No Sorrow like Our Sorrow: Northern Protestant Ministers and the Assassination of Lincoln

By David B. Chesebrough | Go to book overview
Save to active project

6
Sermon Conclusions

Hero, Martyr, Friend, Farewell!

-- MATTHEW SIMPSON

THERE CAN BE no great rhetoric if the conclusion of a discourse is weak and uninspiring. Most of the preachers who composed their sermons as a response to the assassination of President Lincoln understood and practiced this cardinal rule of oratory. As they drew their sermons to a close they reached the summit of their oratorical and homiletical skills. Their concluding sentences and paragraphs are dramatic, moving, eloquent, and well crafted. They make a profound impact upon those who can only read the words; and one can only speculate as to the effect these words had upon those who heard them in a time of great emotional upheaval. By sharing some of those concluding paragraphs, contemporaries may in some limited way recapture the highly charged feelings and tensions of those spring days in 1865, as well as come to appreciate how highly skilled these preachers were in the employment of their craft.

Many, perhaps most, of the concluding paragraphs are the preachers' final attempts to eulogize the martyred President. On Sunday, April 23, at the Holy Trinity Church of Philadelphia, as the body of Lincoln lay in state, the revered Episcopalian rector Phillips Brooks drew to a close what some think is his greatest sermon by likening Lincoln to a shepherd who faithfully fed his flock.

The Shepherd of the People! that old name that the best rulers ever craved. What ruler ever won it like this dead President of ours? He fed us faithfully and truly. He fed us with counsel when we were in doubt, with inspiration when we sometimes faltered, with caution when we would be rash, with calm, clear, trustful cheerfulness through many an hour when our hearts were dark. He fed hungry souls all over the country with sympathy and consolation. He spread before the whole land

-79-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
No Sorrow like Our Sorrow: Northern Protestant Ministers and the Assassination of Lincoln
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 204

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?