Church and State in the Modern Age: A Documentary History

By J. F. MacLear | Go to book overview

Charter is not bad; if the men who use it are not bad! But will the Charter make you free? Will it free you from slavery to ten-pound bribes? Slavery to beer and gin? Slavery to every spouter who flatters your self-conceit, and stirs up bitterness and headlong rage in you? That, I guess, is real slavery; to be a slave to one's own stomach, one's own pocket, one's own temper. Will the Charter cure that? Friends, you want more than Acts of Parliament can give.

Englishmen! Saxons! Workers of the great, cool-headed, strong-handed nation of England, the workshop of the world, the leader of freedom for 700 years, men say you have common-sense! then do not humbug yourselves into meaning "licence", when you cry for "liberty"; who would dare refuse you freedom? for the Almighty God, and Jesus Christ, the poor Man, who died for poor men, will bring it about for you, though all the Mammonites of the earth were against you. A nobler day is dawning for England, a day of freedom, science, industry!

But there will be no true freedom without virtue, no true science without religion, no true industry without the fear of God, and love to your fellow-citizens.

Workers of England, be wise, and then you must be free, for you will befit to be free.

A WORKING PARSON

Source:[ Fanny Kingsley] (ed.), Charles Kingsley ( London, 1877), I, 156-157.


SUGGESTIONS FOR BACKGROUND AND REFERENCE

G. C. Binyon, The Christian Socialist Movement in England ( London, 1931).

T. Christensen, Origin and History of Christian Socialism 1848-54 (Aarhus, Denmark, 1962).

E. R. Norman, The Victorian Christian Socialists ( Cambridge, 1987).

C. E. Raven, Christian Socialism 1848-1854 ( London, 1920).

M. F. Thorp, Charles Kingsley 1819-1875 ( Princeton, 1937).


96
"The New Idea" November 2, 1850

Maurice, Kingsley, and Ludlow believed that the task of applying Christian principles to social and political questions required not only direct cooperation experiments, but a program of education through a new set of "Tracts for the Times" as well. Accordingly, they issued a series of short-lived journals: Politics for the People ( April-July 1848), Tracts on Christian Socialism ( 1850), The Christian Socialist ( 1850-1851), and Tracts of Priests and People ( 1862). This manifesto by Ludlow in the opening issue of The Christian Socialist forcefully announced the group's aims. Anglican socialism's early experiments in producer cooperatives failed, but its ideas won increasing support and influenced modem Anglicanism and Labour politics.

-241-

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