Publication information
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Source: Biblical World
Source type: journal
Document type: editorial
Document title: “Character and Service Through Suffering”
Author(s): anonymous
Date of publication: October 1901
Volume number: 18
Issue number: 4
Pagination: 243-48 (excerpt below includes only pages 247-48)

“Character and Service Through Suffering.” Biblical World Oct. 1901 v18n4: pp. 243-48.
McKinley assassination (religious interpretation); William McKinley (suffering); William McKinley (religious character); William McKinley (political character).
Named persons
William McKinley.


Character and Service Through Suffering [excerpt]

     Within the past month we have witnessed among us one of the sad tragedies of history. The suffering even to death of President McKinley was in the truest sense vicarious. Assassination was directed against him solely as the chief representative of the government of the American people. This nation aims to embody in its political and social organization the principles and the spirit of Christianity, to accomplish the actual brotherhood of men within its borders, and to secure as rapidly as [247][248] possible to all its citizens the rights, privileges, and blessings which pertain to humanity in its ideal conception. But it is not strange that this purpose of our government should be unknown to ignorant immigrants from Europe who find a refuge here from oppressive and class-ridden governments abroad; nor that by such men the power of our government should be misunderstood as to its ability to effect its purpose at once and in full. To such ignorance and misconception this tragedy was due.
     In his four years as president of the United States, William McKinley consummated a long career of sincere and useful service to his country. Throughout his life he was a genuine and devout Christian, whose one wish was to do the will of God as revealed in Christ, and to accomplish that God’s will should be done in the world. This was the thought and prayer even of his dying words. His efforts were continually directed with love, energy, and wisdom to secure the happiness and welfare of every person who came within his influence. In the conflicts of political opinion which waged about him, the sincerity of his motives, the high ideal of the office intrusted to him, and his devotion to the whole people were seldom questioned. The sufferings, therefore, through which he passed at Buffalo were in no degree deserved by him or brought on by him personally. He died a martyr to the cause of order, right, and truth; he will receive a martyr’s honor. Both his character and his service were perfected in those seven days of anguish. May his vicarious sufferings have that purifying and uplifting influence upon our nation which martyrdom in God’s providence has never failed to bring, so that good government and the Christian brotherhood of men shall through President McKinley have received a mighty impulse toward complete realization.



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