“A Brief History of the Universalist Church”

It seems recently I’ve run across a number of resources that make me say, “Jeez, if I had that ten years ago, I would have saced so much time.” In this case, the accomplishment would be figuring out how Universalist institutions worked together, and what the ethos is. The work: A Brief History of the Universalist Church for Young People, by L. B. Fisher.

What was the ethos, the working relationship? Fisher, from the now-defunct Crane Theological School, is rather candid that Universalists have been sloppy to make the jump from being hearers of the word, to doers, especially when it comes to church organizing. And that there was much parochialism. This was couched less as what has been, but what is assumed by all and can be overcome. (So I’m willing to believe it more than if he was “telling what the real problem is.”)

It has no publication date, but this second edition, has enough internal evidence to date it to the first half of 1904, or exactly a century ago. Nice. It was produced for the Young People’s Christian Union, a grandparent of the YRUU, which might explain its directness and small size. I can be read in one longish sitting, even though it is 210 pages.

It shouldn’t be hard to find a copy. (I got mine on Ebay.) Indeed, it will be my next book to get online, should I ever have time for such a project, and if there were twenty of us with a copy and a yen for scanning and typing . . .

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