bed a bar used by the workers to loosen the gravel passed through the floor of the workings and went out of sight. Enlarging the hole and putting the suction pipe of our sixteen inch centrifugal pump into the opening we opened a tunnel and explored it for a distance of twenty feet. The remains of very old workings, clear to bed rock and about thirty feet below the present river bed. Other placer miners have had similar experiences. This discovery increased by interest in the story of the "white" Indian and I believe there must be some truth in the legend.
Anyway, there lives at this day on the border of Sinaloa and Sonora a group of people who, having white skins and brown hair and in many cases blue eyes, claim to be Indians and are proud of their ancestry. Members of the tribe frequently came to my camp and I came to know them well and enjoyed their confidence, and to a man, they swore to the truth of the story that had been handed down from generation to generation. Perhaps it is true, perhaps not, take your choice. Many things appear in this column that are just as true.
Rosalie Nelson placed some macaroni in my mail box. I do not object to "mac" provided it comes in boxes, so next time home she put in a box of this delicious preparation.
Paul Braden is sick again so I look for another advance in the price of kerosene.
Tom Fulcher informs me that what I wrote about his skill in making biscuits has brought him a dozen requests to come to Bay City and make biscuits in private houses.
John Merck hauling feed from Palacios.
Mrs. Ackerman asked the station agent, "Have you received any wire for me?" and he thinking she meant a telegram, replied, "Nothing has been received." She meant a bundle of fence wire.
The Sunday school elected Mrs. Crane superintendent; Gus Franzen, assistant; Mamie Franzen, secretary; Frances Eisel, assistant; John Carrick, treasurer , and Mrs. L. E. Liggett, pianist.
Some years ago the apartment of a lady was invaded by a burglar while a Bryan parade was passing. Asked why she did not scream for help she replied, "I didn't want folks to think I was hollering for Bryan." Must have been a real good Republican.
J. G. Holland says, "Play may not have so high a place in the diving economy, but it has as legitimate a place as prayer."
They say that Seth Corse appeared at the post office the other day with a suit case. On being asked if he was going away he replied, "No the church is packing old clothes to ship away to some home so I figured I better bring my duds down here until the box is shipped."
Verner Bowers counting his cash, ready for a day's business.
Mrs. Crane, presiding at the Bachman & Son store, busy putting up groceries.
Clifford Ash taking some extra large red fish from the bay in front of his home. He says some of them weighed thirty pounds, more or less, probably a bit less.
I guess all men are alike in some respects and especially in that they all like to be complimented by handsome women. I confess that I enjoy the experience and when the other day one of our finest looking matrons drove by in a Dodge and asked me to take a ride, I swelled up but just as I was about to accept, my swelling was punctured, for she asked another fellow to ride also. This other fellow donít begin to have as handsome face as is mine and he cannot boast of as fine a figure but he claims to be the champion biscuit maker and thus he seemed to outclass me as the lady's eyes seemed to linger fondly on the biscuit maker.
Melyn Arbuckle, the actor, once said, "Hell, no one likes a fat man." It was a fat man who beat me out of a ride with this fascinating lady, and so I say, "What the hell, Bill; what the hell," and turned my eyes once more to the miserable wretch.
The King's Daughters, that active organization, made another quilt last Thursday and put up a splendid box of necessities for one of the cyclone victims.
One of the finest little ladies, one of the sweetest and best behaved in all this burg is the daughter of School Trustee Nelson, and her name is Rosalie.
My Chicago daughter has not written to me for about twelve moons and sometimes I think that I will write as follows"
"Boofel Baby, why don't oo write oo sugar pop?
Or does oo have some ozzer wop
To whom oo send itsy-bitsy love,
Or is oo tumin to see oo popsy dove?"
Wonder if that would jar her into a consciousness that down here in Texas she has a friend father.
"And when the stream which overflowed the soul has passed away, a consciousness remained that it had left...images and precious thoughts that shall not die, and cannot be destroyed."--Wadsworth
(Editor's Note: The above was not written by Albert Wadsworth.)
John Merck selling out fresh meat from another of his fat suidae scrofa.
The Homer Goff family busy shipping their goods to Houston where they will make their home. Rather sudden, but then lots of sudden things happen in this old world.
Dale Welsby taking a week off from his duties with the Western Auto Supply Co., to visit his parents.
Leaden skies cover the heavens, promising more rain which we do not need.
In 1918 I spent some time in army camps and met several doctors and some of them told me they found influenza was less prevalent among smokers. Whether this it true or not I never have suffered from this disease. I found by some study that it made much difference what brand of tobacco was smoked, and that R. J. R. had peculiar properties that aided in warding off the disease. For example, here in this burg Seth Corse and the writer use R. J. R. and neither have had the flu, while Ben R. Mowery and Louis Walter both of whom use Prince Albert have been down with severe cases. The moral is: "Use R. J. R. and escape."
The other day I received a very interesting letter from Mrs. E. A. S., a reader of the Tribune, informing me of the pleasure she has in reading "Thoughts." She thinks the Miserable Wretch is a wonderful woman and I agree with her, but she does not agree with me that I am a Christian by inheritance. She thinks "Why I Am a Christian" is a feeble effort compared with other subjects covered by "Thoughts." Maybe so, maybe so. Who knows? I still think that we are all Christian by inheritance but that some of us by absorbing the spirit of Jesus advance and become more Christ-like but the goal is never attained in this life. No one has reached perfection except the Man Who Hung on the Cross. Anyway, I thank Mrs. A. E. S. for her fine letter and hope I may have the pleasure of meeting her some of these days.
The Daily Tribune, January 30, 1929
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