McKinley Memorial Sunday
Spontaneously in most cases, but
at the suggestion of prelates like Cardinal Gibbons in some instances
and of public officials like Governor Stone of Pennsylvania in others,
churches of all faiths set apart one service last Sunday as a memorial
service for the beloved President of the nation who was killed by
an assassin one year ago. Everywhere clergy and people responded
naturally and honestly to the call. Nowhere so far as we have seen
was there anything but admiration expressed for his life and character.
At Canton, O., his home, his long-time friend, Judge Day, whom he
selected to be Secretary of State, paid his tribute, and emphasized,
as all must who study the character of the dead leader, his gentleness
of spirit, his forgiving temper, his disinclination to harm the
feelings of any man. This point is admirably developed by another
of President McKinley’s Cabinet advisers, Charles Emory Smith, in
his recent article in the Saturday Evening Post. Rev. Dr.
P. S. Moxom, preaching in the South Church, Springfield, last Sunday,
expressed the judgment of thoughtful men when he said that Mr. McKinley
“did his work in a difficult time, when new problems were emerging,
with a fidelity and skill which are appreciated more and more highly
as the man and his work recede into historical perspective. One
thing grows clear, he was always somewhat greater than we knew.
. . . It was its moral quality which gave to his life its supreme
Temperamentally Mr. McKinley was quite
different from his successor. Each was fitted for the task to be
done, and journals which, like the New York Sun, are now
covertly trying to undermine the influence of President Roosevelt
by comparing him with President McKinley, to the disparagement of
the former, are not doing that which the dead statesman would indorse.