1. Because the Universalist Church is a part of the Christian church and the Christian church is needed today as never before.
2. Because the Universalist Church is liberal, which means, not that it is lax and easygoing, but that it is open-minded toward new truth, whether of science or of religion, and that it regards all truth as from God.
3. Because the Universalist Church takes its stand squarely on the teachings of Jesus:
The Universalist Church recognizes frankly that only faith can bridge the gap between time and eterpity. Without dogmatism it emphasizes the many grounds for the conviction that our beloved dead have not passed out of existence but live on freed from the limitations of the flesh. It invites men to join the Universalist Church to deepen the springs of faith within themselves and to build faith in a world that is full of doubt and sorrow.
4. Because in the Universalist Church no one form of words is required as a condition of membership, but simply acceptance of the principles of Jesus. This gives to the church a breadth and tolerance that enrich its life. Universalists are not competing with other churches or attacking them. Universalists endeavor constantly to look behind the words that men of other churches use to the truths which those words seek to express, and so Universalists find unity behind apparent opposition and antagonism.
5. Because without hesitation or apology the Universalist Church has broken completely with the theology which pictures God as vindictive, man as under his wrath and curse, Jesus as offered up to buy God off, and endless hell as certain for the majority.
6. Because in the Universalist Church, as in other socially minded churches, men lay emphasis on the duty of members to serve the community. In proportion to its numbers the Universalist Church has an enviable record for Red Cross and other war relief work, charity organization work, prison reform, and good government movements.
Men of prophetic insight in its fellowship are making important contributions to put the spirit of Christainity into all projected change.
7. Because the Universalist Church, however far short it may have fallen, has held up the ideal of better worship, better church architecture, better church music, better religious literature, and better religious education.
8. Because the Universalist Church is made up of friendly people, who welcome strangers and who try to live up to the implications of the golden rule. Not that everybody in the Universalist Church is friendly or fairminded or informed about Universalist beliefs or willing to lend a hand, but enough people in the church are kind and intelligent, and most people in the church are kind and intelligent enough to create a friendly, helpful atmosphere in which strangers quickly find themselves at home and happy.
9. Because we are in the midst of World War II, a titanic struggle where the heaviest of burdens rest upon us and where we need the comfort and strength of religion. Because the Universalist Church with its message of perfect love that casts out fear nerves men for the difficult tasks thrown upon them and the sacrifices that they are called upon to make.
10. Because the era of war must be followed by an era of reconstruction, where millions will suffer disillusionment, hardship and loss of faith in God and in fellow man, and where the gospel of God's unfailing love as proclaimed by the Universalist Church will be a mighty influence for the salvation of both men and nations.
11. Because a cause of high importance to men everywhere may languish and
suffer without your sup-
12. Because Universalists have a history of which they have a right to be proud, a beginning in the labors of men who had a true conception of the goodness of God and who were willing to suffer persecution in order that their faith might prevail. Because the story of John Murray and Thomas Potter is one of the most beautiful in religious history, and the life work of men like Hosea Ballou, Thomas Whittemore, Edwin Hubbel Chapin, John Coleman Adams, and a host of others is of permanent value to all the churches.
If you who read these words have dropped out of some church because of the teachings of a harsh theology or for other reasons, consider whether "in these times that try men's souls" Almighty God may not be counting on you to join those who believe that it is his will that we should unite to overcome the forces of evil and establish his Kingdom on earth.
PUBLISHED BY THE UNIVERSALIST CHURCH Commission on Literature