The Rev. Dr. Charles S. MacFarland, general secretary erneritus of the Federal Council of the Churches of Christ in America, denounced the persecution of the Jews in Germany as a menace to Christianity and to civilization, in a remarkable address delivered on Rosh Hashonah at a meeting of the World Fellowship of Faiths, at Grace Episcopal Church. Dr. MacFarland declared that there were two ways of combatting the Nazi “unrighteousness” and that the Jews could not be blamed for using the more drastic of the two means â€” a counter-attackâ€”to fight the race hostility raging in Europe today, but he added that the second recourse, education and persuasion, must not be neglected.
“Christians,” said Dr. MacFarland, “cannot remain silent or hushed in the face of the monstrous injustice,” and he urged that they must go farther than merely withstanding race hostility abroad or in their own country, and that it is their duty to “educate and persuade the wrongdoers to turn about, confess and repent.”
He referred to the Nazi dictatorial Evangelical Church which is violating the fundamental principles of Christianity by racial discrimination and injustice, and praised the courageous pastors in Germany who refuse to submit to Nazi dictation.
“Our hope is with them,” exclaimed Dr. MacFarland. “No outside attack on Germany can do so much as can thus be done, by carrying our case to the true Christians of Germany, as the Universal Christian Council is doing. We must not rest content with either condemning wrong or helping its sufferers, but by doing all within our power to bring those moral forces to bear which alone can change hearts as well as deeds.”
Dr. MacFarland knows whereof he speaks. He studied the problem and witnessed the unrighteousness in Germany. He depicted the shocking situation in his recent book on the status of the Christian Church in Naziland. But since the publication of his book, the present masters of Germany have intensified their efforts to undermine civilization, to exterminate the Jews and uproot true Christianity.
It is quite natural that, under these circumstances, Dr. MacFarland should not advocate with even greater vigor a policy of firm resistance to the destructive forces of religious hate and racial persecution in Naziland.
Dr. MacFarland has for years been an earnest and conscientious champion of justice to the Jew. He has for years preached and worked for better understanding between Gentiles and Jews in this country and abroad.
It is truly inspiring to recall the splendid cooperation he gave, as secretary general of the Federal Council of the Churches of Christ, to the cause of the unfortunate Mendel Beilis through whom the Tsarist government sought to discredit all Jewry, by fabricating evidence and staging the ritual murder trial. Dr. MacFarland and the organization he represented also identified themselves from the very beginning with the campaign against the Tsarist government’s anti-Jewish discrimination in the matter of American passports.