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[94] Jackson overtook me (riding alone, as was his frequent habit), and, inquiring where I was going, he promptly dismounted, and throwing his bridle over his arm walked with me several miles, engaged in earnest conversation about the religious interests of his men, and how best to promote them.

He was especially anxious to have his regiments supplied with chaplains, and his corps with missionaries, and it was largely due to his exertions that his corps was better supplied than any other part of the army.

In a letter to the Southern Presbyterian General Assembly he said:

My views are summed up in a few words:

Each branch of the Christian Church should send into the army some of its most prominent ministers who are distinguished for their piety, talents and zeal; and such ministers should labor to produce concert of action among chaplains and Christians in the army. These ministers should give special attention to preaching to regiments which are without chaplains, and induce them to take steps to get chaplains, to let the regiments name the denominations from which they desire chaplains selected, and then to see that suitable chaplains are secured.

A bad selection of a chaplain may prove a curse instead of a blessing. If the few prominent ministers thus connected with each army would cordially co-operate, I believe that glorious fruits would be the result. Denominational distinctions should be kept out of view, and not touched upon. And, as a general rule, I do not think that a chaplain who would preach denominational sermons should be in the army. His congregation is his regiment, and it is composed of various denominations. I would like to see no question asked in the army of what denomination a chaplain belongs to; but let the question be, Does he preach the Gospel?

The neglect of the spiritual interests of the army may be seen from the fact that not one-half of the regiments have chaplains.

Among the wants of the church in the army are some ministers of such acknowledged superiority and zeal as, under God, to be the means of giving concert of action. Our chaplains, at least in the same military organization encamped in the same neighborhood, should have their meetings, and through God's blessing devise successful plans for spiritual conquests. All the

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Stonewall Jackson (1)
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