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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 48

Concluding Prayer

Concluding Prayer.

Praising thee, Holy Humanity, as is most meet, for all the blessings which thy past has accumulated for us; for the rich treasures of knowledge, beauty, and wisdom which it has handed down; for its long roll of great exemplars, our cloud of witnesses, which ministers comfort, support, and guidance in our need; lastly, as we are here more especially bound to do, for the full liberty to speak and act which page 7 we enjoy; we pray that we may not be found unworthy of such benefits, but that, day by day, in all humility and singleness of purpose, with all boldness, and yet tenderness for others, we may magnify thee, and attain for ourselves, and help others to attain, the great blessings which only communion with thee can give: Union, Unity, Continuity.—Amen.

The Faith of Humanity, the Hope of Humanity, the Love of Humanity, bring you comfort and teach you sympathy, give you peace in yourselves, and peace with others now and for ever.—Amen.

Note.—We read the Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis, so strongly recommended by our founder, as the most universally received manual of devotion and of a holy life; but it may be wise here, in order to avoid ambiguity or any doubt as to our use of it, to say that, in using it, we substitute Humanity for God; the social type for the personal type of Jesus; our own inward growth in goodness for outward reward; the innate benevolent instincts for grace; our selfish instincts for nature. So used, its lessons of devotion and humility, of intimate communion with the type we adore, of unceasing moral culture, of self-denying service, of the service not of ourselves but of others, are not the less available because they are clothed in the language of an older faith, and sanctioned by the experience of many generations of faithful and devout men.